Experiencing The Mania of Manila

Out of all the natural disasters we’ve survived (fire, flood, earthquake, tornado…) coming through unscathed through a typhoon in The Philippines was of the more mild. Though it did lead us to some really stupid choices. I’m pretty sure the “l” in Manila is silent.

We recorded this episode of our travel comedy podcast at the tail-end of a 14-day trip to The Philippines. We had many experiences worth of sharing, most of which we’ve shoved into this episode. Listen in as Evo tries to talk about the lovely island of Palawan. But Sheila won’t let him.

You’ve probably heard about the terrible traffic in Manila. It’s every bit as bad as people say, so prepare yourself. If you can, we highly recommend taking a Jeepney as part of your public transportation. Not because these stretched Jeeps decked with more chrome than any cholo’s hoopty in L.A. are faster than walking, mind you. But it’s hot out there, and you need to experience some local color.

Because of the traffic and the typhoon, we didn’t get out all that much when we were in Manila. But we really didn’t care, because the fine folks at the Sofitel Manila Plaza took great care of us. Our top-floor room had a great view of the bay, and their cheese room (yes, an entire room dedicated to cheese) was a welcome sight for two weary travelers from lactose-intolerant Bangkok. If you see us and it seems we’ve put on a few pounds, we’ll thank you for keeping it to yourself.

When we did brave the traffic, it was to either a) battle with the Royal Thai embassy or b) deal with dental emergencies. The first is a story of needless bureaucracy (why the hell don’t all embassies for the same country follow the same rules?) and the second one a gentle reminder that sushi shouldn’t have hard things in it, so check before swallowing.

You’ll also hear us rave about the beef at Sarsá, the selection of Filipino craft beers at Alamat, the local rum called Don Papa, and a giant party with Travel Massive. It’s all part of our TBEX Asia 2016 experience. Evo was the keynote speaker, though Sheila will tell you that Scott Herder’s session on Hyperlapse videos was the clear winner. For evidence of that, expect a few dozen videos from her over the next… forever.

After that, those with delicate senses might want to end this episode early. Because the next part is a little… blue. First there was Michelle, the overly aggressive prostitute. Then there was the beer drinking contest that Evo won (of course.). Which led to a visit to a sporting establishment (of sorts) that Evo’s still rather conflicted about. However, there’s too much photographic evidence to deny it happened. No, we’re not posting links. We are, however, laying the blame squarely at Anton’s feet, since he sanctioned the event. That may not give Evo the salvation he’s looking for, but it makes him feel slightly better. Though we’re significantly poorer in the pocketbook after the experience. Because apparently it costs money to referee a little people boxing match?

You could help us recoup some of those dollars by supporting us on Patreon. Each month, we send hand-written postcards to our supporters all over the world. We have extra, so get on the list and we’ll get one in the mail to you right away!

Music for our show is graciously provided by the fantastic band Velella Velella. They make killer tunes, and you should buy all of their stuff. It’s fabulous!

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This One Time (The Podcast) features retellings and recreations of the best (or worst depending on perspective) travel stories encountered in a life lived abroad. Stay subscribed on iTunes or whatever else you use to listen to podcasts and you’ll never miss an episode.