The Adventure Begins
Wow, what a day. I think we’re a little shell shocked. We spent mind and body numbing hours sitting in traffic just to eat to a handful of fried dumplings. We had three goals for today. Buy flip flops, buy an umbrella, and have lunch in the Divisoria district of Manila. Sounds simple doesn’t it? It’s not. In fact it’s excruciatingly painful and not my idea of fun.
For me, Manila is a crazy city. It’s a frenetic hive of millions of people going about their daily lives in a noisy, steamy and pungent environment. It’s a city of contrasts. Drive through Global City, one of the newly developed areas, and you’ll pass a Rolls Royce showroom and construction hoarding announcing the buiding of new 6-star Shangri La hotel. Then make your way to the Divisoria Markets and you’ll notice squatters and their make-shift homes dotting the roadside.
“You can’t bring an unwritten place to life without losing something substantial. Manila is the cradle, the graveyard, the memory. The Mecca, the Cathedral, the bordello. The shopping mall, the urinal, the discotheque. I’m hardly speaking in metaphor. It’s the most impermeable of cities. How does one convey all that?” ― Miguel Syjuco, Ilustrado
The city isn’t for us. Tomorrow we make our escape to Palawan.