Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Philippines Day 1 - Toledo

I kept a very detailed journal of our trip so I'm just going to hit the highlights of each day here on our blog.

Our first day we flew into Cebu, through Hong Kong. Here was my first view of the Islands. There are over 7000 of them! All of the Islands we went too were completely surrounded by coral and reefs.

I was sick and my poor ears were so plugged up and hurt so bad coming in. I don't think I could hear for a couple of days! After we cleared customs we hopped in a taxi over to the V-hire. John got to test his Visayan out for the first time. I thought he spoke Cebuano, which he does, but everyone there calls it Visayan. It is a dialect spoke in the Central Visayas Area of the Philippines which is basically 2 1/2 major islands and a few tiny ones. 

The V-hire is where you rent a seat in a type of mini-van. Because we had so much stuff and wanted to be comfortable we paid for a third seat. They cram people into every type of transportation beyond what it would naturally hold :) They also wait until every seat is full so you don't leave until there are enough people to make the trip.

The road over to Toledo was through the mountains. As we came in I took a picture of how the roads wind through the mountains. I have a stomach of steel and never get carsick but I was sick A LOT on these roads. They are crazy drivers! They just wind in and out on the wrong side of the road. cRaZy!!!!

We arrived in Toledo and grabbed a trike (a bike with a big sidecar attached)

 On my first motorcycle trike ride I couldn't believe that he was blasting Air Supply so I took a little video. It gives you a look at what the city looks like.

We didn't know where we were going to be staying so we just asked for a Hotel and he took us to the Travelers Inn. We paid $20 for our room. Not bad!

We had to push the beds together, not that it mattered...John ended up on my bed. He is a cuddler at night! It was nice to have AC! It was HOT. I knew it would be hot but I didn't know I could feel so hot! We were there in their summer months so it was the hottest it could have been! We lucked out for the first few days with a little drizzling and some clouds which really helped!

Typical bathroom. The shower is open to the whole bathroom. This hotel actually had a shower curtain which was nice since the rest of the time we just sprayed the whole bathroom. I actually think I like this concept. The floor and toilet get all rinsed off during your shower! I might redo the boys bathroom with this design. All of the bathrooms had a bucket in there too - but I stuck to my cold showers.

We dropped our stuff off and took off to find people. John didn't recognize anything. I can see why. Most of the homes and buildings are not super permanent. He had a trike driver take us to an area he use to know some people in and then we just started asking if anyone knew any "Mormons." They told us there was a Mormon named Ramile down the dirt road we were on. Its so beautiful!

We finally found the house and there was a man and woman sleeping outside in their gazebo. John had to say "Ayo Ayo" a few times but they finally woke up. The man was acting really strange at first. John actually thought he was drunk because he kept apologizing. He recognized John and called him Elder Henderson. John was kind of perplexed but didn't recognize him so he started asking about other members he use to know. Then Ramile told John, you introduced me to the gospel with Elder Herrick. That got Johns attention because that was his companion in this area.

Turns out that John and Elder Herrick met Ramile and started teaching him. Before they got very far both of them were transferred out. The next Elders followed up and he ended up being baptized and going on a mission. It was a sweet reunion and just an amazing tender mercy from the Lord to find him.  Poor Ramile was acting so strange at first because he thought he was dreaming!

It was also very helpful to find him because he took us around to a lot of the members homes.

Ramile is in the pink shirt

We got pretty tired at about 6:30 so we grabbed some Lechon Manok for dinner.

Its the most delicious rotisserie chicken. They stuff the middle with banana leaves and season it up. We ate it with rice and calamansi (little lime looking fruit that actually tastes more like an orange). It was so good! I loved this sign we saw later:

The bottom of the sign says, "once tasted, forever wanted." Very true!

Then we were out! We were so tired!

1 comment:

Pam from Over the Big Moon said...

All I can say is WOW! Looks like such a fun trip... can't wait to see the rest of the days!