Last Monday morning I was thinking about the rain we are getting here on the Island of Luzon. There have been a few dry days this month but not many of them. I was scheduled last Friday to meet some friends at the Sit-“N-Bull bar/restaurant for lunch and adult beverages. I was looking forward to Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes and Sweet Corn. It was a stormy day, but then we only hang around at places with a good roof.
That morning we had a brownout, so I fired up the old reliable Honda Generator and was burning gas providing power to the house. Because of my daughter Ymir Thea and our Grandson Jayden, it dawned on me that I had to stay at home as nether she nor the boy, knew how to work the Generator, or shut it off when and if the power was restored. So I had to phone and text my friends and explain why I could not make it. Oh well, they’ll be other times and since there is no shortage of San Miguel beer on Luzon I’ll survive.
So a few more brownouts over the weekend, and I stayed at home listening to the rain, and reading and napping quite a bit. So that Monday morning Mayang asked me if I was bored. I thought about it and replied; “No my love, this is just like being on a ship.” I saw the odd look come over her, and I explained that most people spend their whole working life coming and going from work to home, running out to the store shopping, or to grab a bite to eat. Whereas those, whose jobs were on ships, understand that out to sea we pretty much have to stay in our small self contained world for weeks at a time. I guess people in prison have that same type of restrictions on them also, but with the added benefit of that guy named Bubba to help them pass the time.
So it dawned on me, that staying home, and not having to drive out in that foul weather, on flooded mud packed roads wasn’t really that bad a thing. I keep our freezer full of the foods I like, and our other two refs’ are stocked the same. The beer ref, has only gone empty during parties, but was restocked right away, and I have a dozen bottles of various types of good Rum, plus a well stocked bar for those who don’t prefer Rum. Yes I’ve found those people do inhabit our world also, if you can believe that.
There are a myriad of other things that you can do at home on a cool rainy day, that pass away the time in a most pleasant manner. I’ll refrain from going into details, and let your imagination figure out what I’m talking about.
The satellite Dream TV system goes on and off during the rain, but I’m not that much of a TV person, again I refer back to Living on those ships. But I keep a supply of thirty books unread in the house at all times, and a book is one of my clandestine pleasures. I have stockpiled 700 Kindle books on my “Puter” but have not bought a Kindle yet, my friend Tommy, is still out there sailing, and will pick one up for me and bring it back next time he’s home. So that’s a future thing I look forward to.
My advice to those contemplating moving to the Philippines, and residing on the Island of Luzon, keep in mind the limitations that the monsoon presents, learn to embrace it, or at the very least accept it as a way of life.. The rain will come, and Typhoon’s will blow, but our greatest blessing is, it will never snow!
I was watching the local NEWS and of course Manila has flooded again, why its news anymore I’m at a loss to figure out. The formula is simple; Manila plus Rain, equals flooding. It makes me wonder, Manila is over 500 years old, during those 500 years the Rainy Season shows up like clockwork every May. I would have thought that by now someone would have come up with a solution by now?
But then I remembered a Pinoy named Elmer that I sailed with on one of the Merchant Ship’s. Elmer was telling me that for the last 7 years his house in the Santa Rita section of Olongapo City has flooded out every year during the Rainy season. I suggested that he sell the house and move to higher ground. He stated that he couldn’t do that, as he was only renting. Now I understand Manila.
My niece Shay-shay has had two days off from school this week due to flooding at her school in Olongapo. On the weekends she is a regular at our house and now we get to see her during the week. If she moved into a spare bedroom I’d be happy, as she is more than welcome to be here with us.
I know I’ll get comments from Kano’s that live on Mindanao who will brag that they don’t have a rainy season down there blah, blah, blah. But I had seen plenty of flooding from there too, so what’s the difference.
The kids will be out today splashing in every puddle in the street, my roof is strong and it’s dry inside, so let it rain, let it rain, let it rain.
Paul Thompson; Resides in the Philippines, close to Subic Bay. He is married to the wonderful girl named Maria (AKA Mayang). Our to daughters are both grown up and have left the nest, the eldest married to a wonderful guy named Chris, and they have blessed us with our granddaughter Heather Colleen (AKA Ling-ling). Our youngest is living in Singapore, enjoying her life's adventure. I'm a retired Senior Chief from the U.S. Navy after 21 years. Post Navy he lived 7 years in Puerto Rico as a Night Club owner. After Hurricane Hugo told him to find a new line of work, he was hired by Military Sealift Command and went back to sea in Asia as a Merchant Seaman for 10 years. Then after 30 years at sea he buried his anchor in the Philippines residing now in Dinalupihan (or DinBat for short), Roosevelt Bataan where he build his home. And last but not least, anything he writes will be pure "Tongue in Cheek" if anybody is offended, He'll lose no sleep over it, but here's a quick Mea Culpa in advance!