Castaway on a Hostile Shore


I’m still drifting through Central American memories, looking at my life 10 short years ago…

The present has rippled and the past intervened. It’s leaking through the walls of this cold northern room, and all those feelings are coming back with it.

My Memory Walks The City

As a writer and a constant reader of books, I’ve begun to feel increasingly disconnected from other people. I think it comes from spending too much time alone in a room. There’s a glass barrier between myself and the rest of the world. I’m seeing it all at one remove, through the TV screen of my eyes, from several feet back in my head. Maybe it’s a consequence of traveling alone, when the glances of strangers don’t rest on you for very long.

You Can’t Go Back Again

Panama City, 10 years later.

The plaza in the colonial district still looks the same. The tidal flats are still muddy, and they still smell of the sea. Punta Paitilla still juts out across the bay, a glimmering jewel of finance, luxury, and life lived on another plane. The big ships are still there, floating at random anchorages, waiting to transit the Canal. A couple of them even look familiar. But so much has changed.