Back to Manila

Philippine travel is a model of inefficiency. Every flight so far was delayed an hour and the terminals are crowded. So be sure to plan ahead. Of course my little brother Eric knows the ropes so it’s all good. And everyone is so nice and polite — even after you leave.

The boat to Caticlan

I’ve never seen crazier driving than from Manila to Mandaluyong City. The lines on the roads mean absolutely nothing here. Yet our Coupon Cab wove through traffic like a cigar shop on wheels. Everywhere you look, buses and motorcycles take turns making unsafe lane changes. It can be harrowing for the newbie, but Eric explained there is no road rage here and you never see accidents. Just amazing. I don’t know how they make it work, but they do.

They have a vehicle here called the Jeepney. They’re surplus US Army Jeeps that were converted to long, open air taxis. But they’re also a common target for “holduppers.” Brazen thieves who hop in to rob the passengers or just swipe purses when the Jeepney is stuck in traffic. So you always lock your doors here. Especially when there is zero traffic or law enforcement.

We picked up Eric’s wife Maylin (My-lean) and had a Spaghetti dinner in the Megamall. After that we stopped at one of the cleanest grocery stores I’ve ever seen, which caters to the elite in this area.

There I was introduced to Filipino “candy.” Apparently the dried squid is the most popular. But not more delicious or nutritious than a can of Pringles — right, Miss Vanessacolada?

I’ve gotten to see a little how American expatriates live here. This is Eric and Maylin walking to their condo’s freight elevator. The grocery store then comes and picks up their cart. I think Eric’s talking about Pinky joining their Mobile Legends squad, and Maylin’s about to slap him. 😀

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