Dumaguete and Dauin Online Resources

December 16, 2008 - Filed under General, Planning, Scuba Diving, Stuff to do

We’re becoming a bit more familiar with the area now that we’re settled in and starting to explore the surrounding areas a bit further. Our friends back home in Canada and some of our newer readers have asked for more information about visiting the Dauin and Dumaguete area. Rather than try to rewrite all the great information already available online, I thought I would compile a list of some of the resources we’ve come across and found useful. Sure, it’s a little biased towards scuba divers, but there’s lots of great accomodations and general information too. We’ve found the forums particularly helpful. Feel free to post in the comments section if you have any specific questions about the area that we might be able to help you with, or suggest a resource we might have missed! Read More…

Posted by: Shim

Broadband Internet availability in the Philippines (on the beach)

December 12, 2008 - Filed under General, Planning

Yup, we’re nerdy. We’re traveling with the condition of having internet connectivity wherever we are. And not just an internet cafe or dialup connection. If we’re spending any length of time in one place, we need broadband. For many people an internet cafe will suffice for checking email and logging into Facebook, but when we’re in work mode the volume and size of files we’re dealing with requires a fast connection. Before coming to the Philippines the availability and cost of broadband service was a huge concern of ours. Not wanting to live in a city, was it even possible to get fast internet on a beach?

We spent a lot of time looking for an ISP in the Philippines. There are plenty. Unfortunately, the majority of them are dialup service providers with the few offering broadband service located in major metropolitan areas like Manilla, Cebu, and Bacolod. Even then, service can be questionable depending on the quality of the telephone lines in your neighbourhood. A few service providers offer dedicated lines, but the urban location didn’t make this a viable option for us. We decided to just up and go. Maybe we’d have to resort to satellite internet service? Not out of the question, but expensive. Read More…

Posted by: Shim

A post for the ladies: Tampons in the Philippines

December 9, 2008 - Filed under General

Before we moved to the Philippines, I hadn’t really considered not being able to find tampons. I’ve traveled in Asia before, as well as South & Central America, even in Egypt and never had a problem finding tampons. It wasn’t until I went looking for them here that I became aware of not only how rare they are, but also how controversial they are in this country.  Read More…

Posted by: Kelly

Week 11: Getting settled in Dauin

November 18, 2008 - Filed under Eats, General, Scuba Diving, Weekly Report

We love the new beach house we’re renting. This week has been all about getting set up in our new place. We went into town on Tuesday to stock up on food and get a few other essentials. We had a rice cooker in our last rental at the resort and I don’t know how we survived without one before. They’re invaluable! They take the guess work out of making rice and go into warming mode when the water has been absorbed or evaporated. Not to mention how light and fluffy the rice is. I recommend everyone get one.

I finally found a French press to make coffee at HyperMart, which is the local Costco equivalent of a warehouse with everything from appliances and furniture to groceries. Now if I could just find a decent supply of ground coffee. I’ve found I can buy a small bag or two now and again at the market, but it’s sometimes hit or miss. Whole beans are available in many markets, but I haven’t found a coffee grinder yet. Freeze dried instant coffee is the norm here. I want no part of that. Programmers need high test rocket fuel to function. Read More…

Posted by: Shim

We moved. To a beach front house in Dauin.

November 14, 2008 - Filed under General, Travel

Ah, paradise. This is what we were searching for. After 2 months in the Philippines, looking high and low for the ideal apartment, hut, beach house, or resort to call home… we’ve finally found it.

Puerto Citas is just minutes down the beach from the El Dorado Beach Resort where we were previously staying. When we first arrived in Dumaguete, we scoured the Dauin area looking for places to stay because of the active diving scene in the area. Our first impression of Puerto Citas from the beach was, “That looks expensive.” Shame on us for not looking into it further! As Kelly mentioned in her last post, we ran into the previous occupants after they had decided to move out and they corrected our assumption. It’s actually a reasonable price considering the size of the place… and that’s what we’ve come to value in the last 2 months. For $400 a month we had rented a 1 room studio, which is a steal compared to rent in Vancouver… but after a month or two, that room became small and uncomfortable. With us living and working in the same space, it quickly became a challenge since there was just no area to relax or when necessary, be productive. So, we opted to double our rent and move out of the resort and into a larger space. Read More…

Posted by: Shim

Creepy Crawlers

October 2, 2008 - Filed under General

So last week after I updated my Facebook status regarding a bug incident there’s been a fair amount of people asking for more details regarding the critters around us here in the Philippines. And while we’d never want to dissuade anyone from visiting… while in a third world country a person should be prepared to deal with varying types of pesky pest issues.

So, back to the previously mentioned bug incident… I was cooking dinner the other night at the outside stove (some unbelievably tough steaks I believe) and while heading between kitchens for various ingredients, I failed to keep an eye on my can of beer. Cooking completed, we sat down to eat. Then as I finished the last of my beer, I felt the feelers of a fairly large sized cockroach on my lips. Needless to say, I was thoroughly grossed out and sprayed the table with the last swallow of beer. Dumping the roach out of the can, I smashed him good. Incredibly, minutes later when I wondered if the roach had crawled into the can or had been packaged there at the beer plant… I noticed he had managed to crawl a good 2-3 feet from where I had crushed him. I smashed him again, then lit him on fire just to be sure. I can understand why roaches will survive a nuclear blast. They’re near indestructible! Read More…

Posted by: Shim

Home Sweet Home (at least for now anyway)

September 23, 2008 - Filed under General

After three weeks of traveling around and checking out a few different places in the Philippines, we finally found a place to rent. It’s been a bit of an interesting process, as people tend to tell you what they think you want to hear rather than the reality of the situation. It also took a little longer than expected… it seems that filipinos take “Island Time” to a whole new level. Never the less, we now have somewhere to call home, at least for the next month anyway.

We have rented a studio apartment at the back of the resort we’ve been staying at. It’s small but it’s clean and has a kitchen which is great as Mike mentioned in the previous post… Plus we get to use all of the resort amenities like the swimming pool, dive shop, internet and backup power generator (the power goes out a lot here). There’s also a couple of restaurants/bars a small spa, and a free shuttle into town.

Anyway… since pictures speak louder than words I decided to put together a photo tour of our new place…

Read More…

Posted by: Kelly