This post describes some culture shock I experienced in the Philippines in 2013
Told you guys I am in the Philippines right? hmm, I have had my highs and lows- from being really excited, to being really frustrated and homesick, to bonding and laughing hard with new friends etc. In all, I am having a good time. I am really grateful for the experience so far
I feel like such a foreign object, like one of my new friends says "like an animal from a zoo" <hahaha> I know it's because we are obviously foreigners. The locals are generally nice and welcoming and it feels like people are fascinated by us (foreigners), they constantly stare at us and sometimes, ask if they can touch my hair (lol)... of cos I say yes! it's fine!
A few things to share ...
ha! Manila is a rough city I tell you! You have to be extra street smart in this city or you could get robbed (with their eyes closed) and (or) ripped you off real bad! (but as a sharp ex- Lagos girl, dem no fit haha). It is really crowded and busy here. Cities I have been to outside of Manila are less crowded and cleaner and personally, I prefer to be there than Manila; however, Manila seems to be the heart of the Philippines with lots of things to do. Filipinos eat rice, rice and more rice! and they love sweets as well.
I found the below very funny.. .. we have an "i" for everything.. i-house, i-pad, i-phone, i-cup yay! lol.. btw, bubble tea= milk tea, except it's sweeter and more milky here but I don't mind it.
Transportation: Myself and the other exchange participants have been taking the public transportation - from the tricycles to the Jeepneys and then the trains. <and the occasional use of Taxi's>. The locals warn us against public transportation but hey, it's cheaper and okay as long as you travel smart and in the day time and we actually don't mind it.
Some exchange participants needed a taxi immediately and I was so sure we could call for a taxi since I saw a "yellow cab" number in the directory. Everyone said there was no such thing here but still convinced, I went to get the number and said "there, here is a number for yellow cab" and everyone looked at me and said "NO! THAT'S A RESTAURANT!" hahaha can u imagine how funny the conversation would have been if I actually called the "taxi" lol
My friends and I felt all blue one particular week and decided to go watch a good movie to chill off (we saw "The Internship" which was really funny! - we needed it -). Anyways, I had to use the washroom and and when I was done, I found no toilet paper.. I freaked out real bad!!! I came out asking for toilet paper and guess what people??
YES, you have to pay for toilet paper in some public washrooms!! hahaha that was so interesting! at least now I know to take my toilet paper everywhere I go <smh>! imagine if you had diarrhea and no money :$
Manila or Lagos: What a shame! It has been a while since I have visited Nigeria and I can't tell if there is a difference between Lagos and Manila. :( Is there Wifi almost everywhere you go? is the traffic as crazy? clean or dirty? is it really crowded? I need to be there for myself to compare! But when I do visit I wanna do everything, take okada and the public bus and eat in street restaurants etc :D