Some Positive Thoughts About The Philippines
Dear Mister Stickman,
I do not understand why you are so much prejudiced against the articles from Winston about conditions in the Philippines.
I am not saying I agree with everything he has written, but I enjoyed reading them because it is like comparing notes. I suspect that much of what Winston writes is reasonably correct for certain areas, for example Angeles city. These articles are written to inform foreigners who have never been to the Philippines before. It is easy to take things for granted that are completely new to others. It helps to mention the obvious because it may not be obvious to people who have never been to the Far East.
If Winston were to write only positive, glowing reports of life in the Philippines from a foreigner’s perspective then he would be giving a completely different impression and the foreigner would be taken by surprise when he discovers that things are different from what he was led to believe.
When I use the word ‘foreigner’ in this article I am referring to a male Caucasian adult. These individuals are very conspicuously foreign from a Philippine perspective.
Winston mentioned the Philippines has a two-tier pricing system. But this does not apply to everything. It only applies to some things.
A Philippine person can get a taxi for one third of the cost that a foreigner is asked to pay.
When you arrived at the airport, if you are a Philippine person you will not be hassled by taxi touts, or young men wanting to polish your boots.
A person coming from Eastern United States of America or from Britain to the Philippines for the first time, and who has never been to a Far Eastern country before, will be very much aware that is it extremely hot in Manila. Think of the greatest heat wave you have experienced in England – that is cool compared to the Philippines. If you have spent time in Thailand you will be used to the heat. Remember the internet is global. There are many readers of the submissions on your website who are from Britain and who have never been to the Far East yet. I write with them in mind.
When you arrive in your hotel room and open the door of the minibar, which is just a fancy name for a fridge, you will see cans of soft drinks, small bottles of alcohol and mineral water and some nuts and chocolate bars. Notice they are priced at 3 times the price you would pay if you bought them in a convenience store. Winston’s two-tier pricing system comes to mind. The contents of the minibar are all itemised. If you take anything you will be charged when you checkout.
If you want to access the internet in your hotel you may have to pay anywhere from 60 to 100 pesos an hour. But if you go out of your hotel and walk down the road to the internet shop you only have to pay 8 pesos for half an hour.
Winston said the food in the restaurants is very bad. I don’t think Philippine food agrees with his stomach. I enjoyed my meals in the hotels and restaurants I went to, but I never went to Angeles City so maybe I was lucky. The guide books warn you to keep away from the raw salads if you want to avoid diarrhoea and other infections.
Regarding the girls, taxi drivers in Manila, Cebu and Davao cities assume all foreigners come to their country in order to share a bed with a Filipina girl. Usually they are right, but surprising as it may seem, there are foreigners who visit the Philippines who are not interested in the sex scene over there. For reasons of hygiene, morality, personal safety from criminals, and to avoid getting ripped off economically they consider it much safer to avoid the sex scene altogether and just enjoy an innocent, safe holiday in a foreign country far away from home.
It is wonderful to be in Cebu city where everything is so much different from London; just sitting down outside a restaurant having a drink, with a Philippine newspaper in your lap and observing daily life unfold. I am one of those people to love the simple things in life, away from the scumbags and the wild nightlife in the bars
There are plenty of positive things one could say about the Philippine people. General Douglas MacArthur called the Philippine people a noble race. He had a great love for the Philippines.
My experiences were generally positive because I avoided the sleazy areas of the cities. I kept away from the dangerous elements. I went out to the countryside, the parks and the beaches. I met polite and kind people. I was treated with respect at the airport, in shops, in hotels, in restaurants and by ordinary people.
My impression of Philippine people is that they are modest, practical, realistic, good-natured and easy-going, with strong faith in God.
Yes, I love the Philippines. I am convinced the Philippines will be a shining light to the rest of the world at the disasters and calamities continue (As I speak, the floods have inundated Australia again).
Bingo, this is exactly what I thought. Get away from the gutter and the Philippines is probably a very nice place to visit! That said, for those who see Angeles for what it is, from all accounts it beats Pattaya in a number of ways.