Back in October, when I was on Maui, Tina and a couple that lives in our condo building had planned a short trip for the four of us to Bocas del Toro - on the Caribbean side of Panama. Bocas is mainly made up of many small islands, just off the coast of Panama. It feels much more Caribbean than Latin.
The trip was booked for early December. Of course, we didn't expect to still be in the sales process for our Maui house at this time. However, the escrow was well underway and the tickets were already paid for, so we joined our neighbors for a 3 day, 2 night getaway.
It was a nice diversion from the roller coaster ride of the house sale process. Hhere are some pictures from the trip:
Once we returned, it was back to tracking our escrow and trying to get the sale closed before the end of the year. Most of the paperwork that needed to be signed could be handled remotely, via DocuSign. However, there was one document that the County of Maui required to have a "wet" signature and a notarization. They wouldn't accept a foreign notarization, so I had to:
- Take a flight to Panama City, arriving in the morning
- Take a taxi from the airport to the American Embassy
- Get the document notarized (for which the embassy charged $100)
- Take a taxi to the other side of Panama City, to a DHL office (sent overnight - $65)
- Taxi back to the airport to catch the return flight (same day)
All in all, I figured the cost of getting the document notarized and sent to Maui was close to $400 - still much cheaper than a flight to Maui...
All of the negotiations, emails, texts, phone calls, and additional efforts paid off. We closed the sale of the house on December 30th and rang in the new year with no more financial obligations in the U.S.! It was an amazing feeling!