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Showing content with the highest reputation since 11/09/2009 in all areas

  1. 21 points
    Just a follow up on this foreigner living on the street. He did disappear for awhile but been back for a month I guess. Looking bit worse for wear. Anyway my GF and I put together some lunch and a few things for him and walked over to give it not knowing what his reaction would be. He was asleep on the bench and I was busy today so did not want to come back later. I said hello twice and he woke up and slowly rose up to a sitting position. Obviously sleeping on a hard surface is causing some pain. Anyway I said I would like to offer you some food if thats OK. He said Oh thank you very much mate. Not sure if he is Aussie. We wished him a merry Christmas and he did the same and I shook his hand. He was shaking a bit, not sure if from hunger or nerves. I said I might come and talk to you tomorrow and he thanked again and said god bless and we left. So he seemed a nice enough guy down on his luck for whatever reason. Put in a couple of bananas after picture taken.
  2. 18 points
    A Little self indulgence I am afraid to make a point. For those that know me sorry to say it again but for those that don't and can get unsure of Hospitals and Doctors here's my story to show a little faith. In 2012 I had a stroke (Whilst i was living in Spain) I was married to my SO who is the love of my Life but I was going to see out my working life in Spain But events took over and as the Consultant ( In the UK) said no need for Surgery at this time as you are only 60% Blocked ( the Arteries) to my Brain ( yes I have one) I could hardly walk, talk write or even type at times and forget driving However I made the decision to Come here Full time and got myself booked in with my wifes Doctor and now some 6+ years on I now walk some 5/6 kms a day, Passed to Drive and what I consider as fit as i am ever going to be. Now all this together with a reduction of blockage to now 45% is due to the Constant monitoring of the said doctor together with the Therapy and Diet she and others suggested, just goes to show that with our help and understanding (In my case anyway) The Medical care is not as bad as many would make out. To illustrate I put up a few photos to show the progression that a stable marriage and good Doctor can make, I often say that we are in a lot of cases our own worst enemies and just do not follow medical suggestions, Instructions and planned Diets and medication ( not to mention exercise) Yet we Blame the Hospitals and Doctors here as useless, well not me I will hasten to add. Yes it is expensive but not as expensive as it could be elsewhere ( even the UK as I hear it reported of late) So with a vote of thanks to My Doctor and her colleagues at SUMC (Dumaguete) the Love and caring of my Wife and daughter I will be around I hope to bug you all for some time to come Not well at all Getting there Trying to enjoy never forgetting the Friends that helped me along the Way plus all the others And last but not least The best Friend I ever Had and the Sprog of course Thank you for Reading Jack
  3. 18 points
    I have been here for around 7 years and in this time I have been waiting for the right circumstances to build a house.We bought a lot just before Christmas and we have now started to build.The lot is 500sm and the house will be 117 sm.I am also going to build some rentals so my family has an income when I go. Here are some pictures to give you some idea I will add more as it progresses.Her indoors is a very happy Pinay at the moment.
  4. 18 points
    This week Elizardo, a local carpenter, fashioned us a new bench of his own design out of a heavy duty locally grown bamboo that grows wild nearby. Great craftsmanship and very comfortable too! It's always amazing to me what a talented person here can sometimes make with their hands and simple tools. We;ll get it out into the garden soon.
  5. 17 points
    I dunno, I tend to ascribe to the dying art of treat others how you want to be treated. I'm not always rewarded in kind, but it mostly works and it tends to be universal.
  6. 16 points
    I think I will leave most of the personal obstacles we faced (illnesses) for another thread and just comment on the trip itself. We left on Monday from Clark and returned on Friday. -- Clark airport park and fly still leaves something to be desired. Last time, I got the last spot. This time, they opened a new lot near the security gate and it was almost full. When I got back, it appeared to be full. It is a long walk from that lot to the building. The sign in front said p30 hour, indicating short term parking. However the guard said it was also long term, p90 a day. -- As described in another post, they killed me on fees. Travel tax p6480. Departure tax p3000. ECC-B 2880. Ridiculous. -- Surprisingly, even though the flight was full, there was no queue at all at Cathay Dragon to check in. Staff was really great with the kids and took them behind the counter and played with them. -- We were very happy to have chosen Cathay Dragon over Cebu Pacific. The crew was great even when the 2 year old was acting up. The leg room was much better for me. We were allowed 150 kg of checking luggage of which I used about 80 + a stroller. I will definitely use them next time. -- Arrival in Hong Kong was without incident and they are efficient in immigration. -- We took a taxi to the hotel. We had to wait a while to get a 5 person taxi. They are strict and a 4 person taxi only takes 4 persons, even if the 5th is a baby. We went in a blue taxi because of that and Disney is not normally their area, and the driver spoke very little English. Even though I repeatedly told him Disney Explorer and the dispatcher told him too, he took us to Disneyland first. I think the fare was about 10 hkd too high because of this. The fare with baggage was 182 hkd, about p1236 or usd 23. Ok by me. On the way back, from Disney to Regal airport hotel, it was 158 hkd, about usd 20. -- We stayed at the Disney Explorer's Lodge. Except for the high prices, we loved the hotel. The only thing that would improve it is a playground for the kids. The kid's participated in some activities at the hotel and on the 31st, joined a trick or treat. It was a bit lame but the kids loved it. They have a really nice big heated pool but because the kids had been / were sick, we did not use it. -- We went to Disneyland on Tuesday and Thursday. Our original plan was for Tue/Wed, but we were so burned out we decided to have an off day Wednesday. Then we checked out of Explorer's Thursday morning and they kept our baggage. When we got back from Disneyland around 6:30 pm, we grabbed the bags and grabbed a taxi to the Regal Airport hotel, for the last night before our flight. -- The shuttle buses between the hotel and Disneyland were great. They run constantly so no waiting. -- One mistake I made was not bringing two strollers. One of ours is not so great I figured I would rent one, which I did. However, the walk from the bus dropoff to the stroller rental was very long, and very hot in the morning, and very tired in the evening. We were missing the second stroller there! -- With an exception mentioned later, Disneyland was great! We took it slow. Our plan was to go back to the hotel mid-day and rest, but that never worked out. We had any lines to speak of. I had 4 priority passes from the hotel and only used one. I talked my 14 year old into joining me on Hyperspace Mountain and she loved it. Her first coaster! We used the priority pass to go to the front of the line. - The weather was actually great for an amusement park. Some clouds and some overcast and a breeze to keep it cool. We had been watching the typhoon and it was still tracking to miss Hong Kong. So it completely sucked on Thursday when they announced that all outdoor rides were closed due to level 3 warning! The weather was perfect except for a stronger than normal breeze. The bay was calm. Outdoor rides included even the covered carousel. This did make the indoor rides more crowded but in the end, the closures did not impact us much. -- So, Thursday night we transferred to the Regal Airport Hotel to make it easier to catch our 1210 flight back on Friday. The Regal was fine as it was my last stay on my visa run. I'm having a billing issue but it will get worked out. -- Overall, we had a good trip despite my wife and I not getting much sleep when the kids were sick in the night. We lived. Here are a few pictures... Sunset the first night at Explorer's. There is a really nice, beautifully landscaped area along the bay. Leila on the Merry-go-round Watching the 5D movie, highly recommended! Leila puffing some bubbles! Trick or treat at the hotel! Katy made a new BFF, the little Chinese girl, Summer. The kids loved meeting Moana!
  7. 16 points
    Hi Guys well I'm back home in not so sunny England ,its quite surreal to leave a hot and humid Manila and return to what must be one of the coldest springs on record. The vacation was very enjoyable and i had the experience of phillipino family life from two different families ,one in compostella mindano and the other at porac pampamanga .the first being very much a farming community that relies heavily on the vast surrounding banana plantations and the latter in porac being a family who have mostly worked overseas to earn money to buy their Jeepneys , we also stayed at Davao , Samal island and subic bay ,my favourite place was Samal island ,it was paradise. Ive experienced the hussle and bussle of the night market ,ate at road side eaterys ,up market restaurants, jollibees and mcdonalds. i will return at some point for a longer visit ,next time i wont set myself up with a woman ,id like to explore other areas , ive never seen people who are so happy in such impoverished living conditions , the lady that i met was a nice girl ,,however her father started questioning me on how much i earned and pensions etc , it was quite blunt that they wanted me to marry their daughter and support a family of around 20 people , during the trip the lady never spent a single peso despite me giving her 8k ,my buddles lady on the other hand bought the odd bottle of water for us etc , it was went i was asked if id pay for her son to come along that i decided to end the relationship after the two weeks . We spent 6 nights at the hof gori resort in samal ,owned by a lady boy ,we founf out that she pays her staff a pittance 250p a day to wait hand and foot on us ,she also pockets the service charge herself and takes back any tips that you give the staff ,so we slipped the staff a quiet tip ,the place itself was paradise the food was excellent we left there and after a stop over at Davao we flew to clark and were picked up in a jeepney and driven to porac ,I'm 6ft 1inch and the jeepney was the most uncomfortable ride that i can remember ,we had a day in porac before heading to Angeles ,i screwed up there ,i had booked us into a knocking shop type hotel , we stayed the night and had breakfast before our van picked us up and off to Subic we went ,i had booked us into the Treasure island resort ,it was a decent enough place and from ther we explored a little , a day trip to poondakit was enjoyed as so was the trips to the mall and the yacht club , i did not do the boat trip around the bay . overall a great experience and adventure
  8. 15 points
    Six years ago (April 12 2012) I had a Stroke that could have ended it all for me as it has for so many, We all moan a little at times about healthcare here in the PI BUT I for one, have not a lot to moan about. After going to the UK from Spain for what at the time I thought would be Surgery, I was cleared to Fly here to Retire from that daily Routine of the 4 letter word (WORK). In Spain and Gibraltar [July 31st I arrived 2012] My Doctor her has been Great although a Couple of things have popped in those 6 years but she is on top of them, I got my Laboratory results back this morning for my Physical on Friday and they are good [ I do have a prostate problem but it can be sorted] So Doc, I send you my for all the good work you have done and I hope will continue to do on this ole Body of Mine Not to be too Boring but a before and after Photos to show my progress Not a blog but just an Update for those that knew me before or now even Jack Morning All
  9. 15 points
    im finding the discussion about beer quite funny , I am teetotal and have been for 24 years , I have no idea how much booze costs these days . Anyhow , back on subject lol , I returned to the UK after three weeks in Davao , I met a woman from gensan on my arrival , we did the tourist trips to the crockodile park and the malls etc , that one was an experienced holiday girlfriend , she had posted a photo of her that was from at least 10 years ago , that and other stuff helped me to decide to send her home . I had other options , a girl from Samar and a girl from Cebu ,the girl from samar was too young , I do not feel comfortable when there is an age gap of almost 40 years , on top of that she had a great plan of how I would hire a car and take her and her family on holiday to the chocolate hills for a week all at my expence , she also wanted me to have a baby with her , I was polite and declined her kind offer . I sat in a hotel in Davao , at this point I was aware that the foreigner PESOnality as it has been put to me gave me bird pulling power that I had never experienced before , the young ladies in the mall asked me if I had a girlfriend and also the therapist in the massage parlour made enquireys . I went on DIA to see if there were any mature ladies available and I sent a message to G , we met up later at the mall , we started a friendship and she straight away began looking after my interests , I had been quoted 27000 for a condo for two weeks , she said to leave negotiation to her and the result was a 7000 peso saving . She was not the most pretty lady whom I had met but I felt that she was very trustworthy , her postion as a middle to senior manager in the government was evidence that she had no criminal past etc as we got to know each other , I learned that she was involved in charitable stuff , her pet project is to bring education to street children ,she is the governor of a school. We went to a beach on samal and she asked if she could bring her kids for a treat , so off to the beach we went , 3000 pesos on food and drinks , the kids had a great time and so did we , I was taken aback when her daughter asked her if she had slept with me ,but heyho its a different culture , we made up a story that we had been talking online for about a year that seemed to satisfy the daughter . It felt good to bring a day of happiness to a bunch of kids , somehow there were 8 of them a few friends had tagged along hehe. On the Sunday , I went to church ,its been a while for me but before I met her mom who is a pastor we had to go to church , I met mum ,dad, and a lovely little girl who was her mums great granddaughter , I took them to a restaurant of their choice , I was pleased to note that they picked an inexpensive one and made sure that we got the appropriate discounts . Her mother invited us back to their farm , and I toured the array of fruit trees and ate the obligatory Durian ,her mother at 71 years of age posseses a very sharp mind ,she has two degrees and a PHD ,her dad was a quiet guy. On the Monday I met her co workers and picked up the tab for a pizza , I later made several site vists with her as her primary job is as the safety officer for the water board in charge of up to 120 souls , that was interesting. I also wanted to find out more about property and stuff on this trip , we visited several condos around Davao , again G looked after my interests , I was getting Kanu prices quoted and could not get them to come down from 3.2 mill , so I let her do the talking , the condo that I was staying in became available so she got it down from 3.3 mil to 2.7 mill , so im now in the process of buying a condo , im soo glad that G is an intelligent woman , I could not have worked out their system , I met chris a guy who is studying for the bar , he took care of the legal paperwork , a nice bloke I liked him , if I had used an attorney I would have cost 300k but chris got it down to 100k for legal expenses . Im looking at the condo as somewhere to stay when I return and to generate a bit of cash , im doing the money transfer next week and already its been rented out ,so things are looking good , only time will tell if ive done the right thing . G is in the condo as I type along with a janitor scrubbing the place spotlessly clean and dealing with the clients , it was all a bit quick but ,ive saved 600k on a condo Im planning to return in December , im starting to wind things up this end , I need to sell some capital assets and get rid of the ususual garage sale type stuff ,but im hoping to be semi retired in the phils by 2019 , if I feel confident enough ill try to find a cheap property in the boonies , I prefer countryside to the city ,but ive definitely made my first major step to living in the phils , ill probably do 3 months UK , 9 months phils , im to young for a pension and do not want to erode my savings , I could live off of my private pension but I want to keep that as a reserve , I can do contract work in the uk and earn enough in 3 months to support a decent lifestyle in the phils I got lucky , I met a trustworthy woman , she has her own house , earns a lot more than your average philipino and she used that word that I had never heard from a philipino before , she said we "share" the expence of living in the philipines . Heres a couple of mug shots of us having fun at EDEN center mount apo
  10. 15 points
    If any of you remember I did a post about the Cup of Gold vine in a post a while back. The other day I saw that a Maya or Black Headed Munia had build a small hidden nest between the vines on the window grill. Fun to see, and we've been careful not to go to near as to disturb the small pink eggs in the nest. I'd say that we have about maybe 15 different kinds of birds in the yard here in Cebu. Down by the sea we find small Chinese Egrets on the mudflats during low tide, as well as White Collared Kingfishers. Swiftlets dart back and forth over the sea and back into the yard. also seen are cuckoo birds and other wild doves. A native Tamsi or the Philippine's version of a hummingbird darts around favored flowers looking for nectar. We have a yellow bellied flycatcher that can project it's call like a ventriloquist to another spot in the garden! Another bird makes a sound like EEEEk! The birds have simple birdbaths to visit and I think that our walled garden is a kind of refuge for them. It's kind of fun to find out what the bird is called in Bisaya, and then googling images it to find the English translation I recently picked up a book here called Birds of Cebu and Bohol. The writers explained that due to illegal logging/overtaking of land for farming/housing etc. has cut back on many endemic trees that were once homes for many birds. Birds is the past and still now are sometimes hunted for sport or pet trade, which keeps numbers down. We're just glad for all the birds that we observe, and think that it makes a nicer place to share space with them. I was surprised to read that many birds have adapted to city areas too, and have become more plentiful there. Do you have any particular birds that you see and observe in your areas? I'd love to hear about any that you might know. Google images when looking to identify a particular bird here in the Philippines. You'd be surprised that after looking around you can spot the exact bird that you'd been looking for!
  11. 14 points
    Just to set the scene. I'd been going out with a girl here for a few years. I met her over 3yrs ago but finished with her last year. Lets just say she never took it too well and gave my next partner grief even though she wasn't on the scene at the time. I've got friends over from Scotland and although I'm living in Puerto Galera I decided to take them to Boracay for a few days. I surfed the web for digs and from a few hundred narrowed it down to one. I booked in yesterday to a place that has individual apartments with balconies at ground level opening out to the gardens. I'd just booked into my room and stood on my balcony, looked to the left and there's my ex and her new partner looking at me from the next balcony. Just a bit awkward. Lol.
  12. 14 points
    Steve, Its difficult to answer your post in all honesty. I have been a member of PEF for about 3.5 years, you have been a member for about 6.5 years. Since I have been a member you have wrote many many posts, many with a negative slant, for example... Money issues i.e cost of living/budgets etc, family issues i.e. Emma's family, housing issues, building a family home on Luzon , being taken advantage of by her family etc. You are just about ready to retire and you still don't seem to be any closer to knowing what it is you want to do and I for one feel sorry that you still find yourself gripped by indecision. Its easy for people to just say do it, get on with it but its just not in everybody's make up to be able to easily decide such a monumental life changing decision. Both you and I have worked for decades for our respective companies, I had 30 years on BT, you similar for your company, change isn't always easy for us that are set in our ways. I haven't been here very long myself yet, about 16 months so I am not the most experienced person here to comment but I cant help but feel that you will struggle here. Why? You have to commit, you have to go for it and that doesn't seem to be in your make up. I truly feel that in your situation if you can afford it, try and live 6 months in each country, half a year in the UK and half a year in the Phils, that would satisfy both of your needs and also give you time to see what you really like. People often say that living here is different to being on holiday here, its true, it is different, it's a hundred times better living here than being on a holiday, you get to wake up in this wonderful country everyday, have time to enjoy and embrace what it has to offer and also time to work out what you dont like and have the time to put it right, to make it work. From what I have gathered from your posts over the years I think that your problem will be living to close to your wife's family, I think that you will be actually living with them if I remember correctly. The impression of them from what i have read is that most of them are a good for nothing bunch that are going to give you nothing but grief which can only make your situation even more difficult. Get away from them, as far as possible, choose another island and make a fresh start. Try and get down to Dumaguete and meet up with the guys, I feel that you would get a lot out of it, we aren't in each others pockets but its great to have people here that you can turn to when you need help or advice, let off steam or just chill with a beer or two. I dont think you are going to find that support living with your wife's extended family. Having said all that though Steve, I truly wish you a happy retirement, you have earned it, now it's up to you to make the tough decisions to help you deliver it. If you can work out what will make you happy here and equally what will make you unhappy here then you have cracked it, just take the bull by the horns and deliver it. It's the best decision I ever made, yes its still relatively early days for me but I love it here and so far it's just slowly building and getting better and better. Good luck mate.
  13. 14 points
    Warning -- rant alert, sorry Kuya The Affluence of Manila? I'm sorry for my negative views about the Metro Manila and surrounding areas. I call it the high rise of bottlenecks in all forms. There are no serious considerations of infrastructure (streets, sewage, public transportation, medical services, police, social services, etc, etc) supporting this exponential growth. You add another natural calamity and tens of thousands of displaced people will migrate to Manila again. Yep, luxurious high rise living and right outside your comfort zone is abject poverty surrounding you. More like Opulence of Manila.........
  14. 14 points
    I would not give him the benefit of the doubt or anything else. The problem is that idiots like him give all expats in the Philippines a bad name and also cause grief for those who do have family and go to a Mall or Resto as everyone will imagine the same thing. I applaud the authorities for taking action and I hope others will learn from this and eventually we may be looked upon as proper expats, wanting to live in a beautiful country, with our friends and families and not as sex tourists. Just my opinion. Paul
  15. 14 points
    Stopped off at the LTO to get a license for the wife and I and had to take the drug test and physical. I talked to a young lady thorough a little window and she hands me a form to fill out. So I fill it out and sit back down. Then she says to go in to the back through this small door. When I get inside it was her sitting at her desk. Why the window in the front I have no idea. She gives me the paper work to fill out and hands me this LITTLE bottle to pee in. After 20 years in the miltary and 15 years driving a commercial truck i have done more drug testes then i can count. But this bottle was small. So i looked at the young lady and asked if she had a bigger bottle. She gave me that deer in the headlights look that only a sweet filipina can give. Thats when the older lady sitting next to her said"Dai, it going to get stuck" and started to laugh. It took the young lady a few seconds to get what the other lady had meant. Wow this was the frist time in 33 years i have ever seen a filipina turn red from embersoment. She could Only set there with the papers covering her face making the lady setting next to her laugh even harder. This made my day. By the end of the day I got my license but my filipina/American wife did not, but that is another story.
  16. 13 points
    You get cute girls in their 20s flirting with you in the Philippines though. Say hello to them in the US and they'll probably call the police
  17. 13 points
    I have stopped reading Blogs now after 10+ years here as I feel that many are written by disgruntled Expats that just never gave their Retirement here the full commitment it deserves. We have over the (Certainly last few years) had members with a Totally negative Attitude and it showed in their Topics and Postings that they Just Did not want to here ( if they ever wanted to be in the First place) I for one will never go Back to the UK for many reasons, maybe a Visit if I could get my Wife and Sprig there ( But that's another story) 5 years only sounds a bit like the marriage 7 year itch to me ASs many have said and no doubt many more will say and agree? there are an awful lot of people that will not really be happy anywhere. Me? happy as a pig My friends
  18. 13 points
    My wife and I have been together for 34 years. I used to tell myself " life is hard in the Philippines". It made me feel better when I was ripped off by her siblings. However her family continued to steal from her even when they got to the USA. Her two sisters transferred land out of her name and sold it for 6.6m. Now we have to drag them into court to get her land back. It took me a long time to understand that Being poor is no excuse for being a thief.
  19. 13 points
    Well now that Bigmac has found out the unfortunate truth and heard all the words of wisdom, the only thing to consider for him is where to go from here. And of course Bigmac, I have to say how sorry I am for you. We all know how it must hurt. Let's consider the directions you might go: "They are all scammers." I have known several people who have gone from naive love of a Filipina, gotten hurt, and then globalised the problem by stating that everyone is bad. It's not true. There are many good women here; and plenty of bad ones. And like most things in life, most people are somewhere in the middle. "I'm gonna get revenge." Yep, you could try to do that. Waste more years; waste more money. Potentially make it so that you can never return to the Philippines. You're too old (so am I) to waste your time; move on! "Old + young doesn't work." Not true. Most of the Fil-Am couples I knew in the US had significant age gaps. Most of the couples I know here in the Philippines have even larger gaps. It still comes down to the woman you choose and it still comes down to using good common sense. "I'll find another Filipina." Yep, you can definitely do that. I did. Most of us have. The question you have to ask yourself is - what did I learn and what will I do differently? In the Philippines it's often a matter of degree. We accept the reality that the kid on the street asking for 5 pesos may or may not be legit; but who cares its 5 pesos. But in a country where almost no one has big money when someone (even a wife) asks for big money, an alarm should go off. You have to question, investigate, and question again. Now I am not just trying to blame the victim. But when someone (even a wife) asks for big money (and $2000/month is big money in the Philippines) assume it's a bad situation. Long Distance Relationships: I've done it and many of us have. But it's fraught with dangers. Are you looking for a vacation gf or another wife? If the latter, are you going to bring her to the US, retire in the Philippines, or a little bit of both (that's what I did)? In any of the scenarios there are dangers - but a hell of a lot of fun too. Enjoy the ride if you decide to saddle up again - but keep your hand clenched to your wallet.
  20. 13 points
    We living here in the Philippines are always aware and concerned about our security, safety, and property. Don’t go here or there because it could be unsafe. Lock this and that. Put bars on windows and hid things we don’t want others to know we have cause it might disappear. Well, recently I had a couple incidents where it has restored my faith in man. Not all are out to get us and take advantage of us. The first incident. I go to to our local shopping area which has some pay parking under the small mall area. Its p20 first hour and p10 each additional hour. I go there at the most two times a month and sometimes skip a month or two such as this case. It had been almost two months since my last visit and upon leaving one of the garage checkers told me the cashier at the exit had my change from last visit almost six weeks before. As I drove to the exit and pay, the cashier gave me an old ticket with a wade of cash stapled to it. He said,” Sir, here’s the change (p480) from your last visit you forgot to get before leaving.” WOW! Now I rarely carry much cash but thinking back I remember I was going to buy some meds and groceries. Later I did think I was short but then again maybe I spent it or didn’t have that much. I told the cashier to keep it and buy pizza for himself and co-workers for being so kind. He refused. But being it was almost dinner time, I went and got two pizzas and took them to the garage attendants. Second incident I had a local electrician helping me do some wiring in my new workshop. He did more than I expected and I told my wife to make sure to pay him extra. Before leaving he asked for p600 and my wife handed him p800. He said that was too much because I was helping him. After refusing two times to take the tip I told him I had more work for him and if he refuses to take the tip I would hire someone else. After a few laughs he finally agreed to accept the tip. I’m sure there are many more stories like these but these just made me feel really good after some bad times the week before.
  21. 13 points
    Siliy question yes i know! But anyway when we lived in the UK my wife would wake up at 4am ! Prepare my breakfast and make my coffee and the wake me up at 5.30am, after breakfast and while i was taking a shower she would lay my work uniform on the bed for me all ironed ! When i was dressed and ready to leave for work she would make sure my hair was combed properly ! And if it was in the winter she would pour warm water on the frost or snow on my vans windscreen while i was sitting inside demisting the screen ! Then after i had left she would herself get ready for work as a Hospital Receptionist ! Even now when we go shopping or go out for a meal etc she lays my clothes on the bed while im taking a shower ! And yes to this day i know she loves me ! Because when she goes to the local market she buys me doughnuts !
  22. 13 points
    Here's an unexpected sight from this morning. While I was sitting on the bamboo bench in the garden early this morning, I happened to look up into the palm canopy to see a little bat just hanging there, appearing to be asleep. Maybe the rainstorm last night sent him there, and he didn't make his way away until it started to get dark early tonight. So many bigger and scarier Indiana Jones type creatures that one sees here, you could almost get immune to being startled (sometimes) after a while. This little guy was cute though. I've seen bats flying around certain trees at night on a full moon especially, but so far this is the first I've ever seen hanging so close by during the day!
  23. 13 points
    Morning All, With the fairly frequent posts about our partners/spouses and their families repeatedly asking for money, i just wanted to share something which I think is rather nice: A bit of background .... about 2 years ago I helped the missus and her family set up a business (water refilling station) in her province. It started slow, but eventually, with a bit of western business logic, it is now making good money to the point it pretty much covers their life down there and they have also started renovating/extending the house without a single contribution from me. Anyway, so i turn 18 again today (for the 39th time lol), and this morning I was presented with a scrap of paper which turns out to be a bank deposit slip. It turns out that, in addition to saving for the house renovations, Papa had been busy saving money to buy me a birthday gift. Apparently, when it actually came to buy a gift he had no idea what to get (he told my missus that he thinks i have everything already!) so thought better to just put some money in my bank account ....... P10,000. Of course, i would much rather they put the money towards the house renovations as its alot of money for them, but the missus was insistent that I 'taste the juice of the business'! I was incredibly touched and kind of restored my faith in humanity a bit (not that i had lost it, but Filipinos and their families can be testing at times!). Anyway, something nice to share for a friday morning. Jamie
  24. 13 points
    Ahh there's the problem. What is a fair day's pay for a fair day's work? When I worked in Canada I constantly compared my wage for my job with the wage an American got in his country for the same job. In the end I realized you just can't compare. Due to the economies of the countries and the value of the currency and the politcal decisions and the availability of labor force in the area we ALL got a fair day's pay for a fair day's work but that amount was different in every state or province in the US and Canada. A fair day's pay is determined by the economics of the area that a person lives in. I'm sure the guy who works for you is thrilled to get more than the going rate for his day's labor. Wouldn't you be back in your home country? Do you realize if you had moved to another country you could have got double the money for the same job? There is always somewhere that pays more if you can get in on it. That does not mean the guy making less is not making a fair day's pay, IMHO.
  25. 13 points
    My daughter Katy turned 4 today! Hard to believe that so many years have gone by since I joined this forum, retired at 56, 5+ years ago, moved to PH, got married and had two beautiful babies! Life is good! We had a party at her school with her classmates. Most of the parents will hire McD or J-Bee to cater, but my wife spent the last few weeks putting together a really nice My Little Pony theme party. We hired a magician / host to keep it moving, and the teachers helped as well! My wife's hard work! The birthday girl! Presents are good! Leila had a good time too! She can hold her own with the big kids!
  26. 13 points
    Self-raising flour isn't, it's a staple in most Aussie pantries. Thankfully the problem is solved with a little baking soda. I remember when Dr Pepper first hit Australia during the early 80's to me it tasted like cough mixture. But that's ok, we inflicted Vegemite on the world as revenge .
  27. 12 points
    @Mark Berkowitz I am not sure Mark will like this but I must say it as it came from the mouth of a true Blue Filipina ( My HTMBO) we sat on the Terrace on Sunday Afternoon and this topic came up. So my wife said to me Yeah well, can you remember Alan ( a friend that did as mark wishes) Yep I said , so I hope, that your Friend ( Mark) realises that this could cost him in Money and Stress as it did Alan. Remind me I said, Well not too long after they moved to the UK, the wife Lilybeth ( Elizabeth) started to get request for help and subsistence from them now they had left, then came the illness thing, Hospital Bills and the rest of it. Not going to make this long as i think we all know how these things are looked on by the family. Not going to say it will but I all fairness I can't say it won't, we have members here that have had this and it causes rifts, Rifts? yes rifts because the Emotional culture of the Wifes family can bring about disaster, Arguments start, One particular member I recall had enough and said NO but the wife decided to send behind the husbands back. Bad but it happens ( we have a Sister in law that does it) I just hope that Mark has added this sort of thing into the mix because it happens, "Blood being thicker than water" Springs to mind. Negative ? Oh no, thoughts conveyed here are brought from a very level headed Wife who has sooo many friends in this situation. There was a Story only last week about a couple that came on Holiday from Canada with their 2 children, on the Flight over she announced she had had enough of Canada and the Fact that the family were overbearing on Demands so she was not going back but staying with the family that she missed so Much. Sorry Mark But.......................... did you consider this sort of thing just might happen? Cos it does No one likes posts like this but
  28. 12 points
    I'm 4 years in and take a pragmatic approach. It's certainly not the best place to live, nor is it the idyllic tropical paradise some may think. But, it's realistically the best place for me to be with my family from a financial perspective and it's really not all that bad once you put aside the niggles and let's be kind and say ideosyncracies that can drive us mad. Some come here to escape their life somewhere else, but that same life tends to follow behind p.d.q! Home is where the heart is and good luck to all of us wherever we decide home is.
  29. 12 points
    I've only been here for getting on 4 years but I feel comfortable and have no desire whatsoever to return to the UK. To settle and enjoy it here you have to really want it. Many, I believe, find that the reality does not live up to the fantasy, which for those the fantasy was all it ever was. Each to their own though, no use staying somewhere if you're not happy.
  30. 12 points
    Mac....... My sincere compassion to you, your wife, and what you are going through. I've been following this since you posted it and I must say, you have some really unique issues you are dealing with....... If I may, let me share my thoughts with you.......first and foremost, you say the biggest issue for you is the cost of the injections. The simple solution to this is switch to B-12 pills or gel caps. I checked with a trusted Dr (my daughter) and she assured me that they are a suitable alternate to the injections.....and much much cheaper. Also she told me that for some people the pills are more appropriate because the pills release over a period of time and people who absorb the B-12 slower than others can pass the injectables unused or unabsorbed B-12 out. She also told me that hospitals and clinics greatly inflate the cost of the injection for profitability and to pay the bills so to speak.......... But the one thing that really surprised her was how extremely rare this condition is, and that it mainly affects people older than 60 years and those with African heritage. The fact that your wife has been diagnosed with this, considering her age and other factors, makes this even more rare. Her advice and my advice is to try to get a second opinion............ and you can do this with medical records and test results. She doesn't actually have to travel to another Dr or hospital. She suggested you ask the secondary medical opinion......."does my wife have Pernicious Anemia, or does she have a vitamin B-12 deficiency"? Pernicious Anemia is extremely rare in your wife's genetic class, but a B-12 deficiency is extremely common in her genetic class (especially in the Philippines due to the diet most are on here). Remember, the primary source of B-12 is meat, eggs, and milk products.......these things can be scarce in the Philippine diet at times.......... These are just my thoughts Mac.......and what I have collected from checking around. Good luck to you my friend and God Bless your wife, you and your family. I'm in Dipolog, but still quite a ways away.........but I'm on your side.. JW
  31. 12 points
    To my fellow warriors, Just imagine a thousand muddy foxholes, frigid under the ice cap operations, patrolling at 40k feet or patrolling the lonely waters of southern Indian Ocean and critters crawling up your balls in deep, steamy jungles -- men and women from all flags have no choice but to celebrate Christmas like another boring day with unexpected terror that could happen at any moment. And all they want is to be home with friends and family. These are the sacrifices of our brave men and women to stay on station as they safeguard our front door while we are asleep. Our gratitude cannot be express in words but we can certainly try. Respectfully Jake
  32. 12 points
    The end of World war 1 is to be celebrated this Sunday and there will be matching bands and wreath laying all over the world. Here are some pictures of a local artist work who has made these wire soldiers and each one is standing over a grave of a fallen soldier of both great wars Very moving .
  33. 12 points
    I retired at 56, and after 6 years of no income, living on savings, I finally got my first social security payment on Friday! It was deposited as promised on the 2nd, into my Chase bank account in the U.S. My kids are getting SS too, and I will try to check their BPI accounts tomorrow. They have passbook accounts, so it is harder to do. It sure will be nice to not have to watch the savings dwindle away anymore!
  34. 12 points
    I haven't posted about a garden plant for a while, so I thought I'd showcase this one. In the shade of a dwarf coconut tree, we have a collection of exotic Anthurium plants. Originally from Central and South America, they grow well here. I used to only see them sold as indoor houseplants in florist shops in the US. They are pot- bound in individual pots grouped together. They don't require much soil-only planted with dried coconut husks, and a little composted material. Their flowers make a good addition to a flower arrangement because they last quite a while in water. Apart from their colorful, and unusual flowers, the leaves are large and heart shaped. We don't cut them though, just enjoy seeing them grouped together outside after a rain shower. They bloom continuously year round here, and can be divided when they get bigger and send out new plant shoots.
  35. 12 points
    If you're coming for '29 days in February' then my suggestion is that you come in 2020 not 2019 because February 2019 only has 28 days
  36. 12 points
    Welcome back Capa, we missed your voice of reason and compassion.
  37. 12 points
    This is a great topic. If I may I will share a little experience that my family and I had when i was a young lad. My dad got a wild hair and joined a colonization group that was to establish a colony in the Galápagos Islands, 600 miles off the coast of Ecuador. When the company ship dropped anchor in the harbor the company was declared broke, Dad decided to stay, he had $20 in his pocket, we were basically stranded in one of the most remote places on earth at that time, 1960. We lived on a dock, no power, had to burn cane whisky in our lamps, toilet was an outhouse on the dock. We ate fish we caught off the dock, beef when a cow was tied up to the slaughter house a mile and a half around the bay, We had to strain our water thru a sock on the Spicket, then cheese cloth it a few times then boil it so as not to get hepatitis. We had nothing, no TV, radio, no modern conveniences, it was the happiest time of my life. Finally dad got enough money selling stuff to the locals to get us home. As we were leaving on the ship, I was standing on the stern of the ship looking at what we had called home, I cried.
  38. 12 points
    My wife and I live is a small gated compound (five house) a short 15 minute walk from the center of Moalboal. Our place is quiet by Philippine standards because it sits off the beaten path and we have direct access to the sea via our backyard gate. I do some wood working , taking care of the yard, and I have a passion for reading (Kindle Unlimited). We partner with several local churches to work with young people, mostly middle school and highschool, but even some as young as preschool. Yesterday we spent the morning with youth from a local school speaking about the value of recycling, composting, and planting trees. Following the classroom time the students walked the school grounds collecting litter and recyclables, dug compost pits, and planted shrubs. It made for a very enjoyable morning. You can find out more about our ministry work here by checking out our web site. I am not sure if it is okay to post the URL, but you can find us by using Google and search terms "Philippines Blessings of Hope Reach Teach Feed".
  39. 12 points
    At the end of the month I move into another property. To give those looking at moving here an idea of costs I'll list my experience. My first place was a 24 sqm apartment in Taguig, Manila on the 19th floor. Like a rabbit hutch with no daylight and no local market nearby. All shopping was done in Malls meaning taxi fares. Restaurants and bars were expensive by Filipino standards, I paid 19k peso per month rent and just over 3k per month electricity. My next place was in Sabang, Puerto Galera a one bed apartment with pool use and a small balcony. About 30 sqm all in. A local but very small market for fresh food within walking distance which is expensive by local standards. Bars and restaurants are also quite expensive due to it being a tourist town (sleezy) with a few girlie bars. I paid 15k per month rent and just under 4k peso for electricity. My next move was into a two bed apartment in the same complex, about 60 sqm which I share with a mate who does 6 weeks here, 6 weeks off shore. I'm paying 26k for that shared and getting ripped off for electricity at over 8k per month. My new place is a proverbial mansion in comparison. Only 2 bed still but each room is the size of my current apartment with a huge living room, kitchen, two massive balconies and a huge double garage in about an acre of land with loads of fruit trees. It's about 7km from Sabang on the way to Puerto Galera and 1 km from the main road on a decent side road. I'm paying 15k peso per month rent for that. The local market is 10 mins away by motorbike and about 1/10 th cheaper than Sabang market. Only a couple of bars and small restaurants but they are half the price of Sabang.
  40. 12 points
    Found this news story about a new law that some expats living in Dumaguete decided they weren't going to take all these changes. I guess it's bad enough having to keep your shirt on but has this new law gone too far? ................................. Duma Chronicle By Elyb Descobi -July 05, 2018 After President Rodrgo Duturte announced yet another crack down on public behaviour and decency last month Dumaguete mayor, Felingy Remolloto quickly ordered his police to take action. PNP Supt. Jonso Pineppe officers arrested several people in violations for not wearing a shirt in public as well as drinking and singing Frank Sinatra's "My Way" after 10pm but our foreigner expat residents were shocked the most to learn of a new law which disallows long hair on men in public which the law states is only for foreigners and not for our Filipino citizens. We took to the street to interview some foreigners we found out and about and asked them what they thought. Some have rebelled against this law and say they wont back down because they feel they are being discriminated against. First we talked to Sir Davette ( Name changed) Q} Sir Davette what do you think of the law that prohibits long hair in our country? A} Well it's ridiculous, not only is it going to far but its discrimination against us expats. Q} I can see that you have decided to not let this law affect your daily life. A} No way, this is me and nothing will change even if they lock me up, it's the principle of it all. eh Pictured below. Sir Davette We went on further and found a foreigner and his wife enjoying a drink where we asked the same questions. Sir Jackaby ( Name Changed) Q}Sir Jackaby what do you think of the law that prohibits long hair in our country? A} I love this place but it's starting to feel like back home. I came here for the relaxed lifestyle but now can't get around without a shirt and they want me to cut my hair for what reason I dont know. Q} I can see that you have decided to not let this law affect your daily life. A} No I wont be changing. In fact I feel that I will rebel and grow my hair even longer. Next you will tell me I can't enjoy a pint over the age of 60. ( Pint Sir ? ) "Never mind" Reporter } Sir Jackabys wife was on hand, she says she loves long hair and excivity produced a picture from her bag of her husband when he was a baby, look other than a change in color he is still the same. What's wrong with our country today she asked? Pictured below Sir Jackaby We found ourselves at the beach for a final interview for today where once again we put forward the same questions. Sir Kevarny ( Name Changed ) Q} Sir Kevarny what do you think of the law that prohibits long hair in our country? A} Oh I think there's a screw loose somewhere. Now I'm told I can have long hair but cant go outside? And what, now I have to wear a shirt? Look I'm at the beach so what do I do as the law is not clear. It's a public beach so should I have a shirt on? Q} I can see that you have decided to not let this law affect your daily life. A} They can carry me out in a casket as I wont be cutting my hair and as you can see, no shirt either. Now pass the Yorkshire Pudding please ( Yorkshire Pudding Sir? ) sigh ! Pictured below Sir Kevarny This concludes our interview with foreigners on our country's new laws. What do you think of these new laws? Copyright: Duma Chronicle 2018. Disclaimer : *Duma Chronicle is a fictions news site for enjoyment purposes of this forum only. Names of all who appear in this article have been changed to protect the guilty.
  41. 12 points
    Been here since 2011 nothing will convince me to go back to the UK ! The Phillippines is my country we even have lots in the memorial park Ready for the day our time is up ! Life is good here i have a large extended family and they have accepted me as a brother. We have a nice home with all the things we need to enjoy life, she has her garden and her " Baby Arnie " As in the photo " Arnie " follows the wife everywhere she buys him chewsticks and he knows the word " Ligo " to which he runs to the downstairs shower ! which he gets a chewstick for ! I have my Tablet and a well stocked fridge with southern comfort,jack daniels,apple beers and ice cold coffee we have a nice car for eating out in different places . And if its a toss up between Bluewater shopping centre or SM mall of Asia SM wins ! Yes the Philippines is hot and its now the rainy season but im here to stay
  42. 12 points
    While it is true that most Filipinas chose to marry foreigners for financial reasons, it is undeniably true, too, that some were lucky to find their one true love in a foreigner. I personally knew a few of my friends who were madly in love with their foreign husbands and who are happily married until now. But I won't elaborate on this matter as I would like to share my thoughts on the OP. It is certain that a traditional Filipino family is overly protective to all family member, especially the women, regardless of age or status ( single/married/widowed,etc.). The tagalog term "kilatis" applies here where the elders will ask you things and will read you like a book. Don't worry too much for the fact that your special someone had arranged you to meet her family, that means she likes you a lot already, because if she doesn't feel anything for you, she won't drag her entire family for this meeting with you. A Filipina woman who respects and values her family this much is a keeper, I should say. The respect she had given to her family now would be the same amount of respect she would give to her future family with you. Here is a simple tip you might like to consider, Sir. During your whole stay in Davao, maybe spend half the time in getting to know the family while they get to know you, too. Don't be too obvious in wanting to spend a private time with your special someone no matter how much you wanted to. Patience is a virtue, so they say. Now there's two less lonely people in the world.... P.S. IMHO, Jollibee is not considered exotic restaurant in my country, maybe you decide the place when you get here, Sir...
  43. 11 points
    3 weeks ago I went to the LTO here in Dumaguete to ask what was required to convert my UK Driving License to a 5 year Philippine Driving License, was told come back with your Passport, ACR card and UK Driving License. I went back the next day with all the requirements but expecting all the hurdles/bullshit once they realised that I am on a renewable tourist visa (think its called a 9A), but no, nothing was mentioned, I was just told to go next door for a medical and a drug test, well an hour later it was all done, paid my money, given what I thought was a receipt and was told to come back in 20 days time which was today. About 2 weeks later I found the receipt in my wallet and after actually putting on my glasses and reading it thoroughly I realised it wasn't a receipt, it was actually a temporary paper copy of a 5 year license. Wow, was that it? Where was all the questions about length of stay, rental contract, tourist visa etc.? AND why did I have an appointment this afternoon at the LTO? The answer to that is that just 20 minutes after my appointment time I walked out of the LTO with a PLASTIC 5 year Philippine Driving License!! Yep, I am a very happy chappy this evening. All in all a really well organised experience, nice one Dumaguete LTO.
  44. 11 points
    I did not want to make this Too long but have to tell the story for Impact So Last evening as we sat on the Terrace waiting for the Power to come back my Wife told me about a nephew who got himself in a problem. Seems while he was living at the "Lolas" House with his Elder Brother and the others that are still around now Lola has passed on. He got involved with the Live in helper and she got pregnant(It happens) Anyway, Azons Elder sister (the Now In charge of the family there ) told them to cease their Liaison [ They said no] So she put the Girl out back Home but the Parents did not want a pregnant daughter at Home. They have ended up at the Brother in laws House and now have a baby daughter to Boot. He is a teacher (BIL) and Money is so very tight. I sat and thought about it and whilst Azon and our Sprog were off to Town for a few things. At Dinner I said OK, babe, Jun Jun does not need this so as I have a pension and Interest from Abroad paid Quarterly and is due Oct I will Donate 15.000 peso to the Bayawan Household for Xmas [not a lot but] NO she said, it is not our problem But Honey it is not your brothers fault either ( I blamed the Sister and elder Brother for not being diligent enough here) This Brother has never ever asked for anything and struggles with Money at the best of times so I thought that this would/could make life just that little bit easier over the coming period. I was shocked a little as it is her favourite Brother and what she said after made me think oh I am getting somewhere here about cash. Her last words last night and a little again this morning was Sweetheart Throwing money at a problem is not going to make the problem go away is it? No I said but JOY ( SIL) will end up looking after the child, YES she said and that will give the 2 youngsters time to get out of bed and look for a job then pay their own way. Final Words she said and repeated something we all say, They made their own bed now they lay in it and suffer or get out of it and be responsible. From my Wife that is concrete believe me. Sorry if it seems melodramatic But i was a little baffled at the sense of it But she is Adamant, NO. 10 years on and I think Azon has finally got what I say about things and realised that treating some of the Extended family with Money is not always the best way to go Jack Morning All
  45. 11 points
    I have always said that this place ain't for everyone. I have heard expats bandy about 5 years being a milepost. If you can make it 5 years, you will be ok. I have no idea if that is true (and have no stats or any studies ha ha)... but I am hitting 6 years next week. So far, so good.
  46. 11 points
    I have lived here almost 6 years and just made a 2 month visit back to Dallas, TX. (my 2nd visit in 6 years). The first month was fine... but the 2nd month drug on forever and I was just ready to come back home. It was nice seeing my kids (I was a single dad for freaking ever). I also got to meet 2 grand kids. I liked the little things, you know drinkable tap water, decent internet, good grocery stores - 24 hour stores even. But it really felt like a visit, not home. A few years ago I offered to move back to the US if my wife wanted to work, and send money to her family. It would also be good to get her into Social Security, and get her a blue passport. She did not want to move to the US. Not sure if she did not want it or she knew I really did not want it ha ha... I have an ignored blog but vlog pretty regularly on YouTube (that is why I ignore the blog). I try to stay mostly positive, without wearing rose tinted glasses. I will point out some negatives, but more as a 'fact of life' than a complaint. The conceit of my channel is basically: "I am having fun being retired, and you are not ha ha ha". It was nice to visit family, but 2 months was at least a month too long. Glad to be back home in Iloilo.
  47. 11 points
    Hello Mark, I am glad that you have survived your ordeal about living in PI. Just like being in the military, it's not for everyone. Now that you're back in Texas, I hope you realize that your Filipina wife will eventually get homesick. Additionally, your wife and family may be exposed to the "stink eyes" coming from your neighbors and sometimes from your own Texas family. It's better to talk about it beforehand and how to deal with it, as you walk hand in hand out in public. Respectfully Jake
  48. 11 points
    Being a former US Peace Corps I've had a lot of experience being in many similar homes of the low monthly scale. Things have changed for many, but also still many folks living in our town with much less numbers of amenities. Not a lot has changed for the better for many since then.This includes some of my husband's relatives to some extent. Many average/poor families here in Cebu province are still gathering wood and cooking over open wood fires for every meal. A majority do not have any refrigeration. One family might own one table fan, that they don't use that often due to power costs. One to two light sockets are available. In towns and barangays with a poor water infrastructure, many people still bathe from communal water stations (running water) in designated areas. some carry water or purchase water from private owned sources for their daily needs. Often you can see folks bathing from open water barrels along the road. Scooters are available to many due to easy credit, but without a steady income as for instance a habalhabal driver, those scooters often get repo'd Many homes, even the most humble are often rented and not privately owned. A small TV or radio/stereo might be a family's pride, although I observe that almost everyone appears to own a cell phone of some sort. Proper consistent nutrition is lacking for many adults, and children. (Although a roast pig does seem to materialize out of nowhere for a happy occasion at times.) As with many places in the world, it's location, location, location, when it comes to the value of living in certain areas, Even for the poor. Some of my husband's cousins could live a healthier more carefree life in better surroundings out in the province, but because the city offers more ways to earn income and educate their children, they choose to live in heavily populated areas in not always the safest and healthy of surroundings. We as foreigners oftentimes because of our circumstances might be be insulated from many stark realities of life here in the Philippines. It dismays be sometimes how slow the pace of growth and opportunities for the average Filipino is clearly evident. For every comfortable or well-off Filipino family here, there are scores of people that still lack so much in basic needs. I don't see much for change in the future either, sadly.
  49. 11 points
    Great idea. I'll start. I wake up in my tiny row house each morning and come downstairs to make a coffee, thinking how it doesn't get much better than this. A tiny house that is about 20 sqm upstairs (bedroom) and 20 sqm downstairs (living/dining/kitchen). When I look out the window, I see a guarded subdivision full of "entry level" row houses with middle-class Filipinos living at close quarters. I look to my left and see the mountains and I know that walking the other direction will find me on the beach in 20 minutes. Its 20 minutes to drive to downtown Dumaguete where I can find all the shops I need and meet friends. I see floods in Dumaguete every year or two that remind me of the one OMW described recently. Those floods don't make it all the way out to my subdivision so I must have chosen well. I like being a 20-minute walk from the airport and a 15-minute walk from the ferry terminal so traveling is easy. And I am going to stop now so someone else has a chance to write.
  50. 11 points
    I met my Now Filipino wife in 2001, married her in 2002 she joined me in the UK 3 months later. We came back to phil several times before we retired here in 2011. And from 2002 until today it amazes me how nothing in the provinces has changed very much . I can walk out of our front gate and whichever way i walk i soon come across wooden shacks Some barely standing which people live in and these have been replaced and rebuilt since i first saw them in 2002 ! Its the same driving to Calamba or Santa Cruz or Lipa. But then you realise these people are barely surviving ! A good example are tricycle drivers who are lucky to make 200 pesos a day ! I believe in a fair days pay for a fair days work. And we when the pension allows have a builder to do odd jobs, cutting trees, building extensions And at the moment he is building a new front entrance to our home , This guy is amazing he does everything from laying hollow blocks,making wooden forms For concrete beams etc,to plastering ,roofing etc. We pay him 600 pesos a day and his helper 500, we feed them merienda in the morning and afternoon. He has a wife and two young children And he lives rent free in a wooden shack on a piece of land which every sunday he has to work on for free. The thing that amazes me every morning you see children of all ages coming from these shacks All wearing freshly washed uniforms carrying their lunch to school. Their is a family friend down the road who asked for help a while ago We went to visit them and as mentioned earlier the home was what i would describe as a shed With dirt floor no electric no running water everbody used the hand pump. And they aplogised to me for me having to walk on the dirt floor ! But the thing that amazes me most about the poor here its their life and they have to live it They smile and are happy, the children play with old tyres and stones and swim in the bay No ipads or Iphones for these kids ! And theres me spending on avreage 500- 800 a week on cold drinks !
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