A Matter of Perspective

It was 89 degrees today, humid and very hot. We have heard this is the cooler season but we've not felt that to be so ourselves. Yet, for filipinos, we are coming into the cool season.

Case in point, I was shopping at SM mall looking for Christmas gifts for Kurt. A sales clerk said, "Would you like to get jacket for husband?" I said, "No thanks, it is hot here." He smiled and said, "Us Filipinos get cold in December."

Trader Joe's

Life here in the Philippines is exciting, hot, enjoyable. There are many little vendor stores all over the city...sari sari stores (which are like small convenience stores), barber shops, bike repair, fruit stands, pharmacies, little eateries, etc. No Starbucks yet but we do have a Trader Joe's here!!!!!(ha ha ha) - well, at least "Joe The Trader!"

Kurt and Beth at the Market

Today Beth took me to the market (my first time). What an experience! There were many hundreds of vendors selling everything from clothing to live chickens, fresh fruits and vegetables to fresh fish, dried fish to Doritos, eggs to fresh butchered meat, and rice to the pots to cook it in.

In 30 minutes we felt as though we had just seen a small part of what was there. Spread over many city blocks, occupying every conceivable space, the vendors were everywhere. There was blood running in the gutters from the butchered animals. There were plenty of sights and sounds and smells to keep ones senses working full-time. I really enjoyed the experience.

The market is definitely the place to go to get the freshest fruits and vegetables. Here is a list of what we purchased today:

  • 2 pineapples (one sliced and one whole - both very fresh)
  • 6 fresh carrots
  • 1 watermelon
  • 2 pounds fresh picked green beans
  • 1.5 pounds fresh tomatoes
  • 4 cucumbers
  • 2 pounds kalamansi (like small lemons)
  • 10 oranges
  • 3 mangoes
  • 12 potatoes
  • 20 bananas

All of this was purchased for about $12 US.


As much of what we purchased as would fit in the picture


Beth buying bananas


A fresh fish vendor


Another fresh fish vendor


Aisle after aisle of vendors

Paradise Island

Saturday we had the opportunity to go to Paradise Island Beach on Samal Island, about a 5 minute boat ride across the Davao Gulf harbor from the Davao City Boat Ferry landing. What a beautiful place. It has white sandy beaches. The kids had a great time playing in the sand and sea.


Ben playing with two new filipino friends


Kids playing in the water


Kurt and Beth enjoying baku, a young coconut


Kids with new friends playing in the sand


Our family enjoying our day at the beach

More About the Marang

A few posts ago I talked about the marang fruit. Here is a picture of what the inside looks like. No one in our family really likes the taste too much though. They have a particular smell too. Maybe this is one of those tastes that just have to grow on you.

There are a lot of new fruits for us here in the Philippines. As far as new fruits go, so far we have tried the mangostein, the Jackfruit, Pomelo, Lansones, and some others that we forgot the names of. We have yet to try the durian - we were advised to wait for someone more experienced to guide us through those "waters". We will keep you posted...