Panama – February 14, 2017
It’s Tuesday, and Valentine’s Day. Kind of a mellow day today, with rain in the forecast (a chance, anyway; it never did).
After breakfast we hung around the pool to read. Lisa finished her Janet Ivanovich novel (crappy) and I’m halfway through Flowers for Algernon (excellent).
We went to a little Greek place for lunch—sort of a fast-food gyro version of Subway called Suvlas (where they call them “yeeros”). The “Greek-style” ones were meatless but excellent, and loaded with veggies, tzatziki, and kalamatas, and served with fries and a soda.
It was getting close to naptime, but I headed to the wine store to get an opener—we always seem to forget those—and a couple more bottles. I wound up having to spend $17 on a waiter’s-style wine key that would also open beer bottles, but it’s a solid little number and will serve for years as a souvenir of our trip (if we remember where it came from).
We got cleaned up after our nap, had a little snack of jamón serrano, smoked cheese and wine, and headed out for our special Valentine’s Day dinner. Lisa was in the mood for Asian, and there was a little southeast Asian/Thai joint between Beirut and the hotel. It was called Sukhi. Reviews online were decent, so we went there.
As soon as we walked in the door, the place smelled like mothballs. The atmosphere was a bit diner-ish, so it gets a 1 so far on ambience, but if the food is good…
…and, it wasn’t.
The two “artisanal” beers on the menu weren’t available, but they had one called Purple Haze. I figured it would be a dank, super-hoppy IPA smelling like Hindu Kush, but it was a raspberry lager. Yay.
We ordered chicken satay with peanut sauce and summer rolls as appetizers. The rolls weren’t good, and the peanut sauce was the worst I had ever had—bland and strangely rancid-tasting.
Thankfully the entrées were better. Lisa had ginger chicken with jasmine rice, and I had Thai basil stir-fry (also with jasmine rice). Both were very tasty, with the perfect spice level.
We were nearly done with our meal when some of the other customers started sneezing. Then it hit Lisa, and then me. There was a haze of capsaicin in the air, and the cook was wearing a surgeon’s mask. We were all being pepper-sprayed. I got the check while Lisa went outside to breathe, and we went back to the hotel.
It would be an early night tonight; we’re up early tomorrow so we can get breakfast in before a 7:30 pickup. We’re hitting the jungle tomorrow!