Who your neighbors would be in Panama varies depending on where you live. Most North Americans or foreigners in general, tend to gravitate towards expat areas because they are not ready to make the adjustments in one big step. They want to be around people who are like-minded and similar to them, who speak the same language, and so forth. So if you go to expat communities of course, you would be living around expats and foreigners.
If you get outside of those areas then you would be of course living with the local Panamanians. What they would be like would depend on where you are located but for the most part they are very simple and very hardworking and your neighbors would be significantly different than us because there is a significant difference in the education, in values and the way they do things.
For instance, maybe they don’t value money as much as we do. They are very happy and they are very simple. They seem to be very, very happy considering the amount of money that they make. Their value system is just different than ours. They are not as driven or ambitious to make lots of money, though it is not to say that you could say that about every single Panamanian.
Living amongst Panamanians would require you to certainly make some adjustments. They would have chickens, cows, and roosters and maybe they don’t speak the same language, so all these are things that you definitely need to get used to. I find it that the number one thing that they value is family. Panamanians have tight knit family groups. They do every single thing together. When they go to the grocery store, they are with the whole family. When they go to any outing of any kind, they typically have the whole family in tow.
(Expats finding new friends and romance, Panama, pictured.)