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Calbayog Proper with Lita Plus – Finale

Calbayog Proper with Lita Plus – Finale



Here is a little reminder about what is going on since the last post was about 3 days ago.  Lita, Khan and I are downtown.  Khan is there to get some shoes that Lita promised him for his birthday the other day.  After all, he is one of our godsons.  We went to Metro Bank, met the guy from Minnesota then went to eat at Chow King.  After enduring the flawed service and we finished eating, we are ready to go get the shoes.

Lita & Khan at Footwear

We knew we wanted to go to Footwear to get the shoes, but we could not remember which street they were on.  I was thinking they were on Magsaysay Blvd, which is about 3 streets over from where we were.  I wanted to walk, as I always do while I am downtown, at least when I’m by myself, but Lita, as I have mentioned several times before, does not like to walk.  So she says we should take a pajak-pajak (the bicycle).  Since there are 3 of us, and I am so big, we decided to get 2 of them.  I was in one and Lita and Khan in the other.  We told the operators that we wanted to go to Footwear and they headed that way.  Well as it turns out Footwear is on Rosales, which was the ‘next’ street over.  It took us all of 30 seconds to get there and that was only because we had to go around the median in the center of the road.  Even Lita said that she could have walked there, so it was close.  Of course the pajak-pajak operator didn’t say anything, because it’s hard enough making a living around here for them without them turning down fares, even if it would be the moral thing to do.  This was one of those rare times that I actually only paid the going rate for a ride here, P5.  Normally I give a little bit more, sometimes not much more, but it’s something.


Inside Footwear, where they have plenty of shoes, we got the attention of a saleslady pretty quickly.  She directed us towards the shoes for the kids and we let Khan pick his own pair of shoes.  He selected a pair that I would never wear, but they are for him, not me.  The shoes are grey with black dots lined up on them.  To get the shoes, the salesladies have to yell up to the second floor though a big hole in the ceiling.  The people upstairs will find the shoes and ‘drop’ them down for the saleslady to catch or hit the floor, whatever happens.  Most of the things I saw, they caught, but several did hit the floor.  I think they do have an elevator like contraption on a rope, but that is for bulk, not for the onesy, twosy items.  I suppose they will use that later also to bring up some of the shoes that didn’t get bought.

We also had to buy him a pair of socks, but those were on the bottom floor, no dropping from the ceiling.  So lo and behold, the first pair of shoes he tried fit and we were ready to buy them.   Lita decided that I need to get another pair of flip flops, shower shoes, whatever you want to call them, so I go over and pick up a pair that I was just looking at.  The are black with a little skull at the heel of each one.  Here is something important to remember.  The largest new shoe size that is normally sold in the stores here is size 10.  Now I can wear flip flops in size 10, although 11 would be better, but my normal shoe size is 12, so getting new shoes here is practically  impossible.

Even paying here they make complicated.  You give the money to the saleslady then she gives it to the cashier, waits for the change and a hand-written receipt, bags the item(s), then the saleslady brings you the change and the bagged merchandise.  All this is usually not done so quickly either.  Filipinos are not known for being in a hurry.


After finally finishing at Footwear, it was time to head home.  Lita decided to go ahead a walk a little bit instead of riding.  This time we knew how far we had to go.  We headed for the wet market and the area that the tricycles (the motorcycle)  park that go out past Bagacay.  There were 2 of them there waiting to get filled up before heading out.  One of them could have fit 4 more Filipinos, but I take up the space of 2 Filipinos, so after we got on, the driver left.

We had it back without further incident, but the day as a whole was interesting enough for me.  It’s reasons like this that I should get out and do more things so I’ll have more things to write for y’all.  I think I’m getting there, so y’all hang with me for awhile longer.  I’m actually learning now, instead of just doing.

Salamat, Y’all



  1. Isn’t that just the pits? The PH stores must have specially gone through an great pains to get an “efficiency expert” that make cashing out such an excruciating experience. If they can make it more complicated I think they’d be patting themselves to death. And I say that as a full-blooded Pinay, just so no one can say I’m an outsider mouthing off. The silver lining must be that they pay at least 3 more people to do one cashier’s job.

    Another thing that irks me is the way they round off the cents to their benefit WITHOUT letting you know before they do it, or giving you candy in lieu of five/ten/etc. centavos change. This experience is mostly in the Cebu stores; I don’t know if they still do that or if other places do the same. I must pay attention when I’m in Tacloban. Once I stood pat until they gave me the correct dime complete with the the cashier’s eye-rolling. Others are probably too embarrassed to make a scene or be thought of as cheap.

    What I couldn’t decide was whether it’s store policy or a system the workers have, to augment their salaries. If it’s the latter, I don’ mind much but if it goes to the store, the nickel [cinco/lima], dime [diez/napulo] or quarter [biente cinco] from each customer adds up. I don’t begrudge the poorly-paid store clerks getting “tips” to tide them over for their jeepney fare home, etc. – it’s the way it’s done that insulting. It’s one thing for you to tell them to keep the change; another for them to just short-change you. To save me the aggravation, I use a credit card if the option exists or if the transaction is worth the paper it’s printed on.

    OK, I feel better now. 🙂

    • Hey Winda. I don’t know why they seem to take so long to do something so simple. I suppose it’s been like that for so long that no one actually notices it until you go to someplace that is efficient. Maybe it’s not so bad that everyone is not always in a hurry though.
      I always looked when they gave me change, but I stopped because it seems that it has been working both ways for me. There are times when they owe me the .25 and they round it up to the next peso. But you’re right about the not complaining part. If they round down instead of up, I’m not going to bother saying anything. It would be better if it was for the cashiers, not the store, but 25 centavos is less than 2/3 of a penny, so I’m not going to let it affect me one way or the other.

  2. Well, I believe “Shoeless Joe Jackson” is already taken! Bawahaaaaa!!!!!

  3. Hey John, look at the bright side in all this. The kids can now rightfully call you “Bigfoot Joe” 😉 Sounds like I won’t have much of a problem with size 10’s huh? 🙂

    • That’s the bright side? Let’s not let that nickname get out, I’m having a hard enough time not just being called “Hey” and “Hey Joe”, no sense in confusing them more.
      No, if you wear a size 10 you shouldn’t have a problem getting shoes here. I can’t promise they will all fit, but they claim to be a size 10 US. That would be sizes 7.5 UK – 42 Europe & China (most of the shoes here are sold by this size) – 26 (Japan) – 8.5 (Australia) – 7 (Mexico).

  4. I think it’s (ZENCO) FOOTSTEP not FOOTWEAR.:)

    • You could be right. I’ll have to double check on that. I was just frustrated at the time that I didn’t know the street it was on and had to pay for such a short trike ride.
      Thanks for reading and commenting Edwin. It’s comments like this that help me out and maybe I can learn some things around here.

  5. ff topic UJ, Tomorrow is finally the Day, The next time i will be able to read your blog i will officially be an expat. :)O

    • Alright Scott. It sure took it long enough to get here. I was beginning to think you changed your mind.

Texan in the Philippines