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The List

I figured I’d jot down a few things that I observed while in the Philippines, before I forget:

– Filipinos are text-messaging wizards. Seriously.

– Chivalry is an assumed way of life. Guys always offer to open doors, carry your bags while shopping, pull out chairs for you, load and unload luggage, etc. And it’s not something you point out and say thank you for, either…it’s just something you expect, which was very nice, but…definitely different from male behavior in the States.

– The spoon and fork (as opposed to knife and fork) are the primary utensils in the Philippines. I have actually grown rather fond of this style of eating. If you think about it, you can use the spoon to scrape off meat, and then scoop it and put it in your mouth (using your dominant hand) without laying either utensil down. It’s a little hard to do that with a knife!

– Filipinos run on what is called “Filipino time.” Meaning not punctual at all. A party scheduled to start at 7:00 won’t start until 8:30 or 9:00 (the host won’t even be at her own house at 7!)

– Paper is a scarce resource. Paper towels don’t exist. Napkins are tissue paper thin, and toilet paper is on a byo basis.

– “Public” restrooms take on a whole new meaning here. As in the side of the road, along fences, people took a leak wherever the urge hit them. And (now this makes me cringe still, just thinking about it), most people, male and female, just drip dried due to lack of toilet paper. Needless to say, I carried my own wherever I went.

– Everything in the Philippines is downsized. Smaller people, smaller portions. I could not find a shirt that fit me in the normal section of the trendy little chic shops — an extra-large wouldn’t even fit over my papa head. But I did enjoy the smaller portions. Meals were usually family style, and you took what you wanted, a little bit of each dish…that way you get to try a variety of food, and not stuff yourself in the process.

– Rice is served with everything. Even spaghetti and other noodle dishes. It was cute seeing the little pre-packaged rice that came with the chicken at KFC (instead of biscuits).

– Filipinos have an EXTREME sweet tooth. Everthing is laced with sugar. Fresh fruit juices, LEMONADE (UGH!), potato chips (!?!), spaghetti were all waaaaay too sweet for this American’s tastes. Case in point — I was looking at a container of Hunt’s tomato sauce in the Tan’s kitchen and noticed it said “Filipino style.” I thought, what on earth could make tomato sauce Filipino. And sure enough, written in the corner in big bold letters was “New sweeter taste.”

2 Responses to “The List”

  1. blue_makai says:

    …The things you notice…lol

  2. admin says:

    But it’s all true, right?

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