Monday, March 1, 2010
Sunday, February 21, 2010
1. The weather – The Philippines has a tropical climate. The average temperature is 82 °F (27.7 °C). The highest monthly average high temperature is 93 °F (34 °C) in May. The lowest monthly average low temperature is 72 °F (22 °C) in January & February. You may want to have some sort of air conditioning during the hotter months but there won’t be a need for indoor heating.
2. Cost of living – The conversion rate of US dollars to Philippine Peso currently is $1 for 46 Pesos. That rate changes quite often. I have heard of some Americans living there on $500 - $1000 a month and are living quite comfortably. Somebody retired with only their Social Security check coming in could possibly live a lot better there than in the US.
3. The food – I mentioned this in an earlier post. Not only can you eat cheaply there but there are many families that will sell homemade food right out of their homes. Very good food I might add and also good for you.
4. The people – The people of the Philippines are very kind and hospitable. Of course this isn’t true of all Filipinos but I had great experiences with every person I talked to or met in the streets.
5. Simpler way of life – Many people cook with wood or charcoal everyday, don’t own cars, do their laundry by hand, no running water, etc. Now this type of living isn’t for everybody but what is nice is that you do have options if you don’t want to “rough it” to these extremes.
6. The scenery – If you like coconut trees, white sand beaches, beautiful waterfalls, and great ocean views then the Philippines will offer that in spades.
7. Public transportation – In America it is almost a necessity to own a car unless you live in downtown areas. In the Philippines they have many modes of affordable public transportation. Jeepneys or tricycles are the most common form but they do also offer taxis and buses. Most jeepneys will take you anywhere you need to go for 7 Pesos which is about 15 cents US money.
8. Small businesses – It seems that it is much easier to open small businesses in the Philippines versus the US. If you want to sell food or open a small convenient store also known as a sari sari store then you can do so right out of your home. If you want to open other types of businesses then you will find many hard working and highly educated Filipinos to hire.
9. Tight knit families – Maybe it is due to the poverty of the Philippines but family is one of the most important things to Filipinos. Elders are much more respected and revered there than in the US where elderly folks are put into nursing homes and in some cases just forgotten there.
10. My fiancée is from there so I have an inside track and a tour guide.
Saturday, February 13, 2010
My fiancée went to a Smart office located at the SM Mall in Bacolod with all the information she needed to get the plan we wanted. The employee there stated that they didn’t carry the Plug-it modems there and tried to sell her the at home setup which we do not want. She let him know that it was the Plug-it modem or nothing. She was then told she needed to go to their main office in Robinson Mall to get everything setup. One thing they mentioned to her that was not mentioned online is that she would need a pay stub from her job as part of the application process. Online it states that all that is needed is Subscriber Application Form, Proof of Identification, and an initial 999 PHP payment. She did not have a recent pay stub so she had to contact her main office of her company to get one. She went to an internet café to update me with what was happening and that she was going to go get a recent pay stub from her company.
Monday, February 8, 2010
These misconceptions are incorrect and could not be farther from the truth. Filipinos do like Americans and have really embraced our culture as their own. During my 2 week visit I was not the victim of any type of violence, scams, or pickpockets. I didn’t even receive an evil stare or any rude comments. I was treated great by every person I ran into there and always felt like I was welcomed. There are actually many parts of the Philippines that are safer than America; one of those places was Bacolod which is where I visited.
There is violence all over the world and yes, the Philippines suffer from violence at times also. The 3 groups I mentioned earlier are real and are located in spots in the Philippines but mostly they are concerned with the Filipino military and are not likely to be in any place where Americans are going to visit or live. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t be aware of your surroundings at all times. You should always be aware of your surroundings wherever you are in the world as bad things happen anywhere. Would you tell someone not travel to Michigan or Illinois since there are some violent places there?
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
In America if we want a quick snack we usually go to a fast food restaurant like McDonalds, Burger King, Jack-N-The Box, KFC, Subway, etc. or decide to just order pizza from many of the well known establishments. In the
Philippines there are many other choices and a lot of them are much healthier than what we have in . They do have a lot of the same fast food restaurants there in the America Philippines as we have in . I know I saw McDonalds, KFC, and Pizza Hut for example but I had no desire to frequent any of them. Instead of eating where I was familiar I decided to indulge myself at much lesser known places. America
Street Vendors are everywhere you go on the streets of the
and compared to the fast food restaurants they are much cheaper, and in my opinion much better tasting. You can get different chicken parts grilled on a stick. I tasted chicken feet, livers, skin, the head, and even the intestines. The chicken intestines were actually my favorite part due to the spiciness of them. Chicken feet or adidas as it is called there was one of my least favorites since there really isn’t much meat and you seem to spend more time spitting out bone than actually eating. Philippines
Another known favorite of many Filipinos is chicken inasal. It is served all over
and is my favorite dish to eat there. Chicken inasal is marinated in a vinegar mixture and grilled while being basted with a mixture of oil, margarine and calamansi juice, its color is derived from achuete seeds. The smell of it grilling will stop you in your tracks and force you to answer to your stomachs rumblings. You can partake at many of the street vendor stands or sit down at many of the open air restaurants located all over the city. One place I really enjoyed in Bacolod was Lion’s Park located across the street from the SM Mall. You are in the Bacolod so enjoy it with a cup of rice and make sure you eat with your hands. Food always tastes better when you eat it with your hands. Philippines
My next example isn’t necessarily a street vendor but I believe it falls in that category and that is the small businesses that serve home style cooking right out of their home. I saw many of these in the neighborhoods (otherwise known as barangays) where I stayed during my visit. The menu will change from day to day depending on what they want to cook or what they have on hand that day. My first home style cooked food was from such a place. The portions are very large considering the small amount of money it costs. I only had to walk about 15 steps outside the door from where I was staying to find one of these places and the food was great. When you see the locals frequenting such a place all day, it’s a clear sign that the food is good.
Some visitors of the
will warn against street vendor food, and in some cases they are correct due to the sanitation standards there. The key is to listen to the Filipinos you are with, if they won’t eat it then you don’t eat it. I didn't get sick during my visit and I ate everything in site. The choices you have are never ending and the price is always right. If you plan to visit the Philippines Philippines then I implore you to step out of your food comfort zone and experience foods you can’t get everyday in . Don’t worry the hamburgers and pizza will be there when you get back home but the food of the America cooked by true Filipinos may not. Philippines
Friday, January 29, 2010
Filipino Inmates from Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC), a maximum security prison, did performances from This Is It with some assistance from Michael Jacksons long-time choreographer Travis Payne and dancers Daniel Celebre and Dres Reid. This is not the first time they have performed in such a way and certainly won't be the last. Don't know if this is possible in prisons in the USA but it sure would be nice.
Wanted to share a forum about Filipino/American relationships. Lots of posts about the different types of Visas and common issues people in these types of relationships encounter. Good tight knit community where many of the Filipinas in the USA can meet other Filipinas in their city and a place where the men can come to together to better understand their significant others culture. Enjoy!
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Click Here For World Of Filipinas