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Makati and Puerto Galera

PHILIPPINES | Thursday, 19 June 2014 | Views [443]

Diving in Sabang

Diving in Sabang

Wayne- Has been a very interesting few days and I'll start with Makti. It's a suburb of Manila and the approx population for the Greater Manila is about 11.5 mm people. Stayed at a great hotel called St Giles and rooms were very nice with a great view on the 24th floor. Had our first ride in a Jeepney which is a converted American Army jeep from the war. They are somewhat souped up and many are reupholstered and chromed out- we will upload some pictures later this week on Facebook because so far the computers we have used do not have a port for uploading anything. Anyway, the jeepenys hold about 20 people with 10 per side, slats for windows and no AC. A 20 minute ride can make you swaet off 10 lbs so I am going to drink more beer to ensure I do not blow away. We then just off at a randon stop in the middle of thye city ans walked around for 2 hours which allowed us to lose 2 more pounds of fluids...we all know what that means...more food and beer for balance. We then went back to hotel, swam on the rooftop pool and gained the weight back. Later that evening we went to the hotel called the Shangrila which was the most spectular place I have ever been allowed to hang out in. We went to a bar called for Sage which had a fantastic band with 3 girls. We danced and Kirsten ended up on stage dancing with the band, fortunately I was there to keep her from signing a contract with them. It was a great night! 

On to our travel the next day to Puerto Galera....got a taxi to the bus terminal which was putting our lives in our hands. Any Filipino could drive in Canada but I would never attempt to drive here. They seem to know what they are doing, horns are constantly blowing but amazingly not one finger or voice is ever raised. Someone would be dead if what happened on their roads happened on ours in Canada!  We jumped out of the cab and figured out which bus took us to the Batangas which is where the boat for PG leaves from. The buses have a time to leave but don't follow it, they leave when they are full only. Two hours later we arrived at our destination and when trhe bus doors opened we were quickly attacked by about 8 kids who supposed help you get your ticket.....for a fee. Anyway, got through that and got on the boat which was due to leave at 330. Guess what...that;s right...it only leaves when it is full. However, right away five young guys disappeared below decks and used a 1-1/2 inch rope to turn over the diesel engine. 45 minutes later we were full to the brim on diesel fumes and started our 1 hour journey to PG. It was very rough but thanks to Gravol we made it ok, another Japanese tourist was not so lucky. 





Today’s diving was amazing. I saw some of the fishes I’ve seen in Latin America, but they are HUGE here! I saw so many batfish (they look kind of like angelfish, google them) that were a foot and a half long  scooting by me without paying a bit of attention. The dive instructor made a little motion with his hands that attracted a bunch of fishes, so I started doing the same. I was surrounded by hundreds of fish on every side. I looked up, and it was like floating in a dream. Thousands of angelfish and others floated above me like butterflies. The coral below me, especially a few small fishing-boat-wrecks containing dense coral gardens, were swarmed with all kinds of creatures imaginable, and many not imaginable! Little shrimp walked by whose bodies were completely see-through except for some red stripes. A baby turtle’s head was just visible poking out of a crevice. Today I did a drift dive, where we hopped into the water and just floated with the current beneath the surface. It’s neat because you hardly expend any effort and can float along, exploring the corals and wildlife. I also did a navigator dive, after I learned how to use natural landmarks and a compass to find my way around and remember how to get back to the boat…that’s one step closer to becoming a dive instructor! Should I ever pursue that…

Tomorrow I have a wreck dive and a night dive, and I’m hoping to god I don’t get an ear infection from being in the water because the day after is my final dive, the deepest one I’ve done. Then my advanced certification is complete! Looking forward to seeing what comes :) Dad will post about his first diving experience tomorrow or the day after when he has time!


First impression of Sabang: Beautiful! Our rooms are about 15 feet from the ocean, across a narrow sandy beach, so we go to sleep and wake up to the sounds of the ocean waves crashing right outside our windows. There's definite character here, with many older white guys chatting up younger Filipino girls in the bars and on the street, but whatever's going on is nothing I can put a stop to by judging the situation, so who knows! The food has been good and the diving is unreal, so that's good enough for me!




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