The Bataan Y2K Zone Part 1

As I mentioned last week in “It’s A Small World” (See, you should have read it.) while Visiting with my new friend I noticed ha had Globe Broadband at his house less than a mile from me.

After my head cleared after the previous days imbibing of those cute little brown bottles of world renown SMB’s, I fired up the Mighty New/Old Honda and beat a path to the Globe Telecommunications Building, okay, the truth be known it’s really just a store front. I was there to find answers to that burning question; “Hey, why does CJ (My new buddy) have Globe Broadband and your favorite customer, Paul, has not?”

Flowers from WowPhilippines
Globe Tattoo
Globe Tattoo

Sir Paul, (And yes her hand did scratch her head, a look of shock appeared on her face and both shoulders rose in the world famous Philippine shrug.) We will send a technician to your house right now, and could you give him a ride and Jeepney fare back to town? I responded; Yes, and said; “I will.”

The Honda treks up the mountain once more, arriving at my house and the highly trained technician opens his back pack and waves around this do thingy trying to find a signal. But to no avail, I smile and point to my second roof where the Dream Satellite Dishes are and said; “Son, let’s climb up there.” Low and behold there was no signal, thinking there is a master plan to keep me from having broadband I ask if I could check, I explained that I fully trusted him, but I was taller. Checking that the do thingy was on I waved it like a madman and alas there was not even a trickle of a signal. I swore to all that was holy and not so holy, that there was in fact a Y2K bug and I was the only person on earth to be affected by it.

Tattoo Super Stick
Tattoo Super Stick

Why can I go online using my Nokia 3g Cell Phone and nothing else can be done? Yes it gets me online, but it is SLOOOOOOW! So slow that if I want to open a U-Tube on face book, I’ll see it 25 minutes later. So I don’t bother to open them.

Then later in the month my Nokia phone rang, it was the nice lady from Globe Telecommunications who had not forgot my look of rejection when I was told; “No broadband for you!” “SIR Paul, (I can hear the excitement in her voice) I am going to solve your internet connection problem.” She stated!

“Young lady it’s not nice to fool old people.” I joked back to her. Then she explained to me about the Globe TATOO SUPERSTICK! What, another Dongle (See Bob I remembered you taught me that word) Yes a Dongle, she was surprised that the old Kano even knew the word. The following is the information she gave me. P1, 299 per month, with Speed up to 3mbps in 3g areas (Hey that’s me I have 3g!) With Wi-Fi up to 100 meters plus a free Super Stick (Dongle) on a 2 year contract
Oy Vey! Had my prayers been answered? Could this possibly be true? Or is this another trick that fate is pulling on me, to pay me back for my many past transgressions?

That was 5 August 2011, and at 9:00 hours, I will be at the Globe Telecommunications Store Front Building to partake of this wonderful offer. Since I’ve been living here a couple of decades, I will still view this deal with guarded optimization Oh ye of little faith, Paul! It’s not that, it’s all the past bite marks on my butt!

I’m on my way home with my new found treasure, my wife Mayang is driving as I refuse to put my Dongle down. (Wow; that did sound a bit odd!) Buyer’s remorse is welling up within me, questions like; what if it doesn’t work, and I’m locked into a two year contract? I’ve been using my cell phone for years to go online, is it really that bad? Then there’s my cockeyed optimistic belief that all things will work themselves out, in the end, so damn the buyer’s remorse!

I’m home, but I must wait 24 hours for the system to activate. What in the name of heaven will I do for the next 24 very long hours, why that’s a full day! Okay I’ll do something I’ve never done before; I’ll read the instruction manual right from the box, vice searching through the trash for it latter.

Remember America, I gave you the Internet and I can take it away.
Remember America, I gave you the Internet and I can take it away.

It was an easy read, and I stepped back from it thinking, I have no idea what the hell it said. The next day, the waiting is over, I plugged it in to the computer, just knowing that lights would light up, bell would sound and a prompt would appear and guide me to internet paradise. Nada, nothing, zilch, zippo it sat there and taunted me. “Why?” I cried out to Al Gore; “Do you treat me this way, what have I done to offend you?” Okay I never voted for you, but I do restrict the number of Ice Cubes I use in cocktails, doing my part for global warming!

My wonderful wife Mayang hearing my painful moan came to me and she found that the Tattoo Super Stick had to have the battery charged prior to usage. How was I to know that Globe Telecommunications would knowingly send me home with a dead battery? All the manual explained, was, how to charge the battery, not that I’d better do it now! One slow battery charging hour later, I recommence installing my new toy, screens pop up, I do accept, I will continue. But there it is, lurking, hiding in that maze of screens, the one part that is not covered in their manual. But we all knew that was going to happen. Okay, I’ve been without this fancy dancy stuff since 1999 when we moved to the mountain, so what’s another day?

It’s an eternity that’s what it is. But the ref is full of ice cold SMB’s and they will help me pass the time, until help arrived the following day. I’m never too proud to ask for help!

It is now the following day, a rainy Sunday morning; birds are chirping that old sun is trying to poke through those dark clouds with little success, and I’m still waiting. Who will it be? Will it be Marlon the Magnificent my long standing “Puter Guy”? Or my eldest daughter Yohanna May Sanguyo of “The Farm” fame who might be springing forth to aid her dear Daddy?

Stay tuned for part 2 next week; oh it does get better, or worst depending on one’s point of view.

Post Author: Paul Thompson (314 Posts)

Paul Thompson; has resided in the Philippines since 1993, living close to Subic Bay. I’m married to a wonderful girl named Maria (AKA Mayang).Who is from Gordon Heights in Olongapo where she grew up with her Mom & Dad and seven siblings Our two 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 Our youngest daughter and her husband Cecil have blessed us with a grandson named. Jayden Logan. I’m a retired U.S. NAVY Senior Chief after 22 years of active duty. After retirement from the Navy I lived for 7 years in Puerto Rico as a Night Club owner. Then Hurricane Hugo told me to find a new line of work, I was hired by Military Sealift Command and went back to sea in Asia as a Merchant Seaman for 10 years. After 30 plus years at sea I buried my anchor on a mountain in the Philippines and am now residing in Dinalupihan (or DinBat for short), Roosevelt, Bataan where we built our home. And last but not least, anything I writes will be pure "Tongue in Cheek "If anybody is offended, I'll lose no sleep over it, but here's a quick Mea Culpa in advance!

How to Move to the Philippines Manual


  1. chasdv says

    I nearly fell off my chair laughing, keep on drinking them SMBs, they nourish your humour.

    “Could you give the technician a ride to your house, and Jeepney fare back to town”, now thats a Classic, only in the Philippines,Lol.

    • Paul Thompson says

      It’s those SMB’s that cause me to fall out of my chair, hammock, bar stool, oh you get the point! (lol) Stay tuned for next week, it gets funnier!

  2. Larry Saum says

    Hi Paul
    After reading several articles here on LIP about internet access difficulties, I didn’t quite know what to expect on my trip this year. I bought me a laptop in the US at the Best Buy store and came to the PI, with it at the ready. I got to my brother-in-law’s house in Manila, and Low and Behold he has Globe WiFi in his house, because he has two resident college students and a high school student. They pass around a netbook computer and share the access. When they are not on the computer they are texting on their cell phones.

    Now I am in Gamu, Isabela, and low and behold; my wife’s niece comes up with her Tattoo stick and lets me use it. All I have to do is buy prepaid loads for up to 5 days at a time for 300 peso’s a load. And it works, right here at the family home in Gamu. I think the 21st century is getting to the PI. I hope your luck picks up Paul.

    At the end of the month, I’ll be winging back to the USA, and be taking care of my grandkids in Indianapolis again. I think I will be turning this laptop over to the college kids in Manila so they can use it in their studies. I have two desktop tower computers at home anyhow.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Hi Larry;
      Ir sure was a pleasure to meet you and you’re wife a couple of weeks ago, I had a great day. That is a nice jester to leave the computer with the students, and I know they’ll enjoy that to the max. Have a safe trip home and hope to see you again on your next trip.

      • Larry Saum says

        I hope you can get a good high speed connection at home Paul. Here I am in my air conditioned bedroom, in Gamu, as I write this with some Martin Denny music videos playing on one tab of my browser, this window showing LIP and another tab has the report on the weather in Indianapolis. I think I’m a bit spoiled.

        Today in Gamu is the fiesta for St Rose of Lima De Gamu parish. I attended the 8:30 mass with my wife and some of her other family members. She tells me there are lots of people in the other house sharing a feast there that was prepared over the last several days. She is loving and enjoying her time here with her family. Every once in awhile I come out of my air conditioned hide away and socialize some. No SMB here for me though because I’m not supposed to drink, because of the meds I take. I gladly broke the rules for our visit in Subic though, Paul. I think I’m allowed to break a rule now and then at age 68. I also did that one other evening when my brother-in-law brought out some local brandy and I just had to have some.

        I failed to mention that the niece who provided the Tattoo stick for me is a nice 24-year old girl who just graduated from a Cauayan college with a degree in Psychology. She is now looking for employment. Her brother just finished an IT degree. The two college students in Manila, one is studying hotel and restaurant management, and the other is in architecture. He was drooling over my 15.6 inch screen laptop.

        Of course all the young people here are dreaming of coming to America, and I have to tell them that now is not a good time to do that. They still have lots of curiosity, and I tell them about the need to drive, read maps, have a car, and keep a good credit record. Their lack of geographic education is surprising to me with them at the college level. I introduced them to Mapquest, and showed them some of the financial web-sites I use, including my on-line banking that allows me to monitor the automatic bill-paying going on from my bank in the US while I am here.

        I think my wife is about to call me out again, so I’ve probably written enough to bore you all for now. I don’t have the gift of humorous writing that Paul has. I’m still torn about the choice of retiring here in the PI, in about 3 years, or not. Ive got growing families in both places. Of course the cutest is my 2-year old grandaughter that loves to cuddle up in Papa’s lap, when I’m in Indy. Her mother tells us she is constantly asking where papa and lola are. Our probable long-term answer will put us half-time in both places.

        • Paul Thompson says

          Split the difference is a great way to do it and get away from the winter back home. Snowbirds is what we called them in Florida. But the best to you in whatever you decide. And hope to see you both on your next trip!

  3. Larry Saum says

    Hi again Paul;
    I hope you got the Globe Broadband software installed on your computer. My niece here did it for me.

  4. Joe says

    Paul, your writing really gives me a belly ache. You remind me of a journalist/comedian from Atlanta, Georgia. I think his name was Lewis Grizzard (SP?). Hope your pooter is up and humming soon. Joe

    • Paul Thompson says

      So I turn your stomach, is that what you’re saying? (lol I know what you mean!)
      I went to school at the Navy Supply Corps School in Athens GA, but never made it to Atlanta. “How bout them Dogs?”
      Part two will sum up my forelonging Puter tale. But playing with my Dongle is fast becoming habit forming, I hope I don’t go blind looking at the puter screen!

  5. Mike says

    Cut the blue wire, Paul, not the red wire, the blue wire! No, there’s no way you can do this with your dongle in your hand. Better go get a smb & a #1 cross-hatch for this job. O.K., now turn the little metal cap in a counter-clockwise direction. If it won’t move, go & get a #3 blade and insert in cap gap, twisting carefully. In a fluid motion, pull blade shaft against knuckle & cap should pop off. drink liquid in bottle, being careful not to spill any. Now, go to fridge, get another smb & repeat procedure. Next; the red wire that I told you to cut has to be hard-wired to your dongle’s positive NMEA 0183 terminal. Be careful not to damage the blue wire during this procedure as it is a fibre-optic & a replacement has to be ordered from Xian, China. OK, now go get another beer. On 2nd thought, you might need 2…

    Funny article, as per your usual, Paul!

    • Paul Thompson says

      Hi Mike;
      I know where I’d like to put that blue wire, but this is a family show. I did shut everything down and went and had a beer, but no twist tops here, you place the cap of one bottle under the one you want to open and lift. If you only have one bottle (like that could happen) then you must go on a quest and find the bumper of of an 1957 Chevy and open thusly. Believe it or not my buddy Tommy has a 57 Chevy here in Olongapo City.

      • Papa Duck says


        Just another typical day for the Duke of Dinalupihan at the Castle on the Hill in the Kingdom of the Philippines. But thats what’s so unique about the Philippines. Always something different everyday. Philippines would not be the same w/o it. My g/f has not been able to use Skype for the past month and a half. Does not know whats wrong with it. So have had to use Yahoo Mssger instead. We can see each other, but cannot talk. What can you do. Just smile and make the best of it. Thanks so much for another post that brings alot of chuckles. I will be anxious waiting for part 2. Be safe

        • Paul Thompson says

          Papa Duck;
          My wife Mayang just received a lap top from our daughter in Singapore, she has got a new one they plan to talk on Skype every day as soon as I buy a camera for my wifes computer. Oh the joy of it all!

            • Paul Thompson says

              If it not already in the PI for sale then I’ll wait until it is, so no I’ve never been involved with customs (THANK MY STARS)

  6. Biz Doc says

    hi paul,

    entertaining post from you as usual hehe looking forward to good news on your new globe dongle ” )

    in my case i’ve had my Smart Bro for the past 2 years, and never got past the first week after i bought it feeling i didn’t get scammed. thing doesn’t work– right in the heart of Quezon City of all places. they should have branded it the Smart RipOff hmm!


    • Paul Thompson says

      Biz Doc;
      My cell has worked for years albeit slow, but steady. I’ve tried other dongles in the past and found them lacking. Why would you think that part two of this story has good news? (LOL) Stay tuned and see.

        • Paul Thompson says

          Biz Doc:
          As the old saying goes, “It it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all!” But I promise next week will clear it all up.

  7. John D. says

    Damn you have a new ‘Dongle” ? You lucky dongle dog :-). Kinda like when my nieces told me I had to get a “Load” to use my cell phone, and a “Stick with a Load” to use my laptop. So I guess with a good working “Dongle”, a Loaded Stick, and lots of the golden elixir San Miguel, communications there become a lot clearer. :-)

    • Paul Thompson says

      Toss the Cell phone, the dongles and broadband, stick with the SMB’s and shout at your friends from across the bar.

  8. sugar says

    Hi Paul – Drollery! You’re so fun.. funny. So LOL reading your post! :) And did you say 25 minutes to load You Tube? Is that like for 3 minute video? He he. Oh and SMBis still you best friend! Hm.. never mind no Dongle.. as long as there’s SMB 😉 Looking forward to part two! Who rescued you from your Dongle misery? He he.

    • Paul Thompson says

      You’re assuming I was rescued at all, (lol) and yes, it takes 25 min. to download a 3 min. flick, why me? I live a okay life, and I don’t hurt little animals and am kind to people! I’ll be dongled if I can figure it out!

  9. chasdv says

    Love the Pic of Al Gore being dragged away, were they taking him to an Asylum.
    I quite liked him a long time ago, until he invented the Internet (false) and Global Warming (false).

    We have an ex politician of Al’s ilk, David Iyke, but he has also had conversations with Aliens, Lol.

    • Paul Thompson says

      So you don’t believe Al invented the internet? Then you can’t believe that the moon is made of green cheese. What’s next, NO, Santa Clause, Tooth Fairy or the Easter Bunny? Dear God, where will this all end????

  10. Don says

    My wife has the tattoo and its pretty fast, about 5mbs. Globe came out wit lambroghini and she wanted to upgrade by just extending contract for another 2 years at new rate. They said no, must pay remaining 1 year of existing contract before converting. What a joke, so they lose addtl revenue now.

    Btw, was up at sitnbull bar last sat in the clubhouse. My new fav place. The ride down sctex is great, green fields with the mountains in the background and manAged to miss the rains.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Hey Don;
      That sounds like Globe to shaft them self at every turn. Sit-N’Bull has some great food, I like the meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes.

  11. Bruce Michels says

    I see I’m not the only one whose has Murphy living with them. Oh Yea never a dull moment.
    Remember the saying “If anything will go wrong it will at the most in oppertune time.”
    Thank God for SMB.
    It’s great to be able to get back talking to my LIP Family been a roufh couple of months. Murphy was on overtime.

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