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Who and Where are you From?

It has been 51 days since American in Davao became its own (dot)com. I have had over 1000 unique visitors from 64 countries. Some of these visitors clicked into the site and left, but I hope the majority have taken time to read some of my posts.

From some of the comments, I have learned about some of my readers and it has helped me think of topics to write about.
As this site developes, I hope I can get to knnow readers better and understand what they are looking for on this site.

With all this, the amount of comments, even though have been great, are from a small percentage of the readers. Because of this I would like to take a little survey.  I hope many of you will take the time to answer the questions.

1 ) Where are you born?

2) Where do you live now?

3 ) Age or age range i.e. mid 30’s?

4 ) What brought you to American in Davao? (search, referral, link fromother site…)

5 ) What is the reason you like to read about an expat or the Philippines?

6 )If you have never been to the Philippines, do you plan to visit and the reason?

7 ) If you are an Expat, what was the reason you moved from your country of birth?

8 ) What do you like the most and the least about this site?

9 ) Do you ever use the ads on this site?

10 ) What was one of your favorite articles? (you do not to read everything, but it would be nice)

11 ) Is there anything you would like me to write about?

Thank you for your time and sharing. I hope with your help and interaction to me and to the readers comments, we all can get to know each other better and inform and support each others reasons for visiting.

49 Responses to “Who and Where are you From?”

  1. Evelyn says:

    hi, i am from general santos but now in CA,USA

  2. Evelyn says:

    Gensan as they call it is just 3 hrs from where you are now…
    It is called the tuna capital of the Phil…
    And it is also home to the great boxer in the whole world,PACMAN…

    • Bruce says:

      Evelyn,
      I know about Gen San and Packman being from there. There just has not been a reason to visit. My only real trip out of Davao was to Kidapawan last Christmas.

  3. Evelyn says:

    i’m sorry..i mean 3 hrs by bus..have you been there?,Bruce..
    permit me to call you by your name..

  4. Evelyn says:

    i really don’t know if he has that title now but to me he is a great boxer…

  5. Lee Golden says:

    PACMAN is pound for pound the best boxer in the world!!!! He holds a few different belts in different weight classes. I am from the U.S of A (Florida). My wife is from the wonderful city Bacolod. I hope to be able to spend more time in the Philippines. Bruce, I will keep you posted on my trip.

    • Bruce says:

      Lee,
      Please do, and since your a “rich foreigner” hahaha, if you cannot make it to Davao, just send me and Elena tickets to meet you in Cebu.
      Say hi to your mom and her husband (sorry, brain dead and cannot remember his first name)

  6. don m. says:

    keep up the good work. Your site is growing by leaps and bounds. As it is cold here and rainy and think more of the Pi. Spring is set to start the end of this week so the weather will start warming up. When and If I retire in the philippines I plan to live close to my wifes family the Leyte. I dont want a job but I will be looking for projects to keep busy. I know there are places there who use free help but not to regular as I dont whant to step on the toes of those looking for work. My time frame is just over four years out. A lot depends on the curret enconomic mess here. In four years I will be 62. I hope this is not too borring for you. Best from medford, oregon.

    • Bruce says:

      Don,
      Thanks for the good words. If I could make some money here it would be nice too, but writing about my new home and my life is the main point of this site.
      Even though Filipinos like foreigners to assist, they sometimes feel we are over stepping our bounds. I asked my wife about Letye and she said it is not a progressive area and mainly farming. She said you might feel isolated and bored there. Plus many do not send kids to school so you better learn the local dialect so you can have some communications. We get to feel isolated enough even in Davao. Best of luck on the economy and your future plans.

  7. don m. says:

    Bruce, I have been thereseven times in the last fifteen years and the area is a lot more urbanized than you know. Rominsons is opening up there the middle of this month. Two Jolly bees and one macDs. and the best of all a shakeys pizza parlor. Most everyone knows some english. I just got off the phone with my brother in law. My father in law owns a small electrical shop in Tacloban. My brothers in law works there.

  8. Evelyn says:

    Bruce, tenks for your reply..
    to Mr Lee Golden..tenks for the addtl info about PACMAN…
    And by the way, Bruce, you should visit Gensan and see the big tunas there….and if you’d go there,tell me so i could tour you around the city..i might be there next month..see you when i see you…

  9. Palawan says:

    Bruce,

    HOw are you!!! seems that your site is getting better everyday!!!! Congratulations…Do I still have to fill up the form..hehehe..

  10. Hi Bruce,

    Saw your link on Feyma Martin’s page today. You’ll have a hard time keeping up with Bob Martin methinks but a new perspective on living down there is always welcome.

    I am Canadian, now living for past 8 years in Austria. I have a Canadian friend living in the Phils for past 10 years. Have visited twice and dream of visiting again. Would really love to live down there also, but sure seems to be a lot of paperwork! In Austria I got a pass to stay for 10 years with only one visit to the police.

    One thing that is always on my mind is the diseases. Before travelling down there we must have numerous “necessary” shots and a few “optional” ones (i.e. Dengue Fever). What are the facts? Are you guys exposed to lots of diseases? Can you get immunization down there? Just wondering what is necessary. Western governments tend to go overboard on precautions.

    Looking forward to reading more of your columns.

    • Bruce says:

      John,
      Thank you for enjoying my site. I am a friend of Bob and Feyma Martin and have followed Bobs site for over 2 years. I do not ever thing I will reach Bobs level of blogging and readers. My site though has been growing since I bought my own domain. Look at my sitemeter. American in Davao became a (dot)com on January 27th of this year.
      I do not know of paperwork, for me, I came on a tourist visa and had to renew it every 59 days. That is good for 16 mnonths and then you either have to apply for an extension that will get you to 24 months. After that you need to leave the country for as little as 1 day and re-enter the country.
      If you marry a Filipina you apply for a Residence Visa (13a) or there is also a Retirement Visa.
      About diseases, Dengue is here in the Philippines and I think Malaria too, but no or very few cases in Davao. It is more common in the provences and on other islands.
      I know many people who have been here for years with no problems.
      About governments and their warnings, There are many about Mindanao, but there is little problems for foreigners in Davao. Mayor Dutarte has made this city very safe.

  11. Sorry that I change the subject. I went to see the big tuna in Gensan a few months ago, but I didnt have rubber shoes so they didnt let me in :(…
    I was very lucky with the bombs in Oval Park though. I left the town the day before the bombs went off. In all of my days there I spent the evenings in Oval Park with the locals and ironically we talked a lot about the future of Gensan and that it hadnt been any bombs for a while, and the locals seemed so happy about that. The day after there were hand grenades thrown. I heard it on the news in Iligan city. I travelled all the way from Gensan to Iligan city in one day:) Via Davao. I just love Mindanao and the people of Mindanao!

    • Bruce says:

      Stefan,
      I am afraid of bombs, especially if I am nearby. 🙂 But I hope to take Evelyn up on here offer. Yes the people of Mindanao are so genuine hospitable and nice.

  12. I will try to answer those questions later on…just came back from a 10 km run here and need to take a shower and cook dinner:)

  13. Evelyn says:

    Thnks ,Bruce,for the reply and I’d love to bring you around Gensan..
    To Mr Stefan Lindholm, thank you soo much for loving my country and the people…It’s just frustrating to know that there are some “bad people” around…And it’s so true that when you are not wearing the required shoes, you are not allowed to walk around the area close to the big tunas..It is for your own safety..I had the same experience,too, when I brought my employer,my American guest there in 2007…GEEEEZ, he was sooo mad because he wanted to take photos of the big tunas but it was shortlived and we just walked around the vicinity far from the building —where proper attire is not required..oh well that’s my short story…

    • Bruce says:

      Evelyn,
      Rubber shoes? Do you mean sneakers/athletic shoes? Or do you mean rubber boots?
      Looking forward the Adventure.

  14. About what to wear to enter the fish port: It is me who is too stupid to check that out. But I wasnt prepared at all. I just went there randomly when cruising around town. Of course it is good that they have these rules, I am sure it is about cleanliness also.

  15. 1 ) Where are you born?
    Sweden, in the northern famous hockey town of Örnsköldsvik. 530 km north of Stockholm.
    2) Where do you live now?
    Nyköping a small city 100 km south of Stockholm.
    3 ) Age or age range i.e. mid 30’s?
    38.
    4 ) What brought you to American in Davao? (search, referral, link fromother site…)
    I actually dont remember. It might have been via one of Bobs sites.
    5 ) What is the reason you like to read about an expat or the Philippines?
    Cause I wanna be one myself! It is my dream at least to try it one day!
    6 )If you have never been to the Philippines, do you plan to visit and the reason?
    I have been to the Philippines four times in 4 years now!
    7 ) If you are an Expat, what was the reason you moved from your country of birth?
    Noy applicable to me.
    8 ) What do you like the most and the least about this site?
    I like that I can feel what kind of personality Bruce is :-). Also that he responds to all of the comments (don’t burn yourself out!!) I dont know what I dont like, honestly.
    9 ) Do you ever use the ads on this site?
    I have been clicking here and there sometimes, but I am not an “ad clicker”.
    10 ) What was one of your favorite articles? (you do not to read everything, but it would be nice)
    I like those ones about meetings with locals, daily life things!
    11 ) Is there anything you would like me to write about?
    The subject I mentioned under question 10.
    Some economy, what costs are involved for one person living in Davao, like I live here. I dont live in luxury here either.

    • Bruce says:

      Stefan,
      Thanks, with your info and hopefully more from others, I will be able to try to improve my content for more of my readers needs.

  16. I am impressed that you have the strength and time to answer all comments! You might have to employ someone to help you with that one day, or cut down on the replies 🙂 Or get burned out. Be careful!

    • Bruce says:

      Stefan,
      I enjoy replying to comments. Sometimes it is a short comment and sometimes it takes more to reply.
      Unfortunately some days I am running around and do not answer them right away.
      With the little money I make, I could not afford someone without losing money and I could never have someone else reply to comments written to me.

  17. Evelyn says:

    Bruce, they’re rubber boots not rubber shoes/athletic….The guard said there that it prevents you from sliding and falling and go boom

  18. Ray says:

    Hi Bruce

    1 ) Where are you born?

    Los Angeles

    2) Where do you live now?

    Los Angeles

    3 ) Age or age range i.e. mid 30’s?

    Early fifties

    4 ) What brought you to American in Davao? (search, referral, link fromother site…)

    Link from Bob Matins site

    5 ) What is the reason you like to read about an expat or the Philippines?

    I want to live there someday

    6 )If you have never been to the Philippines, do you plan to visit and the reason?

    been to the Philippines many times. first time was 1990

    7 ) If you are an Expat, what was the reason you moved from your country of birth?

    8 ) What do you like the most and the least about this site?

    I like hearing others views of the Philippines. Nothing I dislike

    9 ) Do you ever use the ads on this site?

    Not yet but thinking of Hostgator 🙂

    10 ) What was one of your favorite articles? (you do not to read everything, but it would be nice)

    Like them all

    11 ) Is there anything you would like me to write about?

    Earning money 😀

    • Bruce says:

      Ray,
      Thank you for your answers, it makes me feel good you enjoy my articles. With your answer about HostGator, I know of one person who has a high price server package and to lighten the load bought some hosting from Hostgator. I do not know about other hosting companies, but with the help and assistance, I am completely satisfied with them.

  19. Vicki says:

    1 ) Where are you born?
    Angeles City, Philippines

    2) Where do you live now?
    USA

    3 ) Age or age range i.e. mid 30’s?
    mid-40s

    4 ) What brought you to American in Davao? (search, referral, link from another site…)
    search for travel blogs

    5 ) What is the reason you like to read about an expat or the Philippines?
    A foreigner’s viewpoints about the Philippines

    6 )If you have never been to the Philippines, do you plan to visit and the reason?
    not applicable

    7 ) If you are an Expat, what was the reason you moved from your country of birth?
    not applicable

    8 ) What do you like the most and the least about this site?
    I like the variety of topics covered.

    9 ) Do you ever use the ads on this site?
    No I don’t. I don’t click on ads on any site I visit.

    10 ) What was one of your favorite articles? (you do not to read everything, but it would be nice)
    No particular favorite, but have read all the articles.

    11 ) Is there anything you would like me to write about?
    Your viewpoints and perspective on life in the Philippines.

    • Bruce says:

      Vicki,
      Thanks for your answers. You put n/a for #7. Actually you are a Philippine Expat I think, even if your now a US citizen.

  20. laagan says:

    1 ) Where are you born?
    Hinatuan Surigao Del Sur, Philippines

    2) Where do you live now?
    United Arab Emirates

    3 ) Age or age range i.e. mid 30’s?
    Just turned 30 yehey!!

    4 ) What brought you to American in Davao? (search, referral, link from another site…)
    expatblog

    5 ) What is the reason you like to read about an expat or the Philippines?
    I lived in davao for 7 years. I miss the place

    6 )If you have never been to the Philippines, do you plan to visit and the reason?
    not applicable

    7 ) If you are an Expat, what was the reason you moved from your country of birth?
    Work, money and world travel ehehe

    8 ) What do you like the most and the least about this site?
    Davao and you just seemed to genuinely love being in the city

    9 ) Do you ever use the ads on this site?
    No I don’t. I don’t click on ads on any site I visit.

    10 ) What was one of your favorite articles? (you do not to read everything, but it would be nice)
    No particular favorite.

    11 ) Is there anything you would like me to write about?
    None in particular

    • Bruce says:

      Laagan,
      Happy Birthday.
      Thank you for your visiting and commenting. I appreciate you and the others continued support. Hope to meet you someday if you come to Davao for a visit.

  21. Vinnie says:

    Hello to you Bruce and your lovely wife. My name is Vincent and I was born in Boston,Ma.I’m in my mid-fifties and I also am married to a gorgeous sweet Filipina named Glennie. She’s from Digos which is about an hour south of Davao.
    I found your website just searching around the net because I am considering retiring to Davao myself one of these days. We are going to visit early 2010. Hope to meet you when we come to Davao. I’ll write again. I like your site. It’s nice and simple and very sincere. Till later……………..Vin

    • Bruce says:

      Vinnie,
      Welcome. I am glad you found and enjoy my site. I know where Digos is but as of yet, have not visited it.
      I will be happy to meet with you. I enjoy meeting and getting new friends. If you have any questions or items you would like me to write about, feel free to ask.

  22. Dan2vero says:

    Hi Bruce,
    I will fill this out for you…

    1 ) Where are you born?
    Washington, DC USA of course 🙂
    2) Where do you live now?
    I live in West Palm Beach, Florida USA

    3 ) Age or age range i.e. mid 30’s?
    Early 40’s now

    4 ) What brought you to American in Davao? (search, referral, link fromother site…)
    a link from Bob Martins “Living in the Philippines” site.
    5 ) What is the reason you like to read about an expat or the Philippines?Because I plan on being an expat and live in the philippines.

    6 )If you have never been to the Philippines, do you plan to visit and the reason?Yes, I am planning a visit, plus a move there, to be married, and try my luck at business there.

    7 ) If you are an Expat, what was the reason you moved from your country of birth? n/a

    8 ) What do you like the most and the least about this site? Lots of information about living in the philippines..don’t have a negative about this site…

    9 ) Do you ever use the ads on this site?If something interests me I do.

    10 ) What was one of your favorite articles? (you do not to read everything, but it would be nice) I enjoyed the Why I married a filipina?

    11 ) Is there anything you would like me to write about? Nothing specific, is better for you to create your articles from your day to day life there, and what you find new to yourself.

    Thanks,
    Danny

    • Bruce says:

      Danny,
      Thank you for answering my questions. I had hoped to get more and use it to better know my readers. We might have crossed paths in the 10 years I lived in Boynton Beach.
      Remember, if you plan to move here, opening a thriving business is difficult for both Foreigner and Filipino. You need money for licensing and business besides getting legal status. There are businesses foreigners cannot own and most of it has to be owned by a Filipino.
      To live here in somewhat comfort, you should have a steady income of 1.5 to 2 Thousand dollars a month, plus enough to pay for a business, get your personal and living needs. It might take years for a business to become profitable.
      If you do come, and have the need for a good American Employee with a decent pay, remember me.

  23. Michael Hansen says:

    Hi Bruce,

    I would like to say that your website is very informative. My name is Micahe Hansen, Im 40 years old this coming June. I was born and raised in the Philippines but I have been living in the US since I was 19 years old. I served in the US Army and I am currently an active Police Detective specializing in Sex Crimes Against Children and Physical Child Abuse. I work for the Baltimore Police Department Criminal Investigation Division. I am starting my 18th year and I am eligible to retire once I get my 20 years of service. At the age of 42 or 43 I will be drawing my pension from the police Department. It’s not gonna be much, Im expecting about $17,000 to $18,000 a year. I am wondering, do you know if I have to pay federal taxes on my retirement if I decide to permanently reside outside the US. My understanding is you are a retiree and you reside in the Philippines permanently. Im not asking for an exact amount of taxes, I understand you wouldnt know that. I asked just about everywhere and I was told that I will have to pay taxes. The people I spoke to sounded unsure of the answer though. I was just thinking what ever happened to taxes without representation?. I mean if I no longer reside in the US and I dont use any of their services why sxhould I pay taxes. I can understand paying taxes to the Philippine Govt if I live in the P.I. and use their roads and services. I called the IRS in the US and their answers were not clear. I asked an accountant and none of them knew the answer. I got a hold of a guy in California who does taxes for expats but he wants a big fee already just to ask a question. I was just wondering maybe you have an answer since you are a retiree and you are now residing in the Philippines. And by the way, do you think $17,000 a year would be enough to live on in the Luzon Area. I intend to live on the outskirts of Manila, I still have some friends there and I know Manila well.

    • Bruce says:

      Michael,
      Thank you for finding and enjoying my site. You do have taxes to IRS if your an American citizen and earn money anywhere. If your not an American citizen but working in the USA you have to pay too.
      From my limited knowledge, if you are living outside the US you have a larger untaxed income allowance. I think it is $80,000.
      In the Philippines, you do not have to pay taxes to the Philippiines as long as you are not earning money here.
      I do not know the cost of living in Luzon but I have heard Manila is more expensive than here in Davao and what level of comfort you want changes costs.
      I think you can live in Davao on $1000 a month, but it is not high level but not a shack. It also depends on how many you are supporting.
      I suggest before you move anywhere here, come visit for 2 weeks to a month and check it out. I also suggest to have some savings to usefor initial expenses and as an emergency fund.

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