What's this about?

Ladies and gents our story begins with our author who one day packed up his bags to spend the next 5 years of his life on some tropical island far far away. This land is not like any place he has ever been to before. There is no telling of what he may encounter during his stay there but one thing is sure he is going to be in for one crazy adventure. And this is where you get to read about it.

What you say?

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Readers beware!

The stories told here maybe appear larger than in real life and at times may even appear outlandish. However, all actual events are in fact real (well, most of them). What may appear as a distortion of reality to some may only be due to the author's perspective of the actual events. Some say he is just not right in the head.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Eating on credit

These past few days the staff here has been kind of strange. They have actually been serving me breakfast, lunch and dinner all to my dorm. It's kind of surprising considering I only pay for the breakfast and the dinner. On top of that though I have been paying for two meals a day in the past usually I only get served one or no meal at all. Before if I didn't make it downstairs for dinner in time I would get nothing at all but now they have been brining it right to my room. The plates have actually started to pile up... Along with the ants.

So why the sudden change? Could it be that Filipino hospitality I was speaking about earlier? I don't think so. See that only works while you are staying in their house, other than that you're on your own. So it has to be something else. Maybe, one of my cousins running the joint said something to them? Or maybe it's because I have lent just about every staff member here money and have yet to receive one peso back. Ah, that could be it. Then again I don't really know.

Well, I guess I'll just see how long it last.

For the love of money

Woke up this morning, actually I should say this afternoon, and took this pic.

Even the ants in this country flock to the sight of money.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Hou She Boys

I found this video on the web a few weeks ago. Originally I wasn't going to post this but every time I watch it these guys crack me up. So, I thought I would share it with you. They call them selves the Hou She Boys (Back Dormitory Boys), from the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts in China. They have become famous on the web for their act and from what I understand have landed an endorsement with Motorola to promote their cell phones. Ok, they're funny but to actually end up getting paid major cash for this? Don't mind me I'm just jealous. Every time I made a fool out of myself nothing good ever came from it. Anyway, the two guys lip syncing are named Huang Yixin and Wei Wei. I don't know the name of the third guy in the back but he's part of the act and is usually always there. I've seen only a few of their videos and this one is the funniest so far in my opinion.

Here’s a couple of their other videos.

You can look for some more of their stuff on You Tube.

You can also read more about them here. (That is if you can understand Chinese.)
CRI Online

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Medical Mission

Yesterday I went on my first medical mission in San Pedro, a city not too far from where I am staying. Now before you get the idea that I went out in to the country and actually helped people and saved lives, it didn't quite work out that way. Actually I didn't do anything at all. None the less it was an experience for me.

The medical mission wasn't quite like what I had in mind, though. Maybe I've been watching too much TV. Things were calm. Most of the people seeking help appeared fairly healthy. No one appeared to suffer from some rare tropical disease or was in that bad of shape to require a medical emergency. Well maybe with the exception of one gentleman who was having difficulty breathing and looked rather emaciated. If you end up dying from tuberculosis Bambi, I just want to say it was really nice knowing you and thanks for treating me out today. And if you could sweat talk some one up there in seeing past some of my minor mistakes and letting me get into heaven that would be nice. Thanks. Bambi had the pleasure of taking the gentleman's blood pressure. That was as "medically" exciting as it got though.

The only other thing of interest to note was a man standing in line to get his free meds with his little girl. The girl hand no pants on and he was holding her as if he was Michael Jackson over a balcony ledge. I was watching him about 3 feet away, wondering what the he was doing when a stream of urine rained down upon the man's foot. Ladies and gentlemen, that was the shocker of the day. It wasn't like the man didn't know what was going to happen. He was fully aware. If we were talking about murder he would get life. I was thinking this man must have really been in a hurry to get them meds. I wonder what his prescription for? He didn't even wipe the kid down after she was finished. He just went back to cradling her in his arms dripping urine and all. I'm sure if he just asked the lady behind him to save his spot, so that she wouldn't have to end up walking in his child's piss with her bare feet she would have. Because you know that's exactly what she did. Clearly sanitation is not a priority of every Filipino. So don't worry Bambi, if you end up dying from TB the rest of us will probably end up joining you shortly because of one thing or the other.

Well, after all of that I can say I'm looking forward to the next one. Hopefully next time I'll get to do more instead of just watching the crowd, though. I guess I better get started on practicing those physical examination techniques and getting all my shots.

My favorite GRO's

Filipino hospitality

I finally broke out of Binan last Monday and headed off to Baguio City, The Summer Capital of the Philippines. It was given that title because the city is situated about 1,400 meters above sea level and on average remains about 8 degrees lower than any other point in the low lands. So when everyone is sweating like a pig in Binan it's usually nice and cool up there. Well, I didn't exactly do all that much and I don't have any pictures to show you of the place but it's not really what I wanted to talk about anyways. I went up there with my cousin's cousins and though they aren't exactly my cousins per say their family treated me like family. One of the things that stand out in this country is the hospitality of the people. It's a country where most people would give you the shirt off their back if you were to stay at their home. They do all they can to make you feel at home even when they don't have much.

Now if everyone could just extend the boundary of their homes past their fence to include their barrio, their province, their country. Then view everyone in the country as a guest in their home and provide each other with that same Filipino hospitality, I could only imagine how much better off this country would be. But then again this country is their home so what's stopping them?

Here's some links about Baguio City.
Wow Philippines
Baguio City dot Com
The City of Baguio

Mutants from the deep

I didn't have time to write about this earlier but since I have time now...

A couple of days ago the water in my sink was draining kind of slow. I ended up pouring some build-up remover in there but wasn't quite getting the result that I was hoping for. The situation called for the use of heavy equipment, so I broke out the plunger. After a few pumps some debris came up along with some other things...

Need a closer look? Here was one all alone...

Ain't she a beaut!

These things were crawling every where. What they are exactly, I'm not sure. At the moment I didn't even care. I poured in more build-up remover, some ajax, and two other liquid detergents. It was all I had. I rinsed them down with some water and watched them swim in the little tide pool. After a couple of minutes I noticed they weren't even fazed. They didn't even break stride while swimming. After the water disappeared they continued crawling out of the drain. At this point I realized that I wasn't dealing with ordinary creatures. These were some kind of mutants, like that big rat with his four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I was actually waiting for those things to speak to me. "Go ahead big boy, is that all you got? Hell, if we can survive crawling up your asshole we can take anything you throw at us here." Damn, son of a bitch. I hope those little bastards aren't parasitic. That could help explain my constant stomach cramps, though.

I'm starting to question how long I will be able to survive out here.


18 umm... maybe
40 err... no
24 yes
17 no
30 yes
16 no
21 yes
15 14, 13,... no, no, no, oh hell no...

Once is all I'm gonna tell you and that's the way it's going to be. So no need to ask twice.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Fanciful Gluttony

It was titled as the longest buffet in the world.
350 Meter Buffet Table
400 Different Dishes
36 Restaurants
10 International Cuisines
Where did it take place? At Eastwood City, one of the country's premier shopping centers.

I had had a light breakfast and lunch so that I would have room to stuff my self for this coming winter. When I got there I went wild, grabbing one entree after the other with no constraint pushing old ladies and little kids out of the way. Hey, survival of the fittest. My plates were filled with Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Italian, Persian, American entrees. You name it I got it. There would be no discrimination from me. The Japanese sushi was mingling with the Italian pasta and the Chinese fried rice all on one plate, I didn't care. We can all get along. When I got to my table with my mountain sized servings in my hands I commenced as if I was in one of those pie eating contest. Devouring everything on one dish and then moving on to the next as if I was just breathing it in. By the time the night was over I probably ate enough to feed five Filipino families for the next three weeks... Well, that's what happened in my alternate reality anyway. Shit, that was what was supposed to happen for real.

Real World Reality:
The world's longest buffet? It was more like the world's shortest in more ways than one. My cousins and I had bought tickets for this "once in a lifetime event" that was supposed to last from 9 pm to 12 midnight. We got there at 10 pm, according to Filipino time standards we were early, but the buffet tables were already bare. Practically all that was left was some fired rice, French fries and ice-cream. What the #$%@?

Now, I'm thinking the organizers for this event either greatly underestimated the bellies of the Filipino people or were just complete #$%@!^* morons. I'm guessing it is the latter. Turns out they had sold 10,000 tickets for this event. However, talking with the restaurant managers they were apparently unaware that there was going to be this many people. Originally they were told it was supposed to only last from 7 pm to 9 pm, in which they sold 5,000 tickets for. In the last couple of days leading up to the event the organizers had sold another 5,000 tickets and set another time for a second buffet from 9 pm to 12 midnight, in which we got our tickets for. So by the time we got there at 10 obviously there was no more food and the restaurants did not have enough supplies to restock the tables. I don't know what the hell these organizers were thinking. Filipinos may be small but they can EAT. Hell, most of them never know when their next meal is coming. What do you expect?

In my opinion some one should be getting fired for this. People were getting up set. You thought the people here were upset with the president? At one table if that security guard wasn't there I'm sure those workers would have been stoned to death. Having sold 10,000 tickets for the event they should have know that they are going to need a crap load of food but instead they tried to get by with what was meant for only half the number of people.

Only in the Philippines.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Wanna come to America?

I recently found out that another one of my friends will be getting married shortly. That makes 6 cousins and close friends of mine who already have or will be getting married all within the span of one year. What's going on? It's like marriage is the new happening thing to do and I'm starting to feel left out. I don't even have a girlfriend now. I better do something about this quick. Being a US citizen I think I shouldn't have much of a problem find one though, especially here. This country is one the top sources for mail-order brides though such services have actually been illegal in this country since 1986. Go figure, it's just another one of the laws in this country that's just for show.

Anyone know where I can find a shirt like this?

Seriously though, to all those I know who've already gotten either engaged or married this year congratulations! (Well, I'm actually serious about getting that shirt also.)

Thursday, October 20, 2005

3:00 O'clock

It is about 3:00 o'clock in the morning out here and I can't go to sleep. Why? Because I am bored. So incredibly bored. I have been on vacation since the start of this week but I have done practically nothing except sit in my little 12 x 10 ft concrete room. I can't even seen out my windows so it's like I'm in a little prison cell blocked off completely from the outside world. I am feeling a little tired though from waking up at 7am but I don't want to go to sleep because I'll feel like I have wasted the day. Though at this point it is kind of pointless since the day is already over, but I still feel like I got to do something. Crazy, huh? Well, that's what the Philippines will do to you. Maybe I need to take up a hobby. Drinking seems very popular here. One of my friends said he took up drinking to cope with being in this country. I'll admit that he does seem to be well adjusted to life here... as an alcoholic. Well, if it worked for him it could work for me too. Or maybe I should just stick to my hobby of killing ants and mosquitoes.

San Miguel the choice of the Philippines!

Drink enough of these and all your problems can disappear... It's magic!