A Whinging Blog Entry

Trip Start Dec 03, 2012
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33
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Trip End Jan 09, 2013


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Flag of Philippines  , Central Visayas,
Friday, January 4, 2013

Detour
Today was one of those days where almost the entire day was unwillingly delegated to travelling from point A to point B. I learnt from last night that there are only 3 ferry departures out of Siquijor (Larena) to Tagbilaran, Bohol. One just left Larena last night, and the next departure is scheduled for Sunday. I didn't have the luxury of staying another two nights in Siquijor (as much as I wanted to), so I had to do a detour back to Dumaguete and catch the daily service to Tagbilaran.
 
Whinge 01
The morning rain began the lousy start. After a wet 45 minutes tricycle ride up to the pier at Siquijor town, I managed to secure a 930 am Dumaguete ticket half an hour prior to departure. The bangka was a small fisherman vessel which set my alarm bells ringing.Here we go again... As expected the ride was choppy and whilst I had a proper bench seat facing forward, the air was hot and stuff. All the timber window panels stayed shut to keep out rogue sea waves. The front latch door was locked shut for most of the journey until a crew member decided it was too stuffy that  he left it ajar as we were nearing Dumaguete. Another unpleasant ride and my unsettled stomach was not helping either. Arriving at the port, the crew had trouble securing the vessel to the pier, making two unsuccessful attempts and had to return three times! All I wanted was to get off this damned boat and stand on solid ground, for feck's sake!
 
From Dunny to Pastry
Time was 1130 am. Next available fastcraft to Tagbilaran was scheduled for 330 pm. At a cost of 680 php, it was the costliest I had paid for a ferry transport. Like it or not, I had to worship at the dunny temple. Thankfully, I was able to leave my bags at Vintage Inn and access the employee's bathroom. I missed out on tasting San Rival's cashew waffle pastry three days ago, so I deliberately ate at the restaurant for my lunch and sampled the said pastry. It earned high praises on Lonely Planet but I really think the pastry is overrated.
 
Whinge 02 
I previously did a blog entry on the incompetency of Oceanjet and today I am going to do another. Oceanjet issues their tickets without allocated seat numbers. When I checked in to the terminal (terminal fee was waived today), a long queue awaited leading to an Oceanjet check-in counter. The only one company in the whole terminal to have a check-in counter. Joining the queue, the clock was ticking 20 minutes to 330 pm and the whole process was painfully slow. By the time I checked in and allocated my seat number (every passenger also had to verify their identification with photo ID), the queue had snaked into the departure hall. It turned out that the queue included early passengers to other destinations! How stupid. 

Oceanjet could have just issue the seat number at the point of ticket purchase. Every other company did that! This really fumed alot of passengers as we bagged Oceanjet whilst in our queue. At the last minute, a quick thinking employee informed all Tagbilaran bound passengers in the queue to just proceed to board without seat allocations. As you can imagine, this caused another problem. While on board, passengers without seat numbers were constantly moved around in the fastcraft while waiting for checked-in passengers to take up their seats. Arguments assured and tempers flared. We didn't depart until passed 430 pm. What a complete waste of time! Don't waste your time with the incompetent Oceanjet if you have other options. Travelling time to Tagbilaran took approximately 2 hours and luckily for me, my bowels were well behaved.
 
Whinge 03
Throughout this Philippines trip, I had not encountered pesky irritating tricycle drivers until I arrived at Tagbilaran. They have the most annoying habit of touting for passengers with methods like incessantly asking where you want to, yelling across the street to get your attention, braking right at your feet as you are just about to cross the road...etc. I got so fed up that I retorted to one driver with Okay, take me to Cebu! He actually paused to ponder before realising that I had just mocked him. 

I stayed in a very basic lodge near where Jollibee is. Unfortunately I didn't take note of the name but it costed 490 php for air-con and attached toilet. Toilet features no flushing system (you use a pail of water to flush), no showering head and no basin. Just a tap on the wall. The shops here close early around 8 pm. I wandered around town before stopping to use the free wifi at McDonalds. Oh no..stomach troubles...still not over..
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