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Our trip to Palawan (with photos)

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Our trip to Palawan (with photos)

Postby Winston » Tue Sep 20, 2011 5:01 pm

Hi all,
Dianne and I will be away for a few days in Palawan, the most gorgeous area of the Philippines.

If you need to report any spammers or have any complaints, please direct them to jamesbond, or wait for me to respond when I have time again.

Thanks for your patience.

I'll try to take some pictures to show you all.

More info about Palawan here:
http://www.gopalawan.com/palawan/about-palawan/

Regards,
Winston
Last edited by Winston on Sun Oct 02, 2011 4:24 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

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"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby Hook » Wed Sep 21, 2011 12:50 am

Any reason to not move there and out of Angeles? Since you don't like Angeles anyway? I hear that Boracay and Cebu are good too.
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Wow Palawan is so nice, clean and happy!

Postby Winston » Wed Sep 21, 2011 2:00 pm

Hook,
Well I got to check it out first and see what kind of rental properties are available, etc.

We arrived today in Palawan. The town of Puerto Princesa is really nice and cozy. People seem more sincere, happy and full of goodness compared to Angeles City. The smiles here are a lot more genuine than in AC too. It's a noticeable difference. We've met several interesting characters who are friends of my friend. They all seemed vibrant and full of energy. Wow. I've never met people like that in AC.

Also the town is very clean. There is no trash on the streets. Amazing. Trikes here are only 8p to most locations in town, as opposed to 50 - 100p in AC. Big difference. The trikes here are also bigger and more spacious, whereas the AC trikes are much more cramped and hard to get in and out of.

We also ate at the best vegetarian restaurant I ever ate at. The food was delicious, fresh and organic, and cheap too. The menu had such a variety of items that one could eat there everyday and have variety. Check out the menu printed on their website. Notice the variety and low prices. Wow.

http://www.imas-vegetarian-restaurant.com/menu.html

The friend we are staying with has a house next to the beach with a garden too. It's very nice and you can hear the waves crashing on the shore all day and all night.

Tomorrow we will go island hopping in a boat.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby Winston » Mon Sep 26, 2011 8:15 am

Hi all,
We just got back from Palawan. It was great, but since we were in a group, things were a bit rushed. That's why I usually prefer traveling alone. But we saw a lot of great sites. We didn't get to see El Nido, the prettiest part of the Philippines they say, this time though.

We have a ton of photos to show you all, but I have to talk to my friend about showing them online. He may not want to appear in them. So I may only be able to show you the photos of me and Dianne in them.

Anyway, now we have to pack up to move out of my apartment, so I can go overseas and not have to keep paying rent while I'm away, which is a waste of money. I will be going to Taiwan after we move out. Since we will be busy, I won't be able to upload any photos from the trip for a while.

Question for you all:

When you live in two countries, part time in one and part time in another, how do you deal with the rent situation? I mean if you are renting a place, you will have to keep paying rental payments every month, even if you are in the other country, which is really a waste of money. So how do you deal with that?

Do you find a way to rent a place for only a few months at a time? If so, how do you handle the furnishings? I mean, most apartments and rooms are unfurnished, which forces you to buy a ton of furniture and appliances, which cost a ton of money, only to sell it for a fraction of the price when you move out. That's a bad deal. It's better to rent a place that's furnished, but most places don't offer any furnishings, at least not in the Philippines. So what do you do about that? Or do you guys buy up a condo in each country that you live in?
Last edited by Winston on Fri Sep 30, 2011 6:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby ladislav » Mon Sep 26, 2011 1:13 pm

I find cheap hotels with WI FI in them. Or by the month furnished places; I don't have a family so it's good enough for me.
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Postby Winston » Sun Oct 02, 2011 9:40 am

Hi all,
I'm in Taiwan now. I'll upload the Palawan photos to show you all later. But first, a few incidents to tell you all about.

1. First, when we were island hopping around Palawan, a bizarre incident occurred. While trying to dock on an island, our boat's wooden wings bumped into another boat that was already docked. As our navigators tried to back up, they bumped into that boat several more times. Then we went on the island to swim, play and take photos.

But when we returned to our boat, our navigators told us that the navigators on the boat we bumped into claimed that a piece of their anchor had fallen off as a result of our boat bumping into them. They said this anchor piece was expensive, so our navigators went diving to look for it, but to no avail. This sounded like an obvious scam. A few slight bumps between wooden wings of a boat is not going to cause any part of a heavy metal anchor to break off. Come on now. Who would believe that? Nevertheless, the crew of the other boat said that they either wanted 1000p for the lost part, or a replacement.

I told Dianne and the two Filipinas we were with (one was my expat friend's date, the other was her friend) that this was an obvious scam. Yet they would not stand up and argue about it. All they would do was summarize what was going on and what was being claimed. I hate how Filipinas do that. When faced with a scam, they don't call out "SCAM!". Instead, they just sit quietly and do nothing except translate what's going on, without confrontation. That's stupid. It's like they never stand up for what's right. I was the only one being outspoken about it. Even my expat friend, who was sponsoring this island hopping outing, did not take sides. He remained neutral and said he preferred to just sit and watch the incident play out between the navigators. After being in the PI for so long, he was unphased by such events.

Whatever was going on, we certainly weren't going to pay for it, since it was our navigators' fault, not ours. So we were not liable for it. I suspect though, that they were hoping that we (especially since my expat friend was a white guy) would offer to pay for the feud, since we had bottomless pockets (in their view).

Still, I didn't understand why our navigators (a team of four Filipino cheerful guys) would fall for such an obvious scam. Were they in on it? Is this a standard ploy they pull on foreigners, each taking turns bumping into each other's boat while docking? Who knows. But the Filipina with us (my friend's date and love interest) told us that she thought the incident was not a scam, simply because our navigators were diving to look for it. I told her that that's not proof that this incident is not a scam. After all, our crew could have been playing along out of politeness, or even be in on it. We simply can't know. But this girl kept arguing with me and wouldn't let me finish my sentences and line of reasoning. I hate it when people are stubborn without a logical reason, but this is common with Filipinas, since they are not reasonable or logical at all, and cannot debate logical arguments.

I kept asking what piece had broken off exactly, but no one could give me a clear answer, since Filipino communication skills TOTALLY SUCKS ASS! I SWEAR! GOD IT PISSES ME OFF HOW THEY CAN'T EXPLAIN SHIT! They kept saying it was a piece of the anchor, but I saw a rope extending from the other boat onto the shore, indicating that an anchor was attached to it which kept the boat secure. It felt like the Twilight Zone again. Here I was asking a logical sensible question, and everyone was ignoring me. Such a bizarro world.

Even Dianne got mad when I kept asking questions that she could not properly answer. I don't know why she wasn't directing her anger at the crew scamming us, instead of at me for asking questions and calling out the scam. It was like she was not directing the anger at the right people. Very weird. But again, in the Philippines, the person making a scene or being outspoken is often seen as "the bad disruptive person", rather than the one trying to cheat, lie or scam you. Very weird. How is being outspoken a bigger no-no, in the Filipino view, than the one who is lying, cheating, and scamming? It's like cheating and scamming are normal and acceptable, but being outspoken and confrontational is not, even if you are in the right?! WTF?! Hence, right and wrong have no value. That's f***ed up.

Eventually, the crew of the other boat simply accepted a promise from our crew to make a new part for them to replace the one that was lost. And we were on our way.

When we got back to the resort that my friend's friend owned, who introduced us to this boating crew, I told the owner's Filipina wife about the incident. She questioned our crew about it, and they exchanged some words in Tagalog. But when I asked her what the crew said, she did not answer me. It's weird how communication here is like the Twilight Zone sometimes. You ask a question, but no one even answers or acknowledges the question.

Back at my friend's house, our girls still felt that the incident was not a scam. Then when my expat friend calmly explained that this could possibly be a scam that both boat crews pull on each other to try to extract extra money from foreigners, each taking turns, and expecting the foreigners (us) to say, "Ah don't worry about it. I'll pay for the missing piece." and gladly shelling out 1000p (I guess some foreigners are dumb enough to do that, so they bank on it, what an insult to our intelligence!). Then the girls said, "Oh I see."

But I don't get how foreigners are able to see through such scams, better than Filipinas are. Are Filipinas really that bad at detecting scams in their own country? Or are they just playing dumb, cause they sympathize more with the scammers than with the foreign victims (us)? Who knows. But it's a disturbing question. I just don't see how some people can have no honor, morals, conscience or integrity. It baffles me. And I hate it too. It annoys the hell out of me (which is another reason why I don't fit in the PI).

(Btw, a black American expat restaurant manager in Angeles City I used to talk to, who had been living there since 1979, told me a few years ago that yes, usually your Filipina girlfriend will sympathize a lot more with a Filipino trying to scam you, than with you, because she shares the same "extract from the foreigner" mentality that he does. Thus, she sees a Filipino scammer trying to cheat you as just a "fellow opportunist and compatriot" so to speak. This is why she often takes his side, albeit in a subtle manner, rather than stand up for you or protect/defend you. That is very disturbing, to say the least. This expat manager I used to talk to was very jaded and cynical, and what he told me was often too disturbing for me to accept. But incidents like this make me wonder if he was right after all.)

I wonder, what do Filipinos usually do when they are confronted with an obvious scam like this? Do they usually comply with it, knowing that they are getting cheated? Or do they contest it? If so, how do they contest it, since making a scene or confronting scammers is seen as "disruptive and out of the flow" in the Philippines? Is there a way to quietly contest something without making a scene?

What do you all think? Was this a scam? Why did I feel like such a "sore thumb" in the group for simply standing up for what's right and for the truth? Isn't that weird? That happens to me often for some reason.

PS - Here below is a photo of our boat next to the one that tried to scam us. Our boat is the one on the right with blue lining, while the scammer boat is the one on the left. Notice the wooden wings on the side of it, and how they can easily bump into another boat's wooden wings while docking. As you can see, the other boat has a rope extending from it to the shore, indicating that it is securely anchored. So what the f**k was broken or missing exactly? I don't know, and no one would answer my simple logical question. (I hate it when I ask a sensible question and everyone ignores me) Now, do you honestly think that a few bumps between the wings of such boats, could cause one of them to lose a piece of anchor that needs to be replace/reimbursed? Isn't that a silly claim? If so, why did our Filipinas not see the obvious absurdity of it?

Image


2. One day we tried to hike up to these secret waterfalls, but the trail was filled with wasps that stung my friend's son. So we took an alternate route through the rocks on the riverbed and stream. It was totally unpaved and filled with slippery wet rocks, brush, thorns, etc. We had to wade through the river many times too, and sometimes you could not even see the rocks you were stepping on when you were in the river.

I was left way behind, and my expat friend's caretaker stayed behind to help me. After slipping and falling a few times on rocks and slippery mud, I had enough and decided to turn back. I did not like trying to pass "impassable terrain" and being expected to do it quickly. That was totally unreasonable and ridiculous and illogical too. This whole attempt was irrational in my view.

But again, like in the Sagada Caves, I don't get how "normal people" can quickly hop through slipperly rocks and slopes so easily, while it takes me forever to do so? I mean, if every step you take is risky and treacherous, how can you go through it quickly, since you have to think and worry about every step you make? How are normal people able to do that and I can't? Is there something in my brain or mind that is unable to process or coordinate my movements in such terrain?

Can anyone explain this? I have asked this many times but gotten no answer. Do I just lack the stamina, athleticism, and coordination of the average person, hence making me below average in such things? Why am I slower than everyone in some things, but faster than everyone in other things? (in the slap the hands game, I am unbeatable, for example, and can beat everyone, but it's a game I'd have to show you)

Btw, Filipinos seem especially good at this kind of thing. They breeze through rocks and climb trees, as though they were half monkey or something. lol. It's like they have some talent for such things that doesn't require any kind of training or learning.
Last edited by Winston on Mon Oct 03, 2011 8:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby Winston » Sun Oct 02, 2011 4:21 pm

Here is our Palawan photo album, taken from my camera and uploaded into PicasaWeb. My expat friend though, the one who invited us along with his new girl, preferred not to have his photos displayed in a public album. So I removed all pics with him in it from this album. So you will see me, Dianne, and the two Filipinas that he invited (one of them is my friend's new girl, while the other is her best friend) as long as the scenic sites we went to and the house we stayed at. Click on the thumbnails to enlarge them.

https://picasaweb.google.com/1014688293 ... directlink
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

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Postby lavezzi » Sun Oct 02, 2011 4:30 pm

Winston wrote:Here is our Palawan photo album, taken from my camera and uploaded into PicasaWeb. My expat friend though, the one who invited us along with his new girl, preferred not to have his photos displayed in a public album. So I removed all pics with him in it from this album. So you will see me, Dianne, and the two Filipinas that he invited (one of them is my friend's new girl, while the other is her best friend) as long as the scenic sites we went to and the house we stayed at. Click on the thumbnails to enlarge them.

https://picasaweb.google.com/1014688293 ... directlink


Absolutely stunning! Both the scenery and Dianne. You really don't know how good you have it Winston. Why are you leaving the Philippines??
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Postby Winston » Sun Oct 02, 2011 4:58 pm

lavezzi wrote:
Winston wrote:Here is our Palawan photo album, taken from my camera and uploaded into PicasaWeb. My expat friend though, the one who invited us along with his new girl, preferred not to have his photos displayed in a public album. So I removed all pics with him in it from this album. So you will see me, Dianne, and the two Filipinas that he invited (one of them is my friend's new girl, while the other is her best friend) as long as the scenic sites we went to and the house we stayed at. Click on the thumbnails to enlarge them.

https://picasaweb.google.com/1014688293 ... directlink


Absolutely stunning! Both the scenery and Dianne. You really don't know how good you have it Winston. Why are you leaving the Philippines??


As I explained in the AC thread:

Why? Because I'm more attracted to oriental girls and because I'm incompatible with the PI in a lot of ways:

1. I don't like playing the sugar daddy/Santa Claus role and being put into it. I'm not generous or willing to be ripped off and overcharged. I am frugal and derive enjoyment out of saving, not spending. Filipinos don't like that. It doesn't fit in with their expectations of foreigners. Thus I have a constant perpetual conflict of wills with them.
2. I don't like inefficiency and low quality everywhere.
3. I don't like hot humid weather and my body wilts in it. I also sweat profusely in such climate, which is annoying and uncomfortable.
4. It is not vegetarian friendly, nor is the local food generally good.
5. I don't like being surrounded by people who seem like retards, with no communication skills, and often act more animal than human.

Etc.

Those are huge incompatibilities, are they not?

I am returning to the PI again, but with less things, so I can live a more mobile lifestyle. Remember? I don't know where I'll live, but I'm trying to not get tied down, so that I can move freely. My dream is to be a perpetual traveler, remember? I may live for months or weeks at a time somewhere, but not in a permanent long term routine. (unless I find some sort of paradise of course) I don't mind staying long term somewhere, as long as I'm not forced to be there. There is so much I want to see and do, and I am way behind schedule.
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Postby Winston » Sun Oct 02, 2011 7:03 pm

Here are some photos from the album.

https://picasaweb.google.com/1014688293 ... directlink

The vegan pizza we ate at Imas, the vegetarian restaurant in Puerto Princesa. Very delicious. The yellow you see on there is cashew cheese, not real cheese. That's why it's vegan. It has tofu meat on it and tomato sauce.

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Veggie steak I ate made of tempe, something I've never heard of before, but it's very delicious nonetheless.

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Vegetarian tostada. Also very good.

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Here is their menu. As you can see, lots of items, enough to eat everyday and experience variety!

http://www.imas-vegetarian-restaurant.com/menu.html

My friend's house that we stayed in.

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The gazebo alongside the beach in front of the house.

ImageImage

My friend's pet monkey, which he rescued from some native Filipino tribe that was about to kill it, by buying it off them.

ImageImage

Around the garden outside.

ImageImage

More later.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

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Postby Winston » Mon Oct 03, 2011 2:29 pm

More photos from the album.

On the balcony.

Image

On a boat island hopping.

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A starfish we found with spikes on it.

Image

On an island shore.

ImageImageImageImageImageImageImage
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

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"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby Winston » Mon Oct 03, 2011 3:17 pm

My friend's new girlfriend.

ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

Cute waitress. Aren't these girls' smiles so innocent and modest compared to AW? lol

ImageImageImage

Cute smile.

ImageImageImage

My delicious but huge vegetarian pizza.

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Romantic photo of us :)

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A trike in Puerto Princesa. As you can see, it is much bigger than the ones in Angeles City. And it only cost 8p per person, as opposed to 50p to 100p in Angeles.

ImageImage

Singing karaoke.

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Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

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Postby Winston » Mon Oct 03, 2011 6:33 pm

ImageImage

Another romantic photo.

ImageImage

Seashells that Dianne collected.

ImageImage

Going back home.

ImageImageImageImage
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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