One of the places I have spent the most time at in Panama has been the mall. This may sound dull and you might think that I can do this in any city, but this mall is special. It is called Albrook Mall and it is one of the largest malls I have ever seen! There are hundreds of stores, a carousel, a bowling alley, banks, restaurants, an internet café, a movie theater and a casino. There is also a little train that drives people around. This mall is so large that some stores have more than one location just in this mall. For example, there are three Cinnabons, two Conways, two Titans and many other places have a multiple shops here.
Another experience from Panama that has been notable though it seems ordinary has been the rides I take on the public buses. These buses are called Diablo Rojos, meaning red devil, because they are notorious for having bad drivers. They never close the doors on these buses even when people are packed into them, with some forced to stand on the stairs leading up to the main area. I have only seen them close the doors one time and that was because a police officer drove up next to the driver and demanded that the driver shut the doors because people were hanging out of the bus. Another time I rode the bus there was a big traffic jam so my driver made a U-turn in the middle of the narrow two-lane street as several people honked at him while he turned around the large bus.
Though this sounds like a less than desirable form of transportation it is very cheap and costs about 25 cents anywhere you travel in the city so the buses are always filled with people. However, they are not very reliable and there is no bus schedule. I believe that the drivers do have a route, but they seem to have a lot of freedom in deciding if they follow this or not. Therefore, you never know how long you will wait until the next bus comes. These rides are an adventure and I often acquire interesting stories to tell after hopping on a Diablo Rojo.