Today I am heading over to Bohol to see the Tarsier monkey and Chocolate hills. My first step is to purchase a ferry ticket at the Supercat terminal.
My taxi driver stops at the ticket counter, and I run in to get my ticket. I request a return ticket for Friday, thinking it was Monday. This gives me a few days to explorer on the 10th largest Island.
However, the ticket girl informs me, Friday the ferry is closed due to some holiday, that I later find out is Easter Friday. Anyways, the sign shows 500 pesos one way, and the girl tells me with the return it is 750 pesos. Great I save 250 pesos! OK, I actually still got ripped off. I later see on my ticket receipt it is 300 each way, when you buy both ways and I also confirmed later that it is 600 pesos. So, I still got ripped off 150 pesos.
What the hell is wrong with some people? Why do they rip off tourist any chance they get? I find this so sad, being such an awesome place. Tourist provide them so much income and they still feel the need to be less than human!
Another example of getting ripped off, is later the same day I bought 4 items from a bakery. All items are 5 pesos which comes to 20 pesos. The girl very sneaky charged me 30 pesos, and being an honest person I didn't think anything of it until a few minutes later. I find this low, because I know she would not do this to a local.
Anyways, back to the story.
The ferry ride over to Bohol only takes 2 hours and then another 45 minute ride on a motor trike to my hostel. The trike guy originally wanted 300 pesos, but agreed to 250 pesos. When we arrived at the hostel, he was such a nice guy and tried to carry my bags in for me, but had a hard time lifting it. He also gave me tons of information and was super nice. This is the type of guy that deserved more. When he gave me my change back from 500 pesos, I ended up giving him the extra 50 pesos and told him I wanted to pay more because he is a honest, great guy. By the way, 50 pesos is $1.30 CAD. He thanked me 5 times before leaving.
Good people deserve good things!
I checked into the hostel and in my dorm room I meed two young guys from Norway. Over the next few days we have a few great chats about Norway and places they have been that they loved.
That night I took a nice walk along the beach and decided to spend a few extra pesos for a nice sunset dinner on the beach.
The next morning I eat breakfast and head out looking for ways to get to the Tarsier Monkeys and Chocolate hills. This is where I realized I missed up. Today is not Tuesday, but Wednesday and I am leaving tomorrow on the Ferry back to Cebu. Grrr, I missed today's excursion and the only other way is by taxi which cost way to much on my own.
Screw it, its OK. I am coming back and will see these cute little beast one day.
I head back to my room and grab my mask and snorkel. I am going to see animals one way or another. :)
Down at the beach, I find several great spots for snorkeling. Check out these great pictures of star fish, little fish, and something I do not know what it is, but it is cool!
I spend most of the day enjoying the beach and eating super cheap, but yummy with some side street BBQ vendors.
Next morning my trip to Bohol is already over. I pack, and head down to the street to find a motor trike for a ride home.
As I am looking for a trike, a car pulls over and asks if he can give me a ride to the terminal for 300 pesos. I asked if he was a taxi and he said no, he is on his way there and was hoping to make an extra few dollars for gas. He looked like an honest guy, so I said sure. A nice AC car for the same price as a uncomfortable trike in the already 30 degree heat.
I get in and within a minute he starts with the common questions asked like, "Where are you from?, how long are you in the Philippines for? etc" I welcome his questions and also ask some back about him.
Fun part of the story, is he starts telling me about a girl her knows who just finished university and is working in the medical field. He tells me she is 25 and very pretty, the type of girl I should be looking for. He eventually tells me, this is his daughter and shows me a picture. Damn, is all I can say. She is super cute!
When we arrive at the terminal, he gets out of the car and gives me his name and number. Ronnie tells me, if I come back to the Philippines to give him a call and we can all go out for dinner :)
Ronnie is such a cool dad. I thought he was only 45 and he told me he is 62 this year. What do they drink here?
We say goodbye and I wish him the best!
The ferry ride back to Cebu is only half full and very relaxing ride.
The taxi ride to the hotel was another, lets rip off the tourist. As he is driving I am using my GPS to see where he goes. I see he adds an extra few turns for no reason, when the road is straight to my hotel, and he didn't need to make a left and two rights to get back onto the same road. So I ask him why he took these roads for no reason, and I know he added an extra kilometer just to rip me off. He had no response and I could see it in his eyes that he knew I was right.
When we arrive the hotel he then drives past the front door, which was obvious and then slowly reverses trying again to get the toll higher. I then said stop very loud and aggressive. He stops and starts to get out without stopping the meter. I lean forward and his stop on the meter for him.
I then explain to him I would have given him a tip but am very unhappy he thinks he can rip off a tourist. He tried acting like he didn't know what I met, so I showed him the path he took and where he should have gone. He then says sorry and I give him 5 pesos less than the meter said. 5 pesos is nothing, but I wanted to make a point. He didn't argue as there was a security guard for the hotel standing beside me listening in.
I am a little frustrated at how people from 3rd world countries think sometimes. I don't mean this always happens, but when it does, it is frustrating.
Anyways, I am at the hotel and my opinion quickly changes again. I love Filipino people for the most part and this is one reason why.
Two small young guys that work at the hotel want to carry my bags up for me. I try to stop them because the one guy could barely get my backpack on. But then I decided to just help him get it on his back.
When we get to the room, they set my bags down, shake my hand and leave without asking for tips. As they are walking down the hall, both guys were signing. People here are always singing. I love it!
I am now at the hotel and ready for some needed R and R.
I normally would stop my blog post here, but since there is only one day left in the Philippines, I wanted to add my last little story to this blog.
The next day I headed out for some water, and when I came back, the same two guys were standing near my door way.
As I put my hand on the door knob a small gecko was on it and scared the shit out of me. I jumped like a girl when it moved. The two young guys couldn't contain themselves and they started laughing like little kids. Ok, I agree, it was funny as shit.
The gecko is now 5 feet from me on the floor, looking at me. I decided, this is my turn to pay him back. I start stomping my feet as I ran towards him, trying to scare him. Well, it didn't work and he ran between my feet and once again, I jumped like an idiot trying not to step on him. The young guys are now almost falling over laughing.
I didn't know what to say, and I was now laughing too.
The young guys finally stopped laughing and we talked for a minute, and then I went into my room feeling dumb and silly at the same time.
A little later on I went into the restroom for a tinkle. As I pull out the anaconda and start to relieve myself. That demon gecko ran across the top of the toilet, and spooked me again. I fucking pissed on my feet and hand. I know this is the same gecko, as I saw a smile on his face. The little bastard. I now think he is doing it on purpose. This is why I have named him Demo gecko.
That is my last story for the Philippines, as tomorrow I am heading to the Airport to fly the Thailand.
Talk soon all!