Philippines Travel Stories, Page 32

Lechon Pig Roast

Lechon Pig Roast
Tupi Philippines Southeast Asia
Sunday, December 10, 2006

Tupi is becoming the place to have a pig roast or hog roast, I was at a birthday party for Jo Jo and they had a pig, complete with head. Then the next day, here in the same hotel, or guesthouse there was a wedding with another pig. I took this photo at the wedding.

A man was quizzing me about, what is the difference between wedding reception in the Philippines and in the USA. The only clear difference was the pig, I never remember going to a wedding where there was a pig roasted or hog roast. The clothes, the table, the dollar dance, all were more or less the same, yet the serving of a pig was different. The culture or Christian culture here is very similar to the USA.

Lechon is the Tagalog name of pig.

Lechon Pig Roast

Ants and Cockroaches

Ants and Cockroaches
Tupi Philippines Southeast Asia
Sunday, December 10, 2006

I am in one of the cleanest rooms I have ever slept in; I do not think it could be cleaner.

I do not think it is possible to avoid cockroaches and ants, I should work on accepting that I live with them, they are part of my life.

I turned on the light and a huge 1-2 inch cockroach goes running towards an undiscovered corner of the room. Then the ants, they are everywhere, they crawl into areas, they are the invaders. The Ants cause problems, the cockroaches give me a scare, as they are creepy, however not really harmful. Ants will crawl into my hair or onto my body and annoy me, and then sometimes a vicious variety will arrive that bites, leaving red welts.

I am sleeping in an exceptionally clean room.

Talking about ants and cockroaches is maybe the dirty laundry discussion of travel. We are supposed to, see no evil, speak no evil, and hear no evil. To say or admit that we have cockroaches in the room is like saying,
- We are low classed people. -

Somehow, the upper class does not have the same problems, or problems… dysfunctional beliefs run rampant.

I am a hobo, the theme of my page is hobo, I do not believe it is wise to admit how nice some of the rooms are, and I am supposed to be sleeping in the gutter.

How to stop cockroaches, I do not think, I can, unless I would have to block every hole in my room, and never opened the door.

Hmm, I just realized, maybe the idea is not to stop them from entering, the idea is to repel them. There are sprays to kill, I need to read, and maybe says it works as a repellant.

(Boric Acid)

Ants, I think I can work on the idea of repelling; however than the problem is speed. I do think I can lay down a liquid barrier that would repel the ants, but first I have to kill the ones in the room. This starts to be a major cost, about five to ten dollars per room. I have never done this, I have never paid to exterminate the ants, I have purchased powder, but to spray and kill all of them in the room, nope.

Everything is about money and time, do I wish to invest one hour of time into killing ants, and than five to ten dollars US in cash, on a room I will leave tomorrow.

Ants do not like air conditioning, however when it is cold enough to repel them, it also makes me want to leave.

Ants and Cockroaches

TBoli Sebu Lake Philippines

TBoli Sebu Lake Philippines
Tupi Philippines Mindanao Island
Saturday, December 9, 2006

A map or tentative planning map to Sebu Lake for me visit the T’boli people, the blue is my known path, I am not even sure which one is the proper lake. There is a bus to Marbel and then to Surallah, neither name is on the map… The correlation between maps and cities is always a mystery; for sure, there is always a need for mapmakers.

The lady ask me,
- Why do you come to Tupi? -
I say,
- I like small villages, and there is no tourist. -

There is a couple of women I met in the road, they brought me a Pineapple to eat, I will eat them, when I find a knife, I am not carrying all my equipment, I do not have my Pineapple knife, but I now have a Pineapple.

They went through the interview, etc, and finally kept asking me what I am going to do, they finally realized, I have no plans. They say, I should go and see the T’boli or Tvoli people, they walk around in just a loincloth or mostly naked. Everyone seems to recommend this lake, yet, and then the woman says, I should not go alone, it is dangerous.

Then proceeds to say there are many cottages and tourist accommodations, and many tourist go there.

I said,
- I came to Tupi because there is no tourist. -

I think there is probably Filipino Tourist; I highly doubt there is many white tourist, or Hey Joe tourist. Mindanao is on every do not go list of the planet and every warning about terrorist.

I do no know, beautiful Philippine girls walking around in Loin Clothes, which is good enough motivation for me. Note, I do not think they are walking around like this, but it does sound good. I think my curiosity is mostly about how a person will explain a place and how it actually is, there is so little correlation, and it is as if the world is just a fantasy.

For sure, a person should go and see any place, shown on TV with CNN or BBC; there is an almost zero correlation about what you will see and what is there. Yes, you can find it, if you spend your whole life searching.

I told the to Pineapple women, I can see topless girls in Manila, I think pretty easy, I would think they have that type of bar, on second though, I am not sure.

Oh well, I will travel on Sunday to this place, I have a big concern though, I hope Jo Jo and Mrs. Espritu have my clothes washed, I risked allowing them to clean them yesterday. They do not clean clothes regularly, however, I am down to my last dirty shirt and shorts, I need clothes to continue.

TBoli Sebu Lake Philippines

Tupi Philippines Hotel in Mindanao

Tupi Philippines Hotel
Tupi Philippines Southeast Asia
Saturday, December 9, 2006

I have traveled from General Santo in Mindanao Philippines to Tupi, Philippines; it is about one hour trip to the north.

I asked many people on the bus from General Santos to Marbel, if there was a Hotel in Tupi. The man next to me said there was a short-term hotel; however, he did not think there were any others. I kept at the bus attendant or the person who collected my bus fare money, and even though he did not speak English well, he did understand and helped me.

The bus driver, and the attendant would not let me de-board, or kept me on the bus in Tupi, in a nice way until they could take me back on the highway and to a hotel or motel called the 3 Inn or 3 Mile Inn or something just north of Tupi.

Sometimes help is worst than no help, they were very intent on helping me to find a hotel, so they dropped me off at the hotel, and saved me a taxi fare. I get out of the bus, and I realized, there is no easy way to return to the city or village of Tupi. That Inn is a motel; you need a car to go to this hotel. I did not even enter the hotel and ask; I just walked to the other side of the road and waited for a taxi, there is no taxis, however, soon a bus stops and takes me back to Tupi.

I asked a taxi driver or trike taxi for a hotel, he points at the Catholic Church, and I walked back behind the church. I ask around and the son of the small store walks me over to this very large home. Jo Jo comes to the gate, and walks me up to a room. I am in some paradise house, with a room for 600 pesos, about 12 dollars US, Air Conditioning, private bath and a TV outside the room with cable and HBO, CNN, and all the TV stations I did not have in the T’boli in General Santos.

The room is probably one of the best I have had in the Philippine and less than most in cost.

It is next to the protestant Alliance Church or across the street, it is a great place. Last night was Jo Joe’s birthday, and they cooked or roasted a pig, he came up and retrieved me, I went down and ate rice, pig, and a very chocolate piece of cake.

Tupi is a quiet place; they keep asking me if I am afraid, there is for sure a notice in this area to be careful of terrorist or conflicts.

People want to know why I come to Tupi, the answer is easy, I was in the village for one night and I was invited to eat Pig and go to a birthday party, if you do not understand, then stay in Angeles…

Tupi Philippines Hotel

Philippines Salted Eggs

Philippines Salted Eggs
General Santos Philippines Southeast Asia
Saturday, December 9, 2006

These eggs are purple, or maybe another it is another color, they are colored eggs for sure. As best I can tell, they are boiled eggs, and the color is to help the buyer to know they are not normal eggs. This photo was taken in the Public Market of General Santos; I am realizing if you asked for Lions Beach, you would be close to the market and in an interesting area of GenSan.

The English is touch and go here, it is not as simple as to ask a person and they explain in English, I stopped at many of the same type of egg stands and asked, why are they purple, however, they did not answer, finally a man answered so I took the photo. I am not sure; maybe they boil and soak them in Salt.

This is a coconut shredder in the market of General Santos; I just saw a shredder for the first time in Bandung, Indonesia. I am wondering if I have somehow ignored, or never observed one for year, it is strange, and however, the mass harvesting of coconuts is not very normal as a person would think on the planet.

Philippines Salted Eggs

Blog for Mom and Dad

Blog for Mom and Dad
GenSan Philippines Southeast Asia
Saturday, December 9, 2006

I thoughts these photos would be of interest to my parents, and not anyone else.

Bambee Trading

Graham Crackers

Blog for Mom and Dad

AC Causes Camera Lens Condensation

AC Causes Camera Lens Condensation
General Santos Philippines Southeast Asia
Friday, December 8, 2006

When I leave the room, my camera lens fogs over in the warm air and ruins pictures.

Air Conditioning is causing me many problems and one problem is escalating to a decision-making process level.

I think in terms of systems, my whole life is reduced to a system, some process that determines my behavior. In Philosophical terms, it would be determinism.

It was just before sunset, I decided to go to the market, then to the internet café. I went outside, caught a three-wheel trike taxi to the public market of General Santos. The traffic was a mess as we approached the market, therefore I decide to walk, I happened up on this bike taxi in the middle of the street.

I stopped, pulled my camera out of the padded or insulated bag and snapped off a couple of photos. I was the middle of a mass of flesh, people everywhere, a few Hey Joes and comments being thrown. The sun was going to set soon, not the time I like to advertise…

- I have a camera, big, if you wait for the sun to set; you can follow me, sneak up behind, and grab it in the dark. -

I have a need for speed, I am constantly aware of my surroundings, I think I can blame it on basketball, I think of who and what is happening around me at all time, I see or feel the presence of people.

So, I wanted to snap a quick photo of this man on the bike, now, I am annoyed greatly that I have missed the photo. Taking photos is like an art, you start to get too serious, I try not too, however, I am human, I strive to improve.

A photo is words, expressed in photos. I can say more; explain better, by well-taken photos. The culture can be explained in abstract terms and a person can see, hopefully feel what I feel, or get that vicarious moment up close and personal.

This photos that is blurred, as a result of a cold camera. I was in a very air-conditioned room, my insulated, or what I think or thought was a great bag, kept the camera cold. The zipper, everything worked against a great photo. The bag did not breathe; it did not become warm, when I pulled the camera out of the bag. The glass lens was cold, the air was hot, moisture or a vapor instantly formed on the lens.

I have a need for speed; I take two quick photos of something I really wanted to capture. Failure!

Not my idea of how to do something, I like a good completion high.

This is the bag that is not working with me, it is working against me, in many ways, it is my friend, last night it was a bad boy, and I am putting it on waver and now actively looking for a better solution.

Why? Ok, hard for you to see, understand, or know, but a photo does represent words.

I am in a trike taxi; the road is blocked by not one but two large trucks, trying to back into small warehouse. I am on a back street, not the main street, so not a big deal; however, a long line of traffic is forming. I can see the market in the distance, so decided to walk. As I walk along a long line of cars, trikes, taxis, and whatnot, I also see this bike taxi.

I am interested in the round steering wheel; it is like a car steering wheel and sort of out of place on a bike, unique and funky. (I will probably take more photos and put in the next newsletter on pages.)
This photo represents many things of the Philippines culture, more correctly of the men of the Philippines mostly.

1. The cigarette hanging in the mans mouth, they do this as if it is some sense of pride.

2. This man is blocking the traffic, arrogance and total lack of caring for anything or anyone.

3. Bike taxi, not the bottom of the evolutionary chain of taxis, but is on the fringes. A pull rickshaw with runners is maybe the bottom, the human powered. A bike rickshaw or this type is somewhere on the bottom of taxis.

4. Macho and no Macho photo. The Filipino men can be both macho and extremely friendly. The group around this photos is all excited, that I am taking a photo, however the many on the bike is both oblivious and at the same time macho when I start to take the photo.

5. Lazy, the women of the Philippines will talk of the nature of men in the Philippines, there is a part of this culture that revels in being lazy. The men sort of like to do nothing and have the women work. A I am too good to do anything type mentality.

Now, I had to be macho, get up in his face, I am taking your photo, maybe you like it maybe you do not, I took the photo. There is a price to pay by me, I have to also be arrogant, I have to be assertive, knowing very well, many people do not like their photos taken. I have to take a small risk, not big, but it is possible he will get angry. I do not like confrontation, I am normal; however, I am risking a confrontation. I paid the price; I risked a confrontation to get in this man face, up close enough to capture the look, the cigarette, etc.

Now, if I had a more powerful lens, higher zoom powers, I could remove myself far enough way, zoom in and he may never see me, then I could take a graphic program and cut the photo out of the photo, too much work, but possible.

I did not capture the photo, because I walked out of a very cold air-conditioned room, with a bag that held in the cold, kept the camera lens cold. I was not thinking about photos, I was going to the market. A photo entered my realm, I tried.

AC Causes Camera Lens Condensation

Hotel Empathy

Hotel Empathy
General Santos Philippines Southeast Asia
Thursday, December 7, 2006

Does a hotel try to empathize with their clients?
I personally think they drop the ball, on a scale of 1-10, ten being a perfect score, and 1, being the worst. I would say the average hotel is about a 3.

Every person though that enters a hotel is different, and every hotel has a different priority, or a different type of client they normally service.

Last night I walked into the reception area and asked about ordering a Pizza to be delivered. The girl behind the desk had no idea, and has no desire to help. Eileen was not there, the one on is a stone face.

I think Eileen would have tried to help, the hotel is good, however not all person in the hotel are good.

The bottom line is this, I want to have my clothes cleaned, I only have 5 shirts with me, and I am in need.

This is a motel or short term hotel, it is not a Hostel, or place where people live for weeks, it more of a Motel. Although very nice, it does not have tourist on a regular basis, I think more of recreational use of rooms…. Hehehe

I purchased some laundry soap, back to doing the laundry by hand. Note, I asked the reception on the way out of the hotel, they said they would find one and tell me later...

Hotel Empathy