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Showing posts from September, 2007

Christmas in September?

Apparently, living in Manila is going to provide plenty of material for me to write about. Here goes:

We have been provided several books to help us adapt to life in the Philippines. Something we read was very beneficial for us yesterday. We went to SM which is a department store, furniture store, grocery store, and several restaurants all in one. Danae had to use the bathroom and guess what? There was no toilet tissue. No, they didn't run out. They don't put tissue in the bathrooms at all. No empty tissue holder or anything. Because I read about that, I had a little tissue stowed in my bag to use.

In the grocery store, the most overwhelming shock was the stench. The entire back of the store is basically a butcher shop. Surprisingly, there were no flies or anything. But, the smell was gross. Danae held her nose while we looked around in there. I wasn't bold enough to purchase any meat yet. One day, maybe. Or, we'll just become vegetarians while we're here.

In the clot…

Manila

We have survived our first 24 hours in Manila. I don't have much to tell though because we slept a lot of it away. We ate breakfast in our hotel and it was pretty good. We ate dinner at Outback Steakhouse. Yeah, we needed a little American food before we experiment on our digestive systems. Everyone is wide awake right now and it's after midnight here. Of course it's midday in the US. We stick out here like a sore thumb and everyone stares at us as we pass them. Tomorrow we're going exploring in this area. Just downstairs is a shopping mall and a lot of restaurants. It seems that a lot is within walking distance so the location is nice. We're in a 2 bedroom apartment in the Ascott Makati and it's really nice. These people here are serious about their customer service.

I'll write more when I have more to tell. I'm going to try to go to sleep for a bit.

Later...

Almost There

At this moment, we're sitting in the Narita airport in Tokyo, Japan. We are dead tired because we didn't sleep much on the flight here. We left Houston at 10:50 am on Thursday and arrived in Tokyo at 2:15 pm on Friday. But, it was about 12:15 am in Houston so right when we got tired on the plane it was time to land. Now we're sitting in an unfamiliar place fighting sleep until our flight to Manila at 7:15 pm or something like that.

I feel like I'm in a dream. Surely I'm not really in Japan. Although, all the signs written in Japanese and the people walking around speaking Japanese keeps reminding me that I am. I've seen 2 black people so far. I know that's not really news but it was still something noticeable.

What else? Oh, we went to the bathroom. And, of course, they have the whole in the ground toilets. But they also have regular toilets too. The funny thing here is that they have 4 controls on the toilet. 1) music to play while you're doing the do 2)…

Oh My Goodness...We're Moving

For real, y'all...

I knew we were moving. Didn't come as much of a surprise. I mean, I had to get gazillion shots (actually 6, I think). We've all gotten complete physicals, passports, made living arrangements, and everything else that goes along with a move. But today, as the movers are here packing up our stuff, it's finally real. We're moving to the other side of the world.........Manila.

In our expatriate orientation classes last week we learned what to expect, about culture differences, how to act and dress, about safety issues, and most importantly about the profile of adaptation. This was most beneficial as I realized there is a name for the highs and lows of moving to another place, another culture, a new set of friends.

When I left home for college, I don't remember feeling sad or anything. Maybe it's because I was only a 2 1/2 hour drive away. The only thing that bothered me was that my family just dropped me off and left. Didn't even take me out…

Viva Las Vegas...The Recap

Las Vegas was great! We stayed with Dwayne's aunt and uncle. They live about 10 minutes away from the strip which was perfect. Dwayne's dad also came out so we were able to leave the kids and enjoy time alone. Here's what we did:

Sunday - arrived in Vegas around 10 pm.
Monday - went to Silverton Casino. They have a small aquarium and Danae got to see them feed the stingrays and sharks. We also rode down the Strip and past Fremont Street. Also went to the Fashion Show Mall. Dwayne's dad arrived Monday evening.
Tuesday - went to Mandalay Bay and enjoyed their aquarium. It was very, very nice. We saw all kinds of animals...except the turtles because they were removed for their feeding. The kids had a blast! We ate at Green Valley Ranch Casino. Dwayne and I watch "Hell's Kitchen". This year's winner, Rock, got a job there. But, we went to the wrong side and his dad really wanted to eat at the buffet instead. Plus, the buffet was cheaper and you get more food…