Tuesday, August 29, 2006

No More 6am Flights!

Just this past weekend, we went to Manila for exactly 2 days. It was during dinner one day with our friends Carl and Sachi and while reminiscing about our wedding in Manila that Sachi asked alot about Manila since she has never been there. Halfway through describing what it was like, one of us said why don't we just take you there one weekend so you can see for yourself? And just like that we decided to zip down to the Philippines.

I called a few friends and contacts and had a car, a driver, a helper and a hotel ready for us when we arrived. We took the last flight out on Friday. We almost couldn't go because the day before, Boy Wonder suddenly had a fever and upon our visit to the doctor, discovered he had an ear infection! Good thing I took him to see the doc early enough so the doc said its not too serious yet and a stronger antibiotic should make him well enough for the flight the following evening. Phew!

We arrived in Manila past midnight, was picked up by my dad's friends and dropped off at the hotel. They also left us a car to use for the weekend. Its great to know the right people! By the time we settled in, it was around 2 am.

The following day we did the only touristy thing and went to Fort Santiago. Our former driver Tony came to drive for us. It had been 4 years since I last saw him! It was great that I was still able to track him down. He was so happy to see me. He had definitely aged and after hearing what he had been up to, life sure hasn't been easy for him. At first I was even abit paranoid about asking him to drive us for a day. I had heard stories of kidnappings arranged by drivers in the past and was actually worried what if my driver was so desparate for cash that he would use this unexpected opportunity to arrange something and make a quick buck. But of course I was being silly and everything turned out great. He now drives a tricycle for a living and invested in a billiard hall. He doesn't make much money driving passengers around on the tricycle though. He said after paying the company that owns the tricycle PhP120 a day, he makes around PhP100 in profit a day! As for the billiard hall, he had been stabbed and receives threats every now and then because of it. He said after the guy who owns the land around where they live kicked out all the squatters and put up a few businesses, one of which is the billiard hall, things had gotten abit rough. A few of his mates were killed as the former squatters are constantly seeking vengance for loosing a place to live. Sheesh, so much drama! After Tony drove us around that day, I gave him a bag of chocolates, 2 watches and PhP500 to thank him for his services. It was sort of sad seeing him go. I could tell he was sad too. Gosh, such different lives we live now than to when I was still living in Manila and have Tony drive me around.

I was able to meet up with a few of my friends for lunch that day too. We ate at People's Palace. I think everyone enjoyed the food. Boy Wonder got a blister after touching one of their light fixtures on the floor. Other than that it was a pleasant enough afternoon. It also helped that I had asked Emma, our future helper to come and assist me for the weekend. I wanted to use the weekend as an opportunity for her and Boy Wonder to get to know each other and for me to see how she is and how she is with Boy Wonder.

After lunch Sachi, Boy Wonder, Emma and I went to the Fort Bazaar while Hubby and Carl went walking around Makati. I love bazaars. I didn't buy as much stuff as I had hoped, but it was nice looking at all the stuff and all that food! If I didn't have to take a flight on Monday and had more time, I would have bought a ton of food and enjoyed it at my leasure.

We went back to the hotel after the bazaar for a quick rest before dinner. Hubby walked in a short while later while Carl stumbled in after him. They had hunted down TGIFridays and had a few of their massive sized margaritas. It was obvious Carl underestimated the potency of their drinks and wasn't quite himself the rest of the evening. We walked to Gerry's Grill later to meet up with my other friends for dinner.

On our way to Gerry's Grill, which was about a 6 minute walk past Glorietta Mall, I felt a small tug on my backpack. I looked back and noticed a man quickly walk away and cross the street. I quickly looked at my backpack and saw that the zipper had been opened! Good thing I noticed the tug! It also bothered me abit that Sachi and Carl who were walking behind me didn't even notice the man trying to pick my bag. Oh well.

At least I really enjoyed dinner. I had all my all time favorites, especially Crispy Pata! If only we weren't staying in a hotel, I would have taken the left over bones home, heat them up later that night and pick at them. Hubby was brave enough to try the Sisig which came last. And boy did he ever regret that move! Tell you why later.

After dinner we went to Greenbelt for dessert. After my first group of friends left, my second group of friends showed up. We moved over to our hotel lobby for more food while Hubby, Boy Wonder, Carl and Sachi went up and to bed. It was the first time in a long time that I was able to stay up till late without Boy Wonder while Hubby was the one in bed with Boy Wonder. It was great! I was surprisingly full of energy and stayed up chatting with my friends till 2am.

The next day Hubby woke up with a fever and stomach issues. Although he felt sick, he still mustered the energy to do a quick shopping trip to buy a golf shirt and a pair of shoes before Steve picked him and Carl up for a game of golf. Hubby said he had golfed in much worse conditions so off he still went. While the boys were away at golf, Sachi and I met up with Germaine and did a whole afternoon of shopping! After that we went over to Ding's newly decked out apartment and had merienda.

After we got back to the hotel, I found hubby in bed even more sick! In order to give him some peace and quiet to rest, we left again and had a foot scrub and massage. We had to cancel dinner that night though. Poor hubby, he was running to the bathroom every few hours and had the chills. We called the hotel nurse who gave him some meds. Then we worried whether he would be well enough to travel the next day.

Our flight was at 650 am, so we were up at 4am to get ready. Good thing Hubby's fever subsided abit and the meds kept his diarrhea in check. We were able to fly back to HK that morning and not have the airport detect Hubby's fever.

All I can say after this whirlwind trip to Manila is no more 6am flights! And 2 days is just waaay too short! Although I got to pretty much see all my friends, I didn't get to pamper myself enough and shop enough. This trip also reminded me how I still miss Manila and would like to go back more often.

Oh, Hubby isn't 100% yet, but at least he's getting better. And on a selfish note, at least I get to see him more than if he had to go straight back to work.

1 comment:

Chris said...

Hmmm... "What is Manila like?"

Do Tawn and I get a guided tour, too? Of course, Sachi is Sam's favourite so maybe it isn't a tempting offer.