Monday, February 1, 2016

Monday, February 01, 2016

S O M E T I M E S   S I L L Y

Not all my travels turn out to be fantastic. Most of them are the way they are because I plan my trips before hitting the road. The few ones that turn out to be disasters don't even make it online. I charge them to experience. When a seemingly off-center review does make the light of day, it's because I rationalized what happened. I felt compelled to share a redeeming value out of the ordeal. Or I found humor in the hoopla.

An unusual adage states that humor is a reminder that no matter how high the throne one sits on, one sits on one's bottom. This is exactly why I make room for surprises in all of my getaways, brief or extended. Like regular travelers I know, I stick to an itinerary that has a breather for the unknown. When I mess up, I can learn from it or simply laugh about it.

I rarely travel on a whim -- which can be aptly called an escape -- because the last time I did, I encountered a ghostly apparition. That's been detailed in another blog post already and I've always been sensitive to my emotional state when on the road since then.

As for finding humor in a pitiful situation, it really boils down to perspective. Am I even in the right state of mind to be laughing at fatal accidents or at the sorry plight of other travelers? Of course not. What I do find funny are my moments of self-deprecation.

As I start my 2016 and three years into travel blogging, I've been able to round up at least three experiences that made me laugh at myself. Maybe you can share in my laughter as you read on.

Left Behind At The Bus Stopover

On my way to the sleepy town of Real one random weekday aboard a bus bound for Quezon Province, I decided to take advantage of the usual stopover. I normally don't get off the bus for snacks or bathroom breaks when traveling solo because I have trust issues. For whatever reason, I just did not care for my belongings and I left them on my seat to score a hotdog sandwich and a beverage at a nearby convenient store. My seatmate looked harmless enough. I figured that the bus was still visible from the store window anyway, so nothing could go wrong.

With loose change and beverage in tow, plus half a jumbo hotdog stuffed in my mouth, I ran after my bus...

Things went in the opposite direction, though, the moment I fell in line for payment. I was so hungry that I started to tear on the sandwich and sip on the drink while I made a few quick glances to where my bus was. It was still there. So far so good. Unfortunately for me, the cashier was painfully slow from receiving my payment to giving change.

Next thing I knew, the bus was already leaving the parking area and making its turn back to the highway. I immediately scrambled for any loose change being counted on the counter and stormed out of that store as fast as I could. With loose change and beverage in tow, plus half a jumbo hotdog stuffed in my mouth, I ran after my bus which was like more than 20 feet away already from me. I couldn't scream because I foolishly didn't want to waste my snack, so I was groaning and grunting for an epic minute. Thankfully, a few onlookers who were on the way of the bus spotted me from the distant sidewalk and frantically hailed it for me. I turned around to see that I actually ran a good distance already before the bus stopped.

Once on board, I fell back my onto my seat and decided to give my seatmate (a stranger) the dagger stare. I was about to lose it when I realised that I still had to finish the hotdog which was still half-stuffed in my mouth. Then I had a good laugh at myself.

Sex Offer While Eating Chicken Inasal

My recent trip to Bacolod City was just a layover in Negros Occidental. I was actually more excited to visit the neighboring cities of Talisay and Silay. I was certain, though, that I'd have to eat the city's famous version of chicken inasal to really enjoy my overnight stay there.

I did not have to wait for dinner to commence with it. As early as lunch time, I was out at the Manokan Country to eat the way the locals do -- with bare hands. The dining destination was just a stroll away from the public market so there was a lot of peddlers around. I noticed that they are permitted to penetrate

I honestly felt awkward hearing the offer in the middle of the day and with chicken oil running down my fingers.

the dining areas of the strip of eateries as if they're part of the attraction. It was amusing in the beginning. I actually struck conversations with a couple of driftwood peddlers who were really rabid in reaching their quota for the day. With charm, I managed to drive them away as I enjoyed my delicious lunch.

As I was almost at the climax of my meal -- succulent pecho and all, an unassuming woman in her forties (or she looked like it) approached my table and offered sex for pay. I honestly felt awkward hearing the offer in the middle of the day and with chicken oil running down my fingers. Suddenly, my grease-smothered lips were shut tight. I just stared at the woman in disbelief until I gave her a negative facial reaction. No one offers me sex while I'm having chicken inasal in the city of smiles!

Photography by Josua Chan
Overconfident Upon Touch Down

My first trip to Boracay in 2013 was a blog contest prize that I won from Gran Prix Hotel and Suites. It was also the second time that I was going to ride a plane to a destination. The first time was decades ago for a trip to Hong Kong. I was still a kid back then and I was unaware of the technical differences between riding one and riding the bus. For me, they were just the same. My plane ride to Boracay was my first one as an adult, so it's basically like flying for the first time.

There was nothing unusual about the whole plane ride. I was seated at the front row, facing a wall with the big, fancy logo of the airline. Like any anxious first timer, I finally got over my worries after seeing a mesmerizing view of a blanket of clouds outside my window. I was seated next to my host, a representative of the hotel and we were having a great time having small talk. When the plane started to descend, I swung back to my anxious self and feared for the worst. I was so careful not to show any sign of anxiety as not to invite criticism.

I reacted like any normal horror flick fan who just witnessed someone got slashed onscreen -- I yelped.

As soon as the plane made a touch down, I reverted to feeling alright so much so that I left my guard down which was a bad decision to do. Since the plane was an ATR 72-600 aircraft, it was bound to have a more bumpy touch down compared to other fleet variants. When our plane was finally slowing down at the runway, it made an abrupt stop and I reacted like any normal horror flick fan who just witnessed someone got slashed onscreen -- I yelped. Not only did I yelp. I also overreacted (another bad decision) by holding on to the bare wall in front of me like I was going to accidentally bump into it while strapped to my seat belt. If anything, I looked crazy and I had a good laugh out of it.

What about you? Have you had any self-deprecating travel experience that turned an irritating moment into a silly one?

Check out my other travel experiences:

Creepy Travel Tales
Why I Sketch Views In My Travels
Baguio City Has Two Faces
How Travel Changed My Life 
My Tribute To My Pet Dog and Home Buddy, Lancaster


  1. I was offered a Sex for pay before in one of my travels in Metro Manila(Mandaluyong) , I'm just curios though, so I asked the "Bugaw" on how much is the price. When I declined sinundan pa rin ako at pababa ng pababa ang price, i approach the hotel guard na kasi kinabahan ako that time. Pero maganda ang binubugaw na babae. LOL :-D

  2. Makatambay nga sa manukan country jowk haha

    1. Lemme know if maka-discount ka... sa pecho haha!


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