An adventurous couple head to the Philippines for an impromptu weekend of diving and suntanning. Their plans are challenged when they realize there’s just been an earthquake, and they’ve headed straight for a disaster zone.
Ethan: We had a day off or 2, so my girlfriend and I decided to take a trip. “Let’s go away!”
We got online and started looking for flights. Found a flight to the Philippines, Manila. “Alright, let’s go!” It was super cheap. We booked it straight away. It was 5PM and the flight was at 9PM. We had a couple hours to throw stuff in bags and get ready. Hurried off to the airport, made the flight. When we were in the air, we realized something.
“Hey… did you book a hotel?”
“Did you book a hotel?”
It was too late. We were already out of mobile range. We landed in Manila at 1AM, searching everywhere for a sim card so we could get a hotel. Found a hotel. Was a kinda shitty airport hotel near Manila Airport. We headed down to Batangas the next day. I wanted to do some free diving and scuba diving. We took a bus, 6 or 8 hours, then took a tuk tuk, a sidecar, to our hotel on the side of a mountain.
I guess there had just been a big earthquake in Batangas, and it was a disaster zone.
When we got there, there was no electricity, no internet, nothing. We got a shitty sim as well, so we couldn’t access the internet. We were stuck there, but as the only guests there, we were VIP customers. There were cracks through the whole hotel. The earthquake might have been a six. Anyway, we had an interesting time. It wasn’t terrible. We got a tuk tuk to take us out of there and got a bus back to Manila.
Me: No diving?
Ethan: No, everything was shut down. They were all on power generators, so they couldn’t fill air tanks.
Me: How long ago did the earthquake happen?
Ethan: It was the past weekend. If I had read the news, I would have known. “Big earthquake strikes.”
Me: I wouldn’t have thought to read the news either.
Ethan: Flights were cheap! 150 bucks for two people. I ended up doing some free diving off a boat, a little kayak. A couple guys took us out on a boat because they felt bad for us.
Me: Gives them a bit of money too.
Ethan: There was almost no food. Just one dish- Rice, chicken and cucumber.
We left Batangas and ended up at Taal volcano, which is pretty cool. You know Taal volcano? It’s an island in a lake, which is also set in another island and lake. We walked there, but she [his girlfriend] was pretty grumpy about that. It’s dusty as fuck. Shoes were ruined, volcanic soot everywhere. They were having some dragon boat racing the next day, but we had to head back to Manila. No drama in Manila, everything’s good. Seeing all the guns in Manila freaked me out.
Me: Manila’s sketchy, I don’t like Manila.
Ethan: No. Manila’s fucking scary. Guys walking around with AK47s and sawed off shotguns.
So we headed straight into the disaster zone.
How would you react if your hostel burned down? See what these Germans did when it happened to them.