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A New Fruit

This is a marang fruit and we just tried it for the first time tonight. It is about 6 inches in size (see 6 inch ruler in photo), roughly round, and has a pliant outer skin. Once through the outer skin, the edible insides consists of slippery, whitish balls about the size of large grapes. The taste is sweet, but not overly so and there are seeds inside each of the "grape-like" balls that are about the size of a peanut. Once broken into, the fruit has to be eaten within a few hours or else it will go bad. At the market, each of these costs about 25 pesos which is the equivalent of 50 cents US.

Our Neighborhood

This is a typical house in the neighborhood near where we are living now. A home that is resistant to burglary is valued as this picture shows where you see a high gate, barbed wire, and walls surround the house (not shown). In contrast, the filipino people are extremely friendly and gracious. One wonders about that seeming contradiction of crime and kindness. Maybe it has to do with poverty rather than greed.


Welcome to the Symanzik family update. Having lived in Michigan in the United States all of our lives, living in the southern Philippines is quite different and exciting. Follow along on this website as we let you know what is different, unique, pleasant, hard, and enjoyable.

Note: Due to sensitivity issues, we will not be posting details about our work. This is a cultural/family oriented blog.

Thanksgiving in the Philippines

Well, I can't speak about all Thanksgiving in the Philippines, especially since it is a US holiday, but I can speak about how we spent our Thanksgiving about 24 hours after arriving from the US. We could hardly keep our eyes open due to jetlag!

Yet, we were treated to a great Thanksgiving meal from some new friends over here, and though we did not fall asleep in our food, we probably came close. But Ben did not even make it through his meal.