How to survive the heat in Philippines?

by John
(Olongapo City)

I came to visit thinking that the weather would be tropical, meaning nice and somewhat warm, but it's terribly humid here.

You can take a shower and be nice and dry, but it only takes a few minutes and your wet and sticky, not a pleasant feeling if your wanting to go out and have a good time just walking etc.

Trying to shop here is a an experience, the traffic is terrible, there is too much exhaust from the local Jeepny's which are constantly belching out exhaust fumes in your face. I was told to try the local transportation here in Olongapo city, what a joke they are hotter and they tend to see how many people they can jam into one space in the vehicle which is open and subject to the other vehicles exhaust that you can't get away from.

The local drivers in cars seem to think that since they are bigger and have the darkest window they have the right of way in traffic as they will edge there way between your vehicle and there's to get where they want to go.

The motorcycles or bikes as I call them are continually darting in and out in front of your vehicle, and trying to pass you on the right hand side forcing you to go into the oncoming traffic. Seems there are no traffic laws here. I tried to obtain a traffic guide book from the local license office, but was not surprised they do not have one.

It seems all you need to obtain a driving license is to have the money and a lot of patience to wait in there hot and overcrowded office. All in all I am having a miserable time here in Olongapo City. I have 8 more months here and am trying to give this city a chance.

I find the prices for items here outside of the malls to be lower but poorer quality. The mall prices are more than in stores in the U.S on almost all items I have priced, great service in the malls as they have it seems 5 clerks in every area trying to sell you items, following you around and saying sir.

Anyway if you have any suggestions, they would be appreciated. I have gotten many which say just go home. I most likely will.

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Get out of town
by: Terry Llewellyn

Nobody could argue with much of what you said but you do sound very much like a trapped tourist. If you lived in Central New York you would expect to get out of the city at weekends and my advice would be for you to do just that. Get out and go to the beach somewhere quiet for a few days. Personally my preference would be Puerto Galera on the Island of Mindoro.

Before you start going "But that's 200 miles away" it as a resort of such quality that dozens of people fly in for the weekend from as far away as Japan and hundreds form Hong KOng.

If I had another piece of advice for your blood pressure it would be to say slow up and laugh more.

Yes just to queue up and pay the money for a driving licence may sound strange to us but it works. That isn't to say there are no road accidents but I have seen no evidence to suggest there are a higher percentage of accidents in the Philippines than the rest of Asia.

The fact they do not seem to have any form of a highway code has caused some interesting habits to evolve, like honking the horn means I am going to overtake you, whereas leaning on the horn and holding it down seems to empower a driver to do any damn thing he can think of.

The Philippines is crowded, it can be hot but the people are some of the warmest in the world. Why not give the place a fresh start.

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