Monday, June 30, 2014

Beginning an adventure in the Philippines

Today I left Singapore (don't worry I am going back) to begin stage two of my trip. I have learned the Singapore train station very well and in an effort to save money I took an almost 2 hour train ride that literally ends inside the airport and one short escalator ride away from check-in. I did not mention this upon my arrive earlier but again today I was incredibly surprised with the speed and cleanliness of the airport. On my way into Singapore from the moment I deplaned through customs and immigration and baggage claim I spent a total of 15 minutes (and apparently for Singaporean citizens this is considered a long time). Today was even quicker for check in and customs/immigration upon departure. I read Think Like a Freak this summer and one of their main points was in order to learn how to make something better we need to ask for feedback. I have posted many pictures of Singapore asking for feedback but to recap I have seen them asking for feedback of public bathrooms, of the metro system, of airport efficiency and cleanliness etc. This explains why Singapore is so successful at many things. Also, if you want a great summer book to learn how to think and act I highly recommend it. 

I flew from Singapore to Malaysia and from Malaysia to the Philippines. Not to bad right? Wrong. Professor Tanglao-Aguas informed me I could have spent half the time and money by taking a direct flight on Philippines Airlines instead of flying Malaysia air. We had dinner with his wife's family who still live together in a beautiful Spanish style home in the capital, Manila. The houseis very open and spacious and has beautiful artwork and pieces of historical and cultural importance to Filipinos. 

My phone just decided it would delete all my storage so I have no food pictures tonight unfortunately.  However, I tried two Filipino dishes and will provide Google images to show what they look like. There names were tinola and nilaga. Tinola is chicken with potatoes and greens while nilaga is beef with greens and potatoes.



Professor Tanglao-Aguas and I have just purchased our tickets to Tachloban (the area hit by the typhoon mentioned in earlier posts). We will be staying working with a nunnery for about a week and after I will travel to Boracay Island for either or both the mini research project (on social economic status creating a horrible gap in education in the Philippines (but also an issue around the world)) and soaking up some sun on the beach and "vacationing". Either way Professor will be leaving me on the fourth of July to do his own project in Shanghai but we will meet up in Indonesia on the 11th and visit Bali, Indonesia which he has described to me as a very spiritual and relaxing place. We will stay there till the 15th before I return to Singapore and he heads back to the U.S.A.

Today's thank you shout-out is for two of the coolest girls at William and Mary, Alex McAuliffe and Ciarra Nickerson. I have been friends with both of these incredible young ladies since the beginning of my time at William and Mary. Alex has one of the kindest hearts I know. She honestly tries to see good in everyone and cares about everyone she knows. Even though she is a fan of the horrid Yankees, she is a close friend. Alex is willing to talk to me about anything and everything on my mind at more or less any time. Ciarra also has many good qualities. The first and most obvious to everyone is her drive and dedication. CiCi, as she goes by makes everyone feel that they need to work harder because of all the time she puts into her studies (she is going to be a swell doctor someday, so it is going to pay off don't worry). CiCi is also a HUGE RED SOX and BASEBALL fan so it is only fitting for me to post a picture of us at a Tribe baseball game. Don't let her super studious habits fool you tho, she is still one of the most charismatic and helpful people I know. I have also had conversations with her about everything and anything at any time. Thank you ladies for being good friends for me and always being here for me. I can't wait to see you both back at school in the fall and hangout. 

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