It’s Thursday 15 March and I’m one day back from my trip to Manila. My friend Tommy who is home from his ship and on vacation, That morning I receive an e-mail from him requesting we all meet Friday Night at the “By The Sea Resort” in the Barrio on Subic Bay. When Tommy invites me I automatically know it is family time, and bring everyone that wants to go. And I know that his family will be there also. We ended up with a group of 15 or more. Tommy has been a family first type of person as long as I’ve known him.
It was an easy sell to Mayang the idea of Mongolian BBQ night as everyone loves it at our house. My girls YoHanna May and Ymir Thea had been to their first Mongolian BBQ back in 1995 at the very same Resort. I’ll never forget it because both girls were in line to fill their plates and were very upset because the meat was uncooked. They understand now, how it works.
So we leave the house and head down the mountain, Cecile and Yhen, and Mayang and I in the New Old Honda Civic. Cecile was driving and we noticed an odd but load noise coming from under the car. When we pulled over we discovered that my tailpipe had broken loose and was dragging on the ground. It was nothing that a jack and some bailing wire can’t temporarily fix, and ten minutes later and we’re there. A tad noisy, but there.
We met Tommy and his wife Lolet, plus their two daughters and two grandchildren and talked and joked for a while by the seawall with an ice cold SMB. Tommy looked at me and said; “I don’t know about them, but I’m hungry.” So to the line we went, and started a parade behind us. The food was wonderful, the service was great.
And then a normal situation popped up that is prevalent here in the Philippines. Absolutely no stock at the bar, except one pint of Tanduay 5 year old lighter fluid Rhum, not another adult beverage could be found, but they did have beer, and we had a couple, but we really wanted an after dinner cocktail.
Out the front door of the resort we go, and walked down the street to the Corkscrew Package Store. (A liquor store to those who are not from the New England area, and are glad they’re not).
Did they have Tanduay 12 or 15 year old rum at the Corkscrew, as they should? Nay not so, but they did have Captain Morgan’s Spiced rum for the paltry sum of P950.00. Of course we bought it! We’ll suffer on through with the Captain any time night or day. We found out from the owner that he was letting their stock run down so they could move to a better location. I thought that 3 minutes walk from the resort was a pretty good location as I saw it.
Back at the resort the waiter said that we had to pay corkage on the bottle, since we brought it in from the outside, to which I explained that we had to, because no one stocked the bay this year. We smiled and said we were not going to pay, and could we have an ice and coke set up, please?
The manager was called in, and here was a gentleman with common sense, after seeing the size of our party, and the amount we had spent on food and now all the desserts the families were still ordering, he waved the corkage fee and apologized for the poor bar setup.
Next the cameras came out and we were moved from here to there for our many Kodak minutes. If there is one trait that can be accredited to the Pinoy is their natural born love of photography and they’re love of posing for the camera.
Our wives and daughters, son-in-laws and grandchildren were having a great time, but, at 2230 Tommy and I were informed that our fun time was over and we were homeward bound. Both of us being wise men, we smiled and just went along peacefully. Neither of us will drive if we have been imbibing in the Devils brew.
Saturday morning my son-in-law Cecil informed me that during the evening, the night before, and after a cocktail or three, I had foolish said that we would get that tailpipe repaired the next morning.
So at 0900 we are in the car heading to Ernie’s shop for all things exhaust and mufflers. Being that my car was the only one that broke its tailpipe the night before we were taken right in and the broken section of pipe was cutout and new section was hand fitted and reinstalled and we were on the way home in under one hour. Ernie is a master at the art of pipe bending and welding. In the States a special part would have to be ordered and the car would sit if it was not in stock, plus it would be brand new from the manifold to the rear bumper. Mine was a three foot section hand fitted and installed, Ricky Tic!
Now here is the part that will surprise those who have not moved here as of yet. The cost to repair the car was far below the cost of that bottle of Captain Morgan rum that Tommy and I purchased last night, and with no corkage.
For those who would like to know, the total cost of the meal at By the Sea Resort for 12 adults and 3 children came to less that P5000.00 total, that came out to P240.00 per person and all you can eat plus all the fancy deserts they ordered and fancy fruit drinks and shakes, which Tommy and I split. Yes we’ll do that again, because family time is anytime we all get together. Hey Tommy; “Let’s do Mexican food for lunch this week!”