A lovely lazy day
Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
371Trip End Feb 26, 2011
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We took a morning walk down to the harbour to change some money then went to the Artcafe for lunch. The town seemed a lot busier today and the streets were filled with the sound of singing from people at the church service, it was lovely.
We were so gutted that this was to be our last full day here and in the Philippines altogether as it has probably been our favourite place so far. We leave for Vietnam tomorrow and have a full day of travelling ahead of us so we just chose to hang around the hut sleeping, reading and researching Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, all places on our agenda.
Later in the afternoon we forced ourselves to go down to the printers to get our Vietnam Visa's printed off and Andrew had to sign and scan some documents from home. Feeling tired and really not looking forward to the long day ahead, we skipped dinner, packed up our weeks worth of mess back in to the rucksacks and got an early night.
The Philippines - for somewhere not even on our radar when we first started our trip it has provided us with so many amazing experiences. The people have been so warm and inviting without so many of the things that we take for granted they are still so generous and hospitable. Their love of karaoke, music ranging from happy hardcore to power ballads with just a little bit of Jason Mraz inbetween, the way they take life as it comes and the fact that time, even to the airlines is much of an irrelevance. The scenery is truly spectacular and so worth the many long, sweaty bus journeys to reach them. In actual fact sometimes the journey can help make the experience.
Andrew edit - The pines made me all a little bit emotional in the end. A great place, great people, a bit short on leccy, ATM's, Water et al but that just makes the place very very very special. When its roasting hot and there are no fans, and nowhere to shelter you can get a bit frustrated but a warm welcoming smile and watching kids playing with stones makes you really realise you don't need much to be happy. Then again as soon as the leccy goes on try and get people away from the telly and the fridge (if the brownout isn't on at the time). The lady in the art cafe in El Nido spoke to me a few nights ago about how El Nido has reached its tourism limit, when she moved here there was no road, no leccy at all etc she fell really ill and spent 7 days on a boat to the nearest hospital that could save her life (she nearly died), she is now a Filipeno (previously Swiss but married into a nation and embraced a culture 'I employ people who have never ever been to qqa restaurant so I need to be a good teacher') wont go to court (as she knows she will always lose), dreads the elections (as the next mayor may want to have a few quid to restart the dredging), and she runs all the environmental campaigns. She explained the sewerage pipes run into the ocean and the fuel and pollution increase in the last 4 years has already changed this place beyond recognition, but she still wants what is best for the people here, she wants 'progress' not at any cost it has to be sustainable. Please visit the Philippines but make sure you're money goes to local people who need it and spread it around not to 5* resorts who limit the take of everyone one else. Rant over!!! ps Erica I love you it has been amazing.