Saturday, September 14, 2013

September 14, 2012

We arrived in the Philippines very early in the morning on September 14 – something like 3:00 a.m.  Maybe it was because of the insanely early hour, but for some reason, navigating the Manila airport and collecting all of our luggage was nowhere near the difficult experience I expected it might be.  We had converted most of our money to pesos before leaving, so that was a huge help.

Our agency’s liaison met us exactly where we said he would, and the four of us tumbled gratefully into the waiting car.  (Little did we know that by the end of our trip we would truly have had it up to here with the driver our liaison found for us.)  After hearing horror stories about the traffic in Manila, we were also surprised that it was nowhere near as bad as we expected in the middle of the night.  We went straight to our hotel, the Fernandina 88 Suites Hotel in Quezon City, and checked in.

The rest of the 14th was mostly a blur, seeing as we slept through the majority of it.  I don’t think Gregg and I were awake nearly in time to have normal breakfast brought to the room via room service.  We had a small, simple meal and then met with our agency liaison in our room to go over the schedule for the next two weeks.  We chatted with him for about an hour, and then started going through our bags to sort out what could be left behind at the hotel in Manila while we traveled on to Legazpi. 

Later that afternoon, Gregg and I had the hotel’s massage therapist come to the room so we could get massages.  This was interesting, because she did not have a table, but did the massage on the bed.  While Gregg was getting his massage, I went out into the kitchen/living room area of the suite and worked on updating the blog and taking some pictures.  We both ended up relaxed and ready for dinner.  We joined my parents in their suite, which had a larger table, for room service dinner.  After that, it was time for bed.  We had a very early wake-up call the next day.  The next day, we would be meeting Francis for the very first time!  

To Be Continued...

Manila traffic outside our hotel window.

Manila at night.

Getting our gifts ready for Francis' caregivers.

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