Sunday 27th March:
Awoke this morning well and truly with the head cold thingy. Blocked nose and a thick head. Was up at 8:30am as I think my body was still on Sydney time (11:30am Sydney time) but I did sleep well.
After breakfast I snoozed while Guy sorted out some clothes and stuff (towels, sheets, etc.) we have in a couple of boxes here. We have been pulling out bits and pieces over the last 12 months so the boxes were a mess. She sorted out all her stuff and left mine for me to sort later. We now only have 1 ½ boxes and she knows where everything is.
11:00am ish we headed for the mall as it was starting to get hot and I was having hot flushes so the air-con was looking pretty dam good.
Set ourselves up in our favorite little Japanese restaurant on the second floor as it is quiet, have a power outlet at the table for the laptop and access to the mall free Wi-Fi. We had lunch there as I posted the blog and Guy did email.
After picking up a few island treats and an early dinner, we headed back to Beth’s place round 4:30pm ish.
I wasn’t feeling the best so had a late afternoon siesta while Guy completed the boxing of her clothes. After I awoke we had a freshly cooked sweet corn for a snack followed by a nice hot cup of tea. Starting to loose my taste with this cold thing but the tea slid down very nicely.
I completed my sorting of my remaining clothes (a fraction of what Guy has) and placed them in the box for later use.
I updated our finances from the AUS trip and checked our Philippines accounts and all our cash is still there. The cost of our trip back to AUS really showed up how expensive it is to live there compared to Marinduque.
But we are both extremely glad to be back and just want to get back home to Marinduque. Looks like Tuesday at this stage.
Monday 28th March:
The flu thing has well and truly hit as I feel like crap and you know what a bloke is like when he is crook…….
After breakfast we walked to the MRT station and caught the train to the end of the stop. A quick taxi ride and we were at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA). We had a copy of our authenticated marriage certificate from the Philippines Embassy in Sydney, which we were able to show them (they will get a copy as well) and confirmed that all is now back on track.
The official copy will now be sent to the National Statistics Office (NSO), which like our Births, Deaths & Marriages, and when they get it, they will then give it their official stamp and we can apply for my residency with the Immigration Office.
DFA are saying that the NSO will take about two months to complete the process so more waiting now. But at least we now know that we have all the required documents authenticated.
A quick cab ride back to the LRT and caught this back across to the other side of town to get some spares for the Thunder Monster. You see the motorcycle dealers here only sell you the bike and don’t carry any spare parts. You have to go to a separate spare parts dealer. We have one on the island for Suzuki but his stock is very very limited. He has oil filters for the Thunder Monster but no O-rings of which I require two for the oil filter change (1 large & 1 small). The existing ones have been reused for the last three changes so time for new ones on the next change.
So we land in Monumento and found 10th Street and sure enough this street is full of motorcycle spare parts and accessory shops. Eventually found the Suzuki spares dealer and I bought five large and five small O-rings, two oil filters and a fuel filter and all for P225 ($5.50 AUS). This will keep me going for a few years.
It was quite interesting wandering down the street seeing all the mods happening on the path.
Back on the LRT and about half way back to town we switch to LRT 2 for the remainder of the journey followed by a short Trike ride and we are home at 1:30pm.
We then decided we just wanted to get back to Marinduque so we packed up and at 4:00pm triked it to the JAC Liner (Bus) station. As we had a heap of stuff (large bag of baby clothes for the locals thanks to Doug & Bec & Ben & Kim) we went to the JAC Liner as this bus actually drives round the island (after the Ro-Ro crossing) and will drop us off at our front door. So you load up all your stuff and don’t have to touch it till you’re home. Works a treat.
Bus trip down was fine and the Ro-Ro 3-hour crossing was okay as well. Just a little rough but I was fine as I slept most of the way on a thin plastic bench seat.
Made it home at 5:00am after a 13-hour trip to find that the gate was padlocked shut and I didn’t have a key. After checking out another gate which was all wired up, I managed to break into the cottage grounds by un-wiring the existing gate. Nothing serious but just what you don’t need at 5:00am in the morning (still dark) when you’re feeling crap.
A quick cup of tea and off to bed till 9:00am.
Tuesday 39th March:
Slow start as I wheeled out the Thunder Monster. Turned on the fuel, the key and hit the starter and nothing. Flat battery, or so I thought. So tried the kick-start and still nothing. Tried a few more times and nothing. MMmmmmm what has happened to my poor Thunder Monster. And then I saw it. Of course not thinking too straight I had left the kill switch on, didn’t I. Flicked that off and hit the starter and she came to life instantly. Luckily there was nobody round to see…..
After a leisurely breakfast we headed for the Gasan markets, as it is market day today. Stocked up once again on supplies and headed for home for a long siesta for the rest of the day and get over this flu thing. Oohhhh and finish the unpacking. We actually got everything home that we wanted, nothing missing at all. But then again we are both Virgo’s…..
Guy handed out some aussie caps to the boys and the first lot of baby clothes was distributed to Nato (who has a 3 month old daughter) and Mang Tiko (who has 7 month old grand daughter). They loved the hats and the baby clothes.
For dinner some nice fresh local food with rice was consumed and I must say it is good to get away from the heavy western food we have lived on for the last few weeks.
Wednesday 30th March:
Got the big welcome home to Marinduque with a 2-hour brownout this afternoon and another 2-hour brownout this evening.
Still feeling lousy with the flu thing so a quiet day for me. Mid morning Guy and I rode up the road to Ron and Vicki’s to drop off a knife sharpener I bought Ron and a good old aussie tee shirt. As some of you may well know I have to have sharp knives (a me thing) and I have also been sharpening Ron’s for him as well. So I bought him his very own sharpener from AUS so he can now keep them sharp himself.
At midday Guy headed off to Mahjong with Vicki as I could see her fingers twitching for those tiles. After an early afternoon siesta I did a quick ride into Gasan and caught up with Geoff (the pom) at Barbarossa for an ice tea and then picked up a couple of supplies we missed yesterday. Also got some fresh Pandecoco buns. Both Guy and I were going into withdrawal for these delicacies. Afternoon tea all sorted for me.
And we now also have a brand new ATM in Gasan (that makes 5 on the island now). It was scheduled for commissioning back in December but hey 3-months late is pretty good. Tried one of my Filipino bank ATM cards and worked a treat. Means we don’t have to go to Boac to get cash out now (well while it is working anyway).
Back home to the brownout but an hour or so later on came the power so all good till another outage later in the evening.
I must say that for the first time in my life, I am crook and I can actually rest for as long as I like and not have to worry about going back to work to a full email box and voice mail box. This is a fantastic feeling………
Thursday 31st March:
Slow start, but we were woken up “early” (8:30am) by John (the pom) who dropped in on his way through to Gerald’s. Had a quick catch up on the happenings while we were away.
Still got this flu thing so a quiet morning with a leisurely breakfast watching the world go by. I rounded up some dried coconut palms for the incinerator, fixed one of the taps and did a quick rubbish pickup on the beach (we get very little rubbish on our beach).
Also wandered down to the road where the watermelon people have set up. It is watermelon season here at present. The locals have grown their melons in the rice paddy fields and to sell them they build a bamboo stall by the roadside and sell them to the passing folks. We bought one of the “good ones” or so the lady told us for P40($1.00 AUS).
Guy off to Mahjong with Vicki as I headed into Gasan to get some fresh Mangoes (along with a few other things) as it is also coming into mango season as well. They are very soft and sweet at the moment and great flu food.
Had a siesta followed by a wander down to the “shops” to replenish my Coke supplies. Wandered back along the beach in the cool of the afternoon.
Guy arrived home at 5:00pm ish and we distributed some more baby clothes to a couple of the locals.
Feeling a bit better this afternoon so hopefully I have broken the back of the flu thing.
Friday 1st April:
Gerald dropped in for a chat at 8:00am with a huge piece of sweet Jackfruit from his garden. We had a good old catch up for a couple of hours and I caught up on the happenings on the island. Guy did a market run and upon her return made a big pot of very yummy Pork Sinigang, which will last for the next couple of days.
Cherry also arrived to do our washing as we were running out of clothes after the Australia trip (we don’t have many clothes anymore). As she is expecting a new baby in May ish we gave her some of the baby clothes we brought back with us.
After lunch (and a 1-hour brownout) a siesta was in order. I am feeling a little better today from the flu thing and the afternoon siestas certainly help.
At 3:00pm we headed for Joseph’s Mini-Mart for some Wi-Fi and email catch up. I ducked into Boac to get some pics printed to be handed out and also get a couple of keys cut for the cottage while Guy caught up on emails. We arrived home at 5:00pm and wandered down to the watermelon sellers on the road and I gave each of them a couple copies of the pics of them selling their wares. They loved the pics and gave us a watermelon in appreciation.
I discovered that both keys I had cut don’t work. When you look closely you can see they have cut them way too deep. Ooohhh well back tomorrow for another set.
Saturday 2nd April:
Leisurely morning as I have had a bit of a relapse with this cold thing. After an early lunch we headed to Joseph’s Mini-Mart for some more Wi-Fi and Guy had also had a pedicure and manicure booked for 1:30pm.
I headed back into Boac to get the keys re-cut from yesterday. Back home at 4:00pm ish and yep, the keys didn’t work once again. Think I can see what the issue is so will have a go with a file tomorrow and see if I can get them to work.
We finished up the day with a very nice slow stroll up the beach on dusk.
Life is good.
Trevor & Guy