Discuss culture, living, traveling, relocating, dating or anything related to the Asian countries - China, The Philippines, Thailand, etc.
Odessa- Istanbul- Dubai- Manila.
23 hours. Exhausted.
A bit of a shock, though.
From architecture like this:
To basically just boxes. And from people who dress in latest fashions to a crowd in T shirts. Now, I need to get reused to being surrounded by Asian people again.
Time to go shopping.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
Manila is where pauper backpackers can feel at ease. I hope to visit again soon!
I've been flying all over Southeast Asia for the past few months and have had many wonderful adventures. We should swap stories sometime.
Report and pictures please
1)Too much of one thing defeats the purpose.
2)Everybody is full of it. What's your hypocrisy?
I just had a crazy month in Indonesia, and went to many places that most foreigners don't even know about. I'm still on the road, and plan to write up trip reports in August.
I am not staying here. I am on vacation until the 23d. Plus, I am helping out a kid- sort of adopted/foster situation. Why the Philippines is under-developed? Actually, it's quite developed. Why it's not a 1st world country? Because of so many factors- mainly, the peasant mind set- still very rural in one's mind and not ready to create a fully urban society. Too chaotic, too nepotistic, too village-minded.
Anyway, on to the original topic- my being back in Manila- and now, Angeles.
While I was in Saudi, I joined filipinocupid and blossoms dot com. So, I decided to meet some girls now that I am here. There was one 18 year old single mother. I called her and we met up. Actually, she was quite a pleasant person to speak with and also she had excellent manners and was not greedy or asking for money. But her reception of me was very tepid.
Do note a detail about such profiles- and I dare say it happens more often then you think:
Many online profiles of Filipinas were not created by them, but It is some friend or relative who would put them up. "I will put your picture on the Internet, and maybe you can meet a nice porener".
The response of the girl is usually that of indifference. "OK", she shrugs. Then, the picture goes up, and if the girl responds to you, it may not even be her checking the profile.
Again, it may be the brother or the father who really wants for the girl to meet a handsome and rich Americano. This often explains a rather tepid reception you get on the part of the girl when you visit her. She never really wanted to be there in the first place. She just allowed it with a shrug.
Of course, it is still you paying for membership no matter who puts up the profile.
The girls is now in a court battle with the man who got her pregnant and two families are fighting. A nice person, but do I want to get involved? Still thinking.
She told me that about 20 men have called her up and also, 5 foreign men actually invited her on a date here in the Philippines. She told me that among these 5 men, not even one acted as a gentleman. They all asked her to go with them for sex. One even started pawing her. In public ( but under the table).
Brings me to another detail:
The Philippines attracts a lot of foreign lowlives and people with no social skills. Also, because of nationalism in the West, very few decent, young and winner types would join Asian dating sites. So, the girls get contacted by a lot of lowbrows and losers. If the guys are in the Phils, again, these are already spoiled by sex with hookers plus, they often have no manners.
Conclusion: 1) check if it was the girls who had made the profile ( if you can). 2) if you are a decent person, you will have little competition.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
They seem like stereotypical Angeles City / Pattaya mongering scum (NOT most of the members here)!
Some of us have been making fun of Winston for not having enough social skills or decency, but compared to those guys he's obviously not one of those lowlifes at all. He's really quite a funny and lovable person, and that's why many Filipinas do fall for him, and I guess also for you too Lad.
I'm figuring out why foreigners (aside from Koreans in their mini ghettos) tend not to stay here longer term unless they are budget retirees mainly into drinking beer or off-the-wall entrepreneurs capitalizing on some of the strange niches available here.
Lad hit the nail on the head when he mentioned that people here are still operate on a village mentality. This is really a hard place to live for someone who is not used to constant chaos, confusion, heat, noise, on and off 90s style Internet, patchy phone service, power outages, lack of flood control, unreliable bank service, etc. etc.
I stay in central Makati which is supposed to be one of the most urbanized parts in the country. But spend some time in Makati City Hall trying to accomplish the most seemingly straightforward types of tasks and you may just wanna jump out the window on a high floor. The simplest things are broken down into say 5-10 mini components which each involve a line and a different floor, and sometimes a multi day wait each. What I can accomplish say in say 3 days in Bangkok takes more like a month here. They have loud election fiestas early in the morning blocking the entrance, Catholic mass inside the main hall, elevators that are often out of service (or require a 15-20 minute wait) when you need to go up to floor 18, then 3 then 14, etc.
One of the best local banks here may be offline when you need to make an important transaction. Walk into Jollibees on Makati Ave, smell the putrid smoke filling the joint, walk up to 5 attendants with no customers who are busy fiddling around with some coins and don't acknowledge your presence till you say "excuse me please" and then they all look confused as if they forgot it's their role to take food orders. Take the MRT with a total of 8 trains serving tens of thousands a day (there once used to be over 40 trains) which you might have to wait in line 30-60 minutes just to board. Enjoy flying from arguably the most antiquated airports of any major metro area in E/SE Asia. The list goes on and on and on. Think the provinces are any better. Think again. They may have better traffic. But the noise is there (2 am roosters constantly crowing), fiestas, and awful smoke billowing from BBQs everywhere, plus much less reliable basics (power, Internet, phone).
A couple months ago, I met a Kenyan student who had also lived many years in Uganda. Both of those countries on paper are less developed and poorer than the Philippines. But he told me that most E. Africans would lose it very quickly if they had to put up with all the BS a person faces in everyday Filipino life. They would not tolerate waiting in long slow moving lines in the tropical heat without making big scenes, slow lack of common sense service, etc. Filipinos are perhaps among the most patient, tolerant, and controlled people on the planet.
The seemingly more painful, frustrating, annoyances and inconveniences have a positive flip side. I believe one reason why Philippines is perhaps less contaminated by certain aspects of modern global cultural when compared to most other HA countries we discuss a lot circa 2015 is all these frustrations work to keep mainstream foreigners at bay and slow down so-called progress. So things are changing here, most notably perhaps due to Internet and social media as Mr. S has pointed out. But since that stuff works so poorly here, it's still not as prevalent or easy to use as it is in other Asian countries, esp. if you go to the backwoods and boondocks. There are places for example in the hills of rural Davao that take 3 hours to access from the closest town by special truck or motorcycle or twice daily jeep. Some of the villages there only have very basic electric and the roads are all dirt. So during rainy periods, you can get stranded for days.
This may sound like a roast of the Philippines. I do need a break but cannot take it just yet for various reasons. In spite of everything, there is still a lot of fun to be had here.
@_@ I think the rest of us need to chip in some $$ and buy you a nice compact camera with high-cap memory sticks, so you can take 8000 photos and upload them to picasaweb for us to gawk at.
Why than live in the Philippines? Why not Japan or South Korea where it's allot more develop. Granted the girls there are bit more stuck up compared to the Philippines but there are sub-culture of Asian girls over there that do like western men .
I always had my reservations about living in the Philippines, but after reading Rock's post just above, I've decided that I'll never do it. I could never tolerate all the bulls hit.
An abundance of quality women
Low cost of living
Nice places (beaches, mountains, etc)
Most people speak reasonable english
Friendly people, easy to make friends
You can live your life and people don't give a s hit
Westerners are looked up to (bonus)
Quirky, fun, interesting stuff always going on
Minimum beaurocracy (in some things)
People try to live and enjoy life
Dirt and pollution
Noise, traffic, too many people
Too hot and humid
It's so fuc king far away and isolated
People can be abrupt and coarse
Scroungers, greedy, scammers
Childish, reckless people
Low intellect, common sense
Flexible morals / honesty
Poor infrastructure, getting things done
Low quality food and goods
Friendliness over helpfulness / honesty
It's not worth it. You have to be a certain type of person to be able to tolerate all that. I could probably adapt enough to be able to stand it in short amounts at a time (i.e. a month or two here and there), but honestly, for me the main appeal is the women, the low cost of living, and to an extent the overall friendliness and ease of making friends. If it wasn't for those things I'd have no interest in that country. All those cons added together is a huge price to pay. It would drive me mad, and I'd scream.
If there was a nearby nice place where they spoke english and it wasn't too expensive, where I could live permanently, and just visit the Philippines often for the things that I do like about it, I would consider that. But there's nowhere. Singapore is a bland police state, Hong Kong is loud, and Australia is scorching and full of australians and there are kangaroos literally everywhere (fact). There's nowhere. Fu ck it. They should move the Philippines to the Atlantic where it's closer to me. Or invent planes that can fly all around the world in 2 hours.
Last edited by Johnny1975 on Tue Jul 07, 2015 8:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
I tried the living in Philippines thing for two months last year and it made me realize it could never work. Even if I had a couple million in the bank, it would be a bad idea. (A bad idea for me, at least.) This is why I say it is so important to take a provisional trip to your assumed HA destination IF you think you want to live there long term. You could end up wasting years of your life preparing to move to a country that makes you miserable if you don't.
When I went there to live, I knew it would be short term more than likely, but I did consider finding a job and staying longer...somehow.
I had a nobya and rented a local apartment. It was two floors, and the price was good: 7000 pesos a month. So I rented it for two months. It was the cheapest accommodation I had ever had, and even though I could've gone cheaper I was more than satisfied. Had to make a few adjustments: AC only in the bedroom, so my nobya brought in some fans. No toilet seat, so we went out to buy one and I put it on.
I felt really closed in while living there and I didn't like to go out by myself. I don't think there was much danger, but it felt like it. (I lived in what essentially a shantytown - one of those garbage dump towns.) You didn't want to walk anywhere outside without sneakers on - I never understood how pinoys almost always had slippers (what they call flip-flops) on. One time I stepped on what I thought was a sharp rock and a week or two later I found a rusty pushpin lodged in my slipper. (Fortunately, I was up on my tetanus shot.)
My girlfriend worked late, so we usually did things on the weekends. If it was a work-night, she would either bring back pasalubong or we'd go to a little hamburger stand. (Good thing about Philippines, it always has a lot that feels familiar because it's Western.) On the weekends we'd go out to the only thing you can do for fun besides p4p in the Phils: the mall. More Western food. I gained weight while living there because of that plus not much walking.
One day we went to Tagaytay, which is gorgeous but can be too touristy in the high season.
Then one night I saw a giant gagumba (spider) outside my apartment. It was as big as my outstretched hand, and I have a fear of spiders. After a two or three hour panic attack, I knew I could never live in the Phils long term.
I left to stay in a hotel in Quezon city because of that, and because of how my relationship with my nobya had deteriorated. I had spent a lot of money in those two months, much of which was planned, but a lot that wasn't. The final straw was my nobya's brother stealing money (about $1000) from me. I left the country the next day.
Anyway, anyone who wants to live there, go try it out first. And beware.
A helpful guide:
Expatriation Apocalypse! The Guide to Expatriation for the Broke and Hopeless (Kindle)
Expatriation Apocalypse! (Paperback)
Go teach English in Kaoshiung. It's cheap and just an hour and change via China Airlines from Manila. Or Taipei which is 2 hours away but has dirt cheap flights via Cebu Pacific. English level among younger crowd in Taipei is surprisingly good.
There's just so many negatives. I don't mind making lots of visits and getting settled but without being there all the time. But full time, no. I'm sure I'd get used to some things but I'd hate to be forced to adapt to everything by being there all the time. The inefficiency, humidity, poor intellect, etc etc, it would drive me insane. I'm looking at google earth trying to find a decent english speaking place that is 1 flight away, but there doesn't seem to be anywhere, except Australia.
First of all, your question should be, why not Taiwan. Taiwan has about all the positives of South Korea or Japan at one half to one third the price (Taipei vs. Seoul or Tokyo) and more user friendliness, better weather (IMO unless you are into skiing), and no language barrier since I already learned Mandarin.
So why Philippines over Taiwan? Well I do go back to Taiwan from time to time for a break. I still maintain a residence there in Taipei. But basically, Philippines has at least 2 critical advantages for someone like me:
- business opportunities - Taiwan is developed, slow growing and stable. All I can probably do there now is teach English. Philippines, is under developed, fast growing, and full of inefficiencies which make for easy and low cost high potential return business opportunities. It's an up-and-coming laggard economy. In some ways, it's a bit like China was at turn of 21st Century.
- dating or gf/marriage opportunities - Taiwan would be fantastic on this front if I was 28 and we were in pre-social media era. But in 2015, Philippines is night and day better in this regard. One of my friends has been hunting for a gf in Taiwan for several months. He does ok at establishing friendships via cold approach. But wow these girls are busy busy busy. If it's not work, then its school and cramming. Even if they like you, they just don't seem to have much of any time for dating.
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