I thought it would be fun to share our tops and bottoms of Manila so far:
Top-the weather, at least for now, it is warm(not hot)and sunny. Perfect weather for a tan.
Bottom-it is very popular to be WHITE here. People bleach their skin to become more white! They carry umbrellas to avoid the sun. Hmm, may have to rethink the tan thing.
Top-the massages; they come to your room, it is really good, and it only costs $10 USD for 2 hours. What more is there to say.
Top-the shopping, I think that is pretty self-explanatory.
Bottom-the shopping (bet you didn't see that one coming) they follow you around...and it kind of makes me uncomfortable always having someone at my heels asking if I need anything.
Top-the fireworks, at least I think that is a top.
Top-the friendly people...always wanting to help, etc.
Bottom-the friendly people...always wanting to touch Holden and his light head.
Top-they know our names at Starbucks!
Bottom-we are very often the only white people around, and people stare at us, it is like being on stage 24/7. Kind of uncomfortable.
Top-they remember us everywhere we go, this can be handy; I left a package in one of the stores and I went back 3 days later and the second I walked in the door they were ushering me in to pick it up.
Top-everyone always says YES here.
Bottom-YES doesn't always mean yes, it also means; maybe, no, yes and no, kind of, lets see, ummm, etc. It actually is the universal word for anything you want it to mean. For instance, me: "could I get that shirt in red?" them: "yes." 20 minutes later because (Bottom: nothing is fast here) me: "Ma'am, I asked for it in red, this is yellow." them: "yes." Alrighty then, that made sense, guess I will buy it in yellow! In my mind thinking, hmm, maybe they think I look better in yellow than red....strange.
Top: how far a dollar goes here.
Bottom: how few people have a dollar. We met a security guard the other night, he might have been a police officer, I don't remember, but he makes $60 USD a month. A month people!
Top: how fortunate it makes you feel every single day that you aren't trying to raise a family on $60 a month.
Bottom: the many many many "street children" literally, out in the streets, begging for money. We actually saw a 5 year old carrying her baby brother and standing in the street as cars zoom by. I cannot bear to watch these things and while sometimes I can't help but give them money, I do know it encourages the unsafe behavior. I want to do something, I'm just not sure what yet.
Bottom: we miss our friends and family.
Top: we want them ALL to come visit. Hint Hint.
Top: I am tall here.
Bottom: everyone is very small here, and there are no pants nor shoes big enough for Nate.
Top: we found a ton of bras at a bazaar the other day that were great deals!
Bottom: they were ALL A cups....
Top: this goes with shopping...I bought 18 plates the other day for $3 USD
Bottom: I don't have a kitchen to put them in!
Top: I think we have decided on a place to live! It is the penthouse! It is across the hall from an ambassador (I can't tell you what country though).
Bottom: It won't be ready until February, so we are living in a hotel.
Top: The hotel folks are SO nice.