Sunday 6th February 2011:
Power went off at 9:30pm last night and came on at about 3:00am (I heard the fridge start up). It was then on all day till 6:00pm, then it went off again till 8:30pm.
Had Bridge this morning at 9:30am, as Terry is back in Manila for a while and this is his last day on the island for a month or so. This meant the Thunder Monster had to forgo her Sunday wash and wax. Will do tomorrow or Tuesday so all good.
At midday we headed for Gasan where I dropped off Guy at the “office” and I joined the 11 expats at Barbarossa once again to solve the problems of the world.
As I am interested in getting a generator it was good to talk to a few of them that have purchased gen sets for different sized houses. Kevin (the other new aussie) purchased one some months ago so was able to pick his brain and I am now getting closer to knowing what Guy and I will need. Work in progress.
Guy caught a ride home with Vicki and right on 6:00pm off goes the power till 8:30pm. So much for the “brownout schedule” we got from the power company yesterday. Oh well that’s life on Marinduque and we can’t complain as we survive very nicely, brownouts and all.
We watched the movie called “Unthinkable” with Samuel L Jackson on the MacBook during the brownout so all good. Not a bad movie actually.
Monday 7th February:
Power off at about 3:00am this morning and back on at 5:00pm this afternoon then off again at 9:00pm so really only 4 hours of power at the cottage today. It did come back on at 10:00pm but we were in bed by this time.
Up at 5:00am and off to Gerald’s for a 15km ish hike on “fire trail” back in them there hills. We left at 6:30am and after a walk along the beach we headed up into the mountains (walking on a fire trail type track) and did a big loop back to the main road. The last 5km were on the main road. Great easy ish walk after the epic trek last Friday. We are both still getting our fitness back so another easier walk scheduled for this Friday.
At 10:30am we hit Buenavista. As we were preparing to catch a Jeepney, a friend of Gerald’s came along in a van and they drove us back to Gerald’s house for a nice cool drink of ice tea followed by an even better cup of hot tea.
Back home for a scoop shower as no power followed by lunch and of course a siesta for an hour or so. Great way to finish the morning’s activities.
We then headed for Joseph’s Mini-Mart up Boac way to see if they had power for some Wi-Fi. And luckily they had power so we were able to get our emails sorted. Being on the outskirts of Boac (the capital) and across the road from the municipal (Government) offices they tend to get power first.
While Guy was Wi-Fiing, I headed for the ATMs to get some cash. The first two were “off line” and the third one was operational with a small line up. Only 3 people in front of me so I lined up. The first two got their cash and as the guy in front of me tried to use the ATM it went off line “for maintenance”. Dam.
The security guard in the bank said it would only be 10 minutes or so. The guy in front of me waited for 5 minutes then left so I decided to give it 15 minutes and see. And sure enough the ATM came back on line in 5 minutes and I was able to get cashed up once again. These power cuts are playing havoc especially with the ATMs.
We headed home at 4:30pm and stopped off along the way for some freshly cooked beef stew stuff for dinner. Got home just after 5:00pm and yep we had power. Dinner warmed up and eaten immediately just in case………
Tuesday 8th February:
Power off at about 3:00am and back on at 7:30am. Yeaaaa we have power in the morning. Off again at 5:45pm and back on at 7:15pm.
Gasan market day so time to do our weekly shopping. With the brownouts we are just getting anything that is non-perishable. Perishables are a day-by-day purchase at this point in time.
Guy off to Mahjong at noon with Vicki and I headed over to see Kevin (Aussie) and have a look at his generator. On the way I passed Ron pulling into his driveway so stopped for a chat. Just as well as he informed me that Kevin left for Australia this morning. He was going tomorrow morning but left a day early.
Back home to grab the MacBook and off to Barbarossa for some broadband.
Guy home at 5:15pm so dinner organized ASAP while we had power. And sure enough at 5:45pm, off it went. But it did come back on at 7:15pm so not so bad.
Wednesday 9th February:
Power on all night till 8:00am then off till 6:00pm.
Rest day today with a bit of a sleep in then a nice leisurely breakfast sitting on the front veranda watching the world go by.
Ingrid (German), who is visiting the island and staying with friends, came over at 2:00pm for a visit. She spends her time between a Greek island and Frankfurt in Germany. This is her first visit to Marinduque and she can see why we love it here, living the simple life.
She left at 4:30pm and we just sat on the front veranda and watched the sun set waiting for the power to come back on (came back on at 6:00pm instead of 5:00pm). Once the power was on it was quick showers all round and dinner eaten just in case it goes off again.
A very leisurely day was had by all.
Thursday 10th February:
Power off at about 3:00am and back on at 8:00am and then on all day. Wonders never cease to amaze.
Beautiful day and a lazy morning enjoyed by all. As the Thunder Monster missed out on her wash and wax on Sunday I decided to do it today. She is once again all clean and shiny.
Midday and Guy headed to the “office” with Vicki and Ron and I headed over Balanacan way to have a look at a new 4 Star Hotel / Resort being built by some Filipinos who are currently working in USA. The owners were there visiting from the USA so we had a good chat to them. They are looking at putting in cottages, swimming pool and marina. All that is there now is a large function centre.
It is in a beautiful spot over looking the bay and I wish them well in their new venture.
Guy and I both arrive back home at 5:00pm and the power was still on… Yyyeeaaaa……
Friday 11th February:
Power on all night till 7:30am, then back on at 9:00am, then off at 5:30pm till 10:15pm
Up at 5:00pm and off to Gerald’s at 6:15am for our Friday hike. Guy came with me to Gerald’s house and once Gerald and I left, she walked back home in the early morning light.
It is a 4km walk along the coast and she enjoyed the leisurely stroll at first light.
Gerald and I did a nice slow easy 2h15m walk today. Walked back into the hills and tried to find our way across to the Grotto (Guy & I visited it from the road a while ago) a couple of valleys away. It finished up we were one valley too short but now know for next time. It was a nice walk through them there hills and we concluded it with a walk along the beach back to Gerald’s for tea.
Once home and showered (power was still on) we headed for Joseph’s Mini-Mart for some Wi-Fi to sort out our itinerary to see as many of you as we can on our March visit back to AUS. And enjoyed a nice noodle lunch there whilst working.
On the way home called into Cawit Port to get some freshly cooked food for dinner and lunch tomorrow. We made it home just on 5:00pm so quickly put on the rice cooker and Guy had a shower. Just as Guy finished her shower and the rice cooker “clicked” off, went the power at 5:30pm and came back on at 10:15pm just when we had given up and were about to head to bed.
Saturday 12th February:
Well day 365 of my retirement has been reached and what a 365 days it has been.
Some of the adventures we have endured during this time are:
- Quit our long standing jobs in Sydney
- Got married
- Sold / given away 95% of all our worldly possessions
- Moved to a foreign country (new for me and back home for Guy)
- Travelled round some of the 7,100 islands in the Philippines looking for a new place to call home
- Found a new place to call home (The island of Marinduque)
- Built a whole new life in a new culture with new food and a new language
- Built up new friendships and missed our family and friends back in AUS
- Explored new activities with our new friends (hiking / exploring the mountain jungles and back roads)
- Bought a piece of paradise property (our 2,908sqm of beachfront)
- Living in a simple life in a simple cottage on the beach (no malls, supermarkets or fast food chains on the island)
- The purchase of my new Thunder Monster which is our only form of transport on the island
- Got to retire at age 55 (something that I have dreamed about since I was 19) with my beautiful wife (she’s 52 but don’t tell anybody)
It has been a fantastic adventure and one of the most amazing year that either of us has experienced in our whole lives, so far.
We have absolutely NO regrets and love our new life style. It hasn’t been easy at times with us both missing family and friends and adapting to our new lives but we would do it all again in a heartbeat.
We have had Jordan (Guy’s son) and Jo (Guy’s daughter) over to visit us and showed them our new home and are looking forward to some more visitors this year (Deb K my cousin in May kicking it off).
I wish you all an early retirement so you can enjoy the fruits of all those dedicated years of hard work.
Life is good.
Trevor & Guy