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Road Trip

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Tuesday night (09-22-2015) and Mayang said to me; :Honey Ko, we need to drive over to San Fernando in the morning to go to Home Depot to avail of door and draw pulls to replace the 34 fifteen year old ones we have in the kitchen. As they no longer match the new Granite counters we installed months ago, and for some reason it has instantly moved to the top of her “To do” list. I had no prior warning of this impending trip. I shrugged and said: “Why not!”

0830 The road trip begins

0830 The road trip begins

Throwaway Ticket Service - The Business that works while you sleep

A drive to San Fernando using the old national highway is an hour and a half depending on the amount of road repair, as here on Luzon all road repairs are accomplished during the rainy season, so shoddy workmanship and cheap materials cannot be blamed when the road needs new repairs in six months. It keeps people gainfully employed and puts rice on the table every night so I fully understand.

We set off at 0800, then I hear; “Honey Ko we must go to Subic first to hit the ATM.” Why; because it is her bank’s ATM and she only trusts that one as she knows all the folks inside the bank. It’s very true San Fernando has no shortage of ATM machines, but can you really trust them?

0900 Visit her ATM

0900 Visit her ATM

Not a word, I smile and say yes dear and drive 45 minutes out of my way, because I know it’s the right thing to do. No Cella Phone Guys are scheduled this week anyway so my day belongs to her.

1030 At the Home Depot

1030 At the Home Depot

But I’m a guy, and what guy doesn’t like the smell and views from walking around a hardware store? Picking things up and grunting (Remember Tim Allan) oh that manly feeling it brings out in us guys. Oh Home Depot, what memories you bring to mind, okay I’m committed to the trip detour and all. Need I mention that all purchases will be placed on her NFCU Visa debit (Interest Free) card? But cash is king in Mayang’s life she is still not used to not using cash. But will grudgingly give in to the wonders of non cash transactions.

While on this trip I came off a new bridge that has a drop off where it meets the road. Of course I was chided about the loud bang the suspension made on contact with the road. I waited until she was done with her tirade, and asked her; “Darling since you seemed to know it was there, next time please tell me about it.” Silence was king until we reached San Fernando.

We arrive at the Home Depot and as I approach the main entrance I notice the parking lot is empty. I wondered what time they opened. They were open but Mayang and I were the only customers there that Wednesday morning. Note to self: Buy all that you’ll ever need today, they’ll be closing soon.

Also the people waiting to be hired to install all that you buy were conspicuously missing from the parking lot! Wait…that’s San Diego California, not San Fernando Pampanga no Chevy pickup’s hanging around here.

It is huge, where was this place when I was building my house? What a selection of stuff. Drawer and cabinet door pulls is the plan, put the blinders on and get to that section, stop fondling the power tools and grunting. Employees, out from behind every shelf and aisle they appeared, and kept coming until we were surrounded by a sea of fresh faced employees eager to help “The Ate” the Kuya was ignored.

The selection of hardware for the doors was vast, from the least expensive (68 pesos each) to the high end (Up to 500 pesos each) Mayang went to the mid range section. I was partially pleased. But here is where my Kano wisdom kicked in. I slipped to the back of the crowd and watched the selection process begin. Many places to sit in Home Depot, I availed of one of them.

Eureka, the decision has been made; I step into the fray for a second quickly measure the new one with my old piece of hardware, announce that they were of the same dimensions and made my exit. We need 34 of them, and I know you are waiting for the famous “Out of Stock” but they had them all plus more in stock. I was amazed! Then check out and pay, just over PHP 4,000.00 and out the door.

1115 at the S & R

1115 at the S & R

That is a long drive for just one item; but Kitty Corner is S& R store where they sell Corned Beef Brisket and fresh milk from California. Fresh milk, the very thing my grandson discovered in Florida and deemed it “GOOD”. Plus many other hard to find items, well worth the drive.

But a warning about the S & R store, they are in “FULL CHRISTMAS MODE” with a huge area dedicated to Christmas decorations. I saw the look in Mayang’s eyes and I was struck with fear, will there be enough funds on her Visa Debit card to cover it all? I looked at her and promised we would return in October for Christmas shopping. A problem averted.

At the checkout line it was noted that our membership card was one week expired. Waiting for the hammer to fall and be told of the long renewal process, I tip my hat to the management as the young lady said: “I can fix that for you and it will only take a few seconds” True to her word it (The Membership Card) was reactivated on the spot with no muss or fuss.

Now we are on the way home, as we approached the car shattering bridge, Mayang tapped me and reminded me of the drop off. I smiled and thanked her, as I wanted a pleasant end to our “Road Trip”.

Installing 34 drawer and cabinet pulls, I’ll need my drill to widen the holes and a ratchet screwdriver to quickly set the 68 screws. I estimate two hours then eat lunch and have a reward of a nice refreshing SMB………….. Did you know that in Mayang’s rolodex we have a hardware installer guy? I’ve been shuffled aside and replaced, but have no fear, I still get the beer. Next month Christmas decoration road trip, Oh joy!

Change 3 to modification four on the simple project. Who knew that 15 years ago the Marine Spar Varnish was not applied to the entire door, I damn sure didn’t. “Installation Guy”, now must sand and varnish every cabinet as the new pulls of course do not cover that blank spot. The good news is that this will not affect my beer consumption one iota; well “Installation Guy” will now be able to put more rice on his families table for the next few days, and I guess that is a good thing. Yes I’m still smiling…….

Posted in

Paul Thompson

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!

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Bubba
Bubba
6 years ago

Beer ! Truly is all that matters…..

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Bubba

Bubba;
I heard from non-believers that there were other things that were more important. But so many people will lie to forward their own agenda. Trust in Our Lady of San Miguel..

Tom N
6 years ago

You got the beer. He got to sand all those cabinets. Sounds about right, Paul!

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Tom N

Tom N.
He earned his salary, I earned my beer. Capitalism……. ain’t it wonderful?

bigp
bigp
6 years ago

Paul does the SR have computers, generators, BBQs ect? By the way you can freeze that fresh milk and it will last untill you thaw it and then seems to last as long as the fresh stuff.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  bigp

Loren;
They have a long shelf life on the milk so I’ll be back before I’d need to freeze any. Yes some of the items but nor all, the Home Depot has every size generator and brand known to man and it’s across the street. If it’s still open (LOL) we’ll take a ride over when you get here.

Elizabeth Bowers
Elizabeth Bowers
6 years ago

Hilarious!! Nope, can’t trust any ATM. I’ve heard some ATM’s have different colored money.

Which reminds me I read where someone was confused and gave someone 1000 instead of 100. I thought don’t go to the States as the money is all one color.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago

Elizabeth Bowers;
In my Night Club in Puerto Rico in the 1980’s I had a group of Canadian Tourists who were drinking and dancing up a storm. One young girl pointed out that it was dumb to have all our US money one color. I pointed out that any government that has to make different colored money might think its citizens are not bright enough to read numbers. She gave me an odd look and ordered another drink.

Jose Porfirio
Jose Porfirio
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

She didn’t tell you about their “loonie” (one dollar) and “toonie” (two dollars) coins? 🙂

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Jose Porfirio

Jose Porfirio:
I wonder what color the coins were, to help the citizens figure out what coins they had?

Rusty Bowers
Rusty Bowers
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

I’m not sure if the woman who said she gave someone a 1000 when she meant to give only 100 was try to cheat the other person or not. How can anyone make a mistake between the bills? The 50 and 20 are close to being the same color.

Still, the greenback is green. I never liked the $2 coin. That and some other coins were too close. Except for their value. That I wouldn’t mistake.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Rusty Bowers

Rusty,
I must assume the lady who gave the 1000 vice the 100 was not talking about US ir Canadian money as I believe neither country uses a thousand note bills.
In the US the idiots in charge have tried a few times to give us a 1$ coin, and found them in every dresser drawer in the United States along with the 50 cent coins. But they’ll try again because in fact they are all idiots.

Rusty Bowers
Rusty Bowers
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

I’ve never seen a $1000 US bill. For that matter of fact the $100 bill was only in my wallet if someone gave it to me at Christmas. Which happened I think once.

Now where did I put that wallet?

Rusty

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Rusty;
The US once printed a 10.000 and 100.000 note, but found that if you ordered a beer most places couldn’t cash it.

ScottD
ScottD
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Rusty,
The last time the US used $1000, 5000, 10,000 and 100,000 bill was in 1934. All were suppose to be taken up and destroyed to combat organized crime. The 10,000 and 100,000 was primarily used for cash transfers between banks.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Scott;
Bart Maverick always had a thousand dollar bill pinned inside his suit jacket. (Now are you old enough to remember that old TV show?) (James Garner)

Rusty
Rusty
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

I remember the money pinned to Mavericks coat.

Rusty

ScottD
ScottD
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

I watch Maverick when I was a kid, even though it was reruns. Came out a few years before my time, it was cancelled like 3 years before I was born. Love watching it and all the westerns to this day. They just don’t make shows like that anymore.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Scott;
Even if you watched reruns it was still one of the best on TV along with Gunsmoke

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Rusty;
A great show would leave the “Corner” to get home to see it.

Michael Boo
6 years ago

Honey ko adventures ! Whooooo X-Mas ,never fear beer drinking Santa is here.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Michael Boo

Michael Boo;
Santa dressed in red polar suit, makes no sense, dress him in tropical wear like we did in the Caribbean, hand him a rum & coke and celebrate. (Beer fits the hand also.)

Derek
6 years ago

Hi Paul, know that road well will they ever finish repairing it lol , had a road trip last Month went to vigan took 12 hours from Manila that was some ride stopped of in San Fernando on the way home, my wife is currently painting our bedroom I just give Advice when needed, like you I prefer to hire a local worker to do any repairs or joinery, Seen a sign on the San Fernando olongapo road windshield or windscreen if you’re British Repair, then saw all the loose gravel and rocks on the road lol very clever guy… Read more »

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Derek

Derek:
Drumming up business with scattered gravel (Grava in Tagalog) also aids his brother who owns the auto paint shop across the street. Vigan is quite a beautiful town..

Jim Hannah
Jim Hannah
6 years ago

Quick….back to home depot and change the handles for ones with bigger escutcheon plates, coz that sanding will have to be all the way back to bare wood.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Jim Hannah

Jim;
Way to late the job is done and he already stocked up on rice. It all came out find and the beer was very cold! (lol)

ScottD
ScottD
6 years ago

Hey Paul, My wife is there in the Philippines to Get our house ready for our move. We had new windows and doors put in. Well that was an adventure in its self. I found out the Window guy did not remove the windows that was the window removal guy. And that same guy does the concrete work so the Window guy could put in the new windows. Well I asked my wife not to let them take the old windows out till they had the new ones there. Well that is just not the way things work. They removed… Read more »

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  ScottD

Scott;
My friend was out to sea, I was by his house as they were installing his Nara doors using only two hinges. I interrupted her and my wife and informed her that they would not hold a door that heavy. She told me that her construction guy knew what he was doing. Two months all three Nara doors fell off the frame and she called and asked me how many hinges I used I told her four and never told my friend.

Roger Craft
6 years ago

hahah, I would say Paul is the guy to call for “the guy” needed for any occasion 🙂

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  Roger Craft

Roger Craft:
I’m the “Guy” to call if you are overstocked with too much SMB. Then I’m your man!

AJ UK
AJ UK
6 years ago

Hi Paul

I trust that you had an extra SMB to remove the dust that your handyman kicked up.

Tagay

AJ UK

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
6 years ago
Reply to  AJ UK

AJ UK;
A dust free afternoon, I made him a deal, he stayed in the kitchen and I sat out front under the tent. It worked out well between us. (LOL)

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