We're back in the U.S.! After a month in Panama, it's surprising and completely pleasant to be in a place where you know exactly how things work. The customs officer greets you in English. You pick up background conversations and song lyrics without even trying. You know where to buy what you need, how much it will cost, and what's the best bang for your buck, food-wise, during the airport layover. You know where things are and how things work. This is amazingly comfortable.
Our cell phones were dead after a month of disuse (always remove the batteries from the phones if you're not using them), and we realized just how hard it is to manage a call home, or anywhere, if you can't suddenly whip a phone out of your pocket. How easy communication has become...if only you have the right gear.
We're in Michigan for another week or so, visiting Matt's family. If we can turn this visit, too, into a writer's retreat, we'll stay longer. If not, we'll have a nice visit and come back to Wisconsin sooner.