I live on White Beach in Puerto Galera on the Island of Mindoro in the Philippines.
The place is nothing like Bohol or Boracay, but is like a sleepy village with beautiful sand and some quaint and not so quaint bars. It is a haven for divers and explorers, and in peak season, thousands upon thousands of people descend on the area and the money keeps the economy going.
Mellisa from Germany is a 20 something lady who is visiting the area and taking up diving skills.
She has been out a few times learning the basics, but now the weather and nature are holding her back. This is her first time in the Philippines, and she is getting to use the major cultural differences, but she loves meeting local friends.Out of season it is a different matter all together. It is extremely hard for the bars to survive and staff get laid off. But in the main, the diving can continue most of the year.
In her short time here she became friends with a few expats and Filipina alike and was invited to a new bar opening. Now, the bar opened off season and as she sat with us drinking Sanmig she was surrounded by the Major and his entourage and a few expats. Why is this interesting?
Well, the day of the bar opening the Philippines was still dealing with a really bad typhoon. So, as we ate and drank at the bar the windows were covered by a tarpaulin to stop the wind blowing you away and to stop the sea spraying across your food.
The power was off and on all night as the wind blew through the transformers and wires, so part of the opening night was by candle light and the food that was cooked was quickly served. Other food could not be cooked until the power came back on.
Melissa found this very amusing, that was until nature threw another punch at the opening night. The typhoon was still blowing when the whole building started to shake and the floor beneath her began to move. She had a look of panic and we explained that we were in the middle of an Earthquake. After the rumbling stopped, she looked around at everyone else who just continued as before.
She told me her friends in Germany would never believe her at all. Well, it is more fun in the Philippines.