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SAMAR - Once you visit, you'll want SAMORE

Saturday – 25 Sep 2010

Saturday – 25 Sep 2010


[smartads] Somehow or another I got up at  0810.  Of course the brown out started at 0558 this morning.  It was a very hot day today too.  We ended up going downtown a little early and buying some gasoline for the generator.  Knew we were going to be needing it today.  The brown out ended at 6:47pm, a little longer than scheduled, but that’s really no surprise.  It is 7:19pm now, so I just barely waited my 30 minutes before turning on the computer.  Power seems good enough right now.  When it first came on it was a little shaky, but it seems to have stabilized now.   While we were downtown I did take a few pictures of things so y’all don’t have to look at the same old thing over and over.  Plus it gives you a better feel of the Philippines if you see downtown people, things and activities.

Oh, sure right when the electric comes back on, everyone shows up to visit.  They should know that I need to be on the computer when the electric comes back on after a long brown out.  Well maybe they do know, that’s why they are here now.  Nah, they’ll probably be in here in a few minutes wanting me to come out awhile, they usually do.

I found the last bottle of iced tea in the refrigerator, I’ve already eaten and have taken at least 6 pictures to post here today, so I guess I’m ready to get started.  I’ve got lots of things to post today.  Oh wait…brb.  Okay…and I’ve been to the CR, so I’m really ready to get started.

Canuto (Khany) and Bebie are here to visit their daughter and grandchildren.  They are on their way back from Bicol where they were attending the funeral of Khany’s mother.  I met her a couple of times and she was always very nice to me.  The funeral was on Wednesday and they will probably stay here until tomorrow morning and leave to get back in time for Bebie to get back to school.  Wouldn’t look good if the teacher didn’t show up on time.  See new link for Bicol information.

Khany. Cathy's father.

Bebie making her oldest grandchild, Crystal, giggle.

The drinking I did last night, yes I decided to have a few, well I ended up only having 4 1/2 glasses, so that was really well within my non-impaired zone.  Actually Titing bought 3 large bottles of San Miguel and 4 of us drank that.  Ramil and I drank the biggest part of it.

We had 3 bottles of this for 4 of us.

Speaking of drinking, not too long ago Titing had Arnel build him a portable bar.  He doesn’t have any liquor in it yet, just empty bottles to make it look good.  As I mentioned, they have never tried a margarita and I told him that if he’d get some tequila for his bar, I’d make him one.  It’s hard to come by tequila around here.  Any tequila at all, much less a good tequila.  It’s actually a pretty nice bar, but when we get our house completed up stairs, were going to have a bigger one.  His is good for just rolling out to the patio and using it there.  Ours will not be portable, but it’ll be better equipped and stocked.

Titing's portable bar w/lots of empty bottles for now.

I told you I was having a hard time getting a picture of Chatty?  Well I got the best one yet.  It’s still not perfect because she was smiling funny try to get away from the camera, but I snapped a picture and the camera just happen to be in a decent spot to get that best picture yet.  I’ll keep trying and eventually I will get a really good one.

Best picture of Chatty so far.

Remember yesterday I was talking about our tricycles?  Well the guy showed up today, didn’t have the money, acted like he didn’t want to pay the money, so we took his tricycle.  I was wondering why he gave it up so easily until I found out that the money he borrowed from us, he bought another tricycle.  There’s a lot of complicated things involved with that tricycle, but in the end it ended up costing us about P12,600 ($286).  That’s about the going price for them these days.  I didn’t like the way the whole deal went, but Lita and Titing were the ones that made the deals concerning it.  About 5 seconds after we got the tricycle, Arnel decided that he would take over the payments on it.  He signed a contract with us to pay P60 per day for 13 months (P23,700).  So either way it goes, we will end up coming out ahead.  I think Lita told me today that Eddie decided he wanted to start paying the P60 per day, instead of P50, so after 13 months, he can own the tricycle.  I’ll have to get back to you on that.  Sometimes my wife gets things confused or she doesn’t explain it to me right.  But I must say, she is doing some nice wheeling and dealing to keep the money flowing.  If I could just do the same, we’d be doing pretty good around here.

Since we’re talking about making money, I’ve got a new venture that I’ll be getting off into.  At least I hope so.  It’s still in it’s beginning stages, but has been looming there ready to burst out.  It’s a tourist business.  Mar is very, very familiar with several of the islands around here and he is in the process of developing an itinerary for a 7 day and 14 day tour of those islands.  He said something about having 2 different tours, but being to 3 different islands each.  I’m not sure of the exact cost yet, but I do know that the price, whatever it is, will start with pickup at the Mactan airport in Cebu, all hotel accommodations, 3 meals per day (including 1 or 2 in at least a 4 star restaurant), all fares and fees and drop off back at the Mactan airport upon departure.  Oh, and he is also talking about having T-shirts made to give away to each tourist.  Of course all vehicles and the hotels will be with air conditioner.  Probably at least 95% of the restaurant will have air conditioner, but if he decides to have at least 1 meal basic Filipino style, then there might only be fans.  I don’t really now yet.  He says that within the next 3 weeks, he will have the itineraries for me and I will post them here.  He did say something about having at least 2 guides for group, 3 if I decide to go, which maybe I should.  You know someone has to endure all those strange hotel rooms and eating ‘steak’ (maybe) in a nice restaurant.  I’m sure I’d be able to sacrifice myself to do such a thing.  When he goes out to contract the hotels and restaurants, I’ll probably be going with him too.   That won’t be as fun as the tours themselves, but it’ll be a chance to get some pictures.  It think Mar is here.  Be right back.

Yeah, he’s here.  I showed him the restaurant that I think would be a perfect farewell for the tourist thing.  He agrees.  In fact, just last week, he was right down the road from this restaurant at one of the resorts in Mactan.  He told me a little more about the itinerary, that it ‘probably would include 2 days and 2 nights on each of the different islands.  The last night being on Cebu at the restaurant we think would be great for an end of tour attraction.  Something to really make y’all remember your vacation.  He also re-enforced my thoughts on what the package would include.  He was telling me about the snorkeling, para-gliding, boating, jet skiing, skiing and scuba diving.  All rentals not included in the price of the tour, but I was thinking just being there would be wonderful.  Of course, since this business is just beginning, not all our relatives believe in it.  The more I hear about it and check into it, the more I like it.  So if anyone out there wants to give the Philippines a look over, then we should be able to accommodate you soon.  I’ll let you know if it gets off the ground, but if it does, it should be wonderful.

Don’t worry, I won’t let that tourist thing take control of this blog.  I’ll keep doing it the same way I have been.  I will have a page or two on it though that y’all can check out if you want to.  I may also mention it every now and then to make sure any new readers know about it.  Actually, the new page I have on here, The Jungle Restaurant, is the restaurant I was talking about to be the last restaurant we take y’all to.  Check it out and see if it’s something you’d like to see.  I know it looks interesting to me.  I can’t wait to check it out for y’all and make sure it’s up to par.

As I stated earlier, I went downtown today.  I got pictures of the Calbayog Home Depot and of my bank (United Coconut Planters Bank – UCPB).

Calbayog Home Depot

United Coconut Planters Bank - My bank.

We also went by the docks today and I took some pictures of some inter-island boats.  At the end of the pier there was a ferry boat in port so I took a picture of that also.

These boats take people from one side of the island to the other.

Inter-Island boats with passengers ready to go.

This is the ferry boat and a fishing boat I caught right when it was leaving the dock.

Ferry boat in Port of Calbayog

Fishing boat just leaving the dock

And the last thing I have for y’all this evening, and it’s 10:51pm, is the singing of the Philippine National Anthem, kind of.  The children singing it I believe have the right words, but the wrong tune.  I hope everyone can view this (Joyce).  It’s kind of cute, but most things are when it involves children.

Had to put it on Facebook because the file was 92mg and this post won’t accept anything over 64mg.  Hope you have Facebook, so you can enjoy it.  Just copy/paste it to an address line, it worked for me.  That took me awhile to figure out and to let it load on Facebook.  It is now 12:47am, and I’m ready for bed.

Tagalog word of the day:  pangit (pa-un-it)(remember to say it fast)  means  ugly.

Gotta go.  Be cool and be free.

Salamat, Paalam



  1. John,just found your website,enjoyed reading your post and glad to find a site about samar.My wife and i have a place about an hour from Catbalogan
    we will be in your area first week in jan.I had a few post on samar expats site but not any movment on that site for awhile.look forward to your articles and pics,it has been acouple of years since we were last there so,
    looking forward to our trip.

    • Well Wayne I’m glad you found the site and even more glad that you enjoyed reading it. I will continue to try to put good pictures and write interesting things. I try hard, but I’ve only been doing this about 5 weeks, so if you have any suggestions on anything that I could improve on, please let me know. About an hour from Catbalogan, which direction? If it’s been a couple of years since you’ve been here, then you’ll be happy to know that the road is fixed. I’m talking all the way from here in Calbayog to Catbalogan and beyond. In fact I think it is fixed all the way to Leyte. It sure is nice and faster to be driving here now.

  2. seen the clip was to cute i loved it

    • Alright, glad you got it to work. Maybe I should send all of them through Facebook.

  3. Funny video. I sent you a facebook friend request too. Jen and I were going to go to the Jungle Restaurant when we were in Cebu but we never got there. It is highly rated in Trip Adviser which is my guide for hotels and restaurants.

    Funny story about your word of the day pangit. Jen was trying to teach our little son George the word by asking him “who is pangit? Daddy pangit?” and he would shake his head no and point to Jen. She tried it many times and every time, George would point to her.

    • I haven’t received the facebook request yet. I’m hoping to check The Jungle out. It really looks interesting and the owner seems like a really nice guy. Well the little story with George needs to be corrected. I’ve seen pictures of both of y’all and I can say, without doubt, Jen is much prettier than you.

    • Found the Facebook request and approved it. I also reconfirmed my statement about Jen being prettier than you, I was wrong. She is not much prettier than you. She is extremely much prettier than you.

      • yeah yeah yeah…you are not the first person to say that

        • That should mean that it’s a fact then. Lita thought your little story about George and pointing to his Momma was very funny. I just finished telling her about it and she is still giggling in the other room.

  4. Tried to watch the video, and got this:
    This video either has been removed from Facebook or is not visible due to privacy settings.

    • Sorry that is my fault. I thought about that after I closed out this morning. I’ll correct it now. Okay…it’s fixed.
      Glad to have a new reader that is paying attention.

Texan in the Philippines