Thoughts On The Philippines
The submissions regarding the Philippines have been submitted from what I would term "lower class" farang (yes, I know it is a Thai word but I have to get the article submitted with something about Thailand). Now I don't care about an individual's
social status, wealth or station in life but when I refer to these "lower class" it is in respect to their thinking.
I have been working and living in the Philippines for the past year. I live and work in Makati and for those that want to spend some time here I can assure you that the problems these people talk about are purely because of the areas they frequent, the people they hang around and the girls they associate with. The same could be said for any country.
Let's start with dual pricing. If you book into most hotels around the world you will be charged double or triple the normal price. It is standard fair anywhere, not just in the Philippines. In Australia tourist operators were taking Japanese and Korean tourists to Bondi Beach and charging them $5 to walk on the sand. They had told them the council charged a fee. Well it's free of course but someone taking advantage of the situation. It isn't right but it isn't unique to South-East Asia. Touting, yep it happens. It also happens in London and New York if those people have been there. So again nothing overly special. Try Greece or Turkey if you want to experience some true touting. Again, words spoken by those limited in their worldwide travels and thus limited in their thinking. "Lower class" thinking.
Now the girls. If you decide to frequent the bars then you will end up with a girl that is willing to spread her legs for cash and not care about much else than how many pesos you are going to hand over. However I employ around 50 females and they are all either in relationships with Filipinos or seeking someone (not necessarily some rich white guy to come along and rescue them). They have homes they go to, children they look after, boyfriends and husbands they love and enjoy what most people do around the world – singing, laughing, dancing, having a good time. They are normal people. Again if you bothered to spend any time with a person who works in an office rather than wandering around Angeles City focusing on bar girls then you would be surprised that the girls aren't interested in your overweight, white, balding body. In fact they find you to be disgusting. The girls in my office laugh at some old fat guy they saw in the mall who winked at them. They say to me "Do these guys seriously think we might be interested in them?" The only girls interested in you are those who look at your wallet. But you kid yourself that you are Brad Pitt. Reality check, Joe.
I must confess the writers are correct about the food and particularly the coffee. It is positively awful. Well, restaurant food. If you have the pleasure of a home cooked meal with a Filipino family then you will truly enjoy the experience. Thailand does offer more with respect to good food and good coffee. Something that hasn't happened yet in the Phils.
Safety. Every time I mention I live in the Phils people wonder whether I have a bodyguard. Well I've never been mugged. Never been attacked. Never felt unsafe. Why? Because I don't go into the bad areas of town. No different to New York. You want to go to the Bronx and wander around the area that they deal drugs then expect a beating. 10 minutes from my front door is Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada, all the top brands. The area of Makati is extremely safe. Angeles City can be dangerous. So can the red light district in Paris.
I would say that the writers of the Phils have realised that women are only interested in them for their money. They don't offer much else. And even worse they probably don't have much of it but make out they do. Quite pathetic really. And then to make themselves feel better they put down the Phils and it's people. Well wake up. You are truly nothing in your own country and nothing in another country that isn't even your own. Who really is the loser in that case?
The fact is that with the Phils being a lower labour, English speaking country the BPO (business process outsourcing) industry is truly entrenched, encouraged and flourishing. The Phils is improving along with it. I have gone from 3 staff when I started to over 120 staff working for Australian and New Zealand companies outsourcing their work. My staff love it and it allows companies to improve their profit margins. Many countries need to realise that the world is undergoing a change and some work can and will be offshored. Quality. Not an issue I have two expats including myself run the show. Masters Degrees in various disciplines and all senior managers of Fortune 500 companies. We make sure the processes are in place to product quality.
So this is another perspective from someone who lives here, goes to the bars maybe 3 times a year, deals with non bar girls on a daily basis and has never been concerned about their safety any more than the countries I have travelled to and lived in around the world.
Go to the Phils and enjoy it !!!
Thanks for that perspective, your honesty and for crushing some of the nonsense we have had to read about the Philippines.