Day 95 of retirement

Hi all

Well we left another stinker of a hot one in Manila on Monday. Caught the bus just round the corner from home so was good not having to go to far in the heat. A quick Trik ride got us to the station with all the luggage (two day packs and one 85 litre pack)….

Then a 2.5 hour air-conditioned (Yyyeeeaaa) bus trip to the port of Batangas. During the bus ride it stops for comfort (toilet) stops along the way where all the food vendors come on board and try to sell their wares (apples, caramelized peanuts, Pork crackling, cold drinks and other stuff I have no idea what it was).

From here we caught a motorized Bangka (see pic of the boat) to White Beach. Now I’m not a fan of boats at the best of times (I get sea sick) but I must admit that the 1 hour Banka ride was actually quite good. They are long wooden boats with Bamboo stabilizers out each side so they cut through the wind chop without any rock and roll. This is going to be our chief mode of transport for a while now as we island hop.

A quick Trik ride to Mengie’s resort (as recommended by the Lonely Planet) right at the western end of the beach away from all the big resorts, bars and tourist spots followed by our first swim which was pretty dam good.

Mengie’s is run by a very talkative but helpful lady who will cook you a meal anytime (24×7), organize a massage, be the bar maid, organize “her” guides for exploring and a hike to the local water falls, organize “her” Trik boys to take you anywhere and look after you and anything else you want.

We were only the 4th & 5th “tourists” checked in so had the pick of the rooms. Ours consisted of a ceiling fan, bed, cold shower and toilet. No TV, no fridge, no cupboards. But hey for $15 a night and 50m from “our” private beach who can complain. We spent all of time on the beach anyway under the coconut trees 10m from the water. But you need to beware of falling coconuts…..

It is definitely cooler here with the sea breeze so glad to leave the sweltering Manila behind right now.

Looks like we will be here for a few more days (Till the weekend at least). We were going to go down the beach to another resort but after an inspection today we found out it is quite expensive and full of “tourists”.

But we did discover that it does have free Wi-Fi so hence this email.

Also I’m still struggling with my gastro and Guy still has her cough so what better place to recuperate.

We are spending our days lounging on the beach lounges (made out of bamboo but quite comfortable), swinging in the hammock, swimming to keep cool and our evening walk up to the other end of the beach. Mengie keeps us fed and watered with nice local fresh food and cold bottled water with the odd Coke thrown in.

Ooohhhh I had a one-hour massage by a lovely little old lady under the coconut palms on the beach who has very strong and slightly rough hands. It was like having a massage and body scrub all at once. Got the full head to toe treatment for the princely sum of $6.50. It was very very nice. Quick swim after and all was good. Might have to indulge in one more before we leave…

Well today the power was out all day. They call them brown outs here. Power goes out and your not sure when it will be back on. But being on the beach all day who cares.

And one other thing I have now noticed. Have a look at your wallet / purse and count up all the cards you have (Credit, Debit, Medical, Auto Club, Other Club, etc.) I had heaps. In my wallet now I have two cards. A Credit card linked to my account back in Aus and a Debit Card for our account with the Bank in the Philippines. I also have an emergency numbers contact card (With AUS and Philippines contacts on it) and cash. My wallet has never been so thin. Love it.

Trev & Guy

PS: Broadband is really bad on the islands so we have to seek out free Wi-Fi at expensive hotels. Till next time…..

Medical Advice: Sent 19th May 2010

Hi All

Hey to all you medical folk (Andrea your advice would be greatly accepted) or folk who know medical folk, I’m after a bit of advice.

I have had this gastro thing for 13 days now and can’t shake it. It works like this. I have been eating the local food and drinking the local water since arriving over 2 weeks ago.

Whenever I eat my first meal for the day (doesn’t matter what time it is, morning or afternoon) I have a gastro attack after about 1.5 hours. It comes on fast and I need to find a loo within 15 minutes or so. The outcome is loose to runny. No blood is present at all or any other odd looking stuff.

If I eat later in the day again it has the same effect but not as severe.

When I eat dinner at night all is fine. I can eat whatever I like with no effect. No gastro at all.

I feel fine otherwise and have no other effects. Can operate as normal. I drink water and all is fine. Coke before dinner sets it off but with dinner is fine.

So when traveling I don’t eat till dinnertime. I do drink water though and I’m fine. I have lost my appetite so not feeling hungry but do eat a decent dinner each night. I am also now on a dairy free intake as well. No cheese, yogurt or milk (used to eat heaps of this back in AUS).

Also no more tea. I was a 15-cup a day drinker 3 weeks ago.

I have lost a few kilos. But not a problem and I have a few more to loose anyway. Great diet program. Anybody want one???

I have taken a course of three Zedd 500 (Azithromycin Tablets 500mg by spirit) and it didn’t make any difference.

I still have a three tablet course of Pfizer Azithromycin Dihydrate 500mg tablets (Zithromax) that I bought locally.

I also have Pfizer Simplotan 500mg (4 tablets taken at once) for Giardia. I have had a good read of my Travel Doctor medical guide and don’t seem to fit the Giardia symptoms. But I could be wrong.

Also have gastro-stop but haven’t used it. I am able to manage the “attacks” by managing my eating and drinking.

So anybody got any advice on what this bug might be and how to kick it??????

All help greatly appreciated.

Cheers

Gastro Trev

Update:

Huge thanks to everybody for the great help and suggestions. As luck would have it the day I sent the email the gastro bug decided to move on. But if it does come back I’m prepared.

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