We’ve been here in Caticlan, Aklan, Panay, Philippines, for a month. In fact, today I paid rent towards the upcoming month at the Hangout Beach Resort. And I’ve told our host, Yolly, that we plan to be here for the month beyond that, too. That will take us to mid-June.
Riding out the pandemic in the Philippines
For the rent I again went into town to get cash from the ATM at the port.
Like the other two times I’ve been there, the usually bustling ferry terminal for Boracay island is deserted. Thankfully, the ATM on the outside of the building is still dispensing Philippine Pesos.
And again, after getting cash, I did some grocery and supply shopping. It seems things are a little more lively in Caticlan. More small stores have reopened. Obviously, after a month of this emergency, people are getting more comfortable with the new ‘normal’. But a quarantine pass, face mask, and social distancing are still required.
Aside from the money remittance shops, the other really busy place is the Coca Cola distributor. As I walked past, a tricycle was pulling out piled with cases of bottles. And a big truck was being loaded too. I guess Coke is essential? Sadly, the beer ban remains in effect. Thankfully, a small stash of Gold Eagle pilsner (a San Miguel product) has been found at our resort. Maybe I can stretch the inventory for a couple more weeks?
Nights and days
I continue to stay up and sleep late. Staying out of the sun for the morning hours is helpful. My redness is moderating. It hasn’t rained here in weeks. Clouds are rare. We are thankful for the strong sea breezes.
I’m also continuing with exercise and cardio — so I don’t seize up or turn to dust. I alternate stretching and resistance (push-ups, sit-ups, dips, leg lifts, planking, etc) with jogging up and down our small side-road. Working in the garden, clearing undergrowth is another option.
There are two dogs at the end of our street that take exception to my running. There’s loose dogs everywhere here. The rest of them don’t pay me any mind. The two problems have come snarling at my legs twice. I’m gonna get a club or have to jog elsewhere.
Riding out the pandemic — with a puppy!
Speaking of dogs, we now have a puppy here at the resort. The Hangout owner adopted little white female is named ‘Snow’.
Very cute, but in the biting phase. Always chomping on hands, fingers, shoes, etc. She seems to get along well with the three older dogs and handful of cats that live here.
Of course, life goes on in the neighborhood. We say hello to the handful of ‘regulars’ and kids that we often see.
Walking the beach, I noticed ‘tourist boats’ dry docked on a couple seafront properties. There are some substantial operators here; parasailing, island cruises, sailing banana rides, etc. All of it catering to the Boracay vacationers. All of it is shut down now.
There is a boat builder that is still working. Good to see that handful of guys still employed.
Flying kites is a popular pastime here at present. Thinking I may invest in one. Maybe I’ll ‘contract’ with one of these teen-agers to set me up with a home made kite and fishing line.
The other main activity for unemployed area residents continues to be fishing. Big nets are laid and drawn in a few times each week. And every evening small ‘outrigger’ boats go out to catch supper. They leave around 4:30-5:00 p.m. and usually return between 7:00-8:00 p.m. with a haul of fish which is then divvied up for dinner.
It’s neat to watch the routine and the success. But I sure am glad I don’t HAVE to fish to eat each day. Observing the process at sunset with beach bonfires burning is especially powerful and primal too. I can’t help but wonder how many people on this earth are barely subsisting daily as the virus shutdown plays out. We are so blessed.
As always, be thankful and generous, happy trails, & more beer.
Life is NOW!
Thanks for reading “Riding out the pandemic in the Philippines.”
What to read next from the lockdown adventures:
- What a supply run is like during a pandemic in the Philippines
- Pandemic sunsets and gardening during lockdown
- Earth Vagabonds expense report for March 2020
Tedly and Ellen alternate posting new blog posts every day during the coronavirus pandemic. To see how they got so lucky to land at the Hangout Beach Resort, start at the beginning.