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Everything posted by JJReyes

  1. Check with Bruce, a former member of this forum. He flies frequently between his home in Hollywood, Florida to Samar where Bruce has a small charity. One of the forum moderators can give you his email. Bruce mentioned to me he has a ticket to the Philippines around November, but may cancel if quarantine requirements remain.
  2. Whenever I replace my laptop, the old one is mailed to Bruce's home address in Florida. The laptop is then included as part of his regular balikbayan box shipments to Catbalogan, Samar. If the pc or laptop is already in the Philippines, Bruce can provide you with a local mailing address in Samar. This was the arrangement for one of my donations
  3. Yes! Someone should start a reclamation drive. I believe the campaign to retrieve the Balangiga bells was organized by the Catholic Church. If you visit the churches and cathedrals in Spain, the altars are packed with silver and gold looted from their colonies, including Mexico and the Philippines. Maybe the Philippine Catholic Church should take the initiative by talking to their Spanish counterparts.
  4. During WW2, US submarines were ferrying ammunition to Corregidor Island before the fall of the Philippines. On the sub's return trip to Australia, they were loaded gold and silver from the national treasury. During one of the last trips, the sub included General Douglas McArthur and members of his family. My father had purchased large pieces of stones which were flat on one side and curved on the other side. This was for use as paving material for our Pasay City home. The stones were granite of a type not found in the Philippines. We later learned it came from a Spanish Galleon. I
  5. Sorry. I meant metal detectors.
  6. The security at the refinery is very interesting. There is a law requiring all gold mined in the Philippines to be sold to the Banko Sentrale. However, some of the independent small miners sell theirs to traders who smuggle it out of the country. The threat is not external because most refineries have excellent security. For example, the depository at Fort Knox is next to a fort housing and training tank and armored brigades. The worry is personnel. Workers are required to change to coveralls and safety shoes provided. At the end of a shift, showers are mandatory. The water drains i
  7. Thanks for the information. I am thinking of purchasing a gold piece for our granddaughter during our next Philippine visit. If there is time, perhaps add a necklace so she could wear it as jewelry.
  8. Does anyone know if the Philippines sells gold coins to the public as legal tender through the banking system? The Bangko Sentral has a gold refinery in Quezon City across the street from the Heart Center. This is also where they print currency. It is interesting to note that the Philippines is one of Asia's top gold producers. The Banko Sentral has approximately 196.4 tons stored in their vaults compared to Thailand, also a gold producer, with 152.4 tons. Although not a producer, Singapore has substantial reserves at 127.4 tons and this country likewise stores the precious metal for othe
  9. The remains were cremated so there is no DNA for German authorities to confirm his identity. How convenient. In the meantime, lots of money is missing.
  10. The Philippines is signatory to an international treaty designating beaches as public domain up to the high water mark. When a resort or individual property owner claims the beach to be private, what they mean is no access allowed through their private property. Security guards can be persuasive so I won't recommend exerting your rights. The recommendation is to visit the local barangay office and explain your need. They will help you find a place to pitch a tent. If challenged, inform the person that the barangay office had made the arrangement.
  11. The 13A is one route, provided the spouse still retains a Philippine passport (citizenship). Since I have a US passport, the requirement is to reapply for dual citizenship. This dual status is recognized under Philippine law, but not the US law. I would also have to pay taxes in both countries except in certain circumstances, the tax is reduced or eliminated due to tax treaties between the two countries.
  12. RobH's inquiry is about finding an alternative solution to his Balikbayan status without leaving the country before it expires (one year). There is a way to extend his stay up to a maximum of 36 months (3 years) total which therefore resolves his immediate problem. Perhaps RobH can post what happened after visiting the BI and what kind of status, visa, fees, etc. I am curious.
  13. Assuming the spouse is a former Philippines national who had changed citizenship, another option is to reapply for citizenship and become a dual passport holder. My sisters had a lawyer research and recommend this avenue to me due to Philippines land holdings in my name. My understanding is that, with the lifting of ECQ, the Bureau of Immigration satellite offices are open.
  14. The information below was published two months. I am sure other medias carried the same story. So long as your tourist visa was valid when the lockdown started, you are okay for 30 more days after the lifting of ECQ. https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/04/02/20/coronavirus-philippines-covid19-updates-foreigners-stay-home-relaxed-visa-rules Foreigners in Philippines told to stay at home, assured of relaxed visa rules ABS-CBN News Posted at Apr 02 2020 12:45 PM MANILA - The Philippines' immigration bureau on Thursday advised foreign visitors who are still in the country to compl
  15. I checked the Philippine Embassy (Singapore) website. Other embassy website should have similar or identical information. One year Visa-free Balikbayan Stay The Philippines’ BALIKBAYAN PROGRAM allows a one-year visa-free stay for Filipinos working overseas and for former Filipinos who have acquired citizenship in certain countries (refer to list of countries below). The visa-free stay privilege is extended to the balikbayan’s non-Filipino spouse and children, on the two conditions that (1) they enter the Philippines with the balikbayan and (2) they are citizens of a country
  16. I believe you can extend your balikbayan visa for an additional six months stay. Because of the lockdown due to Covid 19, there are temporary, special rules even for those on tourist visas. For example, your tourist visa is automatically extended until restrictions on international travel are lifted. You have 30 days thereafter to leave the country or get a visa extension. Check with a BI office.
  17. If it is artificial grass, how do you watch it grow? Another problem is artificial grass is not suitable for the tropics. Natural grass keeps your open spaces cool.
  18. Another tracking device are the cameras in both public and private locations with facial recognition technology.
  19. We are following a similar, strict procedure. Most of our purchases are done online and the goods delivered to your home usually within 2 to 3 days. No one wants to accept currency because supposedly it is full of germs. You need a credit card when shopping. No currency accepted even as birthday gifts so we send eGift money usually for purchases through Amazon. After login, it only requires 3 clicks and 5 minutes before the birthday recipient acknowledges receipt.
  20. China has already been doing this with regards to Covid-19 since earlier this year. They track residents who are not practicing quarantine. You can't deny your movement because the data on the phone is a giveaway. The newer iPhones and similar devices sold in the United States have pre-installed apps that has similar tracking technology. Recently, the bodies of two missing children were found buried in a farm using the "ping" signal from cellular towers. The FBI obtained a court order that gave them access to the phones owned by the suspects -- one of whom was the children's mother.
  21. Is the local media following the Wirecard scandal out of Germany? Approximately $2 billion is missing. Several individuals and either banks or financial institutions in the Philippines might be involved. A senior executive from Wirecard is believe to be hiding somewhere in the country, sheltered by local colleagues.
  22. Nuclear powered aircraft carriers require refueling every 20 years. Water is through a desalination process. The other supplies like food, mail from home, jet fuel, etc. can be delivered by transport ships or flown-in by small cargo planes. Why not try to set a world record by remaining at sea for an entire year? By the way, submariners were not told about Covid-19 spreading throughout the world. It might lower moral if they start worrying about family and relatives while on their mission.
  23. The family farm in Tanay, Rizal has 1,200 mango trees so being hit by a falling, over ripe mango is not uncommon. It usually happens after the harvest (slightly yellow, but still green and hard) because some fruits are concealed by leaves. After the leftover fruits ripen, look out. For safety, we have old fashion farmer's hats made out of bamboo and rattan. Construction hard hats would be better. Our van, less than six months old, was hit by a small rock from a passing truck. The windshield had to be replaced and the replacement had to be flown in from Germany. I was told if the crack i
  24. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_by_coconut 150 people are killed every year from falling coconuts, but this number comes from dubious sources. It was mentioned to compare the number of deaths of beach goers from shark attacks as compared to falling coconuts. But I have personally witnessed falling coconuts in the Philippines, so it is prudent for me to look up and determine if the coconut grove is regularly harvested for fresh buko or copra production before entering.
  25. Mangoes are not problematic. By the time they fall from a tree, the fruit is already over ripe which means the outer flesh is soft and gooey. The only hard part is the center core. Jackfruits grow around the trunk and usually below 8 to 10 feet. The biggest problem are coconut trees. When fruits fall from 50 to 70 feet high, it can kill you. An old story is about a foreigner driving on the South Expressway when a passenger riding the bus in front threw the empty coconut shell out the window, smashed the windshield and killed him. In Hawaii, government crews remove all the small fruits and
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