VIDEOS ARE NOW AT THIS LINK
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 6:23 AM
Monday, August 27, 2007
This was a test photo via cell phone of me eating a coconut for lunch at work, practicing prior to the vacation.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 12:34 PM
Monday, September 3, 2007
TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 4th
After experiencing snorkel maybe no need to scuba, i realize mask fills with water, which would scare me 10 meters down. The coral is so shallow i see the same from snorkel. Ocean is like an 80-degree swimming pool, no chill at all. (i hate cold water)
Yesterday arrived ok, rode the motorocycle around Tagbilaran, and Tess' brother dropped it for us at Flower Garden Resort. Yesterday I drove on side streets but today will be 3rd world crazy, no helmet, with people honking and passing everywhere.
TECH PROBLEM: i had a SIM installed in cell to get local access, and now it can no longer send email! So my plan of posting cell photos here isn't going to work. (The world just needs to catch up with me.)
Shopping in grocery was so much like shopping in the Asian markets in South Sacramento it was not even like a foreign country - except for one thing. Suddenly everyone froze like twilight zone. i started to talk and Tess said SSHHH. There was a prayer coming over the speaker "the holy rosary" (angelus) every mall "praise the father" or something.
Flight into Bohol was amazing approach. It's short field so the 737-clone came in on low/slow approach, and my right window seat was looking out just a few hundred feet at the shorline. Tess recognized a spot where she used to hang out when she was little, so we took the motorcycle there a few hours later. (the airport only gets a few flights per day. aside from our 737-clone there was only a few Cessna 150s.)
Worse "mishap" was i forgot to pack a belt, learned that when i put on my long pants for the flight, so we made a quick trip to tanforan mall sears to get one.
Maybe more another day - we'll take the motorcyle around Panglao Island north shore now, to Bohol Bee farm.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 6:58 PM
WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 5th
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 3:26 AM
Thursday, September 6, 2007
THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 6th
(NOTE: Click on photos for larger images)
Tess sister and husband (Herman from Belgium) liked Flower Garden so much that they rented the a-frame unit next to us. At 8am Tess' parents picked them up and we followed into town on the motorcycle.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 3:40 AM
While at Internet Cafe posting the prior Thursday entry, Jovelyn, who
works at Flower Garden Resort (in photo), stopped in with her friend to
use the Internet. Tess helped her set up a Yahoo email acct.
Kim finished his San Miguel while Tess and Jovelyn were still busy. There are signs everywhere on the highways "TANDUAY" so he asked to try a shot. "Five year or 15 year?" I can't decide, give me both. It is rum. (I guess google it and you'll know more than me - except that I liked the 5-year better - it had a more unique flavor.)
We returned from Internet Cafe about 11pm and Tess'sister and husband (Herman from Belguim) were still up so we visited and had some more beers. (Boy those Europeans can slam down beers.)
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 8:11 PM
father arrived at 8am in Alona to pick up our luggage and Herman,
Lumine, and baby. We then walked to the beach and again hired a boat to
take Kim out snorkeling ($8 for one hour, including the gear). Again,
it's only about 3 meters deep out 200 yards, then drops off a cliff. I
was looking at the coral and small fish when i saw some huge black
things emerging - two divers. I waved and they waved back.
After checking out from Flower Garden we stopped for gas in Alona. The attendant asked "You want one or two liters?" I said two and he returned with two 1-liter coke bottles full of gas and poured them in the tank.
We drove the north route to Tagbilaran, through the crazy traffic and checked into Bohol Tropics. We asked to see some rooms first and picked a nice one (Room 107), completely private, hardwood floors. Their exchange rate was bad so after eating we went back to Island City Mall to the currency exchange, then to Tess' parents house in Manga. Along the way someone called Tess' name. I turned around, it was her friend Judith, who she last saw in 1999, and recognized her during one second driving past.
When we arrived at the parents' house in Manga they were testing the karaoke machine. Then a motorcycle dropped a pig from a sidecar and left it squealing hog-tied in the front yard. In some process I don't want to think about, they will turn it into a lechon for the party tomorrow.
Around 7:30pm - well after dark - the power for the whole town went out for about an hour. Later Tess' father drove us back to Bohol Tropics. Saturday will start early.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 8:16 PM
Friday, September 7, 2007
At 6:10am Tess father arrived at the hotel to pick us up to go to the
open market. Tess and I then took the motorcycle to the pier at Magma
Point to video the arrival of the flight from Manila to Taglibaran. We
thought it should arrive by 9am but didn't see it. We stayed until 9:30,
in spite of gray skies - too late. We got stuck in a tropical downpour,
so we took cover under a waiting structure. The local kids and families
continued to come and go to swim in the ocean. But we had two cameras
and no nearby change of clothes. Luckily an hour later it stopped, and
except for puddles its now a clear sunny day.
Tess family and relatives are preparing for the evening party. Their computer had browser problems, so I brought relative "Eric" to navigate me to an internet cafe.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 8:33 PM
Sunday, September 9, 2007
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 1:27 AM
having the complimentary breakfast at Bohol Tropics, the plan was to go
to Tess' parents house and then visit her aunt and husband at the jail.
But it rained all morning so they delayed the visit until the afternoon.
so I mostly sat on the porch and watched the rain.
In the afternoon the rain stopped so several of us went to visit at the jail. It was out in the country. It houses about 130 inmates and visitation was outdoors within the high cinderblock outer wall. (Oddly the females were all searched, but I was waived through.) Tess had visited some of jailed policemen when she lived in Manila and said this was much better than the Manila jail.
Tess' father then dropped us off at the Island City Mall to do errands. Since some had not tried Bohol Bee Farm food, we took them to that restaurant.
I stopped at Internet Cafe in the mall and paid for a computer for Eric too. He interrupted me and said "watch this" and i saw an Iranian guy taking off his shirt on the webcam chat. What? Eric said pretended to be a female online to see what he can get guys to do. Well funny enough.
i've learned to ride 2 on the back of the motorcycle (eric and tess) but we see 4 or 5 on a motorcycle quite often.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 4:30 AM
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
had an early breakfast at Bohol Tropics. (the website doesn't show the
entrance to the resort, so we show it here - back from the motorcycle
ride to the beach.)
It was raining and my plan was to go to Manga Point to video the airline approaching from Manila. But it was clear that we would get wet and muddy on the motorcycle. I concluded the solution was to put on our bathing suits and sandals and make the drive.
We splashed through a lot of mud puddles since much of the road is not paved. I got the footage of the airline arrival and the rain tapered off. I took a swim in the ocean while Tess convinced a guy to let her paddle his boat around, like she used to do as a kid.
It is a new experience getting both in and out of water with no chill. The salt made it easy to stay afloat with no effort. There were no waves so by adjusting my height I could see the curve of the earth: At 6" above water the hulls of 2' high boats a few miles out were invisible. But when I raised up another foot I could see the full boat. so I suspect that the earth curve drops off at about one foot per mile.
At noon we transferred from Bohol Tropics to Vest Pension House to save money, then went to Tess parents house. We just caught Maricar (Cop sister), Herman and Lumine leaving to catch a ferry to another island (Cagayan), where they are thinking of settling down.
We then went to Manga Point for the sunset.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 4:41 AM
On Tuesday Sept 11th we chartered a van for $75, including fuel and driver, which took 11 of us to two views of Chocolate Hills and then to the Loboc River Cruise. The chocolate hills look about like I imagined from all the photos already on the web. Still the drive was enjoyable.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 1:42 AM
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
We took two "Pump Boats" (outrigger canoe with motor) up the river, winding past fishermen, and it got narrower with short and tall palm trees lining the shore.
We arrived at Bili-Bili, which had nonstop fresh forest water flowing from pipes where the locals were doing laundry. The river had a cement wall and a higher cement structure that we jumped into the river from.
I imagined that the weather would be mostly hot and muggy, but was not usually the case. Today there was a breeze and clouds like thunderstorm coming in. In the evening it was a cool breeze. Riding in the boat the ocean water felt like a warm bath water splashing on us. The ocean had aqua blue color.
In the evening Tess went shopping at the mall with her two sisters while Jerry offered Kim a ride for fun on the Sikad-Sikad (bike with sidecar). Kim then joined the guys drinking and talking in the Payag-Payag (bamboo nipa hut) that is on Tess' parents property - between the house and a child daycare center.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 3:25 PM
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 8:09 PM
Friday, September 14, 2007
We started the morning by walking up Roxas Blvd. At 8am it was already sweating hot.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 4:43 PM
Saturday, September 15, 2007
The last two times I was in the Philippines, 1983 and 1984, I was sick with fever etc on the flight home, making me wary of returning. But it appears that this trip was different. Our return flight is this evening and so far no health issues (other than the headache the night I tried the Tanduay.) A key factor is probably the awareness to only drink beverages from bottles, especially avoiding drinks with ice.
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 7:17 PM
Monday, September 17, 2007
Posted by Mr. Kim Berry at 9:57 PM