Wednesday 14th July:
Well we survived Typhoon Basyang. Hit our section of the city about 9:00pm last night and lasted for about 7 hours. The power went off at 9:30pm last night and came back on at 6:30pm (some 21 hours later). There for a while it looked like we might have to endure another night in the dark.
Was lots of wind and rain (no flooding here luckily). You would hear the gusts coming (sounded like a freight train) and they would hit turning the rain from vertical to horizontal. Then 10-15 minutes later they were gone (still windy though) till the next one. We found out in the morning that the blackout was for the whole island of Luzon.
In our first floor room we got a birds eye view (well sound effects anyway) of the proceedings. We started with our windows open to catch the cooler wind but Guy had to shut them as the rain was starting to come in and stuff was getting blown round the room. Re-opened everything after the storm front had passed and was nice to feel a cool breeze (the coolest breeze we have felt since arriving).
Main damage here in our area was trees, rubbish and some minor building damage (windows and fences). Went for a walk earlier and it is business as usual (minus the power of course). All good in our suburb.
Schools and colleges are all closed today so the kids are all enjoying their free day. Globe mobile has been on and off all day. Smart mobile has been on but noticed the signal isn’t too good. Both Globe & Smart Broadband were down all day.
Tonight we have power and broadband connection so my life is complete.
OOohhh and yesterday while Guy was following the paper trail in the Immigration centre I went for a wander across the road and found this huge (and very interesting) old derelict building.
It was the Aduana (Spanish word for Customs) house. The history is:
- First built in 1823 to 1829.
- Damaged in an earthquake in 1863 and demolished in 1872.
- Rebuilt in 1874 to 1876.
- Damaged in WW2 by Japanese bombs in 1942 and American artillery in 1945.
- Ravaged by fire in 1979.
- Partly restored in 1998 but as nothing since, so mother nature has pretty much taken over, even in the middle of a big city.
You can see by just looking at the facade and inside the broken windows that it was a majestic building in its day. Sad to see it come to its present state where it is just falling down, brick by brick.
Would have loved to get inside and take some pics. But will have to be content with the pics I did get from the outside during the rain.
Thursday 15th July:
Well we have just come from the bank where we have paid a deposit to Laura for 2,908 sqm of beachfront property on Marinduque. Two more payments to be made (one next week and the other about 6 weeks away) and we will have the title.
We have already started on a floor plan for our Bungalow (including Typhoon proofing it as best we can) and will work on this further on our return to Marinduque in a few weeks. As it is the wet now, you can’t build so plenty of time to play round with the plans. Building can start round December ish and we would hope that the Bungalow would be ready to occupy about this time next year.
We will get the land cleared during the wet. Only removing the bush and leaving all the coconut and other big trees there.
The land is on the west coast of Marinduque. You have Boac at the top of the island, Gasan in the middle and Buenavista at the southern part. Our piece of paradise is about 5 km north of Buenavista (where the Hot Springs are), which is less populated than the north. Also this is the area that has the expat community. They meet in Gasan each Sunday lunchtime to chew the fat.
Laura’s (local lady – our land seller) story is that she was married to a German guy but they are now divorced. There is a total of 9 hectares land that has been split as follows:
- 3.5h now belongs to their two kids who live in Germany (northern section which is cleared except for the coconut and big trees).
- 2.0h is Laura’s (her divorce settlement & middle section & still native bush land).
- 3.5h belong to Laura’s ex husband who lives there (has large house, visitors’ house and sheds) when he is in the Philippines (southern section and cleared except for the coconut & big trees).
So we will be all alone on our little patch as Laura has left the rest of her land in two big lots (8,000sqm and 8,500sm).
All very exciting and will keep us busy for a couple of years as we build and plant our local fruit trees on the land.
The Bungalow is that one step closer.
Went to the Mall after and saw the movie “Inception” with Leonardo diCaprio. Interesting movie. Got a bit lost with the old guy but won’t give anything away.
Friday 16th July:
Well woke up today and we have nothing to do and all day to do it. After a leisurely brunch at Guy’s Mum’s (next door) we headed for the Mega Mall (haven’t been there before), which is a short MRT (train ride) ride away.
After a bit of a walk round we came to the annual Gun exhibition. You could get pretty much anything you wanted here if you have the cash. They had everything from pistols, rifles, shotguns, machine guns, pepper spray, stun guns and all the accessories to go with them. Was a bit weird seeing all this hardware after coming from AUS where there is very very strict gun control.
For afternoon tea we found this Coffee shop that caters for us Wi-Fi folk. They had free Wi-Fi (you have to buy a coffee to get the password) with power points at all the tables. I reckon that 85% of the people in the café were on laptops and all had a coffee. Very nice establishment and one I will go back to. Even the Royal Tea Latte (Chai Latte) wasn’t bad. Almost like home……..
Tonight we are going through a “Deed of conditional sale” from Laura. This will need to be completed for our next payment on the land. Hope to have that sorted by mid next week.
We are then thinking of heading to Palawan for a couple of weeks before returning to Marinduque and our new land. But we will see what next week brings.
Saturday 17th July:
Further work on the Deed of conditional sale this morning. Getting it ready to be signed at our next payment, which will hopefully be next week once the sub-division plan is approved.
We are dealing directly with Laura (the landowner and no agent or broker). Will save us both some expense. We are getting a huge amount of help from Aura (Guy’s best friend) who has just gone through the same process. And also Laura’s sister works at the Bureau of Lands, so we are both doing it by the book. Laura is fantastic to work with (lots of communication), as all parties want a smooth transaction for the least cost.
Guy and I are so glad that we are “retired” and can devote our full attention to the process. Then once the land clearing and Bungalow building starts we will be involved hands on.
So much for a quiet “retirement”. That will come in a year or two when I can sit on my veranda in the deck chair with a Coke and lemon in hand gazing out over the beach and snoozing.
Back at the Mall again this afternoon to escape the heat and sort out our mobile phones (well Guy’s and my Broadband). All fixed now so we can share Pre-Paid loads and the free texts. Got to love technology… when it works….
Sunday 18th July:
Another day of not much to do and all day to do it. Now waiting for Laura’s sub-division plan to be approved so we can make the second payment of three on our land. Should be all sorted in the next few days.
Then we leave Manila and either head for Palawan or back to Marinduque if our long-term rental beach cottage is ready. Just needs the power connected and all go. When we get back to Marinduque (either now or after exploring Palawan) we will get ourselves a motorbike and spend our time organizing the clearing up of our block, designing our Bungalow (plans and organize a builder) and exploring the island.
Went to another Sunday market today with Beth and family. Now I should warn you all I love markets (anywhere in the world if there is a market, I’m there). I just love the sights, sounds, smells and the people. Had Goat Adobo for lunch and it was very nice. Anyway see the “many” pics.
Life is good.
Take care all.
Trevor & Guy