Mark's face MARK


P1 P2 P3 P4 P5 P6

This was our itinerary

Thurs 16- Airplane trip from Philadelphia to Chicago
Fri 17- Airplane trip from Hong Kong to Manila
Sat 18- We arrived in Manila Airport and headed for the "Elder Johnson's" house (the person was the mother-in-law of Auntie Eleanor)
Sun 19- We headed for Eleanor's house, and on the way we went to that traditional Filipino restaurant (I didn't get the name)
Mon 20- Still in Bagbag. I donít think we did anything today.
Tues 21- Went to San Fernando. First to a Chow King, but we left pretty quickly (we didn't try anything there). The main plan was to go to an internet cafe to talk to dad.
Wed 22- Bauang, internet cafe
Thurs 23- San Fernando, internet cafe
Fri 24- Nowhere
Sat 25- Baguio City. I forgot what we did here.
Sun 26- Went to Bagbag beach, and then to a relatives' house. Went to Baguio to go to an Internet Cafe again.
Mon 27- Nothing. This was a national holiday, so we didnít go out.
Tues 28- Back to Manila
Wed 29- Did some sightseeing around Manila.
Thurs 30- Went to Fort Santiago, then Science-Children's Museum, Manila Bay, and SM Mall of Asia. We didn't get to see Luneta Park because there wasnít enough time to do anything else.
Fri 31- Went back home.
??? - SM North Edsa. We bought some souvenirs and clothes

These are my impressions while there

Some of my initial feelings were that the Philippines was huge, tropical (it rained almost every day we were there, and it was also very humid), and financially poor. We saw little children out on the streets and doing jobs like selling food. I'm not trying to downgrade this as an issue, but it is how the families are doing financially because it wasn't just children out on the streets; whole families were doing it too. I don't want to say the government is corrupt because I have no idea if that is true, but I guess there are some issues with it because the country is so poor. They had different vehicles, like jeepneys and tricycles (motorized vehicles, probably not the thing you are thinking of) and drivers would often overtake others on the road. Living standards were kind of poor in houses. Health is OK, but I think you have to travel a great distance to get treatment, depending on where you live. Education, as far as I know is pretty good, but we didn't go to a school there so I can't say more about it. I don't know if there is an abnormally high crime rate, but in the neighborhood we were staying at there was graffiti all over the walls of some houses. =O Media is localized to the country (obviously), so you would hear songs you know only in Tagalog, which is the national language. The TV stations are mostly in tagalog, but you do see some shows in english. I think most of the population uses computers/the internet, but it is so slowwwww. We had to go to internet cafes so often because we couldn't send emails without interrupting our relatives who were using the computer and because when we did, it didn't connect. Overall though, I definitely think that going to the Philippines was a great experience.

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