Philippines, Day 13: Headed to Santa Maria

It is 4:41am on Tuesday morning and we just left a few minutes ago. I don’t know who had the idea that we would leave at two of the clock, but I’m glad that we didn’t. I made some room in the back seat here, so I will try to get some sleep with my sweater jacket pillow and a suitcase resting right above my legs.

It’s 8:12am, 7:12pm CST, and I just got done eating a fruit salad ice craze from Jolibee. That is my second time going to the Jolibee in Urdanetta, my fourth time in any Jolibee, and my fifth time eating food from Jolibee this vacation. [By the way, I never grew tired of Jolibee either- such a good restaurant!]

We are now in an area surrounded by mountains and I’m beginning to remember some of the things along this route that I saw before when we went to Baguio City. I think I’m going to stop now and enjoy the scenery.

For lunch we went and stopped at the house of one of Aunt Josie’s cousins. It was a new experience, because they had chickens freely walking all around their house. The outside of the house wasn’t much to look at, but the interior was pretty nice. I wonder if most Philippine houses are like that- not including the shanties.

As we continue on toward Sta. Maria, we keep passing many rice fields. There are hundreds of people out, both plowing and planting fields. I have seen both a water buffalo and a tractor being used to plow the fields. Out of all the different occupations that people have here, I think that those who grow the rice work the hardest. I still think it’s neat that they can plant everything in such straight lines just by hand.

Most of the families along the way raise their own goats and chickens. When you look out at some of the fields, you can see them peppered with red, yellow, black and white spots of animals roaming freely.

Right now, we are at the home of some of Lola’s relatives. We have been here for awhile, waiting for them to get done painting Lola’s and Aunt Josie’s nails. We got to look around at a few of the things they have here. We checked out a small outside building that they cook in. We also looked at their outhouse. They have several chickens and turkeys walking around. There are also a few good-sized [other birds].

They are almost done now and I think we’re going to get going. If we keep on stopping for so long at different places, who knows what time we’ll get to Santa Maria.

We just left the house where Lola grew up. After leaving her relatives, we went to see two other people very briefly before getting to her childhood home in Sta. Maria. Dad’s cousin, Earlynn, and her family live there now. They have two daughters, our second cousins. Sheila is nineteen and Karen is thirteen. They fed us supper and then talked briefly before we left.

The house is not very big; maybe the size of our living room and our kitchen put together. It has about one-and-a-half bedrooms, a small kitchen, a bathroom, and a half room of something I’m not sure about. Outside, they have a lot of different fruits and vegetables growing. It was okay, but too small for our family!

We got to our hotel here and found it to be not much better

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