26 July, 2013

Manila experience 2013 summer

I have worked for a second car exporting company for three month located in Yokohama, where is too far from my home because it takes one and half hour by trains. And my position was accounting however, my actual task was not literally accounting but was sort of sales assistant.
If the task had been an accounting related, I would have used an accounting system, would have seen journal entries along with bills, if the database system had been an accounting one, its past data should have not been editable.
There were personnel problems as well. An unreliable manager and a staff on behalf of human resauces, lazy and selfish colleagues. There were even organisation charts Low salary, poor allowances. The wrest thing for me was the ratio of smokers. The working space was non-smoking but there were so many people smoking regularly and it caused smelly atmosphere.

Under this condition, I was tremendously stressed out and just thought that this was not a right decision to make, in short this was a clear mistake. Therefore I have made my mind to leave this company after the end of a contract period. Meanwhile during my work I had a lot of opportunities to work with the company's Philippine office, where helps the headquarter basically in the area of sales assistant. Consequently I used make rings quite a few times and gradually I have got interested in the country they work. And I hit on an idea to have a vacation in Manila in order to see the co-workers even though this is not a business trip at all, just for fun.

First of all, although it should be a seasonal reason, the fights were expensive for the distance. So I had no choice but to stay Taiwan for just one night to wait for a flight to Manila because this way was even cheaper than direct flights between Tokyo and Manila. When it comes to end of July, summer vacations begin in general and it was never a good thing for me as a timing. The second thing is that a hotel I have booked during my travel was located in literally a slam area, where was quite famous for local people. So you can't look around without hiring a taxi. My arrival and departure were both by a taxi.
My co-workers have advised me that I should not walk around the particular area, even if I walk there, I should take off anything looks expensive for example my watch, camera, phone otherwise these things could be stripped by thefts or I could be attacked by natives. It's needless to say that I was so scary to be there. It was rainy season therefore the weather was quite changeable like the UK. But the rain in Manila was so hard, which also has been stressful for me.

On the first day, I was supposed to see my co-workers straight away along with some souvenirs from Japan all the way. And then I got a taxi to get their office, where they were working. The distance from my hotel to the office was not too far on the map but the co-workers have advised me again like "it'll take 3 or 4 hours". I couldn't believe it. As soon as I got into the taxi I was obliged to lock the door, otherwise someone else trying to rob expensive stuff might rush into the taxi.
In reality, the traffic in Manila was chaotic. So many people walking and originally there were numbers of car on the road. Plus, a taxi driver driving me to the office was not quite familiar with the way to the destination. I had double-checked many time in order to make sure if the taxi going correctly or not. The driver was always unsure despite saying like "trust me". Anyway I clearly remember he asked people walking on the street of the location of the building. Finally the taxi has reached the office after 4 hours driving, which was exactly my co-workers anticipated. However, the driver was not unwilling to let me go for driving charge. When I got on the taxi earlier, he didn't turn on the mater and then said that "300 pesos to the office". But when I was about to get off the taxi, he said 300 is not enough as the taxi has consumed petrol. Such a ridiculous excuse!! I couldn't help shouting in the car and he has conceived my allegation because of that.

Me and my co-workers went to dinner nearby the office. There were some restaurants and a fish market. One of the co-workers has suggested to buy some seafood and bring it to a restaurant and we all agreed with her. Although I expected cuisine, its quality was very poor. Maybe because the seafood was not fresh enough. Vendors sold the seafood without icing. But a sign at the market says "everything is fresh"...
I got back to the hotel by taxi. I suppose that was 40 minutes drive or less at night.

The second day was raining almost all day and also again me and my co-workers meant to meet up at a sightseeing spot. As it was not too much distanced, I have decided to walk to the spot despite it was adequately dangerous on the street. Just respecting their advice and walked carefully. During my walk, I witnessed some people lying on the street and it was stinky as well from time to time. And of  course having carried my camera in my rucksack, I have taken photos very occasionally, picking it up from my bag whenever I found something interesting and then put it back after every chance.
Finally I have arrived at the destination and met them again but one of the most famous sightseeing spots was closed at that time and it has begun raining very hard so we have got evacuated at a convenience store. And after that we have visited a church and a shopping centre.
At the shopping centre, there was an ice skate link, and were so many local people due to the weather. I had a look some shops but it was not very interesting. I have spent more time at a supermarket next the shopping centre after we've got apart.

I had a particular dessert called "halo halo" at a food court of the shopping centre which eventually caused my stomachache and after a while I was completely down, straggling from my stomachache in my room on my own. A nightmare.
Next morning, I have left Manila. On the way to the airport, and got on a taxi. The mater was on and it signifies the fare. Due to the accident last night, I was not 100% alright and had a mistake. I have paid 10 times as much money as the mater showed. The amount itself was not desperate in Japanese Yen however the driver earned too much. 

My very first travelling in Manila was not necessarily fantastic since many accidents have happened in a few days. But this is the reality, this is what and how Manila is. There are no ways to avoid to feel some gaps between my and their standard. Yet I have experienced and learned a lot of things.