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Living and Being around Filipinos (part 2)

In part 1 I mentioned a lot of the things I like about Filipinos.

Now some of the little things I do not like. One is courtesies. In driving, walking in the mall, market or on the street.

With driving, they change lanes without looking. At intersections it is who can force themselves through and block your way. Very rarely does a car or jeepney stop and allow you in.

At times, as someone is crossing the street, I will let them pass and they sometimes look at you to make sure you’re not going to go and hit them. When you have directional on signaling to make a turn, you sometimes see them flash their lights, but it sometimes means they will stop and let you go, and others that they are not planning to stop.
Horns are used the same way. One night I was getting ready to turn into my driveway at my home, I had hand out, signal blinking and from a way back a taxi pressed on his horn and keeps it there all the way until he passed me.

Some motorcycle drivers think they are immortal more than car drivers. They will zoom past you on the left side, the right side and even in oncoming lanes.

In the malls, if there is any space between you and another person, they will cut right in front of you.

One day I was at Dunkin Donuts. The clerk was taking care of another customer so I stood back a little. A woman comes in, walks in front of me, squeezes to the counter and starts calling out her order, interrupting the clerk with the current customer.

In the market at the checkout, the carts cannot pass through, so when you unload, it has to be pushed back and out of the way. Sometimes you see someone will be unloading their cart, and then throw things back that they changed their mind. It is not that they realize they do not have enough money since their order has not started to be rung up. I wonder; if you really did not want it, why put it in your cart. Then they are usually the ones that move forward to the cashier and just leave the cart in your way.

Also in the market, there are items you see for weeks, then not see again for months. In a lot of restaurants, both higher end to fast foods you will see things on the menu and be told they are out of it.

One fast food place, Jollibee, has big posters showing they have Chili Cheese Dogs. When we went in to order, we were told, “Oh, that promo has not started yet”. The poster did not say in future or a date it will start. Next time we were told they were out of stock.

There is a foreigner run restaurant that sells some of their products in the mall markets. One item that caught my eye was Veal Sausage. I picked up the package and read the ingredients. Veal Sausage made with chicken and pork. Where is the Veal?

At the office I was working at, so many times employees either come in late or not at all or have never contacted anyone to let them know. When I was asked to leave because of my status not yet arrived to work legally, one thing I heard from the architect, the supervisor told the boss, “Do you know, Bruce always arrives on time and if is to be late or absent, he will always contact us.”

Well, as most things here, you cannot let these things bother you to the point of anxiety or stress; you just need to accept the way things are here.

I have been living here almost a year now and I am still learning how different life is here, and I am sure it will never stop to amaze me.

10 Responses to “Living and Being around Filipinos (part 2)”

  1. macky says:

    how about entering through a door & having the door swing back at you when someone walks in before you? it's rare to see a person having the courtesy to check if anyone is behind them to be hit by a swinging door.

    and cleaning up after when eating in a fast food joint. it doesn't take much to bring the tray to the trash bin, and yet…

    this is not a put down on the pinoys. i am after all a dabawenyo. just thought i'd add some related interesting observations.

    you bring a different flavor to expat blogging in the philippines. well done.

  2. Bruce says:

    Thanks for reading and commenting.

    The door swinging thing has not happend to me. When I was working they would hold the door and wait, even if you were far back. I have had more doors slam in my face back in the US. Some even on purpose 🙂

    I am guilty at Fast Food places since I was told there are employees to do that and if all customers cleaned up it would be less jobs there.

    About bringing another flavor for my blogging, I try to tell about my life here and also try to see the bright side and not dwell on the negatives. You can find something bad anywhere you live.

    Please keep reading and send any comments you like.

  3. BrSpiritus says:

    We all hve those days. Shopping at the food stores is a free for all, and there have been times I was in line only to have another person push their cart in front of me. You can’t say anything and they know it!

  4. Bruce says:

    You are right, and if you comment, you just make matters worse. as we have learned, it is there world and we just live in it.

  5. Isn’t it interesting, that in any country there are both good and bad things. The most important is, like Bruce says, take it for what it is and not get too stressed about it. I find myself getting irritated about such things when I am tired or something else have been bad during the day.

    • Bruce says:

      It is easy to get irritated and many here do. I hear many expats complaining about any thing and everything. My feeling, if you hate it so bad, why not go back to your home country.

  6. Vicki says:

    Hi Bruce,

    I came across your blog while doing a search for travel blogs. I’m a Filipina who has lived here in the US for 32 years (migrated here when I was 12). My last trip to Angeles City (my hometown) was back in 2001. My biggest pet peeve whenever I visit is the lack of courtesies as you stated. Particularly when standing in line for something and people just cutting in. I am so used to the orderly way of life here in the US that I’ve gotten into arguments when people cut in. Like you, I stand back and patiently wait my turn. But when someone cuts in, I can’t help but get irritated. Now, it depends on where I am. If I’m at the market, I usually just let it slide. If and when I feel the need to speak up, I usually say “excuse me, but I’ve been waiting for my turn” in a civil tone. That usually startles the person enough to step aside. Now, that behavior isn’t limited to the Philippines. I experienced it too while visiting Italy (not sure it the ladies were Italian or other Europeans – this was in a restroom).

    Anyway, I’ve enjoyed reading some of your posts. Will have to come back and read some more. I was hoping to subscribe via email, but can’t seem to find the link/button to do so.


    • Bruce says:

      Thanks for visiting. I enjoy getting comments from all perspectives, Filipinos, Filipinos abroad, Foreigners here and Foreigners away.
      Please continue to visit and comment. Also tell freinds and family.

  7. Anthony says:

    Man, deja vu, you are bringing back all my experiences. I am definetely teaching my kids to say “THANK YOU” .

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