Saturday, May 3, 2014

It's More Fun In The Philippines!

Mabuhay, everyone!
Let me tell you all about my trip to the Philippines! No, it’s not going to be a whole load of self absorbed pictures of myself in some shameless bikini sipping a pina colada (very irritating those girls!) but just more about my trip. That, and my phone conked so I couldn’t take pictures. I can’t even spam you with annoying pictures if I wanted to.

So, I’d already made a couple of big mistakes with Philippines :
1)   Bought a flight to the wrong airport (Brilliant, really brilliant)
2)   Transit time from first flight to second was 8 hours, so my total journey from Singapore to Philippines took 14 hours (I could’ve gone to Germany, honestly!)

Here are a couple more of interesting facts :

We departed Singapore at 12 midnight, and landed in Manila at 4am. I really overestimated how tired we would be, so we took turns sleeping in a little bistro in the airport. The wait was okay, but the boarding gates were the most chaotic I’ve ever been to! Everyone was essentially given 10 minutes to board, where someone would yell ‘Flight XXX, board now! Please board now!’ and everyone would scurry about and board the plane. We were supposed to board at Gate 135 or something like that, but in the end we were told to ‘Board last gate from the left!’ And no kidding, there was a cardboard sign pasted on it saying ‘Last Gate’.

We boarded the plane at 12:30pm, where I promptly fell asleep, but I woke up an hour later feeling very hot and sweaty. I looked outside the window and I thought, ‘Ah! We’ve arrived!’ as I saw the plane rolling the runway. Then, to my surprise, the plane suddenly lifted into the air. I looked at my boyfriend.
“Eh, what’s happening? Why is the plane leaving again?”
“What do you mean leaving?” he stared at me.
“Ya, why are we flying now!”
“The flight has been delayed, we’ve been just sitting in the plane for the past 1 hour!”
No wonder it was so ridiculously hot too.

So our beloved plane was delayed and we only ended up reaching the resort at four in the afternoon. It’s quite cool though, the little airport at Coron. It is a teeny weeny airport, and when planes land they have four people in traditional outfits playing the drums as a welcome. Honestly, it feels extremely welcoming! We were then picked up by the resort transfer, and ‘Gangnam Style’ started blasting through the radio.

I like the Philippines. Everywhere I went, there was fun music! It puts one in such a happy, holiday mood!

The ride to the resort was very bumpy, as there was a dirt road (no proper cement roads) and its surrounded by really untouched scenery. It’s rather rural, with a lot of huts and cows ambling lazily along, and my boyfriend, being from Germany, found this really exciting. I wasn’t half as excited as my hometown slightly resembles this, heh heh, but what I found slightly disturbing was the stark contrast of how luxurious the resort was, when two minutes away there were little huts.

The resort was really nice, I would totally recommend anyone to go there. It’s called Busuanga Bay Lodge, google it! Initially I thought it was a little expensive, but after leaving it, I honestly felt it was worth every penny, because I’d had a really great stay.

I won’t bore you with my stories of snorkeling and tanning (what’s there to tell?) other than the fact when I came back to Singapore I realized I don’t like having a tan and want to be fair. But the flight back was delayed because Obama was in Manila and none of the flights could land! My boyfriend threw a very hissy fit (I was highly embarrassed of him) but then I got very happy when they diverted our flight to Cebu instead so we weren’t affected by the flight delay.

Filipino food is really delicious though, and the people are incredibly helpful and smiley. It’s also great that most of them all speak English so getting around was easy, and I think it’s really in their culture to just be really nice and accommodating. I’m not talking about people at the resort, because I’m sure they’re trained for that, and they really had very exceptional service, but even people you meet in the airport and if you ask passerbys questions.

A sad thing is that my phone got water in it, so I dumped it in a large bowl of rice (Google it if you haven’t heard of this technique before!) but unfortunately it’s still not working. It’s okay though, I’ve had my good ol Iphone 4 for about 4 years now and it’s served me well (plus it’s never failed me despite me dropping it on a daily basis).

I met a lady named Corrie Batchelor on the plane. She owned one of the resorts in Busuanga, and she told us that it was a really good choice that we had come to Busuanga instead of Boracay because Boracay had just become too touristy. I think it’s good for people who are really into nightlife and love crowds, but I’ve turned into some sort of a hermit old lady that really likes seclusion and space. Busuanga was perfect for that! We were the only couple on one of the islands that we went to, that’s how secluded it was. And it was great to snorkel without bumping into another thousand tourists. It felt like the sea was ours!

It’s really more fun in the Philippines! And the food! The food was so yummy! I’m now a firm advocate of Pork Longanisa, which is now my all time favourite breakfast food.  I’d been to Phuket and Bali before, but I really enjoyed my trip to Busuanga the most. It’s probably not a very fair comparison (I think a more fair one would be to compare Boracay vs Phuket and Bali), but I had a great time, and best for me, I came back with lots of inspiration to write!


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