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About banyanman

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    Timberland Heights, San Mateo, Rizal

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  1. Hi Maihuu, Sorry I've only just seen your message - I must have had the reply notifications for this thread turned off. However, for the benefit of other forum members who may be interested in my response to your question, two of the three Makati clinics that showed up in the top 10 based on the GCR ratings were the Gerochi Dental & Implant Center and 'Smiles by Dr Cecile' (in the Dusit Thani Hotel). I can't remember the name of the third one. However, the GCR website now has an updated list and whilst the Gerochi clinic is still in the top 10, 'Smiles by Dr Cecile' has dropped out. In case anyone is interested, according to the GCR website, the top dental clinic in the Philippines is now the Tooth & Go Dental Clinic at Paranaque (that may have been the one that one of the forum members was referring to earlier in this thread). I've not been to that one myself so would be interested to hear any feedback from anyone who has. The one I used at Caloocan (the Sacred Heart Dental Clinic) is still rated as third best.
  2. My stepbrother from Darwin arrived on a PAL flight at NAIA yesterday, and as he had a connecting flight to Cebu, PAL transferred him and about 10 other passengers directly to the Cebu flight. His baggage was checked through to Cebu, so he assumed he would do immigration there as well as customs. But when they got to Cebu, all the passengers exited through the domestic terminal without going through Immigration or Customs. When he got to his hotel, and the receptionist was copying his passport, she asked which page his entry stamp was on. Of course, he didn't have one! I told him to go straight to the BIR today and get an entry stamp because he won't get out of the country without it. Has anyone else in Cebu had this experience, and can they tell me whether it was easy to sort out at the BIR?
  3. No, I was actually referring to the research that I did on the internet on dentists in the Philippines that were internationally accredited. My comment was just an aside because I'd thought that if clinics in Legaspi and Angeles were achieving international recognition, there would be at least some in Cebu that would have comparable ratings.
  4. Sorry I missed seeing your earlier message Scott. I ended up doing some extensive research online looking at clinics that had international accreditation and good reviews. I narrowed that down to seven clinics in total which included three in Makati, one in Paranaque, and one in Caloocan. I ended up going to the one in Caloocan because that was the nearest to where I live, and was very satisfied with the service there. The dentist who treated me was as good as the Chinese dentist I had in Malaysia and actually cheaper. In case anyone is wondering, the other two clinics on my 'top 7 list' were in Angeles City and Legaspi. I was surprised that there weren't more reviews for dentists in Cebu given the number of expats that live there.
  5. I did try that Dave. They took 4 days to respond and the reply was: "Hi there. We're sorry to tell that we cannot provide you the said information, since we are bounded with system limitations. Hope you understand. Thanks. - Jeba of PLDT Customer Care." That's a pretty typical PLDT response given my previous experience with them. You must have been luckier than most.
  6. You may well be right on that point, AlwaysRt, but I'm a producer not an engineer, so can't debate the technicalities of that. Compression was not an option because as I mentioned in a previous post, the project called for files to be delivered to particular specifications, so we had to stick with those.
  7. In this case yes, because the files I was transferring were for over-the-air HD broadcast on VHF/UHF and were already compressed to particular specifications (MPEG-4 AVC 100 Mbps AVC Intra Codec High 4:2:2 intra profile @ level 4.1, 1920 x 1080) that had been agreed to by the project partners. Any compression method is going to involve changing the technical specifications so was not an option for these files. Certainly if you compressed those files for online viewing you'd never notice any difference in quality, but any compression involves removing data.
  8. Yes, 25,000 kilometers. I think it's more a case of the road being hard on my tyres than me being hard on them. The condition of the roads in San Mateo where I live is as bad as anywhere in the Philippines (many potholes and rough edges) and part of the access road to where we live is dirt because of a legal dispute between the DPWH and a local landowner which has been the subject of legal action for about 12 years now. So it's not so much my off-roading as the traveling to and from home every day. The first three sets of tyres were street tyres but the ones I have on now are 'semi off-road'.
  9. I have a Landers membership card but I've only been to the one in Balintawak, Quezon City. There's quite a few imported products I buy there that I can't find in other parts of QC, and the quality of the meat and fish is good (but Rustan's Marketplace at Powerplant Mall, Rockwell, has a bigger range). Good range of imported wines and spirits. But watch the expiry date on products. I bought some Canadian sliced peaches in glass jars and when I got home found they were nearly expired. Maybe that's why they were marked down in price? There are some household goods there that I've not seen in other places (I bought a couple of metal outdoor rocking chairs there at a very reasonable price). I bought a bar fridge there too, but it was only 200 pesos cheaper than Ansons. Their New York pizzas in their fast food restaurant are very good. As is the Italian ice cream in the coffee shop. Haven't tried the barber shop yet though.
  10. Thanks, that's very generous of you, but I managed to get one of the local TV stations to upload the file for me today, so all is well now. Thanks again for your offer - very much appreciated.
  11. I wasn't impressed with Yokohama when I had them on my Nissan Navara. I got 30k out of the original set (can't remember what brand they were). Replaced them with Yokohama but they lasted only 25k. Then replaced those with Bridgestone and again only got 25k. I'm now on the fourth set which are Maxxis. I've done 95k in total and the Maxxis tyres look less than half worn, so I think I may get 30k+ out of those. And the ride is noticeably better than the previous three brands. (I do a fair amount of driving on dirt roads, so others may get better mileage than me). And so far - touch wood - no flats with the Maxxis tyres.
  12. Gardenia bread in the Philippines contains the anti-fungal chemical calcium propionate. About five years ago Gardenia made a big fuss in Malaysia about replacing calcium propionate with 'natural' preservatives (namely raisin juice concentrate and vinegar) but the Malaysian bread does not last as long as the Philippines bread now. I don't know why Gardenia haven't done the same in the Philippines - most likely because Philippine consumers are not as health conscious and as vocal as Malaysian consumers. The bread that you buy in local bakeries does not usually contain calcium propionate - that's why it doesn't stay fresh as long. Calcium propionate is fairly readily processed by the body without adverse side-effects, but in a small number of people it can aggravate gastric conditions and even cause ulcers. It's also been linked to behavioural issues in some children. But if you've been eating it in the past with no side-effects, there's probably no reason not to continue. I eat it once or twice a week when I can't get to the local bakery for fresh bread that is made without preservatives. But I wouldn't want to eat it every day.
  13. Sorry my previous post wasn't clear. I realise you can compress MXF files, but I can't compress these because they are intended for HD broadcast, so we want maximum possible quality.
  14. I'm wondering if anyone has any up-to-date recommendations for a good dentist in Metro Manila? There are a couple of threads on this board on this topic, but they are a couple of years old, and didn't produce any recommendations of the type I'm looking for. I'm not looking for a dentist in a shopping mall (I've had bad experiences with those here) and I'm not looking for someone in Banawe to do a cheap job - I'm looking for a top notch dentist who most likely already has a substantial expat clientele. I've been living in the Philippines for 7 years, and during that time I've returned to Malaysia (where I used to live) on about three occasions for check-ups and treatment by a very good Chinese dentist that looked after me there for more than 10 years. He had an excellent reputation and people used to fly all the way from Australian to be treated by him when they had major work to do (apparently what he charged was about a third of what they charge in Australia and for major work it was cheaper to go to Malaysia even when taking into account the cost of airfares and 10 days accommodation). But I'm not visiting Malaysia much these days so would like to find someone as good here in the Philippines. Or do all the good dentists go overseas to work?
  15. Yes that might be my only option. But given my previous experiences with PLDT front office staff, I'm not very hopeful any of them will know.
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