No Pirates Allowed

DSC00014Shopping in Robinsons Place was not a feat one could accomplish in half a day so we went back. After quickly changing my runners I no longer had to pain my feet with the slightly too small flip-flops (bought on the Superferry for half a €). My feet really appreciated proper shoes, and I was now kitted for a good old day of shop ‘til you drop.

We had a deluxe breakfast at a bakery since the hotel had failed to understand how to boil eggs properly. I just had to ask what the sign depicted above meant and got the obvious answer – “no pirates”. As we browsed the stores in a more ordered manner this time (or so we thought) we tried to understand how the passages and floors connected but it was easier said and done. After making the mistake of postponing a purchase and consequently spending half an hour or more on finding the store again I started to make small direction notes on my cellphone.

The daily massage was replaced by buying a head/hair massage-thingy – I guess most people had had a vendor in some city try to sell the thing to them – small metallic arms that scratch/massage your head really nice. In Manilla it went for 1.5€ which was affordable by all means. If you shop around here we can recommend the cuisine at Sushi-ya, second floor Padre Fauna wing, which had really nice bento boxes. We went home earlier than yesterday and finished our consumer day by watching the last four episodes of Elfen Lied. Purchase of the day was a retro bag for yours truly, not that I need one but it looked really nice and I swear I could hear it whispering my name.

Superferry living and arriving in Manilla

IMG_0554Waking up, realizing that the air-con we adjusted yesterday was actually the the volume for music and announcements. Slacking, eating a nice breakfast and scouting the other decks. Back and blog/read. Lunch – also nice. Swedish pair of guys with Philippine girl mysteriously ignorant and rude. Rather nice way of travel, just slacking. Bob Marley dominating as music.

After arriving in Manilla bay and pushing through the crowd of taxi drivers kindly and repeatedly offering their services we took a honest-looking taxi and headed off to our reserved hotel, Paco Park Hotel. We checked in after checking the room, or apartment would be a better description of the accommodation. It was very nice with sofas, hallways and a spacious bathroom. Mind that this was cheaper (less than 40€) than in El Nido and only slightly more expensive than our stay in Coron. Service leaves some to be desired though, but we have gotten used to that here I guess.

No rest for the wicked however, it was time for shopping! We headed off to Robinsons Place, a nice mall although big enough to get lost in. If found a new pair of runners, clever as I am I had taken a photo of the shoe so I could easily get the newest version of same model. I had not jotted down my size though and of course was in between two sizes.

Electronics was unfortunately still expensive but I found a nice light jacket, always good to gear up for summer when Sweden will have winter for at least four more months. Mirsada didn’t find anything despite thorough searching, it seems that we have slightly different approaches to how we shop. I move past most things but if I find something I like, I usually decide within seconds whether I’ll buy it or not. Mirsada seems not to adhere to that school of consumption.

The massage for the day was dedicated to our feet, an hour of foot massage felt really nice. To finish the day I was going for “the baconator” at Wendys (hamburger chain) but they couldn’t do one as they were closing. Bah. We had some less impressive burgers but this didn’t satisfy our hunger so we got a nice pair of salmon sandwiches at Kenny Rogers Roasters before heading back to the hotel. Well home I of course saw that I had chosen the wrong size for the runners, sometimes 50% chance isn’t enough.

Wreck Diving and leaving for Manilla

IMG_0544As the alarm woke Mirsada up (I could have slept through a civil war) we had breakfast, checked out and headed towards Sea Dive for another day of wreck diving. It was nice weather and the hour out to the dive site was pleasantly spent slacking on the deck.

The first dive was Kogyo Maru, another 2nd World War ship which had housed fortification machines and material such as cement bags, steel wires and a crane. The visibility was nice for a wreck, perhaps 8 meters and in addition we saw Lion-fish and the little silt there was didn’t stir up the water so one could really see with the help of the flashlights. Nice one!

The second one, Tangat Wreck was slightly shallower which allowed longer bottom time. The visibility was worse though and there were some currents so it was an okay dive but not as good as the first one. There was no third dive so we headed back to Sea Dive rather early where we had dinner. We suddenly had more time on our hands than planned but realized that they had the best fresh mango juices so far so we did some reading and blogging. IMG_0545Rather hard to capture on photo, but there is this time around half past four till five when the sun really fills the café with a warm glowing light which is just amazing; usually this is followed by the common but still beautiful sunset…

We were to check in for the Superferry four (!) hours before departure so headed there, curious whether it would depart on time. The staff there assured us that as long as we were back an hour ahead of scheduled departure it was safe, so we went back and had another nice detoxing massage at SPA Paradise. Afterwards I decided not to walk barefoot with my newly cleaned and massaged feet so I changed into my running shoes. Or at least I tried to, I could only find one of them in my bag.

Loosing your shoes once is a nuisance, especially if they’re stolen. Two times is a irritating coincidence. Three times is a conspiracy. Out of three pair shoes I brought from Sweden I was now down to a single right running shoe. This wasn’t bad luck. You know that creature that usually lives in your washing machine and steals socks? Well I think that someone let it loose after pumping it up with steroids, and now it’s got an appetite for shoes. One day it’s gonna be your shoes disappearing first seemingly by accident until you’re out of shoes and only too late realize the awful truth.

But I digress, after some delay we got on the Superferry which actually turned out to be the size of a proper ferry. They had rather tight security with loads of paperwork, bag-searching and picture taking. Most of the hassle was to make trafficking harder although the military armed with assault rifles I think was more related to Philippines Muslim/Christian conflict. Well aboard we had a nice little cabin of our own with queen-size bed and private bathroom. We were quite tired after a long day and fell quickly asleep.