Posted by: powellpjc | February 5, 2012

We Ride.

By the way, if you click on the pics they get bigger due to some computer voodooism.

After 6 months in Subic Bay, 4 of them on the hardstand and a hell of a lot of work done, we are back on the dusty trail. I very much enjoyed the life in Subic Bay/Olongapo area, meeting the Filipino people, shopping at the markets, getting things repaired that in Canada I would have thrown out because no one knows how to fix things anymore—we just change out the part for an expensive new one or simply buy a new one—and a whole lot more.

The route from Subic Bay to Puerto Galera. First stop on the way to Singapore

I liked the ‘hairy, mannie, peddie’ for instance. That is a haircut, done by a ‘bacla’ (man in gender but female in all other respects—hair style, high heels, swish and flirt) the manicure and pedicure done whilst hairs being cut by a sweet young lady. The haircut is always followed by neck and scalp massage, whether you have a bacla cutting your hair or not. This one hour package would set me back $4.00.

I bought a scooter when I arrived in Subic back in June and I quite enjoyed zipping through the tight streets of Olongapo doing my various errands.

My scoot. Bought it for $1000 and sold it for $800 after 6 months use. One of my better financial decisions in this miserable life.

Very few foreigners in the city of 200,000. When in the market I was often the only strange looking white guy and had a whale of a time chatting up the vendors and fondling the produce.


The schools all seem to be private and funded by students’ families and all children up to end of high school wore uniforms—different colours but similar styles. Delightful and elegant when one recognizes there is deep poverty in the tough streets.

Knew nothing about the Philippines when I arrived here 7 months ago and still have much to learn but what I have learned, I like. I could play out the string here.

Paul Mahony joined me last week for the next two months and we sailed clear of Subic on January 17th making for Puerto Galera, an old haunt for me. Met up with Johnny Macmahon, a friend from the Marshal Islands and other Pacific islands and finished up a few boat chores for a few days.

Then it was south to Busuanga, one of the northern islands of Palawan after an easy 2 day sail. Did manage to rip the main headsail in half (pilot error) but rigged my solent stay and smaller jib and we sailed on just fine. Couple of nights in Llultuk Bay was very pleasant. Paul saw a dugong (sea cow, similar to manatees) and that is a very rare sighting so we are told.

Once more up the mast, fixing the damn furler. Anything that can go wrong generally does. We all know this.

An easy day sail brought us south to Busuanga Yacht club harbour where we picked up a mooring. There are two dive resorts here and we’ll be ashore tonight to sample some proper cooking.

The north end of Palawan is a group of islands called Busuanga. The yacht club we stopped at is at the end of the blue line. Lovely spot, typhoon hole and great views.



  1. Good luck guys and fair winds.

  2. Glad to see you are back on the water again. What were the repairs you had to have done while on the hard? I’m assuming this is about half way on your trip.

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