I'm an easy-going Panamanian/Italian, living in the Bay Area after a few years of freezing in Pittsburgh, PA. Some quick facts about Panama - I do get asked these quite a bit, haha:
+ Yes, Panama is a country.
+ There have been two songs made about Panama that I know of: one by Van Halen, the other by the Animaniacs.
Exhibit A: http://youtu.be/w-NshzYK9y0
Exhibit B: http://youtu.be/EGMBUzFyVl4
I try to travel somewhere awesome at least once a year; I get to meet tons of neat people and it helps keep things in perspective. This year I drove 5310 Km (~3300 mi for you 'mericans) from Pittsburgh to SF.