Friday, November 11, 2016

Bohol Part 1

We got up early (4:30 early) on Nov 8 to get to our flight to Bohol. Bohol is in the island group called the Visayas. They had an earthquake in 2013 that destroyed a lot of buildings, and deterred a lot of tourists, so they are very thankful for tourist money right now. The island is beautiful - there are lush green areas, as well as beatiful beaches. It is shoulder season now, and not high tourist season, but there are relatively few tourists. Even the touristy area that we are in right now is not very crazy and there is lots of room on the beach. 

Anyway! We flew to Boho after being delayed in Manila for a couple of hours on the tarmac. Luckily we made friends with our seatmate on the plane who got mad at the flight attendants, thus scoring us some free Cebu Airlines snack boxes filled with pre-packaged Filipino treats. These were mostly saltine-like crackers filled with different kinds of cream (white cream, blueberry cream biscuits, etc). They were not as delightful as the black rice soda biscuits by any means, but they did contribute to our pile of snacks that we are using to stick to the budget. The food plan is currently 2 meals a day with snacks for lunch. And many beers in between. 

We had a one hour drive from the capital, Tagbilaran, to our hotel - the lovely Loboc River Resort - thanks for the recommendation Heather if you are reading this!! Jay, our driver informed us of many things: 
- cock fighting is a very big deal in Bohol. There are fights every Sunday at 3:00. You can double your money if you win the fight, and they fight til the one rooster is dead. People who own prize winning roosters are very respected. Don't worry, I asked what happened to the loosing rooster and luckily, Sunday is chicken soup day! Also don't worry, we didn't go to any cock fights. 
- Jay also let us know that even though Sunday is the only day for cock fights, he wins cock fights in his bedroom every night. 
- Jeepneys (old army jeeps done up with benches painted in all sorts of colours that act as public transportation) are the cheaper way to get from place to place, but the schedule is a bit sketchy. When the jeepney is full, you can ride on top for a discount. This is why "its more fun in the Philippines!". (This is the Philippine travel board slogan). 
- He pointed out many churches that were destroyed in the earthquake that are still being rebuilt today. 
- Apparently water buffalo (caribao) meat is considered quite the tasty treat. He showed us the "best buffalo restaurant" that unfortunately we did not have a chance to get to. 
- Tricycles (motobikes with a side carriage basically) are another cheap way to get around. There are "public transport" tricycles that are registered, and these have a bible verse on them. This is required by law. If your tricycle doesn't have a bible verse, you are using a non-registered one. 


We stayed at the Loboc River Resort for 2 nights. It was quite a lovely place, located on the bank of the Loboc River. It is a Filipino owned hotel, with quite a big chunk of land. The first day we took a tour of the property and saw the feeding of the 4 local monkeys (they feed them twice a day), feeding of the chickens and ducks, fish pond (they raise tilapia) and got to pet the farm water buffalo, Lisa. She was sweet and bristly. They also had a chicken that was nesting 10 eggs in a nest box in the deck railing of the outdoor restaurant. 
On the last day there, Steve decided to try his luck fishing with raw shrimps off the river dock with a fishing pole and extremely short line. Sadly (not sadly?) there were no fish caught. 



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