Today I want to share answers for the questions people timidly asked me via e-mail. I collected most of them and placed in the file named “Shy & Embarrassing” because sometimes questions concerned such basic and strange things, that it must be hard to ask, I guess. So, below the most frequent with as specific as possible answers:
- Is there hot water in the Philippines?
Of course! You will find hot water in the sea usually, because in the tap, in 90% of cases there is only cold one. Actually that cold water is not so cold thanks to high temperatures and huge insolation. Most of the water pipes run on the ground, so water inside becomes warm or hot shortly and you have it in the tap or shower as such. That is the most common solution in private houses, however, many people install flow-water heaters as well. In most of the resorts and hotels they have such heaters in the standard offer.
- Do I have to eat with my hands there?
If only you want, why not to? I can only promise that in every, even the most basic Philippine eatery, you will get fork and spoon at least. Knives are not so obvious because locals generally do not use them, however, in many restaurants (and for sure in those touristy ones) you will get full set of cutlery.
- Are all toilets/restrooms like squatting pan?
No. Actually I saw squatting pan toilets only few times so far. In most of the places there are “western” water closets but quite often their hygiene and cleanliness leave a lot to be desired…
- Is that true Filipinos wipe their backside with hand after pooping?
Yes, that’s true. Same as in India or many other Asian countries. Actually they do not wipe with the hand only but after pooping clean backside with water and they always use left hand to do that. That’s why shake right hand of any newly met Filipino J. Now we can start to discuss which way is more hygienic and healthier, whatever. My simple advice is to have tissues always with you, because in most of the toilets there is no toilet paper.
- Is that easy to “pick up” nice Pilipino girl?
I’m not going to answer this kind of questions although they are extremely often. I included this one here only to state that neither my blog nor this site is a dating site or “easy sex advise” one…
- My English in not perfect. Should I expect difficulties in communication with people?
If only you have basic knowledge and are able to place an order in a restaurant, you will survive. With this kind of English skills you can easily compare to half of Filipino population. The most important thing here is to be open for others and get to know them. And remember – a bottle of local rum usually “increases” your communication skills on about 30% 😉
- How about my electrical apparatus? Will they work properly?
Yes, no problem. There is the same voltage as in Europe or US. In case of outlets, they are like in the US, but in most of the shops you can buy very cheap adapters.
- Can I drink water from the tap directly?
I know many people who do and they are still alive. It is important though “westerners” have different bacterial flora and sometimes, especially during short visits in Asia, our organisms can really suffer. I generally try to avoid tap water and most of foreigners do the same.
- Is that true it is easy to get drugs even on a small island?
Generally in the Philippines that is “piece of cake” but Siquijor is unique in many respects, also in case of drugs. It is not only hard to buy, it is said the quality is very poor as well. I cannot confirm, because I have never had the need to buy. You have to remember though drugs are completely illegal in Philippines and law is very restrictive; from my observations Siquijor has very active authorities and police in this matter!
- Is serious relationship with Pilipino woman possible?
It is possible, of course. We are all humans, we meet people, like them, fall in love. What’s more Philippines is catholic country and if you are catholic and want to get married, nothing will surprise you. From my own experience I can only add, that typical Pilipino is extremely jealous and quite often that may be the reason of faster going out from even the most romantic relationship.