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Everything posted by MacBubba

  1. Thanks everyone for your input and help, it is greatly appreciated. I'm looking into Express VPN and it looks promising.
  2. Sorry, for some reason, this got posted under Spousal Immigration and Benefits. Still would apply to Social Security though. Please feel free to move as fitting. Thanks.
  3. I recall reading up on this some time back, but am unable to find it in search. Moving to the Phils soon and would like to know how to set up a VPN so that it appears that I am still in Canada. Thanks for your help!
  4. I knew about being able to bring household effects, up to a cap, but I did not know about allowing a car.
  5. They have a membership program. We usually go with my sister-in-law, who is a member. From my experience, Spiral is far and away the best buffet I've tried.
  6. I checked with my wife. "Carabao English" is an old term that refers to English that is poorly spoken, due to lack of fluency or limited vocabulary. Not their fault really. Taglish may be spoken due to those causes, but could also be an affectation. In the 1980's, some of the boys and girls from exclusive schools started speaking in Taglish because they thought it was cute. The lower classes were quick to adopt it because it was easy, and in fashion. Easier than striving to speak English properly. Then actors and actresses started speaking Taglish on television, and that was that. Taglish became acceptable.
  7. In Toronto, my wife speaks Tagalog more frequently than she does in the Philippines. She says she misses speaking and hearing Tagalog, and with Filipinos here in Toronto coming from different walks of life, she is not always sure of the other person's fluency in English. In Manila, with her friends, it is English all the way. Taglish is frowned upon.
  8. Group health insurance would serve a need.
  9. Haven't had the fruit. Have had the shake, which tasted like onions, so held no appeal for me. However, as a pastillas (not the cheap durian candy that is commercially available), it is among the best. It added a depth of flavor to an otherwise very sweet milky substance.
  10. I checked with my wife about the word "sakto". "Sakto" is derived from exacto. Exacto means exactly right. She has been away from the Philippines for a long time, and thinks that "sakto", having evolved as slang, may have broadened its meaning also to describe a size that is "just right", not too big and not too small. Exacto is what you say when a person you have given instructions to, repeats what you just said. If he gets it verbatim, you say "exacto". As an adjective for measuring size or quantity, if you have just enough material to make a dress of a certain size or length, you say "exacto lang" and breathe a sigh of relief. If you are trying to fill a container and you nearly fill it, you say "halos exacto" or almost exact. To her "halos exacto" seems to bear the closest resemblance to "sakto", which is "good enough". If it were "exacto", it would be perfect.
  11. Thanks for the cab info. We'll give them a try in May. Did you ever try Uber while in Metro Manila?
  12. She does the planning and the contingency planning, which we discuss at length. Same page, and all that. Makes for fewer arguments when we share the same goals and keep those in sight. Personal freedoms are available to both of us, but never abused. That's because we truly do prefer each other's company and really are the best of friends. So, who calls the shots? I would say that most of the time, she does. She does it well, so no qualms from me.
  13. Kuya is generally a term used to refer to an older male. Some might use it loosely to refer to someone of a higher rank (in which case "sir" would be more suitable), but as a rule, be careful not to use Kuya with someone younger, lest he take offense. I think "Ading" is more Ilocano than Tagalog.
  14. I am "homesick" for the buffets in Manila. We will be there in the Philippines in November, with the last 5 days spent in Manila. We will bypass our regular buffets (Vikings, Buffet 101 and Dad's), and try Spiral (in Sofitel Hotel, with an incredible cheese room) and Alba (Spanish buffet). Yes, I am a Canadian whose home is in Toronto, but I think of the Philippines as home as well.
  15. When we were in Manila last year, I saw that uber choppers were to be available some time soon.
  16. You would never say that about my wife. There is a 100-item food and drink challenge out there, and she's had all but 5: squirrel meat, snake meat, dandelion wine, umeboshi (a kind of Japanese plum), and phaal (the hottest Indian curry). She has a fair idea of where to get the first 4, but the 5th one just eludes her. She's phoned Indian restaurants all over Toronto, and the folks she has spoken with have never even heard of phaal. The only restaurant she has found that does serve it is in New York. The umeboshi, she may have already had, but she's not sure.
  17. Great attitude! Just reading about your ordeal got me all worked up! I hope that when it's my turn to go through hoops like that, I will be just as gracious.
  18. Traditional Chinese lauriats are still done that way, if the hosting family is Chinese (which we are not). We know to expect it, but we still grumble in silence. Be it in the Philippines or here in Toronto, each time we arrange for a lauriat, we always ask for the rice to be served after the soup, along with 2 entrees. The noodles can be served two courses after that. By the time we get to the 8th course, we usually need to ask them to bring out more rice, to eat with the courses still to follow.
  19. I am married to someone who never leaves home without hand sanitizers and wet naps. Anytime she touches anything that is borderline questionable, out come the wipes or the squeeze bottle. She carries some tissue too, but that's more my department.
  20. I was thinking along the same lines. Meals cooked at home are served hot, when only a few dishes are served. For parties where eight or more dishes are served, it gets tricky, unless each dish is served in its own heated chafing dish. Chafing dishes cause a different issue - food must be periodically stirred, or else the food at the bottom gets crusty.
  21. I heard a new term to describe irresponsible journalists. It's a play on the word "press" - or, "prestitutes".
  22. Ylang-ylang is similar. The scent is activated at around 5:30 pm, and is gone the following morning. Perhaps because it is not as heavily aromatic as dama de noche, it does not set off my wife's allergies. That, or it could be that the blossoms are so high up that all we are getting is a diffused aroma. Stranger still is that the ylang-ylang, which I have seen and smelt in sampaguita leis, retains its aroma in the daytime when plucked. Don't know why we are not able to smell it on the tree in the daytime.
  23. My first encounter with Dama de Noche was at a resort in the Dominican Republic. It has a very heady smell that my wife is allergic to! So very strange that in the daytime, she'll pass the trees without changing her pace, but will just hold her breath and practically run down the corridor at night. Actually, her reaction is not too severe, just a lot of sneezing and almost instant puffy eyes.
  24. Thanks for that info. I am sure it has presence in cities as well, but perhaps not to the extent of its representation in rural areas. I guess it's because there are more recreational pursuits to be had in cities.
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