Black Hawks win the Stanley Cup Tournament. Chicago fans celebrate in Wrigleyville.

Chicago Black Hawk Fans swarmed the streets of Wrigleville minutes after Patrick Kane slipped the winning goal into Philadelphia Flyer’s net. Honking and cheering was heard from blocks away hours after the tournament was over. There was a general sense of camaraderie within the mass.  This was a celebration, not a riot, none-the-less police officers mounted on horses pushed back and dispersed the crowd. Fans touted homemade Stanley Cup replicas, donned their favorite players jersey’s, and smiled giddily.  It’s been nearly half-a-century since the last time the Black Hawks won the Stanley Cup, the party was overdue!

Pieces of Panama, part 2.

On a Saturday morning a few months ago, I woke to find a missed alert on my phone from a friend and fellow photographer Laurie.

I dialed my voice mail expecting to hear a message continuing some portion of the conversation we’d had at dinner the night before.  To my surprise, the call was regarding something altogether different.

“Hey Maggie, it’s Laurie.  I talked to Johnny tonight and he said you could come to Panama with us.  We’re thinking about going in the next month or so and we’d really like you to join us!”

I thought about it for about 30 seconds before calling her back to tell her  I was on board.

Johnny, Laurie’s husband, was the point person for our travels. We laid down a few specified a few spots of interest (the canal,  countryside, and Caribbean) and he did the rest. A week before our departure he even showed me the excel spreadsheet coordinating our days’ activities in clear color-coated blocks of time. His enthusiasm for Panama was contagious, especially with the constant promise of hammock time on the beach.

I could only spare 5 days for the trip with my schedule, but I feel like I got a real taste of the country.  The people were warm and laughed easy.  Johnny’s family was wonderful.  His mom made a number of tasty meals for us, delighting my palette with tamales, a sweet yogurt drink, fresh fruit, and other treats I snarfed down.  To our delight, Marco, Johnny’s cousin spent three days with us. Marco knows a lot about Panama and was really patient with my constant queries about “that over there,” or “the history of this spot.”

The photos below chronicle a lot of our adventures, from our morning hike at the Smithsonian owned island, Barro Colorado, to our day at the Caribbean.

With Laurie, Johnny, and his family as my guide, I was able to see SO much of Panama… I had such a great time, and am already looking forward to the next visit.

Passenger’s reflection on the boat ride to Barro Colorado Island.      

The canal

A shared laugh.

The Jungle

Bus Station.


Our boat driver to the island.

El Cristo Negro

The little Chinese owned Panamanian spot. Delicious.

Sunny Sunday=site scouting.

Went for a drive down south of Chicago this afternoon to visit a building I spotted a year or so back.  It’s a long way from where I live, which is why it’s taken me so long to check it out.   With a free Sunday, a rare sunny day, and a fresh zip card begging to be used, I finally made it to the spot.  This was more of a scouting session than anything else. Needless to say, I was intrigued and can’t wait to go back.