I don’t know if martial law is coming to the Philippines but I think it is more likely than not. It all stems from the new President, Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. He is not a “do nothing” president that is for certain. He is bringing changes within the Philippines and doing it in a very short time.
There are many places I’d like to go in the Philippines that I don’t think I’ll ever be able to see but I can tell you about them. If you are not here, you may not know about these places at all and you can add them to your list and perhaps to tell me what you saw. I’ll start with places to see in Bohol.
In Bohol, you will find caves, diving, floating restaurants, waterfalls, bicycle riding in the sky, bee farms, old churches, and Spanish built structures from the occupation.
The Philippines is more laid back, that is good for me. I’ve learned to be a little more laid back but right now, I’m not too laid back ha ha. I’m okay really but a bit irritated. This time of the year it is not uncommon for my doctor to be gone for a month or more at time. We ask him every time we go, “Will you be out of the country next month.” Sometimes, he is and I know to go back and get my Xanax prescription early or later. Sometimes he says no but then he’s gone anyway. That’s what happened this month.
The IRS is being asked to police far more than taxes these days. As a citizen of the USA, even if you move to the Philippines or other foreign country, you still have federal obligations and the IRS is often used to enforce them. Congress seems determined to increase the power and reach of the IRS. There is also a good deal of misinformation out there about what is required.
This was an anxious period for me. It all started when I went to the ATM to withdraw money to pay my bills and to live on. When I tried, it showed my balance was zero but I had just sent a sizeable amount of money to my Philippines BDO bank account.
I hate to hear those words. No it’s not how we did it in the USA but the obvious response is, “I’m not in the USA.” Why be here if you want to do it like your home country. Sometimes, I feel it too. I don’t say it out loud but today I thought it to myself.
“Do not excessively annoy and do not be easily annoyed.” Long before there was an Internet we had what we called Bulletin Board Systems or BBS. There were two major networks, FidoNet and Alternet. Fidonet had one rule and it is stated in the first sentence of this article.
I hear so many foreigners come to the Philippines and complain and then complain some more. They complain about the Philippines and they complain about other foreigners. This is a human trait and it is a hard thing to fight. I find myself doing it, rarely but I do fall into the trap just like everyone else I know. I know one person that I’ve never heard do that and he’s a Methodist minister that seems to have mastered Christianity better than anyone else I know. He would be the first to tell you he’s far from perfect. That old trite saying is true, “If you don’t have anything to say, say nothing at all.” At least it’s something to strive for. Being positive is contagious and will improve how others see you.
As of yesterday, February the 8th I have lived in the Philippines nine years. Even with life’s problems it has been the best nine years of my life. Jessie has been a big part of that and things are better between us. Though this morning, I was really stressed out because her kids need to be here and that’s just not possible due to financial constraints that I will go into later. Like I said, life has problems to conquer no matter where you are.
On the second of October 2015, I sent myself money from my USA bank account to the Philippines. Just like I have been doing for the last seven years. The last six, have been to my bank account. Everything appeared to be normal but there was one early warning sign. I usually get notices on my phone that the money has been received. I never got that notice. I did get an email and my Xoom account showed the money transferred within 30 seconds which is also routine. My trip to the bank though, it was anything but routine. I tried to withdraw the money from my account and only got a message “Your transaction could not be completed.” I’ve never seen that message before. I checked the balance, Jessie was with me and she let out a gasp. I had sent myself almost 70,000 pesos and my balance was zero. What is worse, I have only 400 peso or about $5 USD in my pocket left.