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SAMAR - Once you visit, you'll want SAMORE

Saturday – 16 Oct

Saturday – 16 Oct


[smartads] This morning I decided to get up at 0659.  Why, I have no idea, I just did.  I guess since today was my weigh-in day, I wanted to hurry up to find out how I’m doing.  In fact that is one of the first things I did when I got up, was weigh myself.  I arose, went to the CR, to get out any excess water weight, and headed for the scale.  I pulled my Weight Watcher scale out of the box, because I still keep it in the original box that I bought it in, and placed it on the section of floor that is not slightly tilted.  I always weigh in the same place, with the same scale.  It’s the only scale I have, so that is easy.  When I stand on the scale, at first, I’m always nervous about looking at the numbers that come up.  Today was no exception, but I have to look.  I looked down and the numbers were: there.  I’ll tell you the amount later in this post.  I’ll hide it because I want you to read the whole post.

The drugs on the right, the cookies and chips on the left.

Baking goods on the left, liquor on the right.

Well Ramil actually did leave this morning to go start his new job in Manila.  He left the house about 0630 and should be in Manila by now, it’s 7:30pm.  He says he will rest tonight and tomorrow and start work on Monday morning.  He also said that he probably won’t be home for about 5 months.  That’s kind of hard for me to believe since he has those 4 children.  I was over there earlier and the baby, Faye, was already crying, Poppa, Poppa.  That’s probably just the initial reaction though.  She’ll get use to it.  I know he wouldn’t have gone unless it was necessary for him to do so.  I think he’ll be home for Christmas though.  It’s also hard for me to believe that he would miss that with those children.  Robbie says she doesn’t miss him yet, maybe in 2 or 3 months.  Robbie’s cool, I like her.  She makes me smile a lot, and that’s not an easy thing to do.  There are comics on TV that don’t even make me smile, and the whole audience is roaring with laughter.  It’s just not that funny to me.  Robbie’s going to have her hands full with mga bata though.  They like to jump around a lot and scream, you know, kid things.  She still has to work also, so I guess being at work will be a nice quiet time for her compared to home.  I assume that mga bata will be watched by Lolo, Lola and Auntie Marianne a lot in the next few months.  Ramil is hoping to get a job much closer to home, but this job in Manila came up first, and he couldn’t afford to turn it down.  Robbie told me that she made P33 (something) per day, at least I’m almost positive that’s the amount she told me.  I’m pretty sure she makes about P1000 per month at her office job.  She works at the University where Mar is the Vice President.  She must do a good job, because she has been there for awhile.  Well Ramil was our driver and we paid him P2000 per month, but he was always borrowing the money ahead of payday to pay bills and buy groceries.  I don’t know how much his job in Manila pays, but I’m sure it’s much more than P2000 per month.  I hope at least P2000 per week.  That’d be nice for them.   They deserve to have a break go their way, especially Robbie.  That woman works all day, then comes home and works cleaning the house too.  She washes clothes every weekend, with 4 bata and a limited amount of clothing, that is a necessity.  She also has to help watch the children too.  Well now, she’ll have to watch them by herself at night time.  I know a lot of people do that, but that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a nice break going their way.  I hope they get it soon.

Just a house I took a picture of while coming home.

Another house on the way home. I like the gate.

Titing and I have decided that we will be going for a walk, early mornings on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.  He can’t go on Sunday because he has to go to church and I don’t want to go on Monday’s because I’m up late watching NFL games on the computer.  So on those 3 days each week, we will walk around the big circle as I call it.  We will go by the new market to downtown and then back around to the main road to the house.  Well that should be about a 3 mile walk.  I’ll try to remember to measure it and let you know.  Whatever it is, it’ll be better than sitting here doing nothing.  You know when the weight comes off, it could turn to flab if you don’t exercise.  I would really be flabby if that happen.  I try to lose it slow so that won’t happen.  Of course everything doesn’t always go as planned.  Titing has to start exercising because his doctor told him he needed to.  He is not overweight by a long shot, but he has high blood sugar and the exercise will help keep that down so he won’t have to go on medication or, worse case, insulin.  He brought the subject of exercise up to my one hundred and twenty nine point five kilogram self, I just accepted because I was thinking about doing it anyway.  Works out good for both of us.

Today for lunch, about noon, I had fried potato sandwiches.  Only 2 of them.  The bread is starting to get moldy already.  You have to eat bread fast around here.  I’m going to start only buying 1 loaf at a time, instead of two.  For supper tonight I had Ramen soup, 2 packs.  I think I’m down to less than a half dozen now.  When Gary shows up, probably next week, and brings my stew, I’m going to have a can that day and try to make the rest last as long as I can.  Only eat it when I absolutely feel I need it.  Jaclyn is going to be sending me a box, against my wishes, because I think she shouldn’t be spending that much money on me, and she can bring most of it when she comes to visit in June.  She can stuff 60-70 pounds of it in an extra suitcase.  They will be allowed 6 suitcases.  They won’t need that many for only a 10 day vacation, especially when Wyatt won’t need that much.  Then she’d have an empty suitcase to bring back all the purses she plans to buy here.  I must admit though, that when/if the box arrives, I’ll be glad to see it.  Jaclyn suggests that I take a picture when I open it and have that posted here.  I think I’ll do that.  I hope I remember.  She’ll probably remind me when I let her know it has arrived.

A motor with at least 6 people riding.

This is the street right in front of COBO grocery.

Today a guy from the cable company came by.  Seems that we had not paid our cable bill fully yet.  He was here to collect P720 or turn the cable off.  Well we gave him the money.  Come to find out that the money we gave him is for July and August.  I don’t understand the bills here yet, but I going to learn, so this won’t happen again.  The bill that I saw is not really clear, it didn’t have a due date on it.  I don’t think that was the original bill though.  The cable is in Ramil’s name, not ours, so sometimes we don’t see the bill.  Maybe with Ramil gone, we’ll see it now.  I guess we still owe for September and the October bill is probably due soon too.  That’ll be another P720, I guess.  I didn’t see any late fee attached to it, but who knows if there was or not.  I’ll get use to all this, if I just take more charge of it.  I have been letting Lita do it, but she is getting over whelmed with everything else, and you know I don’t like to see her over exert herself.  So I’ll take more responsibility for the bills.  She worries too much about little things like that anyway.

No the white van is not swerving to miss the tricycle.

This is the last picture I have from that day I went downtown, so I just added it in here.

7,107 Islands
The Philippines, a democratic country in Southeast Asia that declared its independence from Spain on June 12, 1898 but only obtained its full sovereignty on July 4, 1946, has a total land area covering 300,000 square kilometers (115,830 sq. miles) and distributed in 7,107 islands.  According to the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority, 15,854,922 hectares or 53 percent of the country’s total land area were forestlands while the remaining 14,145,078 hectares or 47 percent were alienable and disposable lands as of December 2000. The three major island groupings are Luzon (7 regions, 38 provinces), Visayas (3 regions, 16 provinces), and Mindanao (6 regions, 25 provinces).

World’s 17th Largest Island
Luzon, with a total land area of 104,688 square kilometers is the world’s 17th largest island (excluding continental masses of lands). Listed as the 19th largest island is Mindanao, with a land area of 94,631 square kilometers. The world’s largest islands are Greenland (a Danish territory), with a total land area of 2.18 million square kilometers; New Guinea, 820,033 square kilometers; and Borneo, 743,107 square kilometers.

Okay, that’s about it for the day.  Did you find my weight for today that I had hidden?  Not sure how tomorrow will be.  I haven’t gotten any more questions from anyone except Wayne.  Wayne I’ll be asking Mar when I see him next about some of those things.  Wayne and Jaclyn has been the only ones on here commenting the last couple of days.  I hope everyone else that normally comments, is doing okay.  I’ll be back tomorrow.  Has anyone considered the idea of being a guest writer once or even once a week or month?  Not necessary, but it may be some more interesting things to read and see.  Something with a different point of view then mine.  I’d want you to stay within the theme of the post though.  It’d have to be something about you in the Philippines.

Salamat, Paalam


  1. I know I can say that I braved the world and went to the PI and Korea….lol

    • So y’all decided that you are going to go to Korea, for sure?
      If you are, are you going to bring Wyatt? That seems like the biggest obstacle you are facing.

  2. Hey UJ,
    Well I hope you reach your goal then b/c I would love to be suprized like that.
    Yes Jaclyn has led a very sheltered life… LOL I have only been to Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas, and Lousiana
    So I don’t get out much…lol

    • Goal here I come.
      When/If you make this trip, you won’t be able to really say that anymore.

  3. John i would give it a try,i am not sure how to do it so when we arrive 1st
    week in jan.we will stop by and see you and you can show me how to post a story.I can talk about our trip to samar and our little spot.I remember the store been there often,its not like the stores here they jam alot into small space,Jaclyn and her family will be suprised to see that i bet.Great on your walk i have been up there a few times and that will be a long walk.

    • I think I can make you a guest writer. I’d have to check, but I believe I can add you in.
      Jaclyn is going to be surprised about a lot of things around here. Remember, she’s never been out of the US.
      I’m hoping the walk will help. It should. I want to be able to walk much further than that, but I’ll have to start slow.
      That’s not exactly a short walk, no, but we’ll take it slow at first.

  4. Six point zero five lbs off in one week ain’t shabby. Congratulations! What kinds of fruits and veggies do you eat there? Really impt when your bod is slowly adjusting to the weight loss. Walking 9 kms a wk will also help tremendously. Jaclyn won’t recognize you when they arrive in 8 months!

    Traffic. Been meaning to talk about that. The passenger pedal or motorized trikes give a valuable service to the passengers but man, they’re really road hazards there if you’re driving specially if there are no special lanes for them. Some stretches outside Tacloban have those lanes but the drivers seem to pay no attention to them. A real challenge for due care and attention when you’re behind the wheel.

    You’ll also feel a whole lot mobile, JJ, if you do learn the stick shift so you can take the pos out anytime. Just don’t tackle hills at first. That’s a real beach when you have to stop and start on an incline when you’re just learning. But like everything else though, it’ll become a POC [cake for that “C” 🙂 ] .

    Do you like chicken? Bet Lita cooks a mean adobong manok ! That on steaming rice with veg would be a mmmm.

    Read you tomorrow!

    • Guess that means you found the weight I lost this past week. I haven’t been eating much vegetables, except potatoes and carrots. Had some green beans yesterday with chicken, it sure was good too. Unless you count tomatoes, lettuce and onions, then I’ve eaten a lot of those. I know I need to eat more green vegetables, especially the dark green, but I don’t like too much of that except spinach, and there ain’t none here. There must be a similar one, I’ll find it. Kale I think is good. Part of my goal is to really surprise Jaclyn. Maybe I’ll be standing right next to her and she won’t recognize me. No, no special lanes for the trikes here. And if there was, they too would ignore them. Good thing here though is no jeepneys. It’s still a bit crowded, but we don’t have to worry about those. Actually that first gear, especially on a hill, is the only thing I have a problem with on a stick shift. I know where all the gears are, and can shift them. It’s just starting out that I have the problem with. Yes Lita can cook a mean chicken adobo. I eat that often with onions and red peppers (vegetables). Rice on the side to mix in with it.
      I’ll type…you read.

Texan in the Philippines