Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Touchdown Manila!

Airplane. On the plane, I initially enjoyed looking at the window, seeing the city lights. But as we moved farther away from Cebu, all I could see was the dark night sky. So I decided to take out the book lent by Godsend Debbie and read some Freaky Fact or Fiction: World Records. I also actually kind-of anticipated for an in-flight game, but as I found out, not all flights have one.

Airport. At NAIA, while waiting for mom who was on a later flight. I decided to see if they got free wi-fi services. Well, there were two public networks I could connect to, but none could provide internet access. I wonder why that is. Once mom arrived, we stepped outside only to confirm that the immediate exit to the terminal only had fixed rate and yellow cab taxis. Since Mom was rather in a hurry (and hungry), she opted to just take the more expensive yellow taxi to get to our next destination. To find out how to get a regular white taxi, check out this post.

V. Luna. The V. Luna General Hospital is quite relaxed and peaceful, unlike most hospitals. Maybe because it's exclusive for military personnel and their families. We went there to see my uncle (who is confined, but now fine enough and on his way to recovery) and aunt. We had breakfast at the hospital's canteen before going up to my uncle's ward. Where I could say that some hospitals may give you a feel that you'll get sicker staying there, this really is a place where one could recuperate. I was even able to take a comfortable short nap on a reclining chair (not sure how it is called).

Bus Terminal. We went to the Victory Liner bus terminal in Cubao after lunch. There was a long queue! (It doesn't help that we are lining up along with fellow passengers who will be going home to their provinces for Undas.) After more than an hour, we were finally able to secure 6pm bus tickets for Baguio. Since we had time to kill, we spent it at SM Cubao, before heading back to the bus terminal at around 5pm.

Impressions of the Capital

Traffic. In Cebu, traffic becomes moderate to heavy during rush hours. But in Manila, I'm amazed at how the traffic seems to be always at least a little heavy. I later found out though that it was especially matrapik on this day, since more people were taking the roads to get to their provincial homes. (Upon our return from Baguio, the traffic was already noticeably lighter.)

Flyovers. I also now understand where the "No to Cebu Flyovers" movement is coming from. These structures may help in easing the traffic but they are somewhat an eyesore. Or maybe it should be said this way: They are somewhat an eyesore, but these structures do help in easing the traffic. So each side has a pro and con. Or maybe they could beautify these flyovers. Hmmm.

Radio. During our taxi rides in Metro Manila, I was able to hear from Yes FM and Love Radio (I give them a nod for how they cross-promote both stations in their plugs), Big Radio, Wow FM and Magic 89.9 (finally got to hear DJ Suzy on-air). One listened to DZMM. I also want to note that out of our 7 taxi rides, no two taxis tuned in to the same frequency, talk about variety in taste! (In Cebu, most taxis seem to be tuned in to 107.5 Win Radio these days.) (And hey, if you count the stations I mentioned, it's only six. Well, one taxi had a CD playing instead.)

Systematic Victory. At first, the scene at the bus terminal appeared very messy to me. But once I got used to the heat and the multitude of people around, I was able to appreciate the system that Victory Liner has implemented. It actually had some order in it, and it was effective. Now, the only thing they need is to make the issuing of tickets faster and more efficient, and it's possible with an automated bus reservation system! (Ain't that right, Alliance?)

Respectfulness. I've always found the use of "po" and "opo" as very respectful and nice. It's beautiful to hear it being practiced regularly in any kind of conversation in this part of the archipelago. Keep it up, fellow countrymen!



  1. NAIA really sucks haha.

    Glad your uncle is doing well now :)

    Oh yeah bus terminals during holidays are really stressful!

    Traffic - oh yes the traffic on the north side of metro manila is really terrible. Thankfully I don't experience it that much since I'm from the south and the traffic on the way to our own is light. I live in Cavite and work from Makati but sometimes I get home earlier than my other officemates who live in other areas of Metro Manila

    Flyovers are really an eyesore then add up those huge billboards!

    Oh taxi radio, actually there's no really variety in taste as 90& of the masa stations here play the same music so I wouldn't be surprised if the drivers are just randomly tuning to stations without any sort of loyalty. But yeah a lot of taxi drivers love to listen to AM radio especially in the morning and afternoon sometimes may political commentary pa sila haha

    Victory is quite good actually but yeah when there are tons of people there lapses but when you compare it to other bus liners, they're above by miles

    Yeah it's nice to hear po and opo (as well as ho and oho)

    Looking forward to your 2nd part of your journey! :)

  2. Hi JP. Why didn't you inform me that you were here last weekend? Tsk, tsk. :)

  3. Hi Jecoup, thanks for dropping by to share your thoughts regarding my entry. So nagkataon lang talaga siguro na iba-iba yung pinakikinggan ng mga tsuper ng mga taxi na nasakyan namin, hehe. :)

    And hi Brennan, my apology for not being able to inform you. Weren't you also out to explore other places during those dates? :D