I learned about Chyng Reyes of www.chyngreyes.com in 2011 when I was researching for our Asian trip. You know me, I spend months studying online before we go on a trip abroad to understand the culture, etc. of the places we’re visiting to.
While I was browsing, I came across Chyng’s story on how she and her friend were accused of being drug traffickers in Bali, Indonesia just because they were Filipinas. Correction “beautiful Filipinas”, according to the immigration officer.
I cried the first time I read it. And I cried again just now, after reading her story once again.
That sad article paved the way for Chyng and I to become friends. Until she texted me last year that she plans on visiting Davao City. I told her that I will be in America during her schedule but I can have our driver pick her up at the airport and take her to the hotel, etc.
Everything was set. 🙂 Or so I thought… Then, Manila was hit by a typhoon. And their place got flooded. So she had to stay since it was impossible to travel on the way to the airport.
Second attempt – she and friends were left by the airplane. lol Sorry Chyng, didn’t mean to laugh. 🙂 But I just find that so funny because she lives near the airport!
Then one day, I received a text message from her saying “Hi, Ate Lea. I booked a flight again to Davao”. I said, “hehe.. ok Chyng. When are you arriving?” She said – June 1. I offered to pick her up at the airport but she said that Park Inn by Radisson will be there for her and her friend, Rob.
June 1 – I got busy with work. It took John and me forever to leave the office because there were clients around. Since our office is about a km only from SM Lanang, we decided to eat at Hog’s Breath Café. One of our favorite restaurants in Davao.
I texted chyng saying that John and I am having lunch at HBC. If they haven’t eaten yet, they can come over and join us. A few minutes later, Chyng and Rob arrived. 🙂 We had fun talking about travels, about Davao, etc. And then she said “oh my God, this is sooo good!” Referring to the Salmon she’s eating. I said yeah, that’s why John and I love Hog’s Breath. They’re very bad for our diet. LOL
Two hours later and after the photo op (of course! ha ha) , we parted ways. Agreeing, that if there’s anything they need , they will just text us.
Ok so everything was well with the world.. right? 🙂
No! Cebu Pacific crashed at the Davao International Airport. All flights were cancelled because it took them several days to take off their plane beside the runway. If you’re on leave from work and you have to go home at a certain date, that is very stressful. So I had our driver drove her to the airport and back to fix her schedule. Tiger airways was so helpful but well, since it is impossible for their plane to leave and she cannot wait for the airport operation’s schedule to resume, she finally decided to take the General Santos City route back to Manila a day later than her scheduled departure.
And you know what, despite all these things, Chyng and Rob had a blast in Davao and Samal Island. 🙂 Infact, Chyng told me that Rob is thinking of migrating to Davao. ha ha..
All these hype about Mindanao being scary, are just that. Hype. Those who dared to come to Davao, if possible, don’t want to leave anymore. Life is here, indeed. That’s the slogan of our city. 🙂 I am so proud!
With regards to Indonesia, I’m sorry but it will never be a part of my journey. Maybe things have changed by now. But well, the purpose of getting a vacation is to enjoy the place and its people. And for us to rest. The thought of being framed up though, just because you are a Filipina, that is so stressful. So I refuse to be subjected to that. I don’t need more stress. I already have white hairs, as it is. ha ha..
It’s just really sad because Indonesia is such a beautiful country. They boast of white sand beaches and historical temples. But, white sand beaches are common in the Philippines. 🙂 And as to the temples, I’ve seen the best.
John and I spent almost a week in Siem Reap, Cambodia to visit the Angkor Temples. So I would rather go back there because the people are friendlier. And the place is so pretty! The cost? Believe me, it’s cheap there. 🙂
To Chyng, it was great to finally meet you in person! To those who haven’t seen her yet, she’s a very sweet young woman. 🙂 Whoever she marries someday, is going to be a lucky man. When one marries a traveler, believe me – you’re in for an adventure of a lifetime! (I am not selling Chyng, but according to her , she is single. he he.. Rob is her best friend. )
To Hog’s Breath staff, you are one of the best! Thank you for always accommodating us. 🙂
To the whole world, if God permits, I will continue to travel until the day I die. 🙂 Hopefully by the time I reach 90, the world has a better understanding of the fact that there are good and bad people everywhere. Most Filipinos are really good ones. In the same manner that most Westerners or the rest of the Asians are… Let us not pre judge….
And yes, Filipinos can afford to travel too. he he
Lea C. Walker