Day 1 – We did it again, but never again, probably.
As far as journeys go, this one started out simple enough. Both my wife and I were excited and nervous. Excited to be going to see the relatives and friends, but nervous about the unknown route that we would have to travel to get there. Normally this is not a problem, but when you are trying to travel on military Space A, well you just never know what kind of adventure you will encounter. This is how our adventure went, this time, although it usually differs every time. So from the beginning.
The first thing I noticed before we left is that I’ve gotten too fat .. again. I need to take care of that once and for all. Will I? I hope so, but that’s another story for another time.
We departed our residence in Calbayog City at 0855 on the morning of 14 Sep 2017. We were taken to the Calbayog City Airport by Titing and Neneng (our cousins) in his tricycle (motorcycle with covered sidecar). We checked in upon arrival and paid the P50 ($1) terminal fee. Carry on bags can be only up to 7 kg (15 lbs) and 1 of our 3 bags was 16.6 kg. We had to pay P784 ($15.34) for excess baggage. I bought the cheaper tickets (no baggage), so that is mostly my fault for thinking my wife would actually pack just a little, as she was supposed to.
Our flight was scheduled to depart at 1025, but it left at 1000. That was the earliest a flight has ever left early for me. We arrived in Cebu at 1043, 30 minutes ahead of schedule. They made sure to announce that over the speaker upon arrival.
We went upstairs to the departure area and headed for Gate 5. We already knew the departure gate from Cebu to Manila because the people in Calbayog processed up through both. I love it when they do that.
While walking to Gate 5, we passed a food court. Lita wanted a Jollibee burger. I got her that and a small Sprite. I got a grilled pita from another place there. It was ham, cheese, lettuce, cucumbers and some kind of sauce. It was tasty. I also got a Canada Dry ginger ale. After eating, we finished our trek to Gate 5 and wait for the flight.
Our 1355 flight started boarding at 1310. It didn’t leave until 1415. I had already fallen asleep waiting for departure. I woke up, remembered what was going on and, for a second or two, thought we had already landed. Too bad for me, we were just delayed and had not even taken off yet. I don’t know what time we arrived in Manila, but it was about 20 minutes late.
Lita walked for a little while, but had to ask for a wheelchair because it got to be too much for her. Luckily one from Cebu Pacific was going by. She brought us the short way to the baggage claim area to get our 16.6 kg bag. I thought that bag would never come out of that chute.
We went out front to get a taxi to the bus station, but “we did it again, but never again, probably. We decided to take a taxi all the way to Angeles for P3000. It’s the same as we did last year. We decided that instead of taking a taxi downtown, waiting on the bus and then going, we would just do it this way. It’s the same thing we did last year. P3000 is about $60 and at least $45 more than we could have paid taking the taxi to the bus terminal and then taking the bus, then a tricycle from Dao (where the bus stops). I’m not sure why I’m compelled to do this. I think it’s because of the convenience and I get so tired of seating without a chance to stop and do what I want to do. By taking the taxi (really just a guy working like an Uber driver) we were able to stop at KFC on the way. I only had 6 peach halves from a can and that pita from the Cebu terminal. At the time we stopped it was 7 pm. The 2 chicken breasts, mashed potatoes and rice went down easy.
The driver brought us to the SM Clark Mall in Angeles. A friend of ours (Jen Beaudean, married to Gary Beaudean who was in Montana at the time) came by to pick us up. We would be staying at her house while we waited for our flight. We would actually be staying in her room while we were there. This was for 2 reasons. First, it’s because it’s a courtesy that many Filipinos do for the elders they respect. A courtesy that could be adopted in other cultures, if you ask me. The second reason was that she would not be using the bed anyway because she would be staying with her niece in the hospital during the night hours. Before leaving the mall, they (her and her oldest son) wanted to eat. I’m not hungry anymore because of the KFC, but I order a hamburger anyway, cut it in half and just eat the half. It was a good burger, but I just didn’t feel like eating anymore.
The only problem I had at their house is that they did not have a landline. I’m not so good at using cell phones in the Philippines still. Probably because I don’t try very hard to understand how it works.
After a good nights sleep, we would begin the 2nd day of our journey. The day would have a few surprises and some same old, same old stuff. I hope you will be around to share it with us.