I was taking my afternoon siesta. The crusty old expat needs his “beauty sleep.” The sound of our eight dogs furiously yapping woke me up. An Aussie friend and his asawa swung their Ford Expedition into our driveway. Our good neighbors were there to inform us of a bomb scare in our home province of Guimaras.
“The Dimple Star Road Trip from Hell: Guimaras to Manila, Part Two.” The madness continues. Why would any sweaty, overweight American expat in the Philippines subject himself to such torture? After seven years of living in this Southeast Asian archipelago, you’d think I’d have better sense than to board a bus without air con.
Truth? Yes, it is stranger than fiction at times. Often the limits of credibility are stretched beyond imagination in the Philippines (and in politics.) The other day two chickens, a male and female, were sacrificed to appease the water gods at our new well in the Philippines.
Call me “Old School.” I am a crusty old expat at age 63. In the Fifties, when I was growing up in a sleepy small town in Central Illinois, the latest high tech gadget in our household was a black-and-white television set. We got five channels from St. Louis on that old wooden box: KSD, the NBC affiliate, KTVI, offering programming from ABC, KMOX, backed by CBS, and independent station, KPLR, which featured one of my personal favorites, The Three Stooges, and the Public Television station, KETC, which I rarely watched at the time since Mr. Rogers creeped me out.
Our new roof in the Philippines is halfway done. If our construction crew did not take off this Thursday through Sunday for the Easter Holy Week, the roof would probably have been completed by the end of the week. The pictures posted on this article are the result of only 2 1/2 days of work as the roofers took off early this past Wednesday to return to their home provinces for the long holiday. Any expat that has lived in the Philippines for any amount of time knows that everything virtually shuts down for Holy Week and for Christmas. That’s to be expected in a country where about 84% of the population are Catholic.
I’m a simple man. I like my beer cold. And I like to drink in pleasant surroundings with a fan blowing a cool breeze on my fat face. I can have all of that and more, at the brand new Shirven Hotel in Guimaras, our mango island home province.
The Ford Ranger XLT 4×2 Automatic is our new truck in the Philippines. After not owning, or driving, our own vehicle since moving to the Philippines over five years ago we have finally purchased our own personal transportation. WHAT??? But wait a minute. Regular readers of Philippines Plus must be scratching their heads (or their butts, if you prefer), wondering why in the world we bought the Ford. Didn’t I publish a post a few weeks ago regarding an initial unpleasant visit to the local dealership in Iloilo?
New Year. New property. We purchase another lot in Guimaras, the Philippines, our home for the past five years. My asawa and I both wanted to add to the 7,020 square meters we already own and where we are building our new home. The land, purchased from the brother of the man that we bought our original lot from, is adjacent to our existing lot. The additional lot, 5,478 square meters, will give us a total of 12, 498 square meters, or 1.25 hectares, a little over 3 acres.
My asawa, along with our brother-in-law Joery, and nephew Sherwin, recently visited my father-in-law’s property located in Lawi, Guimaras, my wife’s homeplace where she grew up with no electricity, no running water and dirt floors. Lolo has extensive land holdings, over 2,500 acres, 1,035 hectares. His property is covered with mango, coconut, cashew, mahogany, hitang hitang and banana trees. Bamboo grows all over. Material for the new hut in the Philippines are now secured as my wife and Joery picked out several hitang hitang trees along with an aging, massive mango tree that is dying but will provide us with a unique wood for the floors of our new residence.