Playing the Indian Card

Monday, March 20, 2017

Welcome to the Philippines

One of the things I like about the Philippines is that it is so full of life.

We live in the continuous built-up area of the country’s second-largest city. And in a bit of a ritzy neighbourhood, a new gated community. And yet, on our daily walks, we regularly see, within a couple of blocks of home, a street with dozens of game cocks; a litter of seven puppies we are keeping tabs on; a yard with three cats, always there; a nanny goat and her kid; two budgies living outdoors in a cage; many other dogs and cats running free (but not strays). A few months ago there was a cow and a calf in a little field within a couple of blocks of us; now and again we see a sheep in the block behind us. 

Lots of vegetable life too, of course, including berries and leaves growing wild you can just pick and eat. And not only in summer. If something doesn’t grow here, it is just trying to be difficult. We have some beautiful lush basil of our own out front.

And there are always small bands of kids driving by on their bicycles. Littler kids play outside their homes in the afternoons with their moms watching. There are about two little variety stores in every block, and some of them have street food cooking. So there are always grownups around too. Always guys working on their cars. 

It’s a big contrast from Saudi Arabia, where, thanks to the heat, you almost never saw anybody or anything in the street. Maybe the odd mad dog or Englishman. And if you wanted to go for a walk, there was nothing to see.

All photos are from within two blocks of home, all taken on the same day, during our daily walk.

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