Philippines Travel Stories, Page 12

Tricycle Taxis are Hated in Philippines

Tricycle Taxis are Hated in Philippines
I finally understand a few reasons why Expats in the Philippine despise the Motorcycle Taxis that look like Tuk Tuks in the Philippines.

I travel the planet, it is normal to sit on a bus, train, plane from 10-30 hours; it is the cost I pay for being a traveler. I do not avoid it; this is the rights of passage to being a traveler. I just pay the price and try not to think or complain. And for sure I do not avoid paying this price.

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Bauang or San Fernando, Philippines
La Union Province
Southeast Asia
Tuesday, August 18, 2009

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I pay the price, I cannot change a country, I must accept the transportation as it exists.

This tricycle taxi goes slow; it seldom goes over about 30 miles per hour. These vehicle couples up with Jeepneys have crippled the transportation in the Philippines. Top speed for land travel in the Philippines seems to be 30 mile per hour.

I truly do not care; I do not live here and kind of enjoy long trips on buses, which is why I am good at being a traveler. I was all excited that Ethiopia had Tuk Tuks, and now I am realizing when manage wrong they can cripple a country.

Fun crap, these are great forms of transportation for the locals, and humorously the American hear are 200 pounds too fat to get in them. I am sure they are reminded they are obese every time they see one.

I take the Jeepneys; I do not enjoy negotiating with gouge economics of the planet.

Tricycle Taxis are Hated in Philippines


Doctors Mom Mike and Chris

Doctors Mom Mike and Chris
I often post a problem on this Travelogue, and readers give me great advice, 85 percent of the advice is off-topic. Nevertheless, this is the job of a critical thinker, to separate noise from chaff, to harvest the wheat in the middle of a windstorm.

One great thought can change the world!

Mom is for ideas
Mike is an expert in Sciatica exercises
Chris is for ideas, and points me well.
Readers are for ideas.



I think you call this an inversion table, a person who works out way more than normal would understand. You use this to exercise your stomach muscles, to get a six-pack if you comprehend.

My friend Mike has one of these tables; I got on it the last time I was in the USA to see if it relieved pressure on my hipbone. I worked out daily for about 15 years.

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Bauang or San Fernando, Philippines
La Union Province
Southeast Asia
Tuesday, August 18, 2009

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Ok, I am here in San Fernando, La Union Philippines trying to visit a Physical Therapist, a little Medical Tourism here in the Philippines.

I got on Skype.com yesterday, called my friend Mike in Fort Wayne, Indiana and learned something. Mike is a Sciatica expert. Now, he told me his Chiropractor taught him all the exercises. I have been warned not to use a Chiropractor and this is good advice. A stupid anyone can cause me more harm than good, I have already hurt my back just trying to stretch it, a person must be careful.

I AM NOT A NORMAL PHLIPPINES EXPAT
I am not a fat, ugly, beer drinking, cigarette smoking pool player that has never exercised in their life unless forced by the Military. I am 100 percent opposite, I played all the sports, high jumped and pole vaulted in high school, I for some reason an in a the body of a 53 year old man, truly and annoyance.

11 years of travel has destroyed my body, I have specific muscle groups that have atrophied, I am very strong, but not in comparison to 11 years ago.

The problem with travel is you leave all your friends who are smart and are surrounded by idiots…. That is until you find new smart friends; generally, idiots surround me because they outnumber the smart friends.

Skype.com is the solution to keeping your smart friends close, however difficult to find hotels with Internet that functions and cheap.

I am in the Lorma Hospital trying to interview all the Doctors to see if they are on the side of smart or idiot. I am strict, I expect way too much from people and I get it.

I have found two Doctors that know more than most and speak English good enough to diagnose something, not everything. Their English is great, and if you have lower back pain, something Sciatica, this is a cheap resource.

Doctor Edward Chiu, Orthopedic something.
300 Pesos per visit or about six dollars.

Doctor Acacia, a female Physical Therapist
250 Peso per visit about five dollars

Lorma.org

I made a mistake on Hotels, I should have gotten a Hotel closer to the Hospital, it takes me about 30-60 minutes to get to the Hospital through the horrible traffic, and I am going to find a nice hotel close to the Hospital.

Pain of Trip problem, if you want to exercise, work out, get in good shape, you need to live close to the gym. I need physical therapy and I need to blast my muscle groups, I need to stretch and do it right. Well, the time added up, one hour to go, one hour to return and one hour to exercise adds up to three hours.

THREE HOURS?

This is a lot of time spent jacking around and not effective or efficient, I need to shorten this time. On the other side, I do get to visit all the small shops and learn how Jeepneys and Tricycle Taxis work.

As best I can surmise, it cost 60 Pesos to take a Taxi from the Bali Hai East Hotel to the Lorma Medical Center, I will try it today. This is about 1.50 dollars, not a big expense.

I was laughing, I am a lightweight compared to all the Expats of Americans around here, and I am small person in compared to them. I do not think many of them can lower themselves into a tricycle taxi or climb into a jeepney. They are fat impaired, truly a problem in the Philippines and good reason for them to play pool and not move.

Fun crap, and interesting, I am hyped up, ready to kill a bear, I am going to solve this body problem, there is zero reason to accept I am 53 years old, especially in the Philippines.

I do have trouble ignoring the obese men around me, and to keep my mouth shut, but so be it.

I say I am fat, but to me 5 pounds is too much, I am 20 pounds overweight as I sit here, this will be gone in the next 30 days.

Doctors Mom Mike and Chris


Bus San Fernando to Angeles City Philippines

Bus San Fernando to Angeles City Philippines
We walked out of the Bali Hai EAST, not Bali Hai Hotel and flagged down a bus passing on the road with a sign in the window. “Cubao Manila.” That took a half hour, then sat another five hours to go 107 miles, this is crazy, and we averaging about 20 miles per hours in the Philippines.

107 Miles took us Five hours.

It takes five hours of travel time and about an hour on each end, so from Hotel door to Hotel door is at least seven hours.

WARNING - Wear long pants, jacket and maybe carry a blanket on any bus in the Philippines, it is possible you will freeze to death. The air conditioners are often weirdly cold.

The Philippines is a never-ending city alongside a two-lane highway, there is no way to go faster, the tricycle taxis, jeepneys, and general traffic goes at 20 miles per hour. You are traveling as fast as a Tricycle Taxi, that is about top speed.

We must have passed 300 cars, trucks or motorcycle taxis; in a private car or shuttle, you are a candidate for a head on collision. I personally believe my seat on a huge bus is safest.



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Bauang or San Fernando, Philippines
La Union Province
Southeast Asia
Monday, August 17, 2009

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DOMINION from Bauang to Angeles City
244 Pesos one-way from with Dominion Bus lines from Bauang to Dau. This small city is really part of Angeles City, then you need to take a Tricycle Taxi for about 100-150 Peso to your hotel, good luck….
- Froze on this bus

PARTAS from Angeles City (Dau) to Bauang or San Fernando
250 Peso for a Partas Bus from the Dau or Angeles City to Bauang, just say you are getting off at Bali Hai, they all seem to know the place.
- Baked or cooked on this bus.

You are not going to Clark or Angeles City; you are actually going to the Dau Bus Station, which is just a part of the never-ending city of Angeles City.

We went to the Airport, I cannot tell you an easy way to get to the airport, it was a Charlie Foxtrot, we ended up hitching in, and I hitched out. There was no public transportation leaving the airport when I needed to leave, I walked out, a couple of security guards picket me up, ask me 350, I gave them 100 and I was back in Angeles City.

Bus San Fernando to Angeles City Philippines


Diagnosing Sciatica in Philippines

Diagnosing Sciatica in Philippines
Paying a doctor 10 dollars per conversation here in the Philippines has convinced me that Medical Tourism is a great idea if you are already coming on vacation to the Philippine. It would be hard to justify a trip here just to talk to a Filipino Doctor. I think if you have already been diagnosed in the USA or Europe, then coming here to have expensive medical treatment is also a good idea. Then again, the Doctors in Thailand or Panama may be able to do treatment better, but not able to diagnose..

Hehehe confusion is great, something about the genetic pool.

Hmm, I think talking to 5-10 doctors makes sense to a few people, a great way to be confused and dangerous to many people.

Well, Sciatica is a sharp nerve pain that goes shooting that goes down your leg and stops a person from walking normal.

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Bauang or San Fernando, Philippines
La Union Province
Southeast Asia
Sunday, August 16, 2009

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As best I understand today, a person can have two types of Sciatic nerve problems.

1. One is caused because a disc in the spine is pushing against the spinal column.

2. The second is caused because the Piriformis muscle is squeezing the nerve.

I paid about 180 dollars to have a MRI done here in the Lorma Hospital in San Fernando, La Union. The MRI says I have a bulge that is pushing against my nerve, so I do have a spinal column problem.

However, one of the orthopedic doctors in Lorma Hospital says,
“If you can do all these movements, then you do not have spinal problem, the person with true spinal problems cannot do that.”

JD a friend from Baguio sent me this link on Piriformis syndrome.
Piriformis syndrome. JD I think has pointed me at the solution.

THE BOTTOM LINE
Hmm, this is a trip to confusion, then I learn the bottom line, at the end of the day whether I have a disc problem or this piriformis muscle problem, the solutions are about he the same, the doctors pointed me at a Physical Therapist. I have pointed myself at many YouTube Videos… hehehe and will also do the Physical Therapy at the Lorma Hospital proving the women therapist is friendly and pretty.

(I am going to find a Chiropractor also, I hope… 500 Pesos per trip, this 2000 for Motley is a lot of cash.)

Education to some people is hazardous to their health, then for some people it can save their life.

This is truly a confusing subject, but I think the bottom line is this, you may just want to skip to the solutions if you have shooting pain that does down one of your legs.

SOLUTONS to PAIN
Call is what you want, there is the solution somewhere here, short of paying to have surgery, this is where I am starting.

ONE
You need to stretch both your spinal column and your piriformis muscle.

TWO
Then you need to exercise your Gluteus medius muscle, and think Sciatic nerve, be the nerve.

I am sure I need to exercise many muscles, but this seems to the priority number one muscle to point at.

If you have a shooting pain in your leg, first watch this video, then click below and then maybe click on this link with a collection of many videos.

1. Sciatica Diagnose
2. Sciatica Stretching
3. Sciatica Exercises
Sciatica

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VIDEO BELOW
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If you not see a video here it is because you are reading by email, click here to see video.
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VIDEO ABOVE
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When I have a problem, I do read a lot, research and start making Internet pages that outlines the problem. By making outlining the problems I learn, I use the process of writing to educate myself.

Sciatica

Then again, it would be easier to sit around and complain.

I am not going to lift my Backpacks weighing 70-100 pounds for at least three weeks, and hopefully four.

Diagnosing Sciatica in Philippines


Angeles City Blue Boar Inn

Angeles City Blue Boar Inn
Chuck Wow recommended I come and interview a Blogger called “Harry the Horse” here in Angeles City, Philippines. My Thailand girlfriend flies from Clark to Bangkok, Thailand tomorrow so here I am.

I know diddle about Harry, however something about a person living in Angeles for years is intrinsically interesting.

What is a Blue Boar?

Angeles City Blue Boar Inn, the Hotel I think owned by Harry the Horse.

Harry the Horse
I kind of doubt I will interview him on this one night trip to Angeles to drop the Thailand girl off at the airport. The trip from San Fernando, La Union by bus took five hours of misery to get here.

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Angeles City, Philippines
(Nothing to do with Angels)
Southeast Asia
Friday, August 14, 2009
Angeles City Philippines Hotels
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I guess you can call this Hotel anything, just do not call it late for supper.

Is this the Blue Boar Inn or the Hotel La Casa, nonetheless I think I am in both places with a double room with AC for 900; there are many cheaper fan rooms. Truly, Angeles City Hotels are cheaper or half price compared to Manila.

The Philippines has 7107 islands and Angeles City is not on the water and had nothing to do with Angels. Do we really want a Blue Boar in La Casa…?



Easy to find, you take a Tricycle Taxi for about 150 Peso from the Bus stop to the USA, VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) post, then ask until someone points you around the corner. This Angeles City Hotel has WIFI free and is probably more expensive than many around it that have swimming pools.



Beware of Owner sign as we enter Hotel La Casa.



Hmm, this business card says,
“Hotel La Casa Pension”

I think he is trying to put keywords into signs and his business cards, he is offline SEO.

I will spend the night, and then go return to San Fernando to the Bali Hai East Resort to work on my tan by the swimming pool tomorrow. I will resume my query, “What is a resort?”

I will talk to Harry the Horse later in the:
Blue Boar Inn
Hotel La Casa
or
Hotel La Casa Pension

Harry the Horse

Angeles City Blue Boar Inn


MRI in Philippines Hospital

MRI in Philippines Hospital
I had and MRI in the Lorma private Hospital in city of San Fernando, Philippines in the province of La Union. I suppose this is a form of Medical Tourism, however with a twist because I do not return home.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Cost:
6700 for MRL
1000 for report
500 for discussion with Doctor prior to MRI
300 for discussion with Orthopedic Doctor

9000 more or less, or about 185 US Dollars
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI),

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Bauang or San Fernando Philippines
Southeast Asia
Friday, August 14, 2009

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My Thai Girlfriend took this photo, as they were ready to stuff me below the machine for 45 minutes.



A view of Andy the HoboTraveler.com under a MRI machine. Truly, this is like doing a 45-minute of meditation with a mantra being inserted into my brain.



This is the report, they are saying a bulge a disk in number 4 or something is pushing again my nerves.

I am still baffled; I keep talking about the cyst, nodule, a small piece of growth sitting on my top of my hip joint that hurts. They tell me this is irrelevant, however all pain start there, not in my spine.

I had a great conversation with the orthopedic doctor, he made me do many exercises, and push again his arm. Then said,
“If you had spine problems you would not be able to do that.”

I was laughing, I way lying on my back on the office bed. He put his hand on my knee and said push up. I pushed up, but not very hard, he said push harder. I was not sure of his goal, his Philippines English evaded my understanding, I finally realized he wanted me to push as hard as I could with my right leg. I then pushed hard; he realized he could not stop it.

I was laughing, if he would at first told me to pull or push my knee up as hard as I could, I would have thrown the small man back about five feet. I think he believed he could stop my leg, I knew this was impossible; my leg muscles can lift a man off the floor with no problem.

Solution, is there a solution, I am still baffled, they want me to go to Physical Therapy two times per week for about a month. I am going to do this, at least until I am positive I do not know more about muscles than the Physical Therapist. I read Muscle Fitness magazine for about 14 years and worked out for at least 14 years, my knowledge of how the muscles work is pretty good if not excellent. I tend to believe most people cannot motivate themselves to do the right thing, they need help.

I still have the cyst; I will do a refocus session with the doctors and get them to focus on looking at the cyst and not my spine. I also have the MRI on a DVD and can send to one of my best friends who is a doctor in Las Vegas by the name of Jeff W.

As always, a lot of focus on diagnose, and very little focus on solutions.

I am going to find a Chiropractor here in Bauang or San Fernando, La Union to go to also, I think we can talk about how to get that disk in my back into proper alignment.

The Doctor said,
“Carrying 30-40 Kilos around, walking into and out of cities is what a soldier does.”

I am 53, I suppose I am still 23 in my mind, and have trouble not picking up the load and walking the road.

I guess the gear heads will be happy, I have never been a wimp, but for sure, I will be focusing on wheels for backpacks or travel bags.

I guesstimate I carry on my back and stomach double the weight of the average backpacker. The tourist in the Philippines are in terrible condition, this makes the doctor expect people to be weak.

Going light is for people on vacations, I see having my whole travelers nest as the minimum requirement of my happiness, and I am into enjoying my travel. I am not going to sacrifice happiness, I am not proving into proving I can sacrifice. I can do the 35-hour bus trips without a problem. Generally people want to pride themselves in going light, they never say to the readers, they do not have the strength to go heavy.. hehehe

I am focusing on the goal, the stopping of this pain that emanates from around the cyst or nodule.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

I know there are many people around the world who have serious medical problems and the medical care situation in the USA is touch and go. I see the cost of medical care in the USA as ridiculously high. The Lorma Hospital here in San Fernando is where all the Vietnam Vets or those who hang around the VFW go as best I can tell, it is a private Hospital with about 50 percent of the Doctors speaking great English. I can stop and talk with any of them for about 10 dollars a conversation, this is windfall to be able to interview them for intuitive intelligence, then make a decision on my part.

MRI in Philippines Hospital


Yahoo Mail Problem 2009

Yahoo Mail Problem 2009
I am loyal to Yahoo Mail; I have used their email system now for about 7-8 years, something like that.

I highly recommend a person use either Yahoo or Gmail, an email like @hobotraveler.com, or AOL or your student email system is a recipe for disaster. (I have two designated servers, I am not a boy in this game.)

There is a problem with Yahoo Mail that is driving me crazy.

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Bauang or San Fernando Philippines
Southeast Asia
Friday, August 14, 2009

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I will write an email.
Click on send.

That loading jobby will come up and sit there saying it is loading, then after awhile it stops. The send button is inactive; I cannot click on it again. I cannot CTRL A the content to copy, I cannot do anything. It just sits and looks at me, I have to open a new window and start over. Some of the links are live on the page, but the action I wished to perform is crashed.

This may be a result of slow bandwidth or slow internet, but this is a fatal problem. I am thinking I may use my email client Foxmail to send and receive all emails to circumvent this problem. The problem is the SMTP is sometimes blocked in the worst of areas. I change internet access often, I cannot rely on any configurations to be stable.

My strategy is this,
I delete, reply and work online when possible.

I then download read emails to my Foxmail email client to keep an archive of old emails I can read offline. If want, I can download all of them and always work offline.

Yahoo Mail Problem 2009


I Need a Predictable Environment

I Need a Predictable Environment
I ponder what are the side effects of 11 years of perpetual travel on my mind, body, emotions and spirit. It is debatable whether I am stronger or weaker, what parts of this machine is damaged and which parts are working optimal efficiency.

A traveler understands standing in line, queuing up, and wonders how such a simple task becomes a “Charlie Foxtrot.”

I personally believe humans are animals and will crave, seek, and find what we need. I do not want to solve any problems today, tomorrow, or for the next few weeks, I want a boring life.

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Bauang or San Fernando Philippines
Southeast Asia
Thursday, August 13, 2009

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I have found myself repeating the same words of wisdom, the same advice, to my Thailand Girlfriend here in the Philippines. She will ask questions,
“Why do the Philippines people answer no before you ask the question?”
“Why do the Philippines people not finish buildings?”
“Why do the Philippines people move to Manila?”
“Why do they stand in the middle of the sidewalk?”

My advice is something like,
“You do not want to think about this, please try not to think about it, trying to find the answers will drive you crazy, you truly do not want to understand how the world works.”
If a person becomes frustrated, the solution is easy, do less…

I accepted many years ago, the majority of Tourists needs to go home to relax, they were not on vacation, they were not recreating themselves, and they had just changed channels. I think planning a vacation is an oxymoron.

I find that chaos is my best friend, an annoying friend at that, but the more I accept I cannot control my friend, the happier I become. I am not going to feel guilty, I will do less today, and I will try to get nothing done.

I am going to lie around the swimming pool here in the Bali Hai East Hotel here in Bauang, Philippines and comtemplate the definition of the word "resort."

I Need a Predictable Environment