rants, raves and randomness
I have recently been back from the Philippines for my yearly summer vacation with my hubby. As usual, we got to experience third world infrastructure , (cultural?) institutionalized inefficiency topped with tedious bureaucracy. I tried to prep for it – I really did. I anticipated the worst in airport facilities and service, so I sent my balikbayan box home in advance. Only, now we’re back in Japan, and my box of pasalubong and personal things hasn’t arrived. First, it was the ship rerouting daw – fine, it was unavoidable. The balikbayan box company called me, informing me my box’s misfortune, while I was being interrogated by Japanese cops in Shibuya for being a witness to a “flasher” (side story : a drunk hobo bared himself in front me and a friend. 3 cops in a patrol car arrived to interrogate us and to shoo the hobo away. 3 cops!!!! ). It was tough enough that I was being tagged as a “valuable witness” of this unfortunate event (the flasher,I mean), while talking on the phone and arguing with the box company. The box company promised it would arrive 4 days after our arrival – a minor hiccup. We could have had it sent to Baler via the Joybus. But alas, 4 days after we arrived, no call from the forwarder, until finally I had to call them to ask about my box (customer service Philippine style!). They said, “Na-hold ang container sa port e. Bale sa isang linggo pa siguro makakalabas.” I argued, “E wala na kami nun. Nakabalik na kami ng Japan.” The person said, “E ganun ho talaga. Dami na ho namen reklamo. Wala ho kami magagawa.”
Hay naku! In the Philippines, you learn to live with “ganun talaga“. Asking for more is selfish. Reminds me of Chairman Mao’s China, where being good at something was considered “white” and “bourgeois”.
So anyway we continued living our lives, making do with what we can buy at the local palengke. Too bad our fishing+ swim+surf gear are all in the box! But nothing can stop us from vacationing! When there is a will there is a way! So off we surfed the waves anyway, enjoying what typhoons Luis and Mario brought
I know I shouldn’t be too damn pleased with the typhoons but..look at this!
And when there were no waves, we (tried?) went fishing.
Now back at the airport yes. How terrible my experience was. Let me compare my experience at Narita and NAIA for both web check-in.
Whoever the next president would be should tackle the endless, tedious kuskos balungos of our systems back home. Simplify. For the taxpayers, for the airport staff, for the tourists. Life is too short to spend most of it on public roads and facilities! The entry and the exit points are what people remember easily – we should be breezing through airports, not bogged down by a series of never ending, complicated steps just to get IN and OUT of the country. We want to encourage people to come,right? So instead of simply boycotting Aegis’ Philippine-trashing video, we should actually do something to prove them wrong. Because let’s face it, though the motive of the video is questionable, every issue they raised is true!