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Cell Phone Feature Wish Dec 30

I was talking to a Filipino I used to work with and she told me that she wished her cell phone / mobile phone had a feature that let her send a voice message to someone because she was sometimes too lazy to type an SMS text message.

When she said this I started to laugh and then I asked her,

“Well, why don’t you just dial the number of the person you want to message and talk to them?”

I guess this had never occurred to her because she says to me,

” Yeah. I guess I could.  Couldn’t I?”

At this I had to laugh some more.  My first instinct was to think she was a moron or just absent minded but in actuality she’s a very smart girl. Obviously, living in the Philippines gives a person a much better understanding of Filipinos and how things are done here.

Filipinos will send texts (SMS text messages) a lot more often than they will make a phone call where as in the US and other countries we prefer to talk directly to the person opposed to taking the extra time and effort to send a text.

Why do they do this? Why do things the hard way? Well, usually I would say that’s their logic system but in this case there is  very good reason for it.  Simply put text messages are cheaper.

However, things are starting to change and that trend is starting to reverse itself but it’s slow going. With the advent of the unli-plans Filipinos are changing the way they use their phones.

What’s an unli-plan you ask? An unli-plan is when you pay a flat rate to either send an unlimited number of texts in a 24 hour period or you can make an unlimited number of calls in a 24 hour period.

Typhoon Washi – Typhoon Sendong Dec 20

As of the time I wrote this there are close to 1000 dead or missing people in the wake of Typhoon Washi, or as the Filipinos have named it: Typhoon Sendong. (Yes, the Philippines is in the habit of choosing their own name for typhoons despite what the rest of the world calls them and no, I do not know why.)

At any rate it wasn’t the storm that killed people but rather the flood waters and the landslides that followed that did the damage to life and property alike. The last I heard there were some parts of Mindanao that were under 18 feet of water.


It’s always amazed me how destructive and powerful water is and when I heard this I shook my head because it seems like every Typhoon there are just certain parts of the country that get hammered. I live in Cavite about 3 miles from the coast and we only got a bit of hard rain for about a day but it was nothing major.

So here is what I don’t get. All throughout history when people were in danger where they lived or if the place they lived was unable to sustain them they would move on in search of a better place to live. So why do people nowadays live in dangerous places and stay there long after they know it’s dangerous? I mean Japan/California with the  earthquakes would be an excellent example. But here in the Philippines there are just certain places that everytime it rains hard there is a tragedy because the people stay living in a place they know will either flood or there will be mud slides. Then they blame the government or logging companies for deforestation.


Cagayan de Oro can’t use that excuse because the city is situated at sea level. The city sits at the mouth of the Cagayan deo Oro river so when there is a Typhoon the river overflows its banks and floods the city. WELL, THIS ISN’T ROCKET SCIENCE PEOPLE! This is common sense. You don’t live in a flood zone and if you do you don’t stay there!

I am not stupid. I realize you can not just abandon a city so they should take steps to build some kind of a defense against flooding. If they built flood defenses and if they’re not adequate then they either have to build more or redirect the river or SOMETHING!

I know this is a poor country and all that but this is also a very poor country and a project like that would put a lot of people to work. I think it would be an excellent infrastructure project that would definite the local and national economy. Not to mention the fact that it would save lives.

OK, so the next argument would be where would the money come from? Well, let’s see. There is millions and millions of dollars that floods into the Philippines every year from the IMF and other world organizations. We know that money isn’t being used to improve education because the public schools in the Philippines are a joke at best.  We know the money isn’t being used for public hospitals because public hospitals in the Philippines are an even bigger joke. So there is obviously money floating around in this country somewhere and it’s not being used for the public good.


Well, I am not being negative. I am being realistic. Also, I am not a spokesperson for the Philippines. I am not trying to convince anyone to move to the Philippines so I am not going to sugar coat things in an effort to make the Philippines sound like a wonderful place to live. Don’t get me wrong. I love living here….most of the time….but as with anywhere else there are drawbacks to living here. It’s not a paradise despite what the brochures say. But by that same token Hawaii is not the paradise people think it is either. Neither is Thailand, Bali, or anyplace else that has gorgeous beaches and stunning women.

Real Life Philippines Launch Dec 08

Welcome to Real Life Philippines. This site is dedicated to providing various types of information about moving to or living in the Philippines.