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    • Paul

      New Members: Click Here   03/09/2017

      Hello. If you are a new member, and feel a bit apprehensive about posting in the "open" forums, or, just wish to get your "sea legs" prior to posting in the open forums, feel free to post anything you wish to talk about, in the Newbies Forum. No one will bother you, or give you any sort of grief. Everyone there is happy to help you get answers to your questions.


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About profits101

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Cebu City
  • My Blood Type
  • Interests
    Art, history, filipinas

Philippines Experience

  • Philippines
    Current resident
  1. Days Hotel is a very likely choice if you need internet (lobby only) and want to be centrally located in town. They also offer a fee breakfast that is pretty good... The Ranch is another place, farther out of town, and a different style venue that you should read about... Beyond those, you are down to a more filipino tier of small places with less certainty of quality - in that way, Days Hotel is, I think, aware that they are often "the only game in town" and the prices are not bad, but probably not the bargain they should be... Still, I liked it when I was there and the view out to the water is nice, and proximity to the market is good for food and a sense of what the locals are doing...
  2. interesting to see a pic of the "damaged" container ship here.... http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2017/06/more_fishiness_in_the_ramming_of_uss_fitzgerald.html and also interesting to see an Arleigh Burke make a darn fine turn here... wow also, some good live footage of Fitzgerald and some other commentary here: http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/chinese-media-hopes-us-draws-lesson-sea-rules-after-destroyer-crash-killed-7-sailors-1626857
  3. Follow-up 5/25 "surrender passport" post - returned BIA JMall per stamped Official Receipt, May 30. - Arrive, sign-in 8:21am, room about 90% full, most seats taken. - sign-in, directed to Receiving window, umm empty for awhile, but then they take my Official Receipt, and the wave of hand we love... have a seat... - while standing, then waiting I can see the flow of Releasing pretty well... my observation is that 80%+ are passports being handed back with stamps, coz almost no one then moves to Cashier window, most heading out.... - by 8:41am I receive my stamped (Tourist Visa) passport, back to 59 days now... Yay. - my conclusion, a) I somewhat depended on the strenuous filipino bureaucracy to run through its process and that they would fulfil that, so I kept my Worry Meter on low during the 3 business days waiting.... b) I took a rough count of seats in that room.. really there must be about 50 +/- seats and then room for another 20+ standing, not to mention lingering outside... my last few visits, it's standing room only (although that's like 10am arrival... so, impacts to their workflow? Possible. Staff is like 1 person entering, 2 Cashier, 2 Receiving, 1 Releasing, and then the backroom...c) although I expected the worst and hoped for the best, I think next time I will seek out one of the satellite offices... I don't like the extra taxi fare, time waste, or even setting the Worry Meter one way or the other... frankly I'd rather go meander the boardwalk in Dumaguete for a day than sweat it out here again... - PS, yeah I was wrong about noting those who are carrying stacks of passports as "fixers", they have several "Anti-Fixer" signs/symbols haha... Exit Stage Left.
  4. I concur with what musicman666 says... my experience today renewing my tourist visa... they have posted a couple of notices stating that the renewals will take 3-4 days for Individual, and longer for Group (like 4-5, I didn't focus on that). I think the story is that particular office is impacted by volume. A few people were definitely caught off-guard about having to return 3 business days later and could be heard expressing their frustration to the representatives behind the window. So the procedure is now make the application (yup, still a very simple one sheet, basic info..), turn it in, get the bill, pay the bill, get the Receipt (that's the important thing), and then.... return 3 business days later to get your passport and stamp back. I don't think this has to do with any sketchy visa history, and not sure either if it is some kind of passive-aggressive protest on the part of BIA.... but, at least in this part of Cebu, that is definitely the deal at this point in time. FWIW... the last few times I have been in the office, compared with last year... it was packed... every seat taken, and long wait times just for simple things... you also get a lot of "fixers" in there that come out with stacks of passports - 7-8 at a time - and it's gone from what was pretty easy to somewhat long and tortuous over a pretty simple application... not to mention... it's conditioned by one fan and every so often someone bumps the wires out of the speaker on the floor that broadcasts the names to come up to the window... I don't love surrendering my passport like that, but it was the same deal for everybody... hanging onto the official Receipt is the mega-lifeline, omg....
  5. Good photo spread on jail conditions... http://www.businessinsider.com/philippines-jails-overcrowding-rodrigo-duterte-drug-war-2016-11/#welcome-to-hell-is-written-on-the-stairs-leading-to-jason-madarangs-cell-block-inside-quezon-city-jail-in-manila-philippines-october-19-2016-1
  6. surprised but not surprised... the flight I took CEB/LAX in late March (yup, older aircraft) was not even half full in the back... hey, great for sleeping, but how many of those can you fly and not be losing big time... The prince was super nice, I will say. And then... I was dropped out of Mabuhay Miles and the bar to climb back in was a lot higher than I thought... so I doubted I would be "availing" of PAL lounges much in the future... given some other mechanical history I got dinged on in the past, and now what I hear of Terminal 3 in Manila... my loyalty has evaporated. So it goes..
  7. the shark players on 2nd floor SM City are playing to 2100-2200 I think... and favour blitz... I have yet to barely lay a hand on them, and work hardest at keeping costs down and the understanding that I'm not playing them for money... ar at least not more than p50 ... there are a few scattered chess clubs in the city, and girls I know who went to more formal catholic schools are sometimes trained and excel in chess... not sure there is a natural aptitude for filipinos in chess, but I think when one has a lot of extra time on their hands... this works on their behalf.
  8. The Koreans skipped town... http://cebudailynews.inquirer.net/126124/bi-7-claims-not-aware-travel-restriction-vs-7-south-koreans
  9. My experience with this method, which I learned with the Chinese in Taiwan, is that - given the extended families located on other islands - I often never see those folks again haha... I'm shy on that method now.
  10. In terms of getting to the real "why," I think one element is the church... filipinos have been raised on the notion that the rich should give to the poor. After that, it is just semantics and how the transfer of money is established. As noted elsewhere here... without collateral, there really is no such thing as a loan - that word is just a breath of air twisted and turned in a certain way, but without a western implied moral underpinning. In children I am still surprised how neighbouring baranguy kids will walk along with me, ask for money, then when I say No, they just go about the play they were engaged in before I showed up - not a trace of rejection or reaction in their cute little smiles. In kids, it can almost be a muscle reflex, but then in adults, there is more calculation, but the same vacuum about contractual connection.
  11. Question: although I respect and understand the idea of "all this information about how to code is already out there, you just have to apply yourself," what's a good school in Cebu that provides a formalised education in this area? Recommendations?
  12. I've bought a chain saw and a table saw at the branch in Colon... both good experiences. When I got the table saw I qualified to avail of 50% discount on a phil grinder, so I bought that too... I needed one at 110v. They were good in demonstrating both tools and the price level brought in the manager and he was very good with questions and demonstration. I know both these types of tools very well, so it was easy to measure. I also picked up a couple star screwdrivers (I take apart laptops sometimes), but actually found, almost accidentally, an even better set at a Ace/SM City. Also, I've visited the Mandaue branch once, and would agree they are #1... but this one works for me and I'm closer to it... PS, the main store will also answer your emails if you send them one - at least that was my experience.
  13. Rush weighed in on Groundhog Day, ha:
  14. I'm an artist, so there you go... Going back, I grew up on a lot of land and spent much time in the woods where I entertained myself exploring, climbing trees, building things, playing... when it came to college i wanted to get as far from home as possible... which I did. During vacations I hitchhiked up and down the east coast... Spring Break in Florida and then turn around and head to Rhode Island... A couple of years after graduating I left for California... my family said I'd be back in a year... I never went back. I stayed practical and trained in architecture... and then somewhere in there I did art on the side until I was ultimately working 7 days a week for fifteen years... My wife laughed when I started into art, telling her I would be selling what I was making... later she fought for all that I had when she divorced me coz the work always sold. In architecture I ran through two passports going to Taiwan, Indonesia, Kuala Lumper, and Singapore... it woke me up as to how different life was outside the US. Circumstances had probably not jelled 100% but I was not going to be one of those "wishing and hoping" to not lead the life of quiet desperation so when things seemed to be in spitting distance, I quit "the regular job." In retrospect, I spent a lot of my life taking many of the forks the road offered... For me to wake up here each morning, it feels normal coz the other "normal" back there waiting for me would kill me... I'd rather be wandering in the woods... or in this case, the odd streets of Colon, islands, investigating the traces of the Spanish and American Colonialism, random baranguys, and somewhat mysterious filipinos haha.