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Everything posted by GeoffH

  1. My Doctor tells me I'm not allowed beer review studies right now
  2. I love grilled fish cooked over coals... it's yummy!
  3. I avoid those areas unless I really have to (I'd rather go to the ATM at the mall which is only 10 minutes away) but SWMBO just double parks with the hazard lights on at the local bank along the highway with the engine running (leaving me in the passenger seat). If I have to go to somewhere like that I ride the motorbike. Maybe more people and traffic where you live?
  4. Welcome to the forum, can't help with locals in Davao as I'm in Cagayan De Oro.
  5. All of the malls that I've been to in CDO (and I've been to all of the bigger ones) have dedicated parking areas, the ones in the CBD are multi storey and the ones on the edge of the city are outdoor but they ALL have them.
  6. Having travelled back and forwards between Aussie and the Phils 9 times in 5 years now I've learnt to leave at least 4 hours between connecting flights at NAIA. Most times you don't need it but there are days when even 4 hours is cutting it close. Glad you didn't miss your flight!
  7. I enjoy visiting the relatives in the 'boonies' but a week or two staying there with 1-3 MBps mobile internet (when it's working which it often isn't), a 15 minute walk to the nearest sari sari and a 30 minute drive to a real shop gets a bit boring after a while. And the drinking sessions are a bit much for me these days And that's the relatives that are closer to the city... some live where there is no phone service at all, you need to drive a car (with good ground clearance) an hour along a road, take a dirt track for 15 minutes and then walk for another 30 minutes (probably won't be visiting there again). Be prepared for concrete block CR's with a bucket and a tabo, bamboo houses, native chicken soup (which I actually like), lots of rice and LOTS of beer. You might be tested with such local treats as 'intestines' and 'balut' and liver/kidneys... I find a gentle "I prefer the pork or the chicken (or the fish)" works better than a refusal to try Good luck with the visit
  8. We pay 2400 peso a month for 100MBps cable and a bunch of TV channels, 1GB is available in parts of CDO but not yet where we are. Honestly the 100MBps is plenty fast enough for us and it's been very reliable this trip (unlike a few years back where it used to stop working a bit). It's actually more reliable and a bit faster than my FTTN connection back in Aussie (and about 1/3rd the cost).
  9. Thanks for the good wishes all Re the Keto diet I haven't tried that one but I am down 11 kg on 12 months ago and my BP when tested in the hospital was consistently between 120/70 and 130/80 so that's fine. My sugar level was elevated but not drastically and the same with my cholesterol levels (I'll work on those). The issue is blockages in the blood vessels leading to my heart combined with an existing arrythmia problem... my previously stable angina became unstable and my nitro glycerin didn't work so SWMBO drove me to emergency where they examined me, gave me 'stuff' and left me in hospital for a bit with a canula/drip monitoring me in case I deteriated and they needed to pump drugs into me... but I didn't, I stablized (very slowly) and then gradually improved. Since I'm stable I'm now on 'light duties' and set to be re-examined in 2 weeks. If still stable in 4 weeks then I'll get the ok to go back to Aussie where I can access the treatment without blowing a big chunk dollars, if not then I'll have to get the treatment done here. NB... is it just this hospital or are all private rooms in Phils hospitals huge? This one had a patient bed for me, and a 'watcher' bed for SWMBO and a 2 1/2 seat sofa and a wardrobe and a cabinet plus a large private CR (at 3600 peso per night). The private rooms at St. John of God hospital in Bendigo where I come from are about half the size (and 4 to 6 times the cost but I'd expect that).
  10. Sorry I haven't been very active the last few weeks, my heart has been giving me problems. But I was discharged from hospital in CDO yesterday and I'm feeling a lot better I'm not allowed to fly for a month but assuming the follow up checks come back ok I'm going to fly to aussie where I can get the care needed to fix the issue (not just medicate around it) without splashing out close to a million peso. If I have to I will but I'd rather not if I can get it done there. Oh and before someone trots out the 'you should have had health insurance' I actually had it this trip but because this is a pre-existing condition (that suddenly became worse) it's not covered. Hope everyone else is going good (too many posts to read back and catch up)
  11. We've used the Dapitan to Oslob ferry a couple of times, one time slot is a modern RoRo ferry at 14 knots and the other time slot (which doesn't go onto Cebu) is an old LCT (landing craft type) which is noisy, does 8 knots and there are no seats just rather tired basic vinyl bunks for the 8 hour trip. We use the Mukas to Ozamis ferries a lot, these are older and there seem to be 3 of them needed due to the large number of vehicles making the crossing. These older vessels often have only 2 operating, sometimes only 1 which makes for a wait of 4 or 5 hours to board a ferry for a 30 minute trip. These do have seats upstairs but we mostly stay in the car, not worth the many stairs up 3 decks for such a short trip. Planning a plane trip from a ferry without allowing for delays here is... risky. Because ferries here vary in type, size and delays experienced and your experience will vary, not only from route to route but from there be day to the next. eg 4 weeks ago “Mukas port to Ozamis port 4 hours and 45 minutes and then 2 weeks the same trip took 1 hour and 30 minutes. My suggestion is to research what vessel you will most likely travel on and use that to inform your choice and allow plenty of spare time in your itinerary.
  12. For small purchases I use GCash, for middle size online purchases (plane tickets, hotel bookings etc) I use my Aussie debit or credit cards via a booking website (sky scanner, booking.com, Agoda etc). I don't make many large purchases but we paid for the Innova by transferring 50,000 peso per day from SWMBO local bank until we had paid the total.
  13. I met a filipina through a dating site about 6 years ago (I forget which one) but after a short time it became apparent that she wasn't the one for me. However by then I'd made freinds with a few of the older family members and one of them suggested her partners niece (she's the only one I'd recommend for you Geoffrey). We stayed friends for a few months but eventually got together as a couple about 5 years ago and we're still together. Not married because I'm divorced and SWMBO is strongly Catholic (so understandably wants a Catholic marriage ceremony) and I can't get married in a Catholic church without a church annulment (or my ex-wife passing on which would make me a widower in the churches view). And getting an annulment for me would be arguably more difficult than it would be to get one for a catholic in the Philippines because it would probably have to be done in Australia. Just all too hard *shrug*
  14. That'd want to be a very stretchy dress if it's going to start at Pea's size and end up at Reekay's size
  15. The family here (at the family bondings, birthdays etc) always use disposable plates (mostly paper ones) and throw away plastic one hand clear food gloves. Thats probably the influence of the educated teachers/nurses etc in the family as I don't see it a lot elsewhere.
  16. The SRRV does have some advantages over a tourist visa; 1) you don't have to leave the country after 3 years (cost of flights out and back) 2) you don't have to do regular extgensions (which cost pesos) 3) you can legally convert your foreign drivers license and drive here past 3 months (foreign tourists are only allowed to drive for 3 months... yes many get away with it but that doesn't make it legal) 4) you can open a local bank account (yes some people on tourist visas have opened them but it's getting harder and harder to do so) 5) you can join philhealth there might be others but that's all I can think of now.
  17. I've travelled to the Philippines 8 times during the last five years, I've been asked for an exit ticket twice (and both times were when I didn't have a return ticket with the same airline).
  18. I can use POLI with Bendigo Bank but not with ANZ or HSBC, the restriction isn't World Remit it's the banks doing it.
  19. Middle of the day, 100 Mb fibre plan in Cagayan De Oro with Parasat. It's been fairly reliable the last couple of months and I haven't seen the speed dip under 50MBps which is plenty for us.
  20. We were quoted 18,000 per year for the Wigo 4 years ago... perhaps I should have said 'slightly ahead' :)
  21. We've got 'real car insurance' on the Innova (which was bought new 4 years ago) but we've not got it on the Wigo (which we bought second hand 3 years ago). SWMBO had an accident in the Wigo a while back (it was damaged along the side by a truck creasing the front guard, both doors and the rear corner)... in Aussie it'd have been almost an economic write off but here labor is cheap and it was repaired by a family member (who repairs taxis for a company) for around 70,000 peso. Considering the cost of insurance I'm still well ahead.
  22. I use a VPN, set the VPN to Melbourne and don't tell the bank where I am, then the bank sees my IP address as being in Australia.
  23. I accidently clicked rate this thread (which I never do) and it's stuck on 1* that is not my opinion, this is a useful thread... Sorry guys.
  24. Is it the same price for 2 separate 3 month extensions as it is for 1 6 month extension? Might have to look at those photos I posted a while ago and do some adding up 😆
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