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Heaven and Hell in the Philippines:

Journal of a Peace Corps Volunteer



Daniel H. Wieczorek



Heaven and Hell in the Philippines:

Journal of a Peace Corps Volunteer




Copyright © 2016 Daniel H. Wieczorek


ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


ISBN-10: 1-370-60079-8

ISBN-13: 978-1-3706-0079-3


Smashwords Edition, License Notes

This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to Smashwords.com and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.





DEDICATION:

This work is dedicated, first, to my mother and father. They always encouraged me to be adventurous and live life to the fullest possible extent.

Of course I must also thank the Peace Corps itself for selecting me to serve my country in the capacity of a Peace Corps Volunteer.

I could never have made it through the first year, the culture shock, the problems which you’ll read about, living with three different host families in my first 6 months and so on without the help and understanding of people you’ll read about here – Ronald; my host brother, Nestor; my good friend, George; my sleeping companion for 446 nights; JB and Katie F.; fellow PCV’s who helped me out immensely and of course all of the people who maintained contact with me through an abundance of letters and CARE packages for my 27 months of service. Thank you all. Thank you so very much.

Other Books by Daniel H. Wieczorek

English – Ilokano and Ilokano – English Dictionary

English – Ilokano and Ilokano – English Dictionary – With Some Notes on Ilokano Culture

A Book of Anagrams – An Ancient Word Game

A Book of Anagrams – An Ancient Word Game – Volume #2

Forest Resource & Allowable Cut – Fairbanks Working Circle (Alaska)


Some Books by Daniel H. Wieczorek & Kazuya Numazawa

Outdoor Photography of Japan: Through the Seasons

Outdoor Photography of Japan: Through the Seasons – Volume 1 of 3 (Winter & Spring)

Outdoor Photography of Japan: Through the Seasons – Volume 2 of 3 (Summer)

Outdoor Photography of Japan: Through the Seasons – Volume 3 of 3 (Autumn)

A Pocket-Size Version of Some Violets of Eastern Japan – 2nd Edition

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 1: Mt. Daisetsu (Mt. Asahidake)

Climbing a Few of Japan’s 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 2: Mt. Chokai (Choukai)

Climbing a Few of Japan’s 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 3: Mt. Gassan

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 4: Mt. Hakkoda & Mt. Zao

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 5: Mt. Kumotori

A Pocket-Size Version of Climbing a Few of Japan’s 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 5: Mt. Kumotori

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 6: Mt. Shirane (Kusatsu)

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 7: Mt. Shibutsu

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 8: Mt. Kiso-Komagatake

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 9: Mt. Kitadake

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 10: Mt. Mizugaki

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 11: Mt. Shiroumadake

(includes Mt. Shakushidake & Mt. Yarigatake)

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 12: Mt. Tate (Tateyama)

Climbing a Few of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains – Volume 13: Mt. Yatsugatake (Mt. Akadake)

Japan Outdoors



FOREWORD


Always try to keep in mind that this book was originally handwritten as a Journal. That means that parts may be extremely boring and mundane to you, the reader, but that those things were significant in the specific day of life for the author. Furthermore, due to it being written as a Journal, some tenses within sentences and paragraphs may not agree. As this was being transcribed from handwritten notebooks to this manuscript the author made an attempt to fix most of those problems, but surely some of them have been missed. For that reason we ask your patience and understanding while reading. An example of this might be Get up at 6:00 AM today and ate breakfast” instead of Got up at 6:00 AM today and ate breakfast.” Another important thing to note is that most thoughts are a single sentence and due to that, each day/date is generally entered as a single paragraph. This may make it difficult for you to read at the beginning, but hopefully, you can become accustomed to it.

The author was assigned, as a Peace Corps Volunteer (PCV), to live and work in an upland farming community as an agro-forestry specialist. His previous receipt of a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry and 15 years experience in Forest Management made him well qualified for the position. As the only American living there, and the first American most of the younger people had ever seen, there were many stereotypical ideas about what an American “should” be like. The people expected the volunteer to be different, but the volunteer’s GOALS were just to be a respected, active, productive member of the community. He had to be a full time student of culture as well as language to eventually be accepted into the community, as shall be seen. Just these two aspects of the job made it the challenge of a lifetime – let alone trying to accomplish anything in the field of agro-forestry.

The author was and is gay. The Peace Corps had materials available for gay people to pick up and read at the training center and the author DID pick up those materials and read them before ever going out into the “field”. There are a few places where gay encounters are mentioned, but not many. Why didn’t the author make more complete entries for his sexual adventures? The answer is simple – in the Philippines people often read over your shoulder when you are writing something, same when you receive a letter and are reading it. This same thing happens with every piece of written material that a Filipino finds. Therefore the author did not comment about many encounters due to the fact that if a Filipino found this Journal in the author’s hut, he or she would not hesitate at all to pick up and start reading it. The author felt that his and his friends’ sex lives were not something that he wanted just anybody to read about. While transcribing this material the author has made a few comments concerning sexual encounters, but only where they can be remembered. Now, 30 years after the fact, they surely will not harm the people involved.

Another thing to be aware of is that the formats change slightly over time as the author experimented and learned how to make economical use of space in his Journal and attempted to carry some of that formatting over to this printed manuscript. The author also made notes of his daily expenses, you may find that very interesting. Keep in mind, however, that at the time the author was living in the Philippines the exchange rate was approximately PP20 = US$1 and now (March 2016) it is more like PP47 = US$1, so prices are probably quite different now, as well as the subsistence allowance. Note that most item expenditures are rounded to the nearest peso.

Note that in the print edition of this book the expenses are nicely shown in tables, but for this eBook edition they had to be shown as normal text in a column and are not nearly as attractive as they are in the print edition.

There are some culture notes scattered about through the book at places where it seemed appropriate to enter them.

Note that when you see something entered in brackets [---] it is something which was added as the author transcribed this material from his original handwritten Journal. It did not appear in the original handwritten Journal. In some cases this was done to clarify a point and in some cases it was done as something about an experience was remembered while transcribing the handwritten Journal.

In most cases Ilokano words are italicized, but surely there are a few places where the beta-readers and author missed one.

Keep in mind that research has shown that “culture shock” is something which can continue for nearly two years. There are many places where it may be evident to you that the author’s reaction to something was probably due to culture shock.

When you get to the first page of the body of this Journal you will see how the author starts a new day. The following image is an example of how to interpret the information given at the beginning of each day.



“Where I slept” indicates the home or other lodging where the author slept during the night of that day. “Part of city” indicates a named subdivision or section of the city. “City” of course is the major city. “Province” indicates the province where this city (or other lodging place) is located.

By the way, the Peace Corps gives volunteers what is considered a subsistence allowance when they are in country. In the author’s case this amounted to about $100 per month during his two years in the Philippines. He later discovered that this was nearly equivalent to what the District Forester of his local Bureau of Forest Development Office was making, so the volunteer was in a pretty good place as far as money was concerned.


Peace Corps – The toughest job you’ll ever love. This is the slogan of the U.S. Peace Corps and the author found it to be VERY true.




Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Fairbanks, Alaska to Durham, Oregon

Chapter 2: Durham, Oregon to Berkeley, California

Chapter 3: Berkeley, California to Manila, Philippines

Chapter 4: Manila, Philippines to Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya

Chapter 5: Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya to Burgos, Cabarroguis, Quirino

Chapter 6: Culture Notes #1

Alcohol in Community Culture

Religion – Iglesia ni Cristo

Chapter 7: Burgos, Cabarroguis, Quirino to Gomez, Cabarroguis, Quirino

Chapter 8: Culture Notes #2

Site Transfer

Chapter 9: Gomez, Cabarroguis, Quirino to Building my House

Chapter 10: Culture Notes #3

Stereotypes

Acceptance Into Gomez

Sleeping Companion

Sleeping Culture

The Village Grapevine

On Being Gay

Chapter 11: Building My House through August 2, 1986

Chapter 12: Culture Notes #4

Anger

The Necessity of Demonstration

The First Year Draws to a Close

Birthdays

Christmas

Opening Presents

Cooking and Lighting

Chapter 13: August 3, 1986 through October 17, 1986

Chapter 14: Culture Notes #5

An Overdue Note on Acculturation

Going into the Second Year

Owning a Water Buffalo (Nuang)

Chapter 15: October 18, 1986 through January 22, 1987

Chapter 16: Culture Notes #6

Weddings

The “Art” of Moonlight Strolling

Chapter 17: January 23, 1987 through April 18, 1987

Chapter 18: Culture Notes #7

Death

Chapter 19: April 19, 1987 through June 6, 1987

Chapter 20: Culture Notes #8

Time References

Chapter 21: June 7, 1987 through November 16, 1987

Chapter 22: November 16, 1987 (#2) through December 10, 1987 – HOME!

The End

About the Author


Peace Corps:

The Toughest Job You’ll Ever Love.


Chapter 1

Fairbanks, Alaska to Durham, Oregon

August 23 – 27, 1985

Friday, August 23, 1985

Tent in Gravel Pit, Yukon Territory, Canada


Leave the house for the last time at 11:30 AM. Lunch and last minute things with Dave and then we say goodbye. Stop at Tok, Alaska for a bowl of soup and mail postcards to Dave, Dad, Chris and Mary. Animals seen today – one moose. First tank of gas = 271 miles per 21.5 gallons equals 12.6 MPG. Started trip at 131,000 miles on rig. First day 131,338 miles = 338 miles. Stop for night at gravel pit in Yukon Territory. Made it through customs, no problem.


$2,623.00 – $130.40 = $2,492.60

Postage 71.40

Postcards 1.85

Gasoline 36.50

Supper 5.50

Lunch 12.00

Toilet Paper 1.65

Coffee 1.50

TOTAL $130.40


* Forgot to tell Chris to forward HP stuff and that Dave has a shed key.

What a truly incredible day – moving out of my house and all, saying goodbye to my closest friend in the world. I’m too emotional of a being. I get way to upset by that kind of stuff, especially when leaving for two years!


* Tell Dave thanks for the little white pad.


I’m on the first day of an incredible new adventure. I can now begin to come down off the adrenaline rush of the last week. That adrenaline is a very potent drug that has some weird effects – if that’s even what I’ve been running on, or does your brain produce something else under such stressful times?


Saturday, August 24, 1985

Tent in Gravel Pit, 15 Miles Southeast of Watson Lake, Y.T., Canada


$2,492.60 – 250.00 – 9.85 = $2,232.75

USD $250 > $317.50 CAD $317.50 – 273.22 = $44.28 (Canadian)

Breakfast 8.00

Coke 1.85

TOTAL US$ $9.85

Stamps 3.00

Beer 10.60

Bug Dope 6.50

Jacket 100.00

Toiletries 32.37

Gasoline 109.75

Supper 11.00

TOTAL C$ $273.22


Up at 7:00 AM and hit the road. Stop for breakfast. Stop at Whitehorse, Y.T. for about 1.5 hours for buying of gas, beer, 222’s, jacket and etc. Back on the road with a 12 pack of real Canadian Molson beer! Saw a bear this morning. Rain showers for the entire 600 miles traveled today. Stop at Watson Lake for supper and mail postcards to Dave, Tony and Dave #2. Got 11.43 MPG on one tank of gas today and 12.79 MPG on another tank, hmmm?!

Tonight the odometer reads 131,907 = 569 miles covered today.

Stop for the night at a gravel pit 15 miles SE of Watson Lake.

My watch is now 1 hour slow from local time.

Stopped and made it a point to pee in the Yukon River today and again at the Yukon/McKenzie Great Divide.

Remind Dave he’s traveling with me.

Saw Northern Lights tonight.


Sunday, August 25, 1985

Tent – Somewhere in British Columbia, Canada


$2,232.75 – $100.00 = $2,132.75

USD $100 > $130.00 CAD $44.28 + 130.00 – 120.60 = $53.68 (Canadian)

Change 100.00

TOTAL US$ $9.85

Coke 2.00

Lunch 4.60

Gasoline 107.00

Food 7.00

Toiletries 32.37

TOTAL C$ $120.60


Get up at 6:40 A.M and hit the road. First stop was Liard Hot Springs Park and about 1 hour messing around there. Had a nice soak and even a bus load of tourists took the quarter mile walk to the hot springs, but luckily they just watched. The water was quite hot. On the road again about 10:00 AM and then not stop for lunch until 2:00 PM or so – just a bowl of good soup. Then cross the summit of the Rocky Mountains – where it had snowed about six inches last night. The road was plowed but still lots of snow beside the road. Saw three Woodland Caribou or some kind of deer today – they were pretty strange looking animals to my eyes. Played with my altimeter today. This is the day I wanted and planned to stop before dark, but somehow it didn’t happen. For 50 miles I looked for a place to stop. All roads advised me “Poison Gas Area – No Stopping, No Camping!” Finally I pulled off the road at a litter barrel and called it good enough for the night and here I am. I cooked Mountain House spaghetti and corn tonight and I’m drinking a beer.

Tonight the odometer says 132,425 miles which means I drove 518 miles today. One tank of gas at 210 miles on 17.5 gallons equals 12 MPG.

Got a photo of Folded Mountain – 2,060 meters.

$100 US dollars equals $130 Canadian today.

Postcard written to Dave today but not mailed.

Today feels like it’s been an extremely long day!


Monday, August 26, 1985

Tent – Somewhere South of Quesnel, British Columbia, Canada


$2,132.75 – $32.00 = $2,100.75

USD $100 > $130.00 CAD $53.68 – 53.68 = $0.00 (Canadian)

Gasoline 25.00

Food 7.00

TOTAL US$ $32.00

Coffee 2.00

Food 6.50

Gasoline 45.18

TOTAL C$ $53.68


Stopped in enough daylight tonight to nearly get my supper fixed without a headlamp. I traveled 480 miles today for 132,905 miles on the odometer. So 1,903 miles into the trip. I’ve stopped at a litter barrel very close to a litter barrel which I’ve stopped at once before. I’ve probably still got a good strong 600 miles to go tomorrow, but I’m traveling off my map and don’t know precisely where I am. Nothing really impressively amazing happened today other than that I hit Prince George and civilization. Somehow I only went 480 miles; just because that’s the way it happened I guess. Stopped in Prince George to wash the rig, but that’s really the only stop of the day. Used two tanks of gas; 233 miles with 21.5 gallons equals 10.84 MPG and 213 miles with 17.5 gallons equals 12.17 MPG.

Postcards to Chad and Dad and I’m going to write a letter to Dave upon completion of this. Boy I REALLY DID hit civilization today! Cars go by this spot so often it’s hard to even get in a toke while sitting here in the cab with the light on – incredible! I really had to study how to park tonight so as to be visible from the least amount of highway as is possible.

Well, wrap it up here and start on letter to Dave.


Tuesday, August 27, 1985

Tony & Janet’s House – Durham, Oregon


$2,100.75 – 38.75 = $2,062.00

Coke/Beer 10.95

Gasoline 19.50

Supper 8.30

TOTAL US$ $38.75

Total trip cost was $561.


A very long day! Started today with the odometer at 132,905 miles and arrived at Tony and Janet’s house at 133,478 miles for 573 miles today. Arrived at 9:45 PM local time, so total trip was 2,478 miles and took 103 total hours from the time I left Fairbanks. So, I averaged 24.06 miles per hour for the entire trip. No problems with snow goose [my pickup truck]. I had to add one quart of oil and replace the right front headlight. Dave, my brother, I call out to you and say “I made it.” It was really a trip arriving in Durham. The freeway tried to freak me out and lose me and even tried to wreck me, probably, but I endured and made it through to the end. Today I used two tanks of gas – 204 miles on 17.5 gallons equals 11.66 MPG and 211 miles on 17.5 gallons equals 12.06 MPG. Guess I probably averaged 12 MPG for this trip.



Chapter 2

Durham, Oregon to Berkeley, California

August 28 – September 1, 1985

Wednesday, August 28, 1985 – My 38th Birthday

Tony & Janet’s House – Durham, Oregon


A quiet day of getting my rig ready to take to the restoration shop (getting tarp off, stuff from under the seats, etc., etc.), unpacking things from all my boxes and trying to consolidate into a more compact package to take with me for the two year duration. Tony came home from work early and he helped me pack a while. We went over to Jim’s place, whom I haven’t seen in years.


Thursday, August 29, 1985

Tony & Janet’s House – Durham, Oregon


$2,062.00 – 711.20 = $1,350.80

Batteries 24.00

Binoculars 80.00

Camera 145.00

Tape Player 100.00

Shortwave Radio 142.00

Film 124.20

Shoes 20.00

Shirts 28.00

Supper 33.00

Book 15.00

TOTAL US$ $711.20


Today Tony and Janet both stayed home from work and they took me out to buy all the last minute things I needed (see Tony’s addendum below). We took my rig to Truman Bell’s shop today for restoration and I said my goodbye to my 14 year old rig for two years. I hope I still recognize it when I get back. Spent $711.20 today, which is detailed above, plus Truman wants $2,500 down payment on the rig restoration, so it was an awfully expensive day. Somehow, my accounts reconcile. My money dwindled significantly today! Hopefully I’ll arrive in Manila with some semblance of $1,200 left. It’s sure good to see Tony and Janet again. It’s pretty amazing how things can remain so much the same over the course of years.


Tony’s Addendum: My entry in Daniel’s Journal here at our place in Durham on his way to the Peace Corps. It’s been a day of running around – delivered Dan’s rig to Truman Bell east of Gresham, running around downtown Portland buying last minute things for Dan, $715 spent at one store for camera, radio, tape player, binoculars and etc. Had a great dinner at Lee’s Kitchen and topped off the evening with talk at home.


Friday, August 30, 1985

Tony & Janet’s House – Durham, Oregon


WOW! Well, let’s see – today my Indiana Jones hat and cabin pictures came from Mary. The hat is too big but I called San Francisco and they will exchange it for me upon arrival there. About 2:00 PM Steve & Deb arrived. It was pretty amazing seeing Steve again – and Deb, and their kid, Anna. Then Bob D. called and he’ll get here at around midday tomorrow. Then later in the evening Tim C. even came over! Haven’t seen Tim C. in years and years – not since Ann Arbor. It was practically too freaky. With all of these people around some strange memories of events, happenings, emotions and so on pop up in my mind. It’s for sure, strange.

Good Night!


Saturday, August 31, 1985

Tony & Janet’s House – Durham, Oregon


$1,350.80 – 88.68 = $1,262.12

At REI 50.33

Pizza 16.35

Food 20.00

Radio Shack 2.00

TOTAL US$ $88.68


San and Jack arrived shortly after we went to bed last night and slept in the driveway in their camper shell. So, they were here for breakfast! Steve, Deb, San and I went to REI in Steve’s rig and Tony & Janet met us there and we had a good time. I bought quite a bunch of stuff. Tim and Peg showed up soon after our return from REI. Bob D. came along in mid-afternoon. Around 6:00 PM Tim C. and Kathryn came over. That means for supper we had 14 folks – Kevin, Anna, Tony & Janet, Steve & Deb, San & Jack, Bob D., Tim C. & Kathryn, Tim & Peg and me!


Sunday, September 1, 1985

Tony & Janet’s House – Durham, Oregon


Today I got up pretty early and Steve and I took a pretty good walk. By the time everybody had gotten ready to leave in the early afternoon it had been one hell of a weekend with 14 people in the house. Ardis even called last night and we talked for around ½ hour or so. Steve & Deb sewed the “pile” and zipper I bought at REI yesterday into a “sleeping bag” and really did a fine job on it. Tonight Tony and I got everything into my duffle bag and backpack and I’m ready to be off tomorrow. Tonight I want to write a short & sweet letter to Dave so that he’ll know what’s going on. It sure does my soul good to think of him and his dog Abe and my house.



Chapter 3

Berkeley, California to Manila, Philippines

September 2 – 6, 1985

Monday, September 2, 1985

Some Hotel – Berkeley, California


$1,262.12 – 80.00 = $1,182.12

Lunch 3.00

Miscellaneous 7.00

Postage 40.00

Supper 18.00

Airport Limo 12.00

TOTAL US$ $80.00


Mailed letter to Dave and postcard to Dad.


This morning Tony & Janet took me to the airport and saw me off. What an experience the last week has been, hanging around and talking with my old friends. I arrived in San Francisco at 11:00 AM and started making new friends before we were hardly even in the Hotel Limousine. At 1:00 PM our first orientation/training session started and we went pretty strong until 9:30 PM. Then I called Mark W. and he was pretty freaked out to hear from me. We plan to go out and do something after training finishes tomorrow. Met lots of new people and did lots of new things today – too many people to even begin to try and keep names straight yet. These are the people that I am going to the Philippines with for the next two years though, so even though we will be scattered around all over the country I should try and learn all of the names. They are going to be my “family” I guess.


Tuesday, September 3, 1985

Some Hotel – Berkeley, California


$1,182.12 + 80 (pay) – 33.08 = $1,229.04

Meals 21.70

World Globe 6.38

Beer 5.00

TOTAL US$ $33.08


Today was a pretty intense day! What DID we do today? Practically too much to even begin to talk about. Went out and had a gyro for lunch and had excellent Thai food for supper at a nice Thai Restaurant just down the street from the hotel. They showed us a couple of films today and we had several types of indoctrination and training programs. We learned about the various reasons we might end up with the “Pan-Am Award” [basically this means you are sent home – kicked out of the Peace Corps – for some reason after entering your host country]. We also learned about malaria and the pills we have to take to prevent getting it and a lot of other “Health & Wellness” type of stuff. Went to Mark W’s. house this evening.


Wednesday, September 4, 1985

Some Hotel – Berkeley, California


$1,229.04 – 57.60 = $1,171.44

Meals 45.60

Coffee 3.00

Beer/Tip 9.00

TOTAL US$ $57.60


WOW! Today we got immunization shots, eyes checked and so on. Exchange my hat at TSI and then back to orientation classes at 2:00 PM. We had the “last night in the USA” dinner and party – just a few of us who have kind of become friends. It was kind of an expensive day.


Thursday, September 5, 1985

Some Hotel – Berkeley, California


Called Mark W. and I wrote a short letter to Dave G.


Today we got our passports. We all said “Goodbye!!” to the USA as we left the ground, and we were on our way to Manila, Philippines. At this point we’ve been airborne for about 6.5 hours. We departed at about 12:00 N. This is the 3rd leg of this adventure for me. I left home two weeks ago tomorrow, driving from Fairbanks to Durham – that was the first leg. Then there was the week in Durham with Tony & Janet and all of my friends who came to see me off on this grand adventure. Then the 2nd leg was going from Durham to Berkeley and the three or four days in Berkeley. Now I am on the 3rd leg of this new adventure in my life. Well, time for an airplane snack – I’ll see if I feel like writing more later on. These three days of comprehensive training have been really intense!

Later.

There are 85 of us for Regions 1, 2, 3 and 4 of the Philippines. We’ve all asked each other our names at least 85 times each too. For that same unexplainable reason as always – which I will never know or understand – I seem to have my gift of a smile, friendliness, warmth, whatever – and I am already getting to be fairly well known by most folks. I’m not afraid to stand up and make a fool of myself in front of a group by asking what may seem to be a dumb question – people appreciate that because they had the same question, but lacked the courage to ask it. So, I’m just being my same old Dan’l as I always am and I’m having fun with this entirely new series of adventures.


Friday, September 6, 1985

Missed Day – Due to Crossing International Dateline


Chapter 4

Manila, Philippines to Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya

September 7 – 9, 1985

Saturday, September 7, 1985

DATELINE MANILA, PHILIPPINES


$1,171.44 – 36.00 = $1,135.44 (Final Accounting of US Dollars)

Meals 7.20

Bus Tip 3.00

Gifts 10.00

Headphones 3.00

Beer 9.00

Snacks 3.80

TOTAL US$ $36.00

PP955 – 50 = PP905 (Begin Accounting in Philippine Pesos)

Beer 50.00

TOTAL PP50.00



It’s 16 hours earlier in Alaska.

We are here! We were going for 26 hours from San Francisco to Manila – I don’t even know the actual number of flight hours, I think about 13.5 hours is what it ended up at when we arrived in Manila and got our lai’s [flowers around our necks]. Then we were off to the Manila Midtown Hotel, where we got checked in pretty quickly. Then a few of us that wanted to, went down to drink a couple beers – our first San Miguel’s in country. We had already been going for 26+ hours and we still had the inertia to go get a beer! When we got to the room we found our Peace Corps Volunteer Medical Kit, a health handbook and a bunch of papers. They also paid us PP905 so the final U.S. dollars can now be accounted for.


Additional entry for Saturday, September 7 [I can’t remember why].

Slept in late and woke up at 9:00 AM. Then at 11:00 AM we had a meeting and then at about 12:00 N we were off to the welcome luncheon with the U.S. Ambassador and the Ministers of the various Ministries. At about 2:00 PM they let us go off on our own and some of us went down Mabini Street and finally to Rizal Park. After a few hours walking around the park we hired a jeepney to bring us back to this end of town – the Manila Midtown Hotel. Then after a break we went out to a supper we could barely eat because it was so much food and then we returned to the hotel. After a short swim here at the hotel we went (Mike S. and I) across the street for a couple of beers. Money is locked in the hotel lockbox, so no expense accounting tonight, I’m falling asleep anyway so, goodnight.


Sunday, September 8, 1985

Midtown Hotel, Manila, Philippines


We had a couple of meetings today, a good breakfast at Bumblebee Fast Foods and an excellent lunch there too. This afternoon they separated us into our Region Groups and it seems that most of “the gang” that I hang out with is going to Regions 3 and 4. Unpacked my duffle bag again and it’s beginning to seem that I brought lots of useless things. Went over to Smokey’s hot dog stand for a cheap supper that ended up being more expensive than anything else all day – at PP49.50! Jet lag is still being felt. I hope it’s gone tomorrow. I’m going to try for a long sleep tonight. We started taking Fansidar malaria pills today.


Monday, September 9, 1985

Midtown Hotel, Manila, Philippines


Financial accounting – 9/7 – through today


PP905 – 643 = PP262 + 552.30 = PP814.30 ($30 converted to PP552.30)

Postcards 15.00

Coke 20.00

Rides 5.00

Meals 165.50

Postage 80.00

Tapes 80.00

Miscellaneous 50.00

Lock 24.00

Lens Paper 35.00

Listerine 25.00

Unknown 138.50

Beer 5.00

TOTAL PP643.00


Ouch! Too much money already spent!


Letter & postcard to Dave; postcards to Chad, Dad, Chris & Mary.


What happened today? Well, I got my money out of the hotel lockbox and did a financial accounting through the present. I had some kind of placement interview with Clarita at 9:45 AM and then at 10:00 AM we got rabies shots and a TINE test for TB. Tomorrow we have to be ready to go at 5:30 AM and then we have a seven hour bus ride to Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya via Tarlac Bus Company. I think I’m going to go to bed now, good night. Oh – it feels like I’m getting adjusted to the time difference now, but not to the heat. I’ll be so happy to leave Manila.



Chapter 5

Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya to Burgos, Cabarroguis, Quirino

September 10 – November 24, 1985

Tuesday, September 10, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP814.30 – 109.40 = PP704.90

Meals 76.20

Coke 16.70

Beer 6.50

Fruit 10.00

TOTAL PP109.40


Today we were up at 4:15 AM and then on a bus at 5:30 AM and we traveled to Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya. They gave us lunch and more talk and then they took us to meet our host families. My whole family seems like very nice people and they seem to think I’m nice too. It seems that they had not finished making my room yet, so I watched and helped a little. Then we ate supper – rice, chicken and beans. My host brother did not come home tonight – the family said that he is afraid to meet a foreigner and that he’ll come back in a couple of days. Interesting.


Wednesday, September 11, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP704.90 – 45.00 = PP659.90

Rides 8.00

Sandals 15.00

Beer 22.00

TOTAL PP45.00


Well today was our first agro-forestry session, given by Clarita. It was disappointing actually; I don’t feel that we learned much. Then we had our first language lesson with Kathy – it was not too bad actually. Today they also gave us the first clues about the areas we may be sent to and how we may be selected for the sites. Tomorrow at 5:00 PM I have my interview about the type of site I prefer. I’m really looking forward to getting used to this heat.


Thursday, September 12, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP659.90 – 8.00 = PP651.90

Beer 5.00

Coke 3.00

TOTAL PP8.00


Today was less than a 50 US cents in expenses day! Amazing!


Today we had four hours of technical training and four hours of intensive language training followed by my placement interview. I think I’ll probably end up in a pretty remote place, probably most anywhere. Don told me we’ll know where by the 24th, only 12 days away. My body is not used to the heat yet, although I am beginning to feel a little bit better about both the heat and the new culture, but God it’s HOT.


Friday, September 13, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP651.90 – 28.00 = PP623.90

Beer 5.00

Toiletries 20.00

Rides 3.00

TOTAL PP28.00


Yikes, today was Friday the 13th. Nothing bad happened though. I feel like I lived 1.5 days today. We went on a field trip to the Santa Fe District Forestry Office in the rain, then we returned for four hours of language instruction and then home. In the evening there was a welcoming party. All in all it was an incredible day. At the welcoming party I joined in a Tinikling Dance – a kind of folk dance with bamboo sticks. I was the first male to volunteer, but after I broke the ice (I volunteered as quick as I could get my shoes off once they asked for volunteers) a few more males also volunteered. I guess we’ve been here a week now and it’s been a truly incredible week.


Saturday, September 14, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP623.90 – 17.00 = PP606.90

Beer 13.00

Rides 4.00

TOTAL PP17.00


Today we had school for half a day and then we were on our own. It rained very hard for a while in the afternoon, but then cleared up and got nice again. Mother took me to the farm, where Ronald was spraying some leafy vegetable for some kind of rot. I saw and learned how people climb the coconut trees and knock down the coconuts. Then I watched how they break open the husk and make a carrying handle on it. Chester met us in the field and mother told him that I climbed the coconut tree and knocked down the coconuts, but actually a small boy did it. I saw and studied a nipa hut and also saw where a large spring comes from the ground. Also saw a very big tamarind tree. I saw and learned about the tamarind, papaya, mango, coconut and other trees today. I learned that both the banana and the papaya will have fruit in one year after planting. Had a difficult day in language. My teacher at NVSIT [Nueva Vizcaya State Institute of Technology] was very upset because I had not learned the new vocabulary words for today. Tonight Ronald, my host brother, helped me study (with much patience) and that really helped out. I was able to teach him some English vocabulary too.


Sunday, September 15, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP606.90 – 10.00 = PP596.90

Beer 10.00

TOTAL PP10.00


This morning we bought, or bargained for, a six month supply of rice. We had to sack it at the house next door then take it to the schoolyard and spread it out to dry. Then, however, it threatened to rain and we had to hurry and get all the rice sacked up again, but then no rain came. In the afternoon David and Mark stopped by and we walked to the river and then stopped at the corner store for a single bottle of beer, but some stranger bought us two more bottles each. Finally we got away and went back to our homes. After dark we went fishing with electricity! I guess I got in the way because father took me to an aunt’s house, but Ronald and Herbert continued fishing.


Monday, September 16, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP596.90 – 5.00 = PP591.90

Beer 4.00

Rides 1.00

TOTAL PP5.00


Today we had four hours of language study and four hours of cultural indoctrination. We received rabies and typhoid shots. Rebecca helped me with translation today and Ronald and Herbert went fishing with electricity. It was hot today.


Tuesday, September 17, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Letter to Dad, postcards to Ardis B., Dave G., Jim W., Chris & Mary and Tony & Janet. I have not yet received any mail.


Not a lot happened today. We got out of classes early but did not have the opportunity to do much of anything with the extra time except drink a couple of beers! We had a briefing on our upcoming host volunteer visit and also the upcoming language test and another informational session about health and that’s about all for today. OH – no language study at home tonight so the family and I just sat around and had a good time with each other rather than spending most of the evening doing the usual language study. Ronald and I are becoming good friends, it’s good.


Wednesday, September 18, 1985

Host Volunteer Home, Villa Miemban, Cordon, Isabela


PP591.90 – 100.00 = PP491.90

Rides 18.00

Coke 3.00

Lunch 42.50

Slippers 14.00

Juice 5.00

Miscellaneous 17.50

TOTAL PP100.00


Today we were off on our Host Volunteer Visit [sent out to an actual Peace Corps Volunteer’s site to see what life is truly like as a volunteer]. Her name is Teresa L., in Cordon, Isabela – only about an hour from Bayombong, but it was difficult to get there. A bus went by the bus stop at 7:20 AM. but my Host Volunteer Visit [HVV] companions, Katie and JB, had not arrived yet, so we had to end up taking jeepneys to Solano and then to Santiago. We arrived 1.5 hours late but luckily Theresa was very patient and was still waiting at Letty’s Canteen for us. We did some shopping in Santiago then off we went to our Barrio – Villa Miemban. The walk in from the place where the road ends was four or five kilometers. We were accompanied by some really fine people, one of them, Nestor is a person whom I already consider a friend [he was so very handsome]. Teresa’s hut is really fine – I hope I can have an equally nice hut in the place where I end up. Katie and JB – husband and wife – will be replacing Teresa here in Villa Miemban when she ends her two years of service in November.


Thursday, September 19, 1985

Host Volunteer Home, Villa Miemban, Cordon, Isabela


Kololanti = firefly; Lumabas ak laeng = I am only passing.

WOW! What a day! Slept in until 6:00 AM and then off we went to look at some of the local “farms” and other things around Villa Miemban. Met the Barangay Captain and gave him my old flip-flops and then walked around all day in my new flip-flops and basically had very few problems with it, although I did fill a couple of toes with thorns. We returned to Teresa’s house around noon and took a break for lunch and then madam dama (=after a while) we went out again and headed up the hill. Less than half way up, it started raining HARD on us, so we again came back to Teresa’s house. By the time we got back we had all fallen down in the mud and were filthy so we showered by standing under the roof overhang. We did it naked and the neighbors got a good kick out of that. At the same time, we washed our muddy clothes. About suppertime Celia, Teresa’s co-worker from the Division of Forestry, came and we made supper. I talked Teresa into letting me “wok” some vegetables for supper and she made mung bean soup. We had a fine meal and all present were satisfied. Later in the evening Nestor and Rufino – two Igorots – came over and after a game of Scrabble we all had a good time talking. For a while Nestor, Rufino Celia and Teresa talked 100% Ilokano and everything went over JB, Katie and my heads. Then I got Nestor alone and we had a half hour or so to talk and then they left. Everybody went to bed but I’m still up for a little while writing in my journal. I’m thinking of starting a letter to Dave G., but just looked at my watch and noted that it’s 10:00 PM, so I guess I also should sleep. No money spent today.


Friday, September 20, 1985

Host Volunteer Home, Villa Miemban, Cordon, Isabela


Although this is being written on Saturday, what I want to say about Friday is that it was a very interesting day. Agang angaw-ak means “I am joking”, but I’m NOT joking – it WAS a very interesting day. We prepared a row for planting ipil-ipil trees – we were Celia, Teresa, JB and I and my friends Nestor and Rufino. In the afternoon we went up on the hill and looked down on all of Villa Miemban – then finally we came down and ate supper. After supper was the best part of the day. My friends (gayyem-ko) Nestor and Rufino, the Barangay Captain and many other people came over. Katie and Teresa dressed in the Igorot skirts and JB and I, with the help of the Captain, dressed in a g-string and participated in: 1. an Igorot Dance, 2. Bontoc War Dance and 3. A Kankaney Dance. At that point we were pretty pooped out from being in the g-strings and we went to guitar music and singing. By the time all of this activity was done Nestor and I had exchanged addresses and I promised to write to him and also told him “agsubli-ak” (= I will return). Everybody left at midnight and we crashed then.


Saturday, September 21, 1985

Celia’s House, Sinamar Norte, San Mateo, Isabela


We got up at 5:00 AM and started walking to the jeepney place at 6:00 AM. It was a long walk to the jeepney in the mud. Finally we got to Santiago and then from there we went to Teresa’s already planned baptismal dinner in Oscariz, Ramon, Isabela. We ate lots of good food including ASO, or dog meat. Then we went to Magat Dam, the largest dam in Southeast Asia and then back to the dinner and then finally, back to Celia’s house for a good evening of congeniality.


Sunday, September 22, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP491.90 – 203.00 = PP288.90

Rides 90.00

Drinks 24.00

Lunches 48.00

Slippers 14.00

Cheese 22.00

Toilet Paper 5.00

TOTAL PP203.00


It was a long day. From Celia’s house to Santiago to Letty’s hut, to the hills and lots of sweating and HOT! Then return to Santiago, eat lunch at the Bureau of Forest Development Office and then to the Pantranco Bus Terminal for the ride back to Bayombong. I was the last one in Bonfal East to return (the last Americano) and my mother and father were very concerned.

To summarize the Host Volunteer Visit [HVV] – it was a very fine experience, something I would be very happy to do again. I made some permanent friends, not only in the Barrio, but also I believe Teresa L. to be a fine person. This experience was as good as any experience I had when I visited the Philippines as a traveler back in 1984. I finally got home at 8:00 PM and the family was preparing for Market Day.


Monday, September 23, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP288.90 + 30 – 19.00 = PP299.90

Haircut 5.00

Beer 12.00

Ride 2.00

TOTAL PP19.00


Today I had four hours of language study, two hours of HVV debriefing and then we had a 1 hour talk by Ed Slevin [Peace Corps Director for the Philippines at the time]. I met Ronald, my brother (kabsat-ko) at the bridge and he took me to the barber for a haircut. Mike S. and his host family came over in the evening and we sorted and bundled vegetables and drank beer all evening. It was a good evening, but I didn’t get any studying done, that’s for sure. Tomorrow we have to be at NVSIT [Nueva Vizcaya State Institute of Technology] at 7:00 AM for site placement. My stomach is not quite right these days, not sick, but not quite right either.


Tuesday, September 24, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Letter to Chris & Mary.


PP299.90 + 400 – 55.00 = PP644.90

Aerogrammes 48.00

Beer 5.00

Ride 2.00

TOTAL PP55.00


Today we got our sites assigned to us. Mine is Burgos, Cabarroguis, Quirino. At first I was disappointed, but the more I read and hear about it, the happier I become. We had the site placement party from 4:00 to 7:30 PM. I went home fairly drunk I guess, it was fun anyway and that’s what counts in life. These days life is quite fun for me. Janice, one of the older ladies, called it quits yesterday and went home. I guess she has really had some weird things come down around here. Wonder if there will be anybody else who calls it quits?


Wednesday, September 25, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP644.90 – 30.00 = PP614.90

Stamps 5.00

Notebook 14.00

Ride 1.00

Beer 10.00

TOTAL PP30.00


We had four hours of language study in the morning and then a 1 hour BS meeting in the afternoon. Then come home and work on transferring language to new notebook until nearly dark. Then Ronald and I took the “gasolino nuang” (rototiller = gasoline water buffalo), via the road, to the field and picked up mother and the pechoy and radishes. The sunset was very intensely beautiful as we went to the field and with my brother Ronald it ended up being the high point of the day. The language is really getting me down, that and the total lack of any mail yet


Thursday, September 26, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Letter to Nestor & Teresa L. in Villa Miemban.


PP614.90 – 21.00 = PP593.90

Beer 15.00

Rides 6.00

TOTAL PP21.00


We had four hours of technical training and three hours of language study. Went out for a couple beers at the Greenfield Inn. That’s all there is to say for today.


Friday, September 27, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Aerogramme to Dave M.


PP593.90 – 32.00 = PP561.90

Beer 22.00

Photos 10.00

TOTAL PP32.00


We had seven hours of language study today – too intense!! There was a small party in the evening and my host brother Ronald joined me for a couple beers and then he and I came home.


Saturday, September 28, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP561.90 – 12.00 = PP549.90

Beer 10.00

Rides 2.00

TOTAL PP12.00


Today we had a field trip to District Forester Sarapi’s tree nursery and learned how to plant citrus and narra trees. I talked with my language instructor, Abe, and had a good discussion about how the language study is going. I am really enjoying talking to the language instructors and other Filipinos and beginning to feel like I’m the wrong color. This afternoon I brought home orange and cacao trees to plant on the farm. In the late afternoon we went to the Barangay Captain’s home and ate pulutan aso (pulutan = drinking snack and aso = dog meat) and drank beer. Then we had a hard time escaping. Tonight Coronado and his wife stayed here so Ronald & I had to share a bed. It was a pretty good day.


Sunday, September 29, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP549.90 – 135.00 = PP414.90

Beer 60.00

Rides 75.00

TOTAL PP135.00


Today Tom & Barbara, David F., Mike S and I took our families to Salinas Salt Spring in a jeepney. The families prepared a picnic lunch and the Salt Spring was incredible. Then we went to a picnic spot and ate the picnic lunch. Upon returning to Bonfal East, the family let me help with planting the rice and I planted about half of a row (5 plants wide). Hope that I didn’t mess it up to badly. I’ll take a look in a few days and see what it looks like. In the late afternoon I was tired, but still managed to do a bit of studying. My brother Ronald and I are becoming best friends, it will be hard to leave here in November.


Monday, September 30, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Aerogrammes to Tom L & Tim in New Zealand.

Letter from Dave G.


PP414.90 – 8.00 = PP406.90

Beer 4.00

Rides 1.00

Coke 3.00

TOTAL PP8.00


Today I went to NVSIT visit and they changed my language instructor on me. Surprise! Even after the long discussion I had with Abe on Saturday. I have the teacher that nobody else will put up with. Hmmm?! Why me? Plus, I’m all by myself with her. I’m confused. Today I got my first letter and of course it was from David G. my “napintas nga gayyem” (best friend) in America it’s really a beautifully written letter and I’m very happy. We had gamma globulin and rabies shots this afternoon. Meet Ronald at the guardhouse and we come home together. Study a lot in the evening.


Tuesday, October 1, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP406.90 – 112.00 = PP294.90

Coffee 40.00

Toothpaste 30.00

Soap 11.00

Toothbrush 25.00

Beer 6.00

TOTAL PP112.00


It was a very bad day in language class. It was a good thing it was only two hours long today! I practically ended up hollering at Fe, the new teacher. I guess I’m not in trouble but I had to tell Abe and also the language coordinator, Myra. It was a very bad experience. Ronald and I went to school together. I like to be with him, it’s always a good time when we’re together. Our small group had to do a schistosomiasis skit today and our group won first prize, a box of cookies – I got one of them. I played the part of the victim. We had a four hour field trip to NVSIT College of Forestry and planted some ipil-ipil seeds. Had a relaxing evening at home. Everything is okay.


Wednesday, October 2, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Postcard from Ardis B. – 2nd piece of mail!


PP294.90 – 15.00 = PP279.90

Beer 9.00

Rides 6.00

TOTAL PP15.00


Today I had four hours of language training with Fe again, my 3rd day with her and it’s really apparent, at least in my mind, that my learning curve has dropped to “NOTHING”. I took the case of beer bottles from James Garden (Sunday) back today to get my deposit returned – that’s PP40! They told me to come back Sunday so I will – maybe. This afternoon I studied at NVSIT until 5:00 PM and then met Ronald and my old language instructor, Abe, and we went out for a beer. Got home a bit after 6:00 PM. It was a pretty nothing day other than being frustrated with my language teacher, Fe.


Thursday, October 3, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP279.90 – 43.00 = PP236.90

Beer 4.00

Rides 2.00

Rice Cake 37.00

TOTAL PP43.00


(Rice Cake was for mother)


I had four hours of language study with Fe again – BAD NEWS, MAN! After that we had the first part of a SALT Practicum [Sloping Agricultural Land Technology]. We made A-Frames and laid out contour lines for each crew x three crews. It was an okay session. In the evening I spent a couple of hours working on a letter to Dave G – my best friend in the USA. It was not a very exciting day in the life of Dan’l I guess.


Friday, October 4, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Mail letter to Dave G.


PP236.90 + 20.00 = PP256.90


We went up on Bangan Hill today and worked on the SALT project some more. I got Abe back for my language instructor – naimbag (= good). I am feeling better again. Mother, Ronald and I worked on making the rice cake for the Barrio Fiesta tomorrow.




The photo below shows my Host Family. From left to right: Mother, Grandmother, Father, Robelyn (youngest sister), Rebecca (oldest sister) & her baby, Herbert (Rebecca’s husband), me and Ronald.



Saturday, October 5, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP256.90 – 15.00 = PP241.90

Beer 11.00

Boat 4.00

TOTAL PP15.00


Well, today we went up on Bangan Hill again and helped the forestry students build the Kiosky. At noon was the Barrio Fiesta at NVSIT – all of the students and families gathered together again for an ample supply of food and drink! Mother and Ronald were my guests. It broke up at 4:00 PM or so and then we returned to the house, took a siesta and then it was suppertime. I’m always feeling like I’m doing something wrong, but I talked with Ronald about this and he says no – I’m not doing anything wrong. I don’t know. We had a brownout in the evening.


Sunday, October 6, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


WOW! We did a day and a half today. I slept in until 6:00 AM. Father, Ronald Herbert and I went over across the river to the farm, where father has some cows. We rounded up the cattle and then after that we went fishing with electricity. We stopped for lunch at some relative of my family and it was “naimas” (= delicious). In the afternoon we did more fishing and we were walking in a narrow stream with water up to our chests – like they do in the jungle adventure movies. Later on we eventually made it back to the family rest hut and Ronald climbed a coconut tree and knocked down five coconuts and we ate three of them. Then we returned home and ate supper and crashed. Ronald and I shared a bed again due to there being visitors.


Monday, October 7, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP241.90 – 60.00 = PP181.90

Robelyn 20.00

Beer 40.00

TOTAL PP60.00


Had language study all day! Started a letter to Dave M. at state forestry. After school several of us went for a couple beers and then returned to James Garden for trying to get back my bottle deposit again – they say return tomorrow. Herbert and Rebecca were there at James Garden and we had a couple more beers with them. Bassit laeng nabartek-tayo (= we were a little drunk). Nita is still here so Ronald and I sleep together again. Sige – awan to problema (= it’s okay – no problem.)


Tuesday, October 8, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


Letter from Nestor in Villa Miemban. Mailed film (12 rolls) for developing, letter to Dave M.


PP181.90 – 40.00 = PP141.90

Postage 18.00

Toiletries 22.00

TOTAL PP40.00


Today we had four hours of language study, two hours of tech and 1 hour of First Aid training. It was a long hot day. I studied for several hours this evening.


Wednesday, October 9, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP141.90 – 20.00 = PP121.90

Beer 15.00

Rides 5.00

TOTAL PP20.00


Today we had language study for four hours, and then at 11:00 AM I had my language assessment. I guess it went pretty well, but I am weak on my linkers and markers. In the afternoon we had another tech session, four hours on Bangan Hill again working with the buneng (= machete). After class Abe and I went to the corner Sari-Sari store and had two beers each while working on my speech for my site visit. I got home at about 6:00 PM and Ronald has pinkeye! Nita, our visitor for the last two days had it when she arrived, so she probably gave it to all of us, great! I hope that I don’t get it, but unfortunately chances are real good that I will. I’ll try to get some medicine tomorrow.


Thursday, October 10, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP121.90 – 21.00 = PP100.90

Beer 13.00

Rides 5.00

Coke 3.00

TOTAL PP21.00


Today was such a drag. We had a culture session in the morning, which was pretty much a waste of time. In the afternoon we met our supervisors and talked about mutual expectations. After classes finished we took our supervisors home with us for supper. I discovered that he does not drink beer – at all! He’s also a vegetarian – Hmmm! Oh well – kasta laeng ti biag (= such is life). We’ll see what happens later on when I am working with him. The Peace Corps said that they’d send a van to Bonfal East at 8:30 PM to take our supervisors to the hotel, but they did not, so we all walked them to the highway and got a jeepney for them to take to the hotel. Such is life – again!


Friday, October 11, 1985

Host Family, Bonfal East, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya


PP100.90 + 40.00 – 40.00 = PP100.90


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