I have now spent two weeks in the vital Wellnessland Wholeness Center, here in Cebu City, the second-largest town in the large Philippine 7000 Island chain. This is a great Health Center combining a small hotel/hostel/Conference Center
with an attached Organic and Plant-Based Food Cafe as well as a general medical practice. It was founded and is run by a classically- trained, practicing physician, Dr. Romy B. Paredes, M.D., CMT, who is curing people with drug-free, alternative medicine. Here is Dr. Romy Paredes and me.
Last Saturday, I attended an Isha Yoga workshop, which I’d never tried before. Yesterday, I gave a three-hour talk on Inner Voice Hearing, which was only one of several speeches that I made this week!
We held the inaugural Phillipine Hearing Voices Network meeting in this country, which will now become the 36th nation to join the International Hearing Voices Network.
During the week, I traveled to Leyte with Dr. Paredes to speak at a professional meeting of SHEM: Self Health Empowerment Movement. which was a mini-vacation in itself. So, this country has provided me with a most-professional break in the usual anonymous touring.
Next week, I will travel on to other island communities after I visit Immigration to extend my 30-day entry visa. Maybe there will even be beaches in my future?
Wednesday, May 2: I’m in a very modern, brand-new, high-rise, hostel, the Lub-d, in Makati City, a section of sprawling downtown Manila.
I was at the sister hostel in Bangkok and knew this one would be very comfortable. It’s the newest hostel in the whole 7000 island Philippine chain. But, there are very few big cities out here and I’m keen to explore the smaller spots on the map.
I’m still sleeping off my overnight trip flying from Vietiane, Laos, last weekend; so I’ve merely walked through this particular neighborhood, ranging about for new restaurants to try. Though all the American chains like Subway, McDonalds and Wendys are ever-present too. I was thrilled to learn that the local taste isn’t dependant upon chilis and hot flavors, but consists of plenty of seafood, rice and veggies. Portions are huge and prices are low, so I get by on two big meals a day. Such a deal for really upscale living!
My eight-bunk, female dorm contains sturdy, curtained, cubicle beds and there’s a bathroom down the hall. So far, I have only a few roommates, but it’s so private and quiet that even at full steam, it would feel that way. My nightly rate is $15.
The atmosphere is still somewhat Asian but comes closer to the Western vibe than Southeast Asia. Maybe because everyone speaks English and there are all the familiar brands on the shelves. The weather feels exactly like Florida.
Now I’m planning my transportation to Cebu City further south on Cebu Island. It’s a 1.5 hour flight or a 26 hour sea voyage on a fancy cruiser ferry boat, and I’m leaning towards the water route as I haven’t done enough of that in my life. I’ve chosen a Health and Wellness nature retreat and spa as my accommodations there for as long as I decide to stay in that town, which is the second largest town of this country.
The photo course I was interested in isn’t available any more here; but I’m hoping I can find one in the college town of Dumaguete, where I’ll head after Cebu. I must start shooting pictures of my new life here, anyway; new skills or not.
This is a good possibility for a retirement, once I stop traveling. The country bends over backwards to attract retirees with a serious discount card (did I hear 20%?); a long-term visa; and a monthly living cost of $800 to $1300 per person, per month. And yet, high quality standards and excellent medical facilities. Social Security won’t send checks here, but it’s easy to have it deposited in a stateside bank and then accessed by ATM, as I do now. I’ll keep mentioning this attractive possibility as I learn more.
Haven’t laid eyes on the famous turquoise blue water yet, but that will happen soon.