I originally attempted to post something to my blog – but I just didn’t have anything to say. Now I know why. There was a change a comin’ and I needed to be handed that piece of info (directly from God, I might add) before I could sit down and actually have something worthwhile to say. What change? – might you ask. Is it good? Is it bad? Pray tell – what could make you resort to such antiquated terms as “pray tell”?
As you can see, I’m in a good mood. There’s a very good reason for this. I could prattle on for decades, but I’ll try to keep things succinct. Here’s the deal regarding my experience, so far, in the Philippines. I’ll try to directly relate it to the places I have lived in since I arrive on June 5th, 2008. Here we go:
- Home #1 – The ironically named “Greenwoods Executive Village – Phase IV – a small, one bedroom, two story apartment with plumbing that was damaged by construction next door. As a result, the bottom floor flooded and I slipped coming off the stairs, in the poor lighting, (while getting ready for work) and broke my leg. And trust me, you don’t want to break your leg in a Third World Country. Prior to that, I worked in three call centers for about 18,000 pesos a month (minus taxes, etc.). Transportation was just short of horrendous (and expensive to boot). Rent was 5,000 pesos a month.
- Home #2 – Still in Greenwoods, Phase IV – but a larger home with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms (no actual “bath” – just the standard cold shower). This was when the flood hit (from Typhoon Ondoy). After being rescued by the Philippine military, we spent about a month with relatives in Kapasigan (This included my encounter with the flying cockroaches – don’t ask). We came back once the flood waters receded but I couldn’t work at the call center anymore since I had surgery on my leg. However, this was when I discovered oDesk and I could make more with my writing than at a call center. Much more. At this point, the roof was coming apart and it rained inside the cooking area of the house. Rent = 11,000 pesos. Time to leave.
- Home #3 – Greenwoods, Phase VI. A much nicer sub-division where attorneys, bank executives, basketball players and actors live. Nice looking house with 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. Too bad there’s all this construction going on – so it’s noisy. Plus, the water pressure is not good during the day. I could go on. Not to mention the fact that we are still living in Pasig City (Metro Manila). A “less than clean”, third world country-type city. Polluted with no exhaust limitations on the vehicles. But I’m now working at home on oDesk for about 16,000 – 21,000 pesos per week. This is the equivalent of what two neuro-surgeons make together (seriously – I checked). Rent is considered cheap for my place at 15,000 pesos per month. Add in the cable TV and broadband Internet connection, maid, etc. Not too shabby, but still…
- Now for the GOOD stuff. Home #4 coming up on April 10th – 11th. The place that I have always wanted to live (you’ll see why, later). I will go into this, in detail, in my next post. But to give you a clue – this is SO nice that it actually brought tears to my eyes as I looked around. Finally- Peace.