We got up, ate and headed to airport by 7 am local time. Got our boarding passes for our 9:30 flight to Manila. Japan Airlines may be the nicest airline I’ve ever flown. The windows tint instead of a physical shade you pull down. It was the nicest plane and the nicest airport I’ve ever been in.
Landed in Manila at 1:30 local time and no luggage missing. Loaded up the vans and headed north to our first site – Santiago-Isabella to a dump site named San Jose. According to Google Maps, this is a 5.5 hour drive.
That ain’t gonna happen.
Traffic. Manila is actually Tagalog for ‘parking lot’. I kid. Not really. We actually stay moving through out the city and avoid the rush hour disaster.
Scenic Route. There are not any straight roads as far as I can tell in the Philippines.
Headlights are optional. About an hour outside Manila, it starts getting dark. Country dark. Not city dark. A kind of dark that sucks in light. And yet, about half the motor-trikes don’t have headlights.
At one point, you just understand that either we are going to die or cause the death of another.
Because we are passing on the curves, blind, and sometimes get triple wide with cars on a two lane road.
It’s a miracle more accidents don’t happen.
Different Set of Travel Rules. We are traveling in two vans so Van 1 stops for a bathroom break. Van 2 stops with us. We get out, get snacks, grab Krispy Kreme doughnuts and get back on road.
45 minutes later, Van 2 stops for gas. Van 1 stops with them. After Van 2 gets has, we get on the road.
15 minutes later, Van 1 stops for gas. Van 2 stops and waits.
40 minutes later both vans stop for dinner.
And now you really understand why a 5.5 hour drive takes 9 hours.