Traveling to this part of the world comes with a lot of warnings about safety. We took these warnings into consideration, but didn't let them deter us. We've observed many times to each other how much it holds us back if we're stingy with our trust of people we meet as well as the places we find ourselves, and having an open attitude has been rewarded with a lot of wonderful experiences. However, pursuing our resolve to get off the beaten path can sometimes put us in situations that make it hard to decide if we're extending that trust too far.
Yesterday, a rainstorm turned the roads to rivers, forcing us to park on the fringe of a rougher-looking neighborhood in Panama City while Aidan and I trekked to a nearby police station on foot to sort out paperwork for crossing the Darien Gap. Just minutes after we left, Joel and Parker were attacked while working in and standing guard over the van. A man took them by surprise when he reached into the van and tried to steal the group laptop. After a few struggles to the ground that ended with Parker being dragged into the street, the laptop had taken a few hits, and the attacker gave up and ran away. Parker and Joel were shaken but luckily there are just a few bruises, and one broken fingertip. The laptop, the lifeline to everything we create for this project, didn't fare so well. In its current condition it's unusable, but it could definitely be salvaged and working again.
We've put together this store to offset the cost of repairing this integral part of our project. We'll be losing a big chunk of change out of a very strict budget. Without the laptop and our editing software, we can't produce webisodes (and man, episode 3 was so close to being done!). Web updates and photo editing have slowed to a crawl as they are being done primarily on our phones. So if you have been enjoying our content, or your walls are bare, or you're simply feeling generous, check out our new images. You'd really be helping us recover by picking up some prints, and probably yourself as well, because let's face it: you don't know what you're getting anyone for Christmas yet (hint).