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LA PASHA DRINK PRICES

Posted by admin on June 4, 2012 in Breaking News

Tonight, I received a call from Jorg, the owner of La Pasha and he informed me that the prices at his clubs remain at P95 for local drinks.  I printed a report from a reader of this column who commented that the prices at La Pasha had been raised.  Jorg wants everyone to know that this is not true.

I am more than happy to report this as Jorg runs a great group of Clubs and is one of the good guys in town.  By the way, I did not know that six months ago he added a new baby to his family.  It’s a bit late Jorg, but congrats!

 
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OBEAVERS OPENS

Posted by admin on June 1, 2012 in Breaking News

OBeavers Smoke House is having their grand opening Saturday, 2 Jun.  It is located along the FilAM highway just before you reach WestFields School.  There is a double event on Saturday, the Angeles Chapter of the American Steel Motorcycle Club is having their 10th Anniversary celebration starting at 2 PM and at the same time OB, a Florida native and his partner “Beaver” will celebrate the Grand Opening of the restaurant and Bar.

Folks, I stopped by today (Friday) to interview OB and Beaver and give the place a look over.  Man, it is fantastic.  I thought I was entering a place located in Texas, or Arizona, or even Las Vegas.  This old horse felt at home, in fact I thought they could tie me up to a hitching post along with some old time cowboys.  It is big, the food specializes in smoked meats and they have one hell of a great smoke house that will crank out some mighty tasty selections.

I will write more in my July column but did not want to wait that long to make this announcement.  You have to check out “OBeavers”, I predict a great success for this new restaurant for expats, tourists and Filipinos as well.  I hope they will be featuring some great country and western music.  There is plenty of room for parking.  Folks, get your ass on out there, you will love it.  By the way, the ribs are out of this world, fantastic!

OB declares “everyone welcome, you all come on over and have a good time.”

For sure this old horse will be there, hope to see you all now.

Forgot, operation hours 12 to 9 PM, seven days a week.

 
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June 2012

Posted by admin on May 31, 2012 in 2012 Monthly Newsletters

This month of June I would like to dedicate this column to a wonderful gentleman who peacefully passed away on 6 May at the young age of 65.  Steve was an icon in this town.  He worked for Dave Fisher at Kokomo’s for many years and I think Dave knew him better than anyone else here.  For that reason I invited Dave to write a few words about Steve and you will see his remarks further down in this column.  Oh my goodness, this man will be missed by so many, he was a friend, a mentor, and adviser to so many.  He never uttered a negative word against anyone, he had a dry sense of humor and he emanated an aura of wisdom that earned him the respect of all who knew him.

 

FEEDBAG

First and Last Name: Larry N.

Hi Harry, got to tell ya what i saw today. I left my apt in clarkview today 28 apr. I witness 2 boys walking north towards friendship. I saw the one boy throw himself in front of a foreigner riding a motor. A Filipino “concerned” citizen was following behind and suddenly called on his cell phone. Within minutes the boys in blue showed up. I left after that(I wonder if the dirt bags are bringing back a very old scam?  Regretfully Larry did not stick around long enough to see how this drama ended.)

Dear Harry, After reading about the unconscionable behaviour of Bureau of Immigration staff at C.I.A. in your May newsletter, I imagine you’ve failed to grasp the point behind their conduct. Far from harassing young, nubile Filipinas who wish to travel abroad for a romantic holiday with their foreign boyfriend or fiancee, bureau officials are in fact doing them a favour.

The Bureau of Immigration, at the behest of the government, are discouraging Filipinas from traveling overseas because they have no wish to expose them to well governed countries with a functioning, polite bureaucracy. Can impressionable young ladies from the Philippines be expected to cope with such policies as environmentally friendly cities, paved roads, functioning and well maintained public transport systems, honest taxi drivers, an absence of malice and rudeness in public servants, competence in government and a lack of corruption? I think not. I think these young women would be shocked by the efficiency with which other countries operate.

Imagine what could happen when these intrepid tourists returned home. They may agitate for efficient government in the Philippines. The likelihood that the local population may in any way be dissatisfied with the lazy, incompetent, venal, mendacious plutocrats who dominate this country’s political life and seek to replace them with well meaning, honest individuals with principles is something the elite cannot accept. I’m assuming this country does have a handful or two of principled, honest citizens but I wouldn’t risk money on such an assumption.

On the other hand I suppose it’s just possible that the Immigration desks at C.I.A. are manned by bureaucratic thugs anxious to make life as difficult and as unpleasant as possible for passengers, irrespective of nationality.  J.T. Archer.
(Hey J.T., my goodness, it all makes sense to me now but not all the BI agents are that bad but it only takes a few to poison the water)

Comments and Remarks: Regarding the DMIA off-loading problems – Some of the airlines (Tiger particularly) routinely overbook flights. It appears they use Immigration to help them out. A friend was recently off-loaded. Tiger was requesting her boarding pass back hours before Immigration made their final determination. Thus airline gets two fares for one seat and doesn’t have to compensate for over-booking. Mike Kravitz.
(a different twist on a very sensitive subject)

First and Last Name: Hans Kristian Espersen
Comments and Remarks: Hi Harry, This is Hans, think asshole member 84 or so ;O) Been reading your May news letter. Like to comment on the CIA bull… I know Cpt. Robert and misses for 11 years. Heard about her raw deal from Magnus who spoke to her before, and after she was supposed to leave. Needless to say as excited she was going to Thailand as devastated was she coming home not admitted on the plane in Clark. THANKS for bringing that up!!! Spoke to Henrik/ Marble Inn, he recently experienced a party of 16 (Guess 8 men with companions), where 7 of the girls were not allowed on the plane. Same deal, quick trip to Malaysia and back. Apparently one of the girls was not permitted because she LOOKED too young. The girl was 22 years, but really short for her age.. haha I think I was kind of lucky, received an email from the Danish consulate that this bull was coming last year at this time. I did not want to chance it, so my asawa went for the seminar in Manila, even though we have made several trips out of the country in the past. If I did not happen to be on the mailing list for the consulate, I would not have known about the issue before they started to refuse the girls to leave. In my case it could easily have been a loss of 3000 usd, for return tickets to Denmark, 1500 if I would have decided to bail on her.. hehe Keep up the good work! Best Regards Hans (one of the Scandahooligans in town)  (Hans, guess the Danish consulate is better in informing their citizens then the American and Australian Embassies.  It remains confusing but there are on-going discussions that hopefully will help in avoiding ill feelings generated between Immigration officials and travelers at the DMIA.)

Dear Harry The Horse,  I am an American who has been a visitor to the Philippines since 1998. I have always enjoyed your column, commentaries, and opinions. Thanks.

On the recent topic of Pinays being “offloaded” at CRK and MNL airports when traveling to ASEAN countries for tourism purposes with, or to meet their western boyfriends, it prompted me to do some further checking into this as I am planning to take my pinay girlfriend to Hong Kong this coming August to see Disneyland, shopping and to enjoy the city. Also to see how we are able to get along on unfamiliar turf, before making any serious plans together.

I wrote the CFO - Commission on Filipinos Overseas <info@cfo.gov.ph>;

Copy of:  This is an enquiry e-mail via http://www.cfo.gov.ph/

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am an American Citizen in USA who would like to take my Filipino friend with me on holiday to Hong Kong for approximately (2) two weeks.
The purpose of our trip is shopping, visit Disneyland, sightseeing, and general tourism.
We are friends only and are not engaged to be married or have a fiancee’ or support relationship. She is employed and has no plans to leave Philippines permanently or emigrate abroad.
She will have a return air ticket, valid passport (4 years valid remaining), and meet all entry requirements of Thailand.
Does she need to take one of your seminars before leaving the country, and if so specifically which one. I am an American, we are going to Hong Kong.

Thank you, Hymie Tucker – And 2 weeks later I received a reply:

Dear Mr. Tucker:

We wish to inform you that under Department of Foreign Affairs’ Department Order Nos. 15-89, 28-94 and 11-97, Filipinos leaving the country as spouses and other partners of foreign nationals or naturalized citizens of their host country are required to attend the Commission on Filipinos Overseas’ (CFO) Guidance and Counseling Program (GCP).

The CFO GCP is being administered by our service provider, which is the St. Mary Euphrasia Foundation – Center for Overseas Workers (SMEF-COW). Attendance to the GCP is on a first come first serve basis; there is no need for reservation.

The counseling session, usually lasts for two hours.  However, there may be other documents that the counselor may require (letters, pictures together, annulment or divorce papers, if applicable) to clarify issues and concerns raised during the sessions.  A Guidance and Counseling Certificate (GCC) will be issued after successfully completing the requirements of the GCP.

Please be advised as well that your girlfriend does not need a CFO registration sticker/stamp for your holiday trip to Hong Kong, the Bureau of Immigration will only check the GCC as proof that she has complied with the government’s policy.

We have attached a copy of the requirements and procedures of the CFO SMEF-COW GCP for your reference.  We hope you find this information useful.

Very truly yours, Thea May Rabe (Sgd.) Counselor
Approved:  Ivy D. Miravalles (Sgd.), OIC, Migrant Integration and Education Division

I then called the CFO SMEF-COW (St. Mary Euphrasia Foundation – Center for Overseas Workers.) and asked the same questions, specifically of my “girlfriend” would need to take a counseling  seminar in order to leave the country as a tourist. Also since they are country specific, would she avail the seminar for the USA  or the South Korean and other Asian-Pacific countries. I am an American, we are going to Hong Kong, she is Filipino.

Their answer was NO and that my girl will only need a valid passport and return air tickets to travel outside the Philippines.  I asked for clarification on the “and other partners of foreign nationals or naturalized citizens of their host country” to which she explained that “partners” means “same sex” relationships.

She said that there are no seminars for tourists, only for fiancé’s and spouses.

So what is the current advice on this situation?  Does she take their Guidance and Counseling seminar to receive the certificate of completion or not? She will not have a visa as a tourist, as Hong Kong is a visa on arrival country, so I understand not needing the CFO “sticker” in her passport.  Since their seminars are designed for those emigrating outside of the PI to live permanently with a fiancé/spouse, and this being an unusual circumstance as I will be accompanying her to Hong Kong and back to Manila.

What sort of documents should she be ready to show at the seminar? Further, Why would I be involved at all, since she had a valid passport and return ticket? Should I bring my recent tax returns and bank statements?  Seems that it’s none of their business.  I would like to hear your response to this, you may post it if you like in your column and edit as necessary.
Sincerely, Hyman Tucker (Hyman, the responses you received kind of make things a bit more confusing.  I do not have answers for you yet but there are some Filipino officials and concerned business related Filipinos that are aware of this problem and we just have to wait to see if more specific guidance is provided)  

First and Last Name: Chris Simpson
Comments and Remarks: My wife (married in the Philippines) required the 2 hour course in Manila to leave with me and our daughters, we were told that it didn’t matter where we went or for how long. It seems the way they are looking at it now is that if you are leaving in circumstances where you may end up working elsewhere, they will require this. The day my wife got her appointment, the printing machine broke down, there were 16 women there told to come back on Monday or Tuesday to collect. Several had spouses waiting with tickets booked that friday night. (The confusion continues.  Was this her first trip out of the country since marrying you?)

First and Last Name: Charles England
Comments and Remarks: Hi Harry REF. PHEODFILE WITH EXTREMLY HIGH RISK OF AIDS! Have you ever seen a notice in any bar in Angeles with faces of undesirables Harry? Having stayed in Angeles for over 20 years and owned hotels and other business here, I like to think I have a good balanced view of the upside and the downside of The Entertainment Industry on Field’s Avenue and Perimeter Road. The majority of mamasangs are professional, do a difficult job and have the interests of their girls under their wing at heart. However, a small number are just ruthless, selfish and have zero care for the girls. There is a hard core, like myself, who know these mamasangs and the high profile assholes who constantly frequent the bars. The worst, by a long way, are the paedophiles, as I am sure you will agree Harry. Yes, they are known to the police, mamasangs and many of the girls. But still the paedophiles get their victims as they are very resourceful and determined and because some mamasangs simply don’t give dam. There is one particular case I find the most abhorrent, by a long way, which prompts me to write to you. The guy in question has been living close to the entertainment area for about 15 years and is over 70 years old, I would think. He is already a celebrity in Angeles having been featured as being a paedophile by the British national papers, has appeared on BBC World TV while in Angeles City Jail after being arrested for crimes involving underage girls about 10 years ago. He openly brags to mere acquaintances, that he has had 1,500 different girls in the last 15 years and, waits for it, “has never used a condom”. STAGGERING! He says that he always tells the mamasangs that he has been steralized so the innocent girls, mostly underage, are led to believe that they will be safe. They don’t know any better and off they go. The worst scenario is that he is a woman hater and knows he has AIDS and is purposely infecting kids. You will no doubt know this particular paedophiles as he has featured on your web page about 8 years ago and has been pursued by the Roman Catholic Church (PREDA) in The Philippines for about 9 years to get the Philippine justice system to bring him to count. He has somehow got away with overwhelming evidence against him including over a hundred video cassettes tapes, confiscated by the police, all featuring him having sex with girls, mostly underage, some as young as 12 years old! From my reading of your web site for many years, it’s clear you have “know how” and influence in such important things like this and you are not frightened to publicise such “pond life” that sickens even the most hardened criminal minds Thanks in advance Harry.  Charles
(Charles, I remember the name of the person you are referring to and I also remember the well publicized incident that caused his arrest. I will not mention his name as he claimed his innocence and was able to get the charges dropped and a number of years have passed without further incident.  It is true that pedophiles live among us here in AC and some come as tourists.  I wish that each and every one of them could be outed, arrested and put in jail.  It is regrettable that some Mamasans cater to these dirt bags and should be fired but they have to be caught and prosecuted first, along with the customer.  These people are clever, they build up a network of contacts willing to provide young girls for a price.  Unless someone gives a tip to the police and he is caught in the action he can operate here, with impunity for many years.  If any pedophile is caught by the police here and prosecuted, for sure I will publish the details and the offender’s name but one must be aware that there have been circumstances where an innocent person has been set up by individuals or law enforcement officials.  Fortunately, this has not happened in quite some time.)    

Harry, True .   The military has no money .   Much of it has been stolen .   In the article last year about the PI Chief of staff stealing  millions , it was pointed out that the troops have no boots ,     no food ( their family has to feed them ,  )   , no ammunition , no gasoline etc, etc.    None of the Generals were prosecuted in what the Manila Paper called a ” monstrous theft “   .   Meeting last weekend in Manilawith US military and government officials pointed out the PI military has no money for spare parts , no functioning logistics system , no trained techs or mechanics to work on sophisticated F 16 , even if we gave them to them .    No money to operate the older ships we may give them .   Ammunition, fuel etc,   What about trained pilots for the F 16 they may get .   And , as you know being retired AF , logistics supporting Jet Fighters is very expensive .   Who is going to pay ?    Oh.   The M16 rifles the Muslim Guerrillas have in Mindinao all come from the Philippine Army   .    Which the Marines leave behind when they train there .    Common knowledge by our intelligence .     So, I ask you and everybody , ” why waste time with these fuckers  ? “   .    It appears to me that if this war does get ” hot ” , the USwill have to fight it .     Will Japan and Korea get involved ?    Joe W.
(This was in response to an observation I sent to Joe, who is married to a Filipina, living in the States who keeps up with the Philippines through the US Filipino channel.  The subject was our concern of how the Philippine military would handle a shooting war with China.  My comment was: The PI military has never had enough money to be effective.  The AF pilots cannot train properly because no budget for gas.  Their military is a joke.  Without the US assistance they would lose a war within months.  Hope it never happens as the people here do not deserve such a result.  I also wonder how far the US is prepared to go in defending the Philippines?  I hope we never have to find out)    

First and Last Name: mo deveney
Comments and Remarks: i notice that fewer and fewer tourists are visiting angeles …the bars are deserted and there are fewer girls …..yes times are hard ..but its surely going to get harder when the robbing bar owners in fields keep on putting up the cost of bar fines ….obviously they do not understand the concept of customer service ..there is none ..the girls are pizzzzed off, the customers have pizzed off …soon the golden goose will no longer lay any more eggs …time to stand up mr horse ..what are your thoughts.
(Mo, I just heard today that the LA Pasha Club raised their local drinks to P110, this at a time when business is so slow.  I very seldom buy a drink on Fields Ave  and believe me, very few ladies drinks.  For sure the EWR prices have become unreasonable but so far the tourists are still forking over the money. I must admit that I am not in a position to criticize pricing in the bars.  Those owners with multi-clubs must have one hell of a big overhead and they establish their pricing to allow for costs and to make a profit.  They should know what they are doing.  I suspect that the tourists are not caring about the prices but those of us living here on fixed incomes feel the pinch to our budgets with each price increase.  Remember, Club owners on Fields Ave do not care about Expat business, they depend on tourists.  It is a different game there.  I have lived in Las Vegas which is a tourist town.  I did not gamble nor did I spend a great deal of time on the Strip, my budget would not allow it.  I sought out neighborhood casinos and bars where I could afford the entertainment.  So, the same with Fields Ave, let them charge what they want, they are the owners who take the risks.  Why complain?  Just let your feet take you elsewhere.  I happen to like La Pasha, but instead of buying two or three drinks, I will only buy one, nurse the hell out of it and enjoy the atmosphere for an hour and then leave unless some of the ladies looked so good that I buy another drink and stay longer.  But, I know I can afford only so much and keep to my budget.  Now, if I was a tourist with only two weeks to stay here, believe me, my attitude would be different as well as my budget. One other thing to consider, those rental prices on Fields Ave are astronomical and getting higher every year.  OH well, I know pricing will always be a subject of debate but the answer is survival and those Clubs that continue to get the business will survive, those that do not, of course, will not.  Hopefully, Fields Ave will not go away, but for sure, over time the face of Fields Ave will change and owners will be required to adapt or fade away)  UPDATE:  Jorg, the owner of La Pasha called to inform me that his prices were not raised and remain at P95 and will stay that way until the cost of goods increases to a point where he has no choice.  Thanks for calling Jorg, that is why I like the La Pasha group. 

Harry, Talked to my son a few days ago .   He will be visiting tomorrow .  He made E8 two years ago .   Nice .   Served in Iraq for 18 months as a platoon Sergeant  in a very hostile area .    He was serving as a First Sergeant at Ft.Hood  in a field unit. Good potential for E9 .   But, then he told me he retired 6 months ago. 20 years, 3 months .   I was sort of shocked .   He said ” Dad, I am not going to Afghanistan.    I am not pushing my luck.”   He said many of his friends feel the same way .   They have had enough war.   Many are burned out  .  Marine Corps infantry , also.   So he retired on 20 .  He is using his GI bill now for school.    But , he is getting 90%   VA disability, also.   I am greatful to God he survived and he is out .  Anyway, maybe he and I can go to Fields ave and open a bar. Joe W.  (Joe, instead of opening a bar on Fields Ave he would be better off in Afghanistan)  

Harry I have noticed that many trikes now have the front passenger window either fully or partially obscured so the passenger cannot see what is going on up ahead and in the case of an impending accident at least try and prepare him/herself. Like several of my friends I now refuse to ride in one of these trikes. Ron G.  (Maybe you are better off not seeing what is going on up ahead.  Some trike drivers are frustrated Kamikaze drivers who scare the shit out of passengers.  So, they cover the front window, dispense muscle relaxing pills and hope to avoid heart attacks.  Even if you see what is coming you are so squeezed into the trike that rapid egress movement is impossible.  Just relax, say 10 hail Mary’s and hope you had a nice sexual experience prior to boarding the trike.  At least then you can die with a smile on your face.  Oh wait, I forgot.  If you only get injured be advised that the accident will be your fault and as you lay in the street, your wallet, watch, rings, loose change and gold chain on your neck will be removed never to be seen again.  Better make that 20 hail Mary’s)    

Harry, I am sitting here in your bar for my last few hours in paradise reflecting on my experience here.

THE GOOD NEWS:

Always, the staff at the La Casa are over the top in service, quality, and friendliness. The Blue Boar Inn/La Casa is home base on my visits here, I say that because everyone makes me feel at home. I also have to mention the lovely girls employed at your bar, I love them, and each and every one is special in her own way.

People sometimes mistake my carefree attitude as not paying attention, but I do. I have never been shorted one peso in your place and I have never “lost” anything at your place, in fact Monique scolds me for leaving the keys in the scooter and leaving belongings laying around.

Thi-Hi is still a great place to drink and be entertained by exciting, pretty, and helpful girls. Prices are reasonable even with the dollar exchange rate so low. Just as you do, I love Thi-Hi and I love the girls there.

I can still rent a scooter to get around for less then P300 a day, it keeps me away from the trikes, jeepneys and taxis. I don’t even know who else rents other then NICE BIKE because the manager and staff there have given me no reason to ever look anywhere else.

There is a point on the road, somewhere around THE BRASS KNOB where you can go to most any bar and have a great time at reasonable prices, even if some attempt the “double” P300 drink.

I had no problems with “raids” or police “checkpoints”. There were some soldiers who had a checkpoint but they simply checked my ID and let me go (as the Filipino drove by).

THE BAD NEWS:

You have mentioned before the big bars on Fields and the simply outrages costs to sit and have a drink or two. P95 at Dollhouse and P125 at Carousel, that’s $2 or $3 a drink. If that was all there was here I would have no need to return. I can pay $3 a beer at any bar in the states.

For the first time I was shorted my change on a bill and it was at the Dollhouse. The actual cost and the shortage were so different in numbers I can only assume the waitress was correct when she said “cashier make mistake”. (Dave, they do that a lot there)

Still plenty of beggers. I understand how difficult things are here and I sympathize with everyone who squeaks out a living here day after day.  I continue to give candy to the kids that beg and watch the disappointed look on the parents face when they see the child has not gotten cash for them.

Business is booming and things are being built all around you, I am afraid this will cause the prices at the beloved Blue Bore Inn to increase. We will see.

The PPD (Post Philippines Depression) has hit me already as I wait for my departure to the DMIA in three more hours.  Thank you so much for inviting me into what is your home, I don’t play darts or pool, and we don’t get a chance to talk much but lets face it, I did not come here to see Harry The Horse, as kind as he may be.  Dave “Candyman” Williams. (Dave is from Kansas City.  He works full time with the National Guard and absolutely loves Angeles City.  He is a most welcome guest at my Stable and his kind words are appreciated).   

First and Last Name: Nico
Comments and Remarks: interesting about airport woes. i am a fairly long time resident (6 years) and i normally cruise right through customs. this time the lady asked me ‘why i visit so much’ and ‘you have family here?’ i replied ‘i love the country’ – after 4 or 5 awkward min of questioning she asked where i stayed – i replied ‘at my house’ (i own a house here) and that was the WRONG THING TO SAY! she surely wanted to deny me entry, but i was one of the first 10 people through a very full flight – she told me she would let me through ‘this one time only’ but ‘you can’t travel here on a tourist visa if you are living here – next time we will not let you in’ was pretty shocked, i’ve been doing the back to back visa for last 6 years with no issues. i’m 38 yo, white normal looking guy. is it illegal to the point of being refused entry if you live in the PI? (i have my ACR card and everything). thanks! Nico.  (Good question Nico.  This is the first time I have run into that problem.  I would have answered the same way you did.  I have to see if I can get an explanation on this one)

First and Last Name: Robert Russell

This is me about the house I was purchasing and so far I am out $53,000(USD) I paid toward a total of $84,000. I have recently contacted a lawyer in Angeles City. It started in January 2010 when I was here preparing to bring my girlfriend at that time to the USA. Walking through SM as always. several of the housing projects were handing out flyers.  Just wanting to see what the houses looked like for future reference we looked at several places. I did as much research as possible on each one and always talked to people already living in each area. I was not interested in buying until I actually moved here but my wife kept insisting so it would be finished by the time we got here. Against my better judgement I did not listen. After much research and talking with people I selected Montenegro Estate on Fil-Am Friendship Hwy, Angeles City. It was owned by Krisworld Development Corporation which started building houses doing several joint adventures in Australia with other developers  .In April 2007 they decided to build in the Philippines with the Montenegro Estates. Before getting into the housing development business they had started as Perfect Australian Wardrobes in 1984. My research showed the company was sound. I was intoducted to the man in charge and the developer of the estate by the name of Kris Krstic (Australian) and a Filipina I thought was his wife (later found out just his gf).  My wife put down the 50,000 pesos (January 22, 2010 – have receipt) required to reserve the lot location. On February 10, 2010, I paid 1,182,134.20 pesos (have receipt) so construction could start.  Kept in communication with Kris by several emails. He always replied. In March my wife and I came to visit to see how the house was going. Kris met with us and showed us how things were going.  He took me around and introduced me to all the people living in the community at that time to include a few visits to his house. He took me to several stores and even worked discount deals  in reference to purchasing aircons, furniture, appliances, etc.  He was helpful in every way.  I paid an additional $25,000 dollars in April 2010 with receipt. The monies were sent through my credit union through Bank of America to BDO SM Clark to Krisworld Development Corporation with a code number and swift code.  Everything seemed to be going good until maybe September when I stopped receiving answers to my emails. I then received an email from a Mr. Estelito Soriano from Krisworld on December 28, 2010, that Kris was no longer with Krisworld since October 2010 (later found out he took off with the monies of the Angels City development) and that the corporation would no longer honor monies paid to Kris (the monies were sent to the corporation and not Kris). They said they liquidated the corporation and formed a new one.  I later met with Mr. Soriano in March 2011 and he said since I paid so much that he would try to help me. Of course this did not happen.  I am now deciding if the attorney here in the Philippines can help me recover some of the money or if it is a waste of time. The attorney feels I can win something in court but he is not sure how long this could take (as you know the court system here).  I Just want to tell others to be careful, no matter how good the company is and where it is from.   Robert (Bob) Russell USA

(Bob, I am not a lawyer but it sounds like the present new Corporation is not being helpful at all by not taking any responsibility for the illegal actions taken by Kris while representing the original Corporation.  I cannot advise you on what to do but your warning to others is a good one.  There are people out there, and they are not all Filipinos, waiting to take advantage of a foreigner.  They are known as con-men.  Angeles City has a few of them.  For sure, I would be a bit apprehensive about dealing with anyone connected with Montenegro Estate or as you wrote, any other subdivision.  One lesson for all is that one should be here in-country from the beginning to the end in any transaction dealing with purchasing real estate.  In that way you can do more research and discover foul play much quicker if it takes place.)  

This is a true story. I am still sort of laughing.  Curtis had a room reservation at my stable but had to cancel for health reasons.  After I acknowledged the cancellation he sent me this explanation:

“Red enamel spray-paint.  I bought her two cans of the stuff and showed her how to use it (she never used spray-paint before)- she wanted to paint a couple of metal chairs we have.  I “thought” she would do it in the garage with ventilation – instead she painted the things in our small second bedroom and filled her lungs and nasal passages with over-spray! P28k later – she is doing well at home, where I am trying to figure out how the hell I am going to get the over-spray off of every single thing in that bedroom…:-(  You know you are married to a Filipina when:….:-)

I need to save my peso’s again for awhile – I had to dip into my emergency healthcare/travel savings in the states for part of this – maybe first week of July – I’ll let you know. Take care – Curtis”  (Curtis, my sympathies and honestly, every time I read this I try not to laugh).

Last month I had a few regular readers of this column point out three mistakes I made.  Man, I felt like I was getting a one, two, three punch out to the head.  I remember two of them but forgot the third.  The cancer story from John Hopkins was not true.  It did not come from John Hopkins, in fact, the hospital is John Hopkin not Hopkins.  But, I still stand by the recommendations listed there, just the source was wrong.  The second one was about the Boeing 1,000 passenger jet.  Not true.  I keep trying to remind myself to check snopes and other sources on some of the stories sent to me and still screw up.  But, my readers are quickly there to point out the errors to me and believe it or not, I appreciate the input.  I hope that this month I have not made any errors.  I know there was a third one but damn, can’t find it again.

Charlie’s –  previously know as “the Screaming Eagle” has undergone a $100,000 refurbishment under the supervision of new owners, one English (Andrew) and one Aussie.  Andy told me it would be open by 25 May.  They will be open for  breakfast at 0830.  What surprised me is that he told me there  would be 5 chefs on duty and now I have to try and figure out my notes which I planned to get more details in a second interview but never saw Andy again.  Let me see, so something about Comis chefs, whatever that is, 2 Sous chefs, whatever that is, one chef named William that was with Margarita Station and 8 years with Holiday Inn, a consultant executive chef from from Yats Wine Club 2 times a week or something like that.  Now, some time this month I will get on over to Charlies and get all my information straightened out and take some pictures.  Hours are from 10 to midnight except for the bar upstairs which will be open until 0100 hrs.  Andy, if I have screwed up this write-up please forgive me.  I just wanted to let everyone know that by now you should be up and running and that your place will be a winner.  I look forward to seeing the upstairs area where you told me you plan to have some live music, maybe some darts, and well, a fun place.  My goodness, with all the chefs on board, I expect some very interesting menu items.  OK, enough for now, I will be dropping by for updates very soon.  (My goodness, is this the worse write-up I ever did?  Maybe I should have just said, “Charlie’s is open, check it out as the advance word to me is that it will be a great place to eat and play.  Details later”.  Shit, I like that better, please disregard everything I wrote before that.  Update:  Stopped by on 31 May, Upstairs far open for business.  Still working on the downstairs, Grand Opening on 4 Jun, 7 PM.

From: Alma Clayton
Subject: Re: Hello Brendan…..
Hy Bredan:-)
I Had Reason To Visit The Embassy Today 14th 0f May To Submit The Papers For My Daughter Passport.The Past Few Years I’ve Never
Heard Any Good Reports From People Who Had  Cause To Visit There,Complaints 0f Locals With A Bit 0f Power Giving Expats A Hard Time ETC.Having To Fight My Way 0n The Bus At DAU Then My Wife And I Standing All The Way Whilst The EDSA Traffic Crawled At A Snails Pace.
Finally Arriving At Ayala At 8:40am.Found A Taxi Within 20 Seconds All Looking Good.Thankfully I Looked At Your Website And Saw The Map Showing The Embassy.At First I Thought The Driver Was Taking A Short Cut But After 15mins Realized All Was Not Well.I Showed Him Your Calling Card”0h I Thought You Said U’S EMBASSY”.Now My 9:30 Appoinment Looked Grim.Well We Arrived At 9″20 And Was Treated Very Well,The Guy At Reception The Lady security And Most 0f All The Lady  Who Dealt With My Interview A Pleasant Smile And Very Professional And Polite.I Recently Applied For My 13A Visa And It’s A Pity That The Staff There At Immigrati0n  Were Not All The Same Calibre As Your Young Lady.If This No Nonsence Attitude Is A Result 0f You Being The New Captain 0f This Ship.Then Well Done.I Shall Be Certainly Prasing You And Yours To Any Other Expats You Have Reason To Visit.
Regard’s, Jack Clayton:-)  (Jack Clayton is from England and is a true blue hasher)
Brendan’s reply to Jack:  I’m glad to hear your experience was a pleasant one, Jack.
Brendan Gill, HM Consul, British Embassy Manila | tel: 00632 858 2222 | ftn: 8411 2222 | fax: 
00632 858 2342 | e-mail: brendan.gill@fco.gov.uk 

TIDBITS

LA PASHA -

I received a call from Jorg, the owner of La Pasha and he informed me that the prices at his clubs remain at P95 for local drinks.  I printed a report from a reader of this column who commented that the prices at La Pasha had been raised.  Jorg wants everyone to know that this is not true.

I am more than happy to report this as Jorg runs a great group of Clubs and is one of the good guys in town.  By the way, I did not know that six months ago he added a new baby to his family.  It’s a bit late Jorg, but congrats!

 

A musician named Dave Carroll recently had difficulty with United Airlines. United apparently damaged his treasured Taylor guitar ($3500) during a flight. Dave spent over 9 months trying to get United to pay for damages caused by baggage handlers to his custom Taylor guitar. During his final exchange with the United Customer Relations Manager, he stated that he was left with no choice other than to create a music video for youtube exposing their lack of cooperation. The Manager responded: “Good luck with that one, pal.”
So he posted a retaliatory video on youtube. The video has since received over 6 million hits. United Airlines contacted the musician and attempted settlement in exchange for pulling the video.  Naturally his response was: “Good luck with that one, pal.”
Taylor Guitars sent the musician 2 new custom guitars in appreciation for the product recognition from the video that has led to a sharp increase in orders. Here’s the video, and it’s GREAT!  A Must Watch;   http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=5YGc4zOqozo
(I really liked the video.  It is great to see someone get back at some of these “screw the customer” airline companies.  Well done Dave!)  Update:  It was reported that Spirit finally did refund the money to the Vet but only after so much bad publicity, and done grudgingly.  By the way this is what I mean by how Spirit and other airlines squeeze their customers to death:

The “S” in Spirit means: “S”uck you dry!! Check out Spiritless Airlines’ baggage policy for carry-on luggage, a fee between $20.00 and $35.00. (There’s also a fee for check-in luggage). The dumb and dumbers running this airlines will also publish an airfare about $10.00 lower than competing airlines – just to “suck” you in…oops, there’s that word again. Spiritless Airlines - Sucking you Dry, so we can Fly”

After hating to drive to the Angeles University Foundation Hospital (AUF) because of lack of parking for so many years I was overjoyed to find that they finally built a parking garage behind the hospital.  OK, I know this is not the biggest news to report but damn, if you knew what it was like before you would really appreciate it.  The Angeles family built on every square inch of land around that area disregarding parking requirements.  So, better late than never.  Now, if I get sick and end up in AUF, which I hope never happens again, drive on down and see me.  I might even pay the parking fee, oh yes, nothing is free at AUF.

I missed a golden opportunity!  This little story has a bit of drama, comedy and a lesson that when opportunity knocks, go for it right away and a bit of the early bird catches the worm.  It all started when the infamous Wesley Prentice sent out an Email in which he asked that it be circulated to all hotels in Angeles and Subic.  It contained a list 12 different items available for sale at hard to believe low prices.  Man, it had a 450 KVA generator, Air-Cons, mini-refs, bed boxes and mattresses, tables, jacuzzis, kitchen equipment, computers, telephone hand sets and a washing machine, dryer.  The message was sent out on 4 May and the instructions said “The following items are for sale, please contactd Mr. Ross Addy, Dreamland Resort, before Monday, May 7th 2012, cell number 09493282511.

The prices were so reasonable that I wanted to grab 20 or 30 thousand pesos and drive to Subic the next morning, with the Mrs of course.  I wanted around 3 of those mini-refs and a couple of air-cons.  But, Sat came, slept late, never got motivated but kept thinking I was making a mistake by not going.  Early that evening I went to the Hang-out and that is when I learned all those lessons.  Two lads were there relating the story of their shopping trip to the Dreamland Resort.  They waited until the afternoon to get there but they were prepared with trucks and cash.  They loaded up beds, mattresses, air-cons, mini-refs (would you believe they still had stock in them), washing machine and dryer.  While they were there, other folks had come earlier, loaded up and left the compound.  Just as Dave and Chris were about to leave, after paying and receipt in hand there suddenly appeared a Chinese character who was all excited and upset.  He immediately padlocked the gate and went to our, now, puzzled buyers, demanding they unload their truck and that they could not leave the compound until the police arrived.  Now we had a Mexican standoff, or should I say, Chinese Standoff.  This guy was so upset that our friends thought he would pull out a Ninja sword and start whacking them.  They told him that he could not hold them there.  They were legal, paid cash, had a receipt.  Needless that did not work.  They finally had to unload the truck, get their money back and continue arguing.  This guy refused to open the gate until the police arrived.  Dave and Chris accused him of hostage taking and insisted on leaving the compound.  Finally the China man reluctantly opened the gate and two very disappointed ex-pats returned to Angeles with empty trucks.  What really hurt is that if they had arrived their one or two hours earlier, they would have been home with what has to be the bargain of the year for shopping.  The mystery is, what the hell was going on?  Where was Wes Prentice?  Who was this Chinese character?  If Dave and Chris had been “early birds” they would have met with success.  The drama was the one man hostage taker.  The comedy was his antics and Dave and Chris unloading the trucks.  And the biggest lesson was my opportunity missed by not getting off my ass to get there in the early AM as I had planned.  I wonder if someone can tell me what the deal was with this Dreamland Resort fiasco.

I wrote to Mo, the very knowledgeable, long time Club owner in Angeles City and now Barrio Barretto to ask if he could shed some light on this latest Wes Prentice action.  His reply follows:

Like his schemes here (Vegas and the non-existent Dreamland Resort project on Clark) and Arizona and finally Dreamland in Subic, Wes sells, in essence, promises of huge returns. As an incentive, stockholders get to use the hotel for a number of nights based upon their holdings. They also received discounts on food and beverages.

When he finally bails, the share holders are usually left holding the bag (empty bag). In the Arizona case, the shareholders ‘loaned’ the corporation considerable amounts of money at something like 6% interest. When it was sold, Wes used part of the proceeds to repay the loans (no interest) and the remainder to develop the Dreamland project. One shareholder held out for the interest, and Wes basically told him to pack salt, and take him to court promising ‘I will tie it up for years, and you won’t get anything’. The sale of the Arizona International Hotel, Inc. included a clause that the corporation was free and clear of any debt. When the new owner asked Wes for restitution, Wes gave him the same response. The new owner’s a stand-up guy, and paid the shareholder and took Wes to court.

Wes enticed a top manager to invest in the bar and restaurant. They had a contract that stated that should Wes wish to terminate the relationship, he’d pay the guy something like $60,000. The relationship ended, and Wes, as always, reneged on that deal as well. That was about 2 years ago.

I don’t know exactly what happened, but Wes returned to Australia. Supposedly, there was a clause in the lease that precluded foreclosure based upon nonpayment of rent, and the arrears rumors are between P2M and P6M. It’s probably someplace in-between.

Wes got scared and headed back to Australia. I’m not sure how long ago it was, but he turned the management over to locals who promptly ran it like locals. The restaurant started serving local quality food, the rooms were left to deteriorate and business slowly, but surely, suffered. The only thing it had going was a magnificent pool area and dirt cheap rooms.

When I heard about the sale, I contacted someone in the know about the possibility of taking over the operation. He came back with a strong warning not to touch it. Bankruptcy is imminent (probably this week), and the owner of the land is going to tie the place up for awhile. The employees had not been paid for a prolonged period and were allowed to remove hotel property as payment in kind.

Harry, there are probably some holes in this and probably some errors, but the gist of the story is correct. All-in-all another scam perpetrated by a consummate scam artist. To elaborate a bit further, 4 or 5 years ago, Wes ran an ad in Blue Book advertising 50% share and total control of the planned commercial plaza for something like $600K. A friend of mine in the States saw the ad and asked Wes for more details. Wes provided business plans, drawings, permits, etc. Everything was in perfect order. My friend emailed Wes and told him he’d like him to make the presentation to me. Wes came up. We talked for a couple of hours. Everything was perfect – too perfect. When I started asking about the ‘total control’ aspect, it became clear that it was nothing of the sort. There were all sorts of restrictions and permissions needed including a significant percentage of the rents charged for any commercial undertakings. I relayed this to Wes and my friend. The negotiations stopped. Wes sent him an unbelievably rude email calling him a “stupid fucker” for ‘taking the advice of a simple bar owner’. Needless to say, Wes and I have not gotten along well since then.

I’ll do a little more digging, but my guess is the Chinese person is the landlord, and it’s also my understanding that it’s illegal to sell assets when there’s financial disputes. It was mentioned by someone in the know that “It is 100% sure Wes will never return to the Philippines”
Easter in the Philippines:  That is not a picture of a dead man, it is just another one of the many flagellants that can be seen walking the streets beating their backs bloody just before Easter Sunday.  In this case they came in front of a chapel in a local barangay, San Nicholas, AC and lay flat on the ground as penance while others continue to beat and lightly kick them.  Others carry heavy crosses and meanwhile one has to put up with the 24 hour, very annoying, singing of the story of Jesus, called the Passion.  This singing or chanting starts on Holy Monday until Good Friday.  I find it to be extremely annoying because they have to use loud speakers without any consideration to people who have to get up for work or want a good nights sleep.  Before it used to be done only in chapels but now they set up temporary booths in various parts of the neighborhoods making it more difficult to get away from the sound.  But, it is once a year, for one week and one learns to live with it.  Easter is taken very seriously here but even some priests do not support the carrying of the heavy crosses and beating bare backs into a bloody mess since far too many of those participating will return to their sinful ways the day after Easter.  The rituals are to be respected, along with the participants, and when I witness the bloody backs, watch the long walks with heavy crosses and see those who on Easter Sunday tie themselves to crosses or even some who allow their hands to be nailed, I am more than satisfied to be an on-looker and just say a few Hail Mary’s for my penance, preferably in an air-conditioned environment.  No doubt, if there is a heaven, I suspect the Filipinos will be well in front of any line that I might be on waiting for entry into that gate.  Next year I will recite more Hail Mary’s, eh, OK, without air-conditioning.

Mark Dizon Update:  I was able to attend his hearing last month at courtroom 58, now located at the newly renovated Dept of Justice Building in the City Hall compound.  Once again I was not all that impressed with the Prosecutors presentations and even the judge made instructions that there was too much duplication in presenting witnesses to confirm what has been presented by previous witnesses.  He instructed them to get on to new ground and to speed up the process so the case does not drag on indefinitely.  Dizon was in court and his appearance was the same.  It looks like he gained a bit of weight and still seemed not to be bothered by events.  He was able to chat with some court officials and even have a joke or two.  I look forward to his next appearance in June and hope that the prosecutors heed the advice of the judge.

Three weeks after I wrote the above update on Dizon I was pleased to see an update published by Punto newspaper with reporting and picture by Ding Cervantes.  I know Ding and am glad to see this article as theirs is the only newspaper that has written any update on this alleged murderer.  I must agree, that justice here is very, very slow but at least it is not dead.  I like the no nonsense judge.

‘Slow justice’
2 years after serial murders, jailed suspect waits for verdict - 
By Ding Cervantes  May 24, 2012, Source: Punto

ANGELES CITY– Almost two years now since the serial murders of nine persons here, suspect Mark Dizon has remained in jail still in wait for any verdict in the several criminal cases filed against him before the salas of three regional trial courts (RTC) in this city.  Sources from RTC Branch 58, who asked not to be named as they had no permission from Judge Philip Iturralde, said that government prosecutors still had to present 10 more witnesses against Dizon in the case of victims retired US Air Force MSgt. Albert Mitchell, 70, and his wife Janet and their househelps Isabel Fajardo, Marissa Prado and Yulberto Catli who died from gunshot wounds in their home in Hensonville Court Subdivision in Barangay Malabanias on July 22, 2010.

Dizon in the Mitchell case is accused of the “intent to kill willfully, treacherously, feloniously and with evident pre-meditation” five of his victims.
The RTC sources noted, however, that several prosecution witnesses have already been presented, including Czarina Mitchell, the surviving daughter of the Mitchell couple, who had at one time been the girlfriend of the suspect. Czarina was in the US when her parents were killed.
Dizon, who was 28 when he allegedly committed the crimes, faces five counts of murder, one count of carjacking and three counts of robbery in the Mitchell case.
RTC personnel said Dizon is also facing similar charges in other RTC branches in connection with the murders of South African national Geoffrey Allan Bennun, 60, and his live-in partner, Abegail Helina, 20, whose decomposing bodies were found inside their house at Oasis Hotel and Villas in Clarkville Compound in Barangay Anunas here on July 12 in the same year.
He is also facing charges before another RTC branch in regard to the killing of Briton James Bolton Porter, 51, and his live-in partner, Melissa Madarang, 22, in their house at 4-11A Nicolas street in Sta. Maria Subdivision in Barangay Balibago a few days later on July 16.
The RTC sources said Dizon is being represented by lawyers from the Public Attorney’s Office. Several attempts to interview his lawyers failed, as they were always out on official missions.
Dizon, who had worked as computer technician for his victims, had denied all the charges against him.

The David Balmer murder:  Not much progress here.  The suspects are out of country and there has been no further progress on obtaining an order of extradition for the suspects.  This does not mean that nothing is being done it is just that It is a slow process and with David’s family being out of country it makes it more difficult. Eventually it will happen, least wise we hope so.  No one should forget this horrible murder of such a wonderful couple who were very much in love.

I attended a meeting last month at the City Hall Conference room in which Dennis Pamintuan, Alex Cauguiran and Jesus Eres.  Also in attendance were PEACE representatives led by Balibago Barangay Captain Tony Mamac.  Alex Caugriran is the Chief of Staff for the Mayor.  During this meeting Alex stated that “if it was up to him, all the bars on Fields Ave would be closed within one year”.  He was dead serious as he spoke quite emotionally about it.  But, he did add that he was not the Mayor so this would not happen.  He did add that the policy on bars that are closed as a result of illegal practices, i.e., Coyote Ugly, would not be allowed to reopen as a bar, even with a new name or new management.  They could open as a restaurant, hotel or some other type business, but not a bar.  No doubt there are other government officials out there that must feel the same way as Alex.  It will be interesting to see how this train of thought plays out over the next five to ten years.

On 22 May, another meeting was called for by Jesus Eres, the Executive Director of the newly formed Angeles City Entertainment Promotion office (ACEPO).  This is an office formed by the Mayor with the mission of working towards reforming the image of the entertainment industry along Fields Ave, Don Juico Avenue and Friendship Ave through the implementation of programs aimed at maintaining and sustaining peace, security, cleanliness and orderliness within these areas.  The ACEPO office will be located in a building alongside the Station Four Police Station and manned 24/7.  An overview of specific plans was presented by Alex Cauguiran by a slide presentation.  Artists renditions were shown of the future look of Fields Ave and the Korean area at Friendship.  He announced that the Philippine government has allocated funds for the widening of the Friendship road to four lanes, all the way to San Fernando.  There are plans to make Fields Ave a true walking street in which from 4 PM to 4 AM no public or private transport will be allowed (how many times have we heard this before?).  There are plans to build a Sun Dial at the park with an underground museum and a skateboard park.  Additionally, the traffic circle will be transformed into a fountain and enlarged to improve the traffic flow.  On cleanliness, street sweepers will be employed and a regular schedule of cleaning will be established.  Solid Waste Management will be enforced whereby garbage will be separated for pick-up.  This will be a cooperative effort between the Government and the stakeholders.  On Fields, after 11 PM minors, 17 and below, will not be allowed.  There are more details but the overall objective is to make Angeles City a world class entertainment district where tourists and regular citizens can visit and feel safe at all times.  Alex admits that this is not an easy task, but his motto is “dream big and think big”.  The question is, will it be a dream come true?

Sometimes trying to be helpful can back fire on you.  It was midnight, location, near Norma’s Money Changer on Teodoro Street.  Some Filipinos beating up on a girl, a foreigner goes to help her, the Filipinos turn on him and beat him up and leave him laying in the street.  He ends up with a broken collar bone.  Was he right to help or was he being foolish?  Good intentions, bad result.  My advice, next time turn around and go home a different way or just call the police and stay out of it.

This one is a switch.  In front of La Pasha one late night.  Two foreigners fighting each other in front of the bar.  A Filipino tried to break it up, the foreigners turned on him and starting hitting him.  Bad move, Tricycle drivers and vendors in the area got involved, result, two foreigners down for the count.  I hope the two idiots were not fighting over a girl!

Over the years I have read a few books written by Ex-pats about Angeles City or various wars they have participated in.  Some are good, others were not worth reading after one chapter.  But, recently Scott Grant, who reads this column and sends me well written opinions and suggestions, mailed me three books that he authored and are available on Amazon.com.  He asked that I read them in order as they are all connected to one main character.  I did not start reading them right away as I had a couple of paperback books to finish first.  But, once I started the first one, “East of Egypt” I was hooked.  That meant every time I took one of my long extended dumps and before sleeping at night I read the book.  Man, it was great, full of action, twists and turns and informative details.  Even Angeles City was mentioned.  It was good enough that I even started reading it during TV commercials, then biggest compliment of all, it took me away from my computer and this column.  For me, it “movie” material.  Now, I am on the second book, “Year of the Rat” and hate to put it down.  But then, I know that the third book, “The Lebensborn Experiment” is waiting for me.  My fictional hero for a long time has been “Jack Reacher” but now “David Anderson”  is up there with Jack.  As I mentioned, I do get to communicate with Scott and he told me he, along with his family will be returning to the Philippines on 28 Aug and for the first time I will meet a book author and be able to get him to autograph the three books for me.  By the way, he has two more books in the planning stage already, so get on board now before you have too many books to catch up on.  This is part of the message he wrote to me recently.

“I appreciate that you like my work well enough to publish a thread on your blog about me. I think ex-pats are the perfect audience as I am an ex-pat myself. If you mention my books in your blog/newsletter please tell the guys that if they are interested they can go to Amazon.com/books and type in the book title and Scott Grant and they will be taken to the book straight away.”
“I forgot to mention I have a blog at http://actionthrillers.net would you ad that link in your column?”

Would you believe that another Ex-pat living and working here in Angeles City, upon returning from a trip to Hong Kong found out that he was blacklisted by Immigration and was not allowed to leave the terminal.  They told him that he would have to wait for a return flight to Hong Kong the next morning.  Fortunately, this person knew enough influential people that he was able to exit the terminal late that night and the next day went to Manila to meet with Immigration officials there.  Why was he blacklisted?  He made the mistake of, three weeks earlier, questioning Immigration officials as to why they refused to allow his girlfriend to travel with him to Hong Kong.  Apparently, they hate to be questioned and interpret anyone doing so as being rude and deserving of being blacklisted.  Naturally, they do not tell the traveler this, one only finds out if he tries to extend his visa or on returning to the PI after a trip out of the country.

I attended a meeting last month called by the Regional III Dept of Tourism Director, Ronnie Tiotuico in which members of the Travel Agent Agencies, Hotel organization (HARP) and private individuals were invited to meet with Attorney Carlos Capulong, Head Immigration Officer at the DMIA to discuss the policies at the DMIA regarding the treatment of Filipinas trying to leave the country on Tourist Visas and denied boarding based on the fact that they were traveling with foreigners or going to meet a companion for a vacation.  Would you believe that one lady was denied boarding because the Immigration official told her that “I can tell by your face that you are a prostitute”.  This lady was a 26 year old secretary employed in Manila.  Anyway, at the very last minute Attorney Capulong cancelled his appearance due to other commitments but did send his representative, DMIA Immigration Supervisor Samer Balindong.  Mr. Balindong was kind enough to patiently listen to complaints, at times not presented as politely as they could have been and provided explanations as best he could.  From what I gathered I can only recommend that, especially foreigners, do not question Immigration policies at the airport.  At all times, be respectful, keep a smile on your face and be humble.  Sometimes that is hard to do but Filipinos are extremely sensitive especially those in authority.  When questioning an agent, try to make sure he or she does not get the impression that you are being rude or arrogant.  These agents deal with a lot of people during their duty day and you have no idea who might have pissed them off before you.  Agent Balindong indicated that it was not a good idea to question the agents on policy decisions.  He also indicated that he supports his agents 100% and will not second guess them on decisions made or how actions are taken.  He recognizes the difficult task they have and supports his team.  So, do not raise your voice, do not curse, try to remain respectful, even if the person you are dealing with is not doing so.  Remember one thing, these agents might tolerate a lot from a fellow Filipino, but a lot less so with a foreigner.  A bit of Nationalism comes into play here.  I have lived here thirty years and sometimes I forget my own advice but am quickly reminded of it by Filipino friends.  I will leave Immigration issues to those officials who can work the problem at the levels where solutions can be found and implemented.  Eventually, things will be sorted out, proper uniform procedures will be developed and all we can do at the ground level is to continue to provide examples of airport problems encountered and then we can forward them to those folks who are working at higher levels.  Does that make any sense?  Bottom line – Don’t mess with the Immigration agents at the airports.  Hell, you better not do that even when entering the US.  They don’t get mad, they get even!

From Jimmy Waldon:  An outstanding website for US Vets.  Maybe you can get it out to folks. http://www.theveteransvoice.com/.

Super darters visit the Blue Boar Inn (My Stable) from Korea to enjoy a bit of Fields Ave but also a lot of darts.  In fact during the two weeks they were here each afternoon saw them throwing the arrows for a couple of hours of practice.  Greg Relihan is stationed at Camp Humphries in Pyeongtaek, Korea and Frank Rabuck, is stationed at Osan, Korea.  They play a lot of league darts in Korea so they are at the top of their games.  The third player in the picture, in the background is John Marszal, an outstanding dart player from Australia who used to live in Angeles City but has moved to Barrio Barretto where he dominates dart play there, when J T is not in town.

Last month I wrote about the Gasthouse and promised that Mrs. Horse and I would return to check out the specialty, baby-back ribs.  We kept our promise and Priscilla absolutely loved the ribs.  It was better than expected and there was so much, delicious tender meat on the bones that Priscilla could not finish them, even after sharing some with our son and me.  I had the Goulash and that was a good meal as well.

Douglas (Dougie) Frost, owner of Hang-out.  I wrote about his accident and hospital treatments last month.  I am sad to say that this poor guy has been through hell since then.  He has been in and out of the hospital numerous times and had operations on his arm and hip and then had to go back in to clear up infections and repeat operations to correct some mistakes by doctors.  Every time I stop by the Hang-out to look for him I am told by Mac, “oh, we just took him back to hospital this morning”.  I sure hope that this month of June will see his bones finally healing properly and no repeat admissions to the hospital.  It was a miracle that he survived the car accident but man, complete recovery is slow coming.  Regretfully, some of his sufferings were caused by doctor errors.

Angeles Sports & Country Club, Zeppelin St Hensonville

FOR RENT AVAILABLE JUNE 1 2012
On the most secure & best location in Angeles City
1 only, 2 bed luxury fully furnished apartment. Overlooking the International Lawn Bowling Greens. To include free use and Membership of all Club facilities including a 25 metre pool with a swim up covered bar and an adjoining kiddies swimming pool both with food service,and a large sunbathing area.
A challenging Par 3 Golf Course and Driving Range, Lawn bowling Greens, Petanque Courts, a kiddies play area, a restaurant, plus 2 additional Family friendly Bars.
Close to all the facilities and services Angeles offers yet remains an Oasis, a real hidden gem. A one off.
For further details tel:  +63 922 839 5660  Ainie  English / Tagalag. OWNERS LIVE ON SITE Tel  +63 999 652 6214  John   English.

 

JUNE EVENTS

15 June, 1PM – The Wild Orchid 2nd Annual Miss Pinatubo 2012 Bikini Contest & Pool Party.  Proceeds will go to the Duyan ni Maria Orphanage.  Folks, this is a fun event and the judging is done by audience participation in the form of bead voting.  I watched this last year and the voting was interesting.  One lady had a boyfriend with plenty of pesos to spend and he bought one hell of a lot of those beads to put on his favorite lady.  Fortunately she was not bad looking.  She did win!

4 June – Grand Opening of “Charlie’s On the Bend”  7 PM.

7, 8 9 June – American Legion Convention.  A dinner will be held at the “White House” on 9 Jun, 6 PM.  Contact Joe Carsley for details at 889-5767 or 0908-697-4680.

15 Jun – New Infinity Bar grand opening – Well fella’s a few changes in store.

Firstly, we will be taking possession of the old Dirty Duck location sometime next week. After some clean-up, a little fresh paint and some minor tweaks here and there, we will reopen as Infinity Bar, except this time located in the HEART of Fields Ave! Our targeted opening date is June 15th. The current Infinity Bar will remain open until June 12th. We plan to host ANOTHER grand opening party (just another reason to call a party!) on the weekend of the 15th.  Our prices will remain the same throughout the summer. (HH 60p local / 125p Ld’s – 75p local / 140p LD’s).  Johno

26 June, the one and only duo of Howard McKay and Doggie will be returning for another exciting standing room only appearance at the La Casa Pension/Blue Boar Inn.  Free admittance to a fun filled night of song and comedy provided by two talented lads.  Additionally, surprised appearances by some of the customers is a special treat.

A VERY SPECIAL COUPLE

From 1958 to 1962 I was stationed in England, in fact, Denham Studios first then moved to South Ruislip when when the Air Force decided to give up Denham.  My wife and I lived on top of a garage in Hillingdon.  I ran with the Hayes and Harlingdon Athletic club and also did a lot of road riding. Needless to say I have a lot of pleasant memories of that time especially of my first wife, Lilian Finch, from Iver Heath. So, when my fellow dart player, Frazer Gas      told me that his parents were here for a visit I bugged him to death to please bring them to my “stable” so I can chat with them.  Finally, on the afternoon prior to their night time departure he complied with my request.  His dad, Alan is 79 years of age and wife Eleanor is 85.  Both are still very much in love and Eleanor still has the good looks that attracted Alan at a dance hall many years ago.  Naturally, they are both retired but they told me about their adventures of hiking in many different countries when they were younger.  I was flabbergasted to learn that, alone, the hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and back up, taking around 16 hours to do so.  A guide had told them they could not do that, especially on their own.  They proved him wrong.  Amazing!  It is seldom that I get to talk to visitors from England that are old enough to remember the old radio and TV shows from the time I was there.  Can you believe that Frazer did not know who Harry Secombe was!  He did not know about the Goon show either, and horror of horrors, did not know about the “Pearlies”.

Naturally, I served tea to this distinguished couple and wished we had more time together.  I do not know what they thought of this old “Horse” from New York but I hope I was a good host for our short visit.  Oh, Alan is quite proud of his garden in Chesterfield Derabyshire and promised to send me some pictures.  Frazer, their son, is working here in Angeles City with the “Kandi Realty” company promoting and selling some very stylish/affordable apartments in town.  I guess I am going on a bit too much here but can’t help myself, I shall forever remember meeting Alan and Eleanor and helping me to return to a time of wonderful, wonderful memories.  By the way, they never heard of “Harry the Horse”.

REALM OF MAGIC BILLIARD HALL

Do you remember the short lived “CourtYard, the brainchild of Mr. Delfin Lee whose dream was short circuited when he ran into legal problems with his various housing projects?  I certainly do as I interviewed Mr. Lee and also did a couple of photo shoots there.  I liked the place, it was a good idea, until the band started playing at night and you could not hear yourself talk or enjoy a meal at one of the many eateries there.  Many stall owners were unhappy from the first day of operation because of harsh management rules, so, with time, the inevitable happened, it closed down.  I was a bit sad because it should have worked but not to worry, along came the brothers from Saver’s Mall with the big bucks and the management experience.  The building has been transformed and it is great to see the new Fortune Hong Kong restaurant on the ground floor but I was surprised when I took the escalator to the second floor and saw this great looking Billiard Hall with with a Bingo room as well.  I certainly did not expect to see the great Efren Reyes, the pool player who is the pride of the Philippines.  Oh, I have seen him before, even had him autograph my pool stick one time, which I lost at the old Powder Keg a year later.  But to see him so unexpectedly was a special treat.  He was playing some foreigner in some sort of challenge match.  Needless to say, Ped, the manager of the Fortune Hong Kong Restaurant along with my ugly kisser disturbed Efren long enough to get a picture. Stop by and check out this place, it is a lot more impressive than the pool halls I was not allowed to hang out in when I was a kid.

 

 

 

 

 

TOURISTS OF THE MONTH

 

This month I have to do a bit of catch up, hence two pictures featuring four great guys.  The first picture with me in the middle has me in the company of Bob Bouroughs with the Navy Seebees.  He is working with the Veterans’s Museum in Redding CA and is a Senior Chief, Naval Reserve.  His partner is Mike Coffey, Retired Air Force, working with the California Dept of Veterans Affairs at the Northern California Veterans Cemetery.  He is married to a Filipina.  I do believe I should stay out of the pictures, I appear to be shrinking.
The second picture features two lads who are working in Singapore, Buddy Shelton(w/beer) from Texas and Art Warren, Tucson Arizona, both are retired Air Force veterans.  Both These two guys had a lot of stories about their experiences with living in Singapore and staying out of trouble.  It appears that life is better well regulated in Singapore and that it is a very strict country in enforcing its laws and regulations. We had a bit of a hot sauce story here.  Buddy was carrying a bottle of Singapore hot sauce to me but when he got out of the tricycle he left it behind and now some Filipino tricycle driver is enjoying some decent hot sauce on his rice.

NEW NAMES SAME ACTION

Previously known as Club Rio and Nifty’s we now have a much cleaner exterior look to these two very popular clubs and a new name, the Exenum Night Bar Club.  I don’t know why they put the word “night” in there as they are opened in the afternoon as well as night.  They did a nice job on the frontage and the newly paved road (Thanks to John and Dave of the Boomerang Hotel) really helps with the image.  In the front, next to Garfields but still connected to the Exenum (same owner) is the “Banana Peel Knight Bar”.  What is it with this play on words “Knight and Night”?  For us old timers who have been happy customers of the old names we are glad to know that some things just do not change, thank goodness.

I WOULD IF  I COULD

It was a magic moment for me at the “Miss Magic Club” one afternoon last month.  I was engaged in conversation with owner Leah and her special man, Loren (From Canada) when at the end of our serious talk I relaxed and looked up at the dancers on stage.  Suddenly I got the bright idea, why not take the time to look for my “I would if I could” lady while I was sitting there.  My eye immediately fell on a tall lady in the line-up that from a distance, appeared to be a good choice.  I must admit that my eyes are not all that great at long distance viewing but never-the-less, I asked the boss if she could talk to her to see if she was willing to be

photographed.  The answer was yes, and when she arrived at my table I was pleased to know that my eyes had not let me down.  Her name is Maryann, 19 years old, from Talisay City, Cebu.  This is her first job and has been dancing for six months.  She only has a sixth grade education but has an excellent knowledge of English and can carry on a conversation in such a way that you do not want to leave her.  There is something special about this young lady.  She is an only child and this is very unusual, in fact, in all the years I have been writing this column this is the first time I interviewed a lady who did not have any brothers or sisters.  I told her this and she explained that her parents separated not too long after her birth.  She was raised by her grandmother.  I asked her what she wanted in her future and right away she said she wanted to find her mother and connect with her.  She was very serious about this.  We talked about other things important to her but her desire to find a mother stayed with me and I can only hope that someday, her wish will come true.  Maybe that special guy will come along to help Maryann in her search and also will provide her with a decent life.  If you want to communicate with Maryann Email her at:  maryann_malinao06@yahoo.com.

THE MELBOURNE DOGHOUSE BOYS 

Fourteen Doghouse members from Melbourne made their annual trip to Angeles City last month and stopped in to say hello to the “Horse”.  Their membership has increased since last year but not all were available for the picture.  I was particularly happy to greet cancer survivor Barry Salisbury who did not make it last year because of his cancer treatments.  Two members, John Wallace and Peter Summers were making their first trip to AC.  This has to be one of the most fun clubs to be a member of and I certainly recommend that more lads from Melbourne look into joining up.  These guys never grow old and certainly have fun together.  Naturally I was only one of many of the Clubs that are on their barhopping list.  After my place I know they were heading to Honey-Ko’s and Thi-Hi.  I wanted to join them but had too much office work to accomplish.  The truth be known, I just can’t keep up with these “youngsters”.  A few of them had stopped off in Cambodia before coming here and they had some high praise for their stay in Phnom Penh.  They stayed in the NagaWorld Hotel and Casino for $60 a day, including breakfast.  They reported that there is a lot to see there and when they visited the jail and the killing Fields it was an emotional experience.

AN IRISH WAKE FOR STEVE 

Words of remembrance from Dave Fisher:  

Early in the morning of May 6th, Angeles City lost a good guy. Steven James (Steve) Healey succumbed to a massive heart attack while sleeping. It Is only befitting that, he died peacefully next to his beloved wife Claire. He leaves Claire, his daughter Stephanie and son Joseph.

Steve came to the Philippines shortly after Mt.Pinatubo. He settled in Barrio Barretto which, at that time, was getting ready for the departure of the U.S. Navy. He started a small Jet Ski rental and a very cool bar by the name of Hooters (yep, the same name and logo as the chain). After Mayor Dick Gordon left office and his wife assumed the Mayoralty, she decided to close all the bars in Olongapo and Barrio Barretto. There was a brief struggle, but, of course, her wishes prevailed. That act coupled with the withdrawal of Forces, spelled doom for the majority of bars in town. Steve’s was one of them. He had a strong and varied background from his time in the Coast Guard in construction and management and was quickly hired by several different firms looking for Western management and skills. This coupled with his professional work ethic made him a valuable asset to all of his employers.

In 1998, we were in an expansion mode. We had our 2nd bar, Lollipop. It was located where Swiss Chalet now operates. Our GM, Dennis ‘Mitch’ Mitchell, also a long time Barrio Barretto resident, mentioned he had a friend who had bar management experience and might want some part time work. Steve came over and we chatted for a while and thus began our 14+ year relationship. Steve filled in for Kel Gallagher a couple of days a week and continued in that role for several months. Kel went on to other things, and we invited Steve to take over. He accepted, and, as many will remember, turned Lollipop into one of the best bars in town. He faced all sorts of challenges – including a far less than perfect location. He brought a style and verve to the bar that all A.C. veterans will remember.

As we grew, it became clear that we needed someone to handle the overall management of the bar operations. Steve was, of course, the perfect candidate. He was liked, and more importantly, respected by the entire staff from the houseboys to the mamasans to the foreign managers. He was fair, balanced and honest. He treated them with respect and dignity. He had that rare quality of being able to listen to their issues and problems and was able to say ‘no’ without hurting feelings. He took the time to make sure they understood what he expected. He helped them achieve their goals, offered guidance and wise council when they had problems.

Steve was working part time at Morrison Aircraft handling the shipping department. As that company grew, the demands on Steve’s time forced him to make the decision to transfer full time. He was with Hank for a few years, but never really left us. He was always ready and willing to lend a hand, listen to problems and offer helpful solutions. His first love, though, was the bar business. He was a social person, and, of course, enjoyed the lifestyle bars can offer. After a hiatus of a couple of years rejoined us. By that time, Dennis Kelly (another Barretto transplant and current GM of the Paradise Complex) had taken our reins, and he and Steve continued running the operation until we sold in 2008.

Steve stayed with the MacGroup for a couple of years. When he left, he worked his magic at several places including Body Shop and eventually, the construction of Valhalla. Steve was never far away. As we developed the need for additional foreign support inSubic, we asked him to join us. Steve was with us for a year – commuting a couple of times a week back to his family in AC. During the year he worked closely with JoJo Keene handling the operations side of the business. We had just purchased the DrydenBuilding, and Steve oversaw the complete reconstruction of our kitchen and the renovation of our open air restaurant into what’s now Lips. He and Joe worked closely together managing the bars as well. Lots of hours and lots of fun. They were a perfect team.

On a personal note; Steve (and Joe) brought a balance into my life. He was one of those rare individuals who was not afraid to tell the boss ‘you’re wrong, and here’s why’. It’s not always an easy thing to do, but both did it well. After his stint with us, Steve returned to Angeles City where, for the past 2 and a half years, he was running the all night shift at the Wild Orchid. Like his experiences with us, he was well liked and respected by his colleagues at the hotel.

In what might be the most telling thing about Steve, in all of the years we’ve known each other and of all the people who knew him as a colleague, competitor and friend, I have never heard one ill word spoken about him. As a further testament to the high esteem he earned, his Irish Wake was a Who’s – Who of the Angeles City community. The speeches were short, but from the heart. I received an email that I’d like to share:

I am at a loss for words. Steve indeed was not only a good man but a good person and friend.
Makes me feel even more how lucky I was to have mine while I was awake and know what was happening so I could get to the hospital in time.
I hope Claire and the little one will be ok. Please give her my condolences.
I still remember when I 1st opened Roadhouse in AC and Steve and his former partner would come from Subic to have a drink or 3 with me. I’m sure everyone will miss him.

Best regards,
Mark (Smith)

Personally, I will miss one of the closest friends I’ve ever had. I’m sure Steve’s in Harley Heaven looking down at us and, with that wry smile, joining us in spirit if not the flesh.

Some things you learn from these events; First is how poorly equipped the spouses are to handle the affairs and arrangements. By-in-large, there’s a huge age difference. Many times, they come from the provinces where a death is handled much differently than in the metropolitan areas. Then there are things like government pensions, insurance benefits, figuring out what to do with a house that would be well beyond their means, the family abroad, dealing with the embassy and, many times, banks. In Claire’s case, their many friends stepped up to the plate and handled all of the above. Many thanks to Hank, Smitty, Mitch (Dennis) and Don for all they did. Lastly, these photo collages came from pictures as far back as 2000. Many were sent by our good friend Steve-O inTexas.

I already mentioned that there was a well attended Irish Wake for Steve at the Lollipop Club on Fields Ave.  Let me finish off this dedication with a few pictures of the attendees.

NOISE REDUCTION – NEVER HAPPEN!

It was reported by Reynaldo G. Navales, Sun-Star Staff Reporter in the 10 May issue that “Councilor Edu Pamintuan filed an ordinance that would penalize mortorists using vehicles generating excessive noise  that is a result of modifying their respective vehicles.  The ordinance shall be known as the “Anti-Muffler Modification Ordinance” which prohibits all vehicles using, noise, modified mufflers from traveling through primary, secondary and barangay roads within the city.”  I applaud Councilor Edu but I would be surprised if his ordinance is ever approved.  If by chance it is approved I would be willing to bet a dinner for two for Edu at a restaurant of his choice within Angeles City that the ordinance will never be enforced.  In fact it will only give the police another excuse to fill their pockets with more “consideration” money.  Why hasn’t an ordinance like this been passed before?
I have been here thirty years and the tricycle drivers are the worse offenders of the muffler game.  These drivers ignore every regulation in the book.  Most do not have insurance, driver’s licenses or quiet bikes.  Additionally they do not even come close to following the fare guidelines dictated by the Government.  I have always said that the City Government could make a ton of money just by enforcing legitimate laws and regulations.  For some reason tricycle drivers are allowed to run wild, they are untouchable, even when they cause accidents much less the excessive noise they cause.  My dear Councilor, it would be my pleasure to lose my bet if I could enjoy a day or night without my ear drums nearly bursting from the sound of tricycles or even some overly loud motorcycles.  Noisy cars, hell, I hardly hear them but, yes, get them too.  By the way, can you do something about the illegal Karaoke establishments that operate without permits and keep whole neighborhoods awake with their lousy loud  music all night long.  Man, Edu, you could be an Angeles City Hero if you accomplish your “no-noise” pipe dream.

Phillies P10 Weigh Out Lunch Buffet

 

 

 

 

 

Phillies Sports Grill & Bar has one of the most affordable, reasonable lunch buffets going on now. Its a full hot buffet and cold salad bar. Items range from: Sweat n Sour Fish, Pork Curry, Roast Chicken, Baked ZIti, BBQ Spare Ribs, Hot Fresh Vegetables, Potatoes, Rice, Fresh Roast Pork, Pizza, Garlic Bread and changes from time to time. You can take as much or as little as you want and you you pay by the weight. P10 for every 30 Grams of food. You can have a full plate of food and eat your hearts out for less than P200. Hot Fresh Food, and great fresh salad bar also. The new Weigh and Pay Lunch Buffet is everyday from 11am to 2pm. You certainly wont be disappointed.  Check out the happy faces on the two customers who are satisfied fans of this special luncheon offering.  Of course being served by a couple of good looking Phillies waitresses makes the meal even more enjoyable.

GALAXY HOTEL

 

 

 

 

 

The Galaxy is one of the newest hotels on Fields Ave and is Korean owned.  I kind of like the place, it is strategically located and the outdoor eating area allows a great place to eat, drink and enjoy the passing parade of people.  The location of the pool is kind of unusual.  Those on the first floor, or ground floor I guess, I always get mixed up on that only have to exit their room and jump into the pool.  The security man showing me around kept telling me there was a fourth floor but I could not see it.  I thought my eyes were going bad.  But, then he pointed out that they are located only on the front of the building facing the street.  Ah Hah, a trip to the eye clinic was not necessary.  Oh, speaking of eyes, I was very impressed with the Rose, the desk clerk, receptionist, whatever the title is.  She had a great smile, slim body, good looking and fun to talk to.  I think guys should check into the Galaxy just to meet her.  She is 27, single, and does have a little girl, four years old.  She is an Angeles City native, a college graduate, Email address: rosewallyngonazles@ymail.com.  Now, back to the hotel info, see how easy I get distracted by a pretty face.  They offer 4 types of rooms ranging in price from P2,980 to P2,040 but these are the promo rates and I do not know how long those rates will be available.  You can visit the website at www.galaxyhotel-ph.com or Email them at galaxyhotel.com.ph.

GOODBYE GORDON GRUBB

 

 

 

 

 

What a great smile Gordon has as he spent his last afternoon at the Thi-Hi saying goodbye to his many friends here in Angeles City.  Gordon is a long time member of the local American Legion here but he told me that after 8 years in land locked AC he is heading out to Palawan where he has a house only one Kilometer from the beach.  He is packing up his wife Lila and six year old daughter where together they will start a new adventure in life.  Fortunately for Gordon, under construction near him is an SM Mall and Robinson’s so at least he will be able to do some decent shopping and stay out of the heat.  To stay busy he plans to start up a new American Legion post in Palawan which, no doubt, he will become the Commander of.  That should really keep him busy.  Thi-Hi owner Josie and her staff organized a fine little send off for Gordon who is retired from the US Army and was also a Teamster Representative in civilian life.  Good luck Gordon, stay out of the sun, those skin cancers can be hell.

RUGBY + PERIMETER BAR = PLEASURE

I would venture to guess that all the sports bars in the entertainment area were packed with Australians cheering on their favorite team in the first of three State of Origin Rugby matches.  My Aussie friend Graham told me that he was going to watch the action at the Perimeter Bar.  I hadn’t been in there in quite a while so figured it would be a good time to snap a few pictures.  When I entered the place it was packed, not a vacant seat in the place.  The match was between Queensland and New South Wales and it appeared that there were an equal amount of fans for each team. I have never seen a bar this size with so many TV screens.  They were in the front, sides, back, around the bar, my goodness, no matter you sat or in my case, stood, you had a good view of the action.  Despite the heat out the air-conditioning inside was up to the task of keep the standing room only crowd quite comfortable.  The service was great and you better believe, the beer was cold.  Serving warm beer to an Aussie is a kiss of death to any Publican.  The owner, Ted has to be complimented on a job well done and what a great Club he has created.  I did not know that he also has the Drill Shack and the two bars are connected by a common interior door.  It was a pleasure to see one of my old waitresses, Rose, gainfully employed by Ted.  For sure, I will return for another visit but hopefully when I can find a seat to sit my old ass down.  By the way, QLD won 18 to 10 over NSW.  I was neutral!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NEW YORK SUPREME PIZZA

This is getting to be a real quandary now in deciding where to go for pizza in this town.  Years ago there was only one or two places to go, now suddenly there are many.  The latest entry is the New York Supreme Pizza located on MacArthur Hi-Way.  I had heard about this place and had it on my hot list to visit.  After a enjoying a movie at the SM Mall one evening I told the Mrs I would treat her to a pizza and take care of some pictures and writing at the same time.  She enjoys checking out new places as much as I do so NY Pizza it was.  We were not disappointed, It was darn good and for people who like a lot of cheese on their pizza, they would not be disappointed at this eatery.  They had two sizes, 14″ and 18″ with various toppings.  The prices were P405 to P595 (14″) and P595 to P795 (18″).  We were only two so went for the 14″ all meat pizza.  Priscilla ate one slice and I went overboard with three slices which allowed four slices for take-out.  They offered other items from the Pizza such as Pizza Rolls, Pasta, Salads and Rice meals priced quite reasonably.  I enjoyed the clean, open ambiance of the place and, of course, the pictures of New York.  It was fairly crowded when we arrived and the customer base was mostly Filipino with the main item of choice appearing to be the Pizzas.  I would certainly recommend this place for pizza lovers as they do come close to capturing the New York taste which is good enough for Angeles City.  I am still kind of leaning towards the NY pizza offered at the S & R Store in San Fernando, taste wise but I would be happy with either one, San Fernando is a bit too far to go for pizza unless shopping there.

 

 

 

 

 

AN OUTSTANDING ITALIAN RESTAURANT 

I never use the word “Best” when writing about restaurants or food.  It is my belief that everyone has their own opinions in taste and what they expect in a meal, whether it be fast food or a five star restaurant.  I am not into gourmet food because the prices are ridiculously high and the portions are too small and some of the items they serve taste a bit off but food snobs will still say “oh, how delicious” just to be with the “in crowd”.  OK, I have no class and not enough money to go that route but I can still appreciate a good restaurant.  Man, that is a long lead in to writing about the “Piccolo Padre” Italian restaurant.  You see, I nearly broke my own rule about “best” when I was introduced to this restaurant last month.  First all, the place only has seating for 24 diners and every seat was occupied on this particular Sunday night.  Everybody I talked to was raving about the food, how great it was.  I was not there to eat, only have a cup of coffee with some friends that called me to join them. Regretfully, I got the call just as I was finishing eating Pizza at the NY Pizza.  I was Full!  Never-the-less my friends allowed me samples of what they were eating and I must say that this is truly an outstanding place to eat.  I have had people writing to me asking where they can get good Italian food.  Naturally, I always recommended “C” Italian Restaurant but now, I have no reservations in recommending Piccolo Padre as well.  The Piccolo has the advantage of being run by a giant of a Chef, 6’4′ Danilo (without his chef’s hat) and his wife Aida who is a bit shorter.  They are great together and she runs a tight ship while Danilo Giampaolo, from Milano is sweating away in the kitchen.  What a wonderful couple they are and Aida is wonderful about stopping by your table to chat and make customers feel very comfortable.  Please folks, check out this restaurant and let me know what you think.  It is open from 5:30 to 11 PM and on the weekends you better call for a reservation.  It is located at 566 Don Rico Ave quite near the abandoned Galleon building.  If you go after dark look closely for the entry way is kind of dark and easy to miss.  It is located between Grandview Tower and Cottage Kitchen so that should help you a bit.  The phone number is 875-6050 with mobile numbers 0917 500 4750, 0919 887 2195.  Aida wanted me to mention that every second Saturday they offer a set menu for P950 and BYOB.  Now that sounds like something to look forward to.

HOLIDAY INN AND PRIORITY PRIVILEGE

I know that I have mentioned this before, probably once a year, but since I think it is a pretty good deal, I will share it with you again.  My wife and I have been enjoying the Priority Privilege Club at the Holiday Inn for many years now and we think it is a super privilege if one is ready to actually use the benefits.  The cost is P6,500, good for one year and you received a membership card and a package that includes many benefits.  We particularly like the complimentary dining benefits at the Holiday Inn which includes 50% off the total food bill for a member and one guest, 33% off for a member and two guests, 20% off for a member and nine guests (we never did that).  We use the card mostly for dining at the Mequeni and the roof top Rodizio.  But the discounts are not just for food, in fact there are two pages of discounts listed such as accommodation benefits, dining certificates, free usage of the Holiday Inn pool for member and three guests and there are a few free meals included as well.  There is much more but you will have to talk to Suzette at the Holiday Inn Services Dept, tel:  599-8000 local 1608 who can brief you on details and pricing.  If you can, tell her that Harry the Horse referred you to her or whoever else you might talk to in that office.  Of course, if I get enough folks to join I might get a free meal and you know that this old Horse likes to eat, especially for free!

 

 

 

 

 

PAN DE PARIS

 

 

 

 

 

My goodness, it seems as if I am on a restaurant kick this month.  Can’t help it as there seems to be a new restaurant opening every month.  I am just doing a bit of catch up here.  The location of this little eatery really surprised me. It is located on Teodoro Street, just down from Norma’s money changer.  The Pan De Paris is owned by Chef Antonius Van Esch hailing from the Netherlands.  Can you imagine, a top notch chef running a place in this location, quite unusual for Angeles City.  Antonius was working as the Chef at the Belgian Cafe, a 5 star Intercontinental Hotel in Doha, Qatar.  Why leave a great job to come here to AC?  The explanation was that he was tired of working 14 hours a day, no free time and the heat was unbearable.  He heard about AC so came here and with friend Dean Magat opened his restaurant and now is thoroughly enjoying himself and his new found time for a social life.  The food is good and affordable and his low P35 price for beer has made this restaurant a favorite watering hole for members of the Hash House Harriers.  Being on a sort of diet I did not order the food I normally would, instead I opted for a cucumber salad and French onion soup which I found to be quite delicious.  Vina ordered a sandwich which I considered a bit small for my taste but sufficient for her.  A full menu was available with the usual selections but each prepared with a bit of Antonius originality.  We will certainly return for a return meal.

By the way, I noticed a sign right next door of another new Pizza place.  It was not open and I heard that it opens only from six to nine PM.  I have not had the time to check it out yet, will wait until next month.

TIME FOR AN IMAGE CHANGE?

Fields Ave scene at night.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Since the beginning of the current Mayor’s term I have met with representatives of his administration and suggested that the excess number of ladies outside of the bars along Fields Ave be reduced to one decently dressed lady stationed at the door.  There was a brief period of time when this was ordered but immediately the bigger bars claimed they needed more than one because their bars were so large.  Despite the size of the bar, they still had only one door to man so that did not make sense to me.  Anyway, OK, a few more were allowed.  This lasted three weeks, then as usual, the Club owners did what they wanted and the numbers went back to 15 or 20 in some establishments and customers walking the street were subjected to ladies grabbing their arms and trying to talk them into entering their club. They were not at the doors, but on the sidewalks and into the street.  Naturally, many guys would not object to this, and normally not me either.  But, this painted a picture to the media and to local Filipinos of Fields Ave being a “red light district” and a place where one could not walk down the street to a restaurant or other business with one’s wife or children without being embarrassed or offended.  The TV show “Imbestigador” and International media outlets loved to show the ladies on the street which fueled the sustained the image of Angeles City as “Sin City”.  No one here, including me, wanted the Clubs closed down but what to do at no expense to clean up a bit?  Get the girls inside was an easy start.  What goes on inside the Clubs stays inside and other non-club businesses could flourish.  That was my idea, rightfully or wrongfully.  I did not want people like Alex Cauguiran to want to close the Clubs down because of an exaggerated image and misconception of the locals.  At a recent meeting with Mayor’s representative Jess Aires, I brought up my idea again and was verbally abused by one Doll House Filipino representative who absolutely resented the idea of a reduction of the 20 or more girls outside of the Doll house.  I was not allowed to explain my reasoning and that this was only a suggestion as that person then started a more heated discussion with Barangay Captain Tony Mamac.  Immediately afterwards Jess closed the meeting after Tony walked out in anger.  Anyway, the reason the first try at limiting the girls on the street did not work was because of lack of enforcement of the rule.  Without that, naturally the bars will do whatever they can get away with.  Now, I have heard, but not confirmed that the Mayor has once again directed that the Clubs limit their outside girls to three.  That is a step in the right direction but much more can be done, for example, getting rid of the underage kids working the street, the beggars, the non-mobile vendors, and those hustling illegal drugs.  We must keep the Clubs up and running for many more years.  There is nothing wrong with having an Adult entertainment area but one without a “in your face” attitude.  Let Imbestigador get their pictures some place else.

Another month has ended, one in which I was able to treat the Mrs to a nice Mother’s Day meal at the ABC’s Vari Asia restaurant along with some in-laws.  It was a fine evening even if I did not get the table I reserved the day before.  Now we are into June and Father’s day is coming up so I have to wait and see what Mrs. Horse has in store for me.  We are now officially into the rainy season with daily afternoon rains as we had in May but now the rains should be more consistent and more lengthy in nature.  Time for hats and umbrellas but that should not slow you down in seeking out the pleasures offered up by Fields Ave and beyond.  Be advised though, that more thunder storms will be coming up which leads, automatically, to an increase in brown-outs so look for those hotels offering up some decent generator service.  That’s it for this month, horses do not mind getting a bit wet but we do hope you will continue to be kind to all horses.

 

POLITICAL RANTINGS – SKIP THIS PART

If this doesn’t frost your Wheaties, call 911 immediately!

YOU WILL NOT BELIEVE THIS, but it is true!!
Watch the newscast video and stay calm!

Muslim woman with Children

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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HOUSE FOR RENT

Posted by admin on May 30, 2012 in Breaking News

Angeles Sports & Country Club, Zeppelin St Hensonville

FOR RENT AVAILABLE JUNE 1 2012
On the most secure & best location in Angeles City
1 only, 2 bed luxury fully furnished apartment. Overlooking the International Lawn Bowling Greens. To include free use and Membership of all Club facilities including a 25 metre pool with a swim up covered bar and an adjoining kiddies swimming pool both with food service,and a large sunbathing area.
A challenging Par 3 Golf Course and Driving Range, Lawn bowling Greens, Petanque Courts, a kiddies play area, a restaurant, plus 2 additional Family friendly Bars.
Close to all the facilities and services Angeles offers yet remains an Oasis, a real hidden gem. A one off.
For further details tel:  +63 922 839 5660  Ainie  English / Tagalag. OWNERS LIVE ON SITE Tel  +63 999 652 6214  John   English.

 

(I am very familiar with this house and location.  In fact was able to watch it being built a few years ago.  It is well worth looking in to – Harry the Horse)

 
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GOLF TOURNMENT

Posted by admin on May 20, 2012 in Breaking News

Announcing a special Gold Tournament on 1 Jun.  I know AC has a lot of golfers hanging around so this might be a great one to sign up for.  It sounds like fun!

 

HI Harry,

The Lewis Grand Hotel and Charlie the Korean Marketing Manager are sponsoring a golf tournament at Mimosa on June 1st.
It’s 2500 pesos entrance and includes Mimosa green fees with lots of prizes and includes a big banquet dinner afterwards in the grand ballroom at Lewis Grand and a bar hop at Forbidden City then at Blue Nile, then High Society, not a bad deal for golfers.
For info contact Charlie Jo at Lewis Grand Hotel
or by email at: withyouany@hanmail.net
or by call or text at
or

 
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NEW SUNDAY MARKET

Posted by admin on May 16, 2012 in Breaking News

THE POSTER IS SELF EXPLANATORY.  SOMETHING NEW FROM THE LEWIS GRAND FOLKS THAT FOLKS IN TOWN MIGHT ENJOY VISITING AND DO A BIT OF SHOPPING.  I WILL BE CHECKING IT OUT AND TAKING A FEW PICTURES.

 

 
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BAD LUCK FOR JUST MY LUCK

Posted by admin on May 10, 2012 in Breaking News

Word reached me today that the “Just My Luck” bar, managed by Vidar has closed its doors for good.  Why?  The word is that for not paying the rent and other bills. Guess it was a victim of the recession or bad management.  That is anyone’s guess.  Sad day for the employees.

 

 
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STEVE HEALEY’S WAKE

Posted by admin on May 7, 2012 in Breaking News

 
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STEVE HEALEY

Posted by admin on May 6, 2012 in Breaking News

It is with great sadness that I must pass on that Steve Healey passed away early this morning, 6 May.  It was reported that he laid down to sleep and passed peacefully.

Steve was a long time employee of Dave (Mo) Fisher and a friend as well.  He was a true gentle human being, well liked by all who had the privilege of knowing him.  He was 65 years old.  More details and pictures will be provided in my June column.  Steve will be missed by many.

 
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IMMIGRATION ISSUES

Posted by admin on May 1, 2012 in Breaking News

Updated information pertaining to the harassment of Filipina tourists wanting to exit the country from the DMIA.  The actions of the Immigration officials at the DMIA are beginning to draw the attention of various government agencies.  We hope that anyone who has been denied travel out of the DMIA because of profiling please provide the dates and details to Harry the Horse.  The following was provided by the Regional Director of Tourism, Central Luzon.

Harry, Upon interview with a BID immigration officer and based on my research work (www.dfa.gov.ph and cfo.gov.ph), here is one particular provision in the immigration law that subjects Filipino tourists / temporary visitor’s visa to PRIMARY and SECONDARY inspection. The conduct of secondary inspection makes it difficult for Filipino tourists (especially women) to clear immigration lines. The reason? It’s Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003. Please take note of the provisions on “partners or spouses / fiancees” meeting their spouse abroad” (CFO clearance) and “tourists / temporary visitors” (capacity to travel / affidavit of support).
Here it is:

GUIDELINES ON DEPARTURE FORMALITIES FOR INTERNATIONAL-BOUND PASSENGERS IN ALL AIRPORTS AND SEAPORTS IN THE COUNTRY

        Pursuant to Republic Act No. 9208, otherwise known as the “Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003”, and its Implementing Rules and Regulations, Republic Act No. 8042, otherwise known as the “Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995”, as amended by Republic Act No. 10022 and other related laws, the following guidelines, providing for definite parameters in the strict enforcement of immigration departure formalities intended for the prevention of trafficking in persons, illegal recruitment, and other related offenses, are hereby promulgated for strict implementation/compliance by all concerned:

  • I. TOURIST TRAVELERS

       A traveler intending to go abroad with a tourist/temporary visitor’s visa shall be subjected to:

1. Primary Inspection

During primary inspection, the following documents shall be required from a traveler:

  • a)  Passport
  • b)  Visa when required
  • c)  Roundtrip Ticket

2. Secondary Inspection

2.1 The Bureau of Immigration shall conduct a secondary inspection of a traveler, when deemed necessary, for the purpose of protecting vulnerable victims of human trafficking and illegal recruitment and other related offenses, through the assessment of the following circumstances:

  • a)  Age
  • b)  Educational attainment
  • c)  Financial capability to travel
  • i. If not financially capable to travel, an authenticated affidavit of support, indicating therein the relationship within the 4th civil degree of consanguinity or affinity, together with the supporting documents, may be entertained; and
  • ii. An affidavit of undertaking/ guaranty may likewise be entertained.

2.2 Any passenger/traveler who will be subjected for secondary inspection shall be required to accomplish the Bureau of Immigration Border Control Questionnaire (BCQ) to be furnished by the Immigration Officer.

2.3 However, the following shall automatically be subjected to secondary inspection:

  • a) Travelers without financial capacity to travel escorted/accompanied by a foreigner who is not related;
  • b) Minor traveling alone or unaccompanied by either parent or legal guardian without the required travel clearance from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD);
  • c) Repatriated irregular workers, in which case, travel may not be allowed without the clearance from the IACAT (generate data);
  • d) Partners and spouses of foreign nationals intending to depart to meet and/or marry his/her fiancé without the CFO Guidance and Counseling Certificate;
  • e) Passengers traveling to counties with existing deployment bans, alert levels and travel advisories and those in possession of a visas to the said countries; and
  • f) Passengers who stayed abroad for more than one (1) year during a previous departure from the country as a tourist/temporary visitor, intending to depart for the second and/or subsequent time.

2.4 Clarificatory questions may be propounded relating to the above-mentioned documents/purpose by the Bureau of Immigration.
2.5 A traveler found to be misrepresenting the purpose of his/her travel as tourist shall not be cleared for departure.

 

 

Ronaldo “Ronnie” Tiotuico
Regional Director
Department of Tourism – Central Luzon
Paskuhan Village, City of San Fernando, Pampanga, Philippines
Website: www.visitmyphilippines.com

 

Prisca,

Based on the reporting of Jim D, the issue on profiling / offloading by the Bureau of Immigration is beginning to be a pain in the neck. The same issue will have an adverse impact on your operation as travel agents. Imagine a tour operator issuing tickets to passengers only to find out they are offloaded at the airport under the pretext of protecting the rights of women against human rights violations(human trafficking, abuse, etc).

Under the law, all contract workers are to show overseas employment certificate from POEA. BUT if an individual is on a VISIT or FIANCEE / DEPENDENT / SPOUSE status (or training, foreign residence, student and business), he or she is required to register with the Commission on Filipino Overseas and attend a 2-hour pre-departure orientation seminar.

And so, I have decided to call a meeting of key members of PATS and ATTAP on May 14, 2012, 4:00 p.m. at Marlim Mansions Hotel (coffee shop) to thresh out these issues on profiling and offloading. May I advise the two presidents (Prica and Gilda) to advise their members to come to the meeting. I will try to invite the Immigration officer in Clark to this meeting.

Regards,

Dir T
cc: Jim D / PATS / ATTAP

Ronaldo “Ronnie” Tiotuico
Regional Director
Department of Tourism – Central Luzon

 
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May 2012

Posted by admin on April 30, 2012 in 2012 Monthly Newsletters


Hi folks, welcome to the month of May.  Here we are again where we have to mark 13 May on our calendars denoting Mother’s Day.  If we forget that special day we are in deep poo-poo.  Even Dindo, pictured here is probably planning a special day for his Mrs.  You are probably wondering why I am starting off with this photo.  Well, Dindo and his wife have been supplying the Clubs with beer and soft drinks for many, many years now.  His business has grown with the town.  Not too long ago he suffered a stroke and is slowly recovering.  I stopped by to see him and he is still sitting in his favorite chair at the entrance to their warehouse, keeping an eye on everything and still supervising a bit.  I use to see him on a daily basis until my wife’s nephew took over the daily task of ordering and picking up supplies.  Dindo is an icon here in AC and I am so glad to see him recuperating so well.  He is staying alert and active and that is the path to complete recovery.
It is my pleasure to still be around to greet you on this first, hot day of May and I hope that wherever you are, plans are being made to visit us here where the weather and the action is still hot and my Yankees are still hanging in there.  Go Derek Jeter, did he take a youth pill or something?

HOLD THE PRESSES – LATE NEWS:  Hi Harry, A well known retired-American that has been hanging out at Margarita Station probably since its inception has come under the curse of having too much fun in Angeles City. He forgot that the human body has limits on how far you can push it. I have known a few good men who have accomplished so much in their lives prior to retiring here but then when they are as free as a bird and they can do whatever they want, they tend to go overboard and their bodies can’t take it anymore. James C. Williams is the latest victim and right now he is holding on by a thread at Sacred Heart Hospital. He goes by the name J.C. Until a couple months ago he was a big strapping guy that played billiards almost everyday at Margarita Station always having kind words to say to anyone who would listen to him. He is somewhat of an Icon here because he has a sandwich on the menu named after him and I am sure there are other things about him that make him so well known. He has countless friends and acquaintances. When I first came in town in 1999 he offered his friendship right off the bat and listened to me when I had some personal problems and gave me his advice on how to overcome them. Thanks J.C. On Sunday April 29th I dropped by Sacred Heart Hospital in the early evening to pay my last respects to him. I thought he was on his way out. His nurse gave me the rundown on his situation and she felt confident he was going to recover. When I was in his room he mustered enough strength to lift up his hand and I shook it. I said “fight on man” and looked at him astonished how far he had fallen. After I left the hospital I had some time to kill and I drove my motorbike to a Perimeter road bar, ordered a San Miguel beer and was happy I could still drink one of those. There are times when I have gone overboard on my favorite drink, I can only hope I temper my love for that before its too late. Martin B.

THE FEEDBAG

Harry, I just returned from S&R and was really disappointed at the checkout counter as I had to have the manager come over three times and turn back a couple of products. They over charged on many items and refused to honor prices on signs and in some instances prices plainly marked on the item. I kept myself from being over charged P1,500 on a bill of P8,000. While in line I heard Filipinos and foreigners complain while the manager made it all seem like it was the customers fault. I was waiting for them to claim it was all Bush’s fault. I am willing to admit that some of the confusion was caused by failure of store employees to remove signs and to relabel sale products. I did not attend their overcrowded sale and had no reason to be aware of what was on sale. Wrong prices were coming up on a lot of scanned items. I was used to accepting this as foolproof and I ended up the fool. It would be great if you could warn shoppers of the situation and warn them to closely monitor  the register at check out. Normally my total is in the range of P12,000 and I hate to think how much they have scammed me for at the checkout counter.  John Casey.

Response:  (Thanks for the heads up John.  The Mrs and I shop there quite often but I am guilty of never paying attention at the cash register.  Guess I will have to be more careful.  Priscilla does pay close attention so they can cheat me but not her)

Comments and Remarks: Dear Harry. Thanks for your informative reply to my recent blog. As you know I love reading your monthly newsletter and may they long continue. As you well know the Philippines is a potentially rich country its just badly governed. Corruption is out of control and has destroyed the infrastructure of the country.  In my province the main road going to Manila is just like a ploughed field. The road building work was skimped and the saved money went into the pockets of wealthy officials, we all know who they are. The political system stinks!  Where else do you find blatant vote buying?  Most of the Filipino politicians would be in jail in a civilized country. Every educated Pinoy knows what is going on but lacks the backbone to do anything about the ills that are killing the country.  Stephen B.

(Stephen, Yes, we do have a bit of corruption here, but so does many other countries, and even America is not squeaky clean, i.e., Chicago.  Oh yes, blatant vote buying, guess what, think Chicago again.  Taking shortcuts on road building and pocket the money that should have gone into the construction, oh yes, that happens in so many countries, and yes, even the US back when the Mafia was in its hey day.  Pinoy’s lacking the backbone to do something?  My goodness, how many of us lack that backbone?  How many of us are willing to stand up to a society that is embedded with a certain power base that has existed for generations?  The Filipino’s know that drastic changes are needed but this is their country and those changes will be made in due time, but we won’t be around to see it.  Many of us expats live here because we are not completely happy with living in America, or Australia, Canada, wherever but we are still proud of our countries.  We are still very Nationalistic, despite those faults we are very aware of.  So are the Filipinos, they are proud and aware and they have a nature that is patient and adaptable, but man, don’t piss them off for then you will see that back bone.  So, when they get pissed off enough they will stand up and change things. When that happens, we expats will have to move for we won’t be able to afford the place.  Love this country!)

First and Last Name: Ted “SNAKE” Walsh
Comments and Remarks: Harry, being with my asawa for 25 years & doing a 5 week holiday every year to the P.I.  I now find that to venture out of a day onto the strip, called walking st. the beggars are becoming unbearable, and you have to run the gauntlet every time you go out from your hotel.  The worst ones are the groups of young girls around about 11 or 12 yrs. old.  Surely Major Tan or his officers can do something about this harassment of tourists.  We are thinking of trying another overseas venue if this cannot be resolved.    These young people are taking the pesos away from the real needy beggars.  Dont get me wrong we love Angeles & the great nightlife it provides, & have for years.   Thank you for your consideration in this matter & all the best to you & your asawa.”SNAKE”.

(Just like you can’t get rid of rats, ants and cockroaches, you can’t get rid of those little beggars.  Over the years they have been rounded up many times without any great success.  Yes, their numbers can be reduced dramatically if the will to do so was there.  Neither Maj Tan or the City Government has that will.  Those of us who have lived here for many years do not pay attention to it as we are used to them.  We tend to forget how annoying the little shits are.  I have read that it is worse in some parts of Italy and India and I am sure, elsewhere.  Don’t give up on us “Snake” just duck into the bars a bit quicker and stay longer so you can avoid them) 

Harry, When I first moved to the PI about 9 years ago ( 2002 ) there was all sorts of talk about a train system being built from Manila to points north in Luzon, to Pampanga, Subic,  Baguio etc. All the VFW experts said it was imminent. My most recent visit, about 2 years ago , I heard the same thing from some bar owners. The cho cho train is coming, any day, great.  It is needed.  Most other Oriental countries make extensive use of trains.  Have for years.  Very useful but, so far, nothing for the Philippines except for a small system in Manila which hasn’t been paid for yet according to Pres. Aquino.  He was quite blunt about it on the PI Channel in the US.  He admitted that It was bad for Manila’s credit rating and future serious investments.  But, on any future train system who would move the squatters off the tracks?  What if the locals steal the steel rails which they have done before and the cho cho train derails?  Anyway, the next time I visit, I plan on taking the train from Manila to Fields Ave.  Joe W.

(Hey Joe, I guess you do not plan on visiting us here for at least another ten years)

I received a message from someone calling himself the “Cebu Sandman”  He passed on info about two subjects, the price of alcohol in the Philippines and Human Trafficking, particularly the over use of the word “rescued”.   The latter has been discussed and written about extensively but the article on the American influence on why locally made alcoholic prices will increase was new to me, to include the WTO and some European countries.  Here, you can read it and form your own opinions.

“refer to this article which i am really really pissed at the American government.

http://cebusandman.typepad.com/philippines_travel_news/2012/04/alcohol-prices-in-the-philippines-beer-and-spirit-prices-in-the-philippines-rising.html

The US government has been targeting the Philippines for its low tariffs through the WTO.  You can search online.  The sin tax bill is therefore a way of rebalancing this indifference in pricing that exists between the local products and imported products.  The cost of alcohol will increase as the Philippines has an “order” on them by the WTO to comply, all bought about by the US and in some parts some European countries.”

Harry, the police raid on Coyote Ugly must have caught you as your newsletter was hitting the printing press as it was only a brief mention. I don’t know whether others see it the way I do but Angeles City is under siege. It’s like the frog that doesn’t realize it is being boiled because the water temperature starts out cold. The NGO IJM has done some wonderful things in Cambodia by making a huge impact on pedophilia there but after living in AC for 10 years I have never witnessed anything like that, at least not in Pampanga. I’m not saying it couldn’t happen if everyone turned a blind eye, but I don’t think the Filipinos would put up with such garbage. I believe Filipinos would hang pedophiles and no one would care. IJM is now firmly established in the P.I. but their strategy and methods are the same as they were in Cambodia. Police bribes, applying pressure at the international level by threatening to withhold aid money, while at the front line in a crusade against all forms of prostitution, using decoys and plants to build a case against bar owners before the police raid ever takes place. In just one decade Christian NGOs have managed to lump adult mutual consent prostitution together with what they are now calling “Human Trafficking.” This will end AC as an entertainment zone and most of the places adult males and females get together for mutually consenting affairs but it will not end prostitution. It will only drive it underground where health issues will become catastrophic and where real Human Trafficking will burgeon. If one thinks police corruption is bad now, imagine what it will be like when prostitution no longer officially exists. I remember clearly how president Obama publicly threatened the Philippine government that unless they got Human Trafficking under control the Philippines status would be reduced and aid money shut off. Not long after president Obama’s well publicized visit to Manila three different police organizations along with Cox’s army of NGO’s hit the place and forcefully rescued dozens of girls who didn’t want to be rescued, especially the one who was taken from a police bus and raped by a policeman in exchange for her freedom. Today it has become apparent that a shameful hypocrisy is unfolding. President Obama wants to clean up the Philippines while he is obviously unable to keep prostitutes away from his own immediate subordinates in the Secret Service. Scott Grant.

(The International Justice Mission (IJM) is a human rights organization that rescues victims of violence, sexual exploitation, slavery and oppression.  All too often an NGO like the IJM can be overzealous in their efforts to make a name for themselves.)

First and Last Name: Phillip Williams, Email Address: pfw72@hotmail.com
Comments and Remarks: Good morning Harry. I am here to decide if I wish to settle here. One activity I am interested in is an Aikido Dojo. Can you point me in that direction. I have looked and asked everywhere I can think of. Thanks, Phillip.  (Phillip, I have no idea where an Aikido Dojo is located here.  Somehow I think that some of the readers of this column will know where one is located.  Hopefully they will drop you a line or at least let me know.  I will continue to ask around myself)

Comments and Remarks: A friend from the Gym is asking if anyone has heard of a problem with re-registering a bike.. He bought a new Honda 125 four years ago and got new tags every year after but then ran into a problem when he tried to get the tags this year. The people at LTO say that he cannot get new taggs becaause he was seen someplace riding without a helmet and would need to go to manila to get that sorted out before he could get new tags for this year. The LTO woman could not tell him who reported him for not using a helmet or where it was supposedly seen. My friend has an extreme phobia and fear of riding with no helmet. He says that it is completely impossible that he would have been seen on a public road with no helmet as he won’t even move the bike in the driveway without a helmet. Does anyone know anything about this? thanks I enjoy your site Jeff

(Jeff, this is a new one, never heard of such a thing before.  I do not have time to check with the LTO before this column comes out but will certainly put it on my list of things to do.  Meanwhile, if any reader happens to know anything about this, please drop me a line)

Comments and Remarks: Hi Harry, just saw your MOJO recipe & was that different from my day! I was on the MIDWAY fm ’73-’75 & the Subic mix then was 1 pint of rum, 2 (cans) of coke, 2 (cans) of beer, & fruit punch to taste. From there you can add anything from the bar that you like; but the base is more than enough to sneak up and get you! CHEERS!  Mike McGuire

( Hi Mike, question –  with you guys drinking all that MOJO how did you avoid grounding the ship?)

TIDBITS

Boeing has been preparing a 1000 passenger jet that could reshape the Air travel industry for the next 100 years. The radical Blended Wing design has been developed by Boeing in cooperation with the NASA Langley Research Center. The mammoth plane will have a wing span of 265 feet compared to the 747’s 211 feet, and is designed to fit within the newly created terminals used for the 555 seat Airbus A380, which is 262 feet wide. The new 797 is in direct response to the Airbus A380 which has racked up159 orders, but has not yet flown any passengers.

There are several big advantages to the blended wing design, the most important being the lift to drag ratio which is expected to increase by an amazing 50%, with overall weight reduced by 25%, making it an estimated 33% more efficient than the A380, and making Airbus’s ! $13 billion dollar investment look pretty shaky. High body rigidity is another key factor in blended wing aircraft, it reduces turbulence and creates less stress on the air frame which adds to efficiency, giving the 797 a tremendous 8800 nautical mile range with its 1000 passengers flying comfortably at mach .88 or 654 mph cruising speed (another advantage over the Airbus tube-and-wing designed A380’s 570 mph).  

(This is what upsets me about getting old.  I am beginning to see some futuristic designs that I may not live to actually see or be too old to enjoy.  Does this mean that one could fly from the US to the Philippines non-stop?  That would be interesting.  There is no date established for this plane to be in service but I hope they don’t wait too damn long)

Hi Harry, I read with interest the stories of people being robbed on jeepneys, there is a simple solution, buy a wallet with a chain that attaches to your trouser belt loop, they cost from as little as p150 and are available from the stalls opposite the Swiss Chalet here in Angeles.  They have Velcro fastening with plenty of room inside for notes, coins, credit cards and Id.  Having lived here for 6 months of the year since 2006 and travelled on jeepneys late at night, usually the worse for wear, once the robbers catch sight of the chained wallet you are left well alone! Love the column, cheers Graham.

(Good suggestion Graham, might buy one myself)

This is long, but important to one and all.  It is also a coincidence that it came to me at this time, I will explain at the end of the article.

Johns Hopkins Update
This is an extremely good article. Everyone should read it.
AFTER YEARS OF TELLING PEOPLE CHEMOTHERAPY IS THE ONLY WAY TO TRY (‘TRY’, BEING THE KEY WORD) TO ELIMINATE CANCER, JOHNS HOPKINS IS FINALLY STARTING TO TELL YOU THERE IS AN ALTERNATIVE WAY .

Cancer Update from Johns Hopkins:

1. Every person has cancer cells in the body.. These cancer cells do not show up in the standard tests until they have multiplied to a few billion. When doctors tell cancer patients  that there are no more cancer cells in their bodies after treatment, it just means the tests are unable to detect the cancer cells because they have not reached the detectable size.

2. Cancer cells occur between 6 to more than 10 times in a person’s lifetime.

3. When the person’s immune system is strong the cancer cells will be destroyed and prevented from multiplying and forming tumors.

4. When a person has cancer it indicates the person has nutritional deficiencies. These could be due to genetic, but also to environmental, food and lifestyle factors.

5. To overcome the multiple nutritional deficiencies, changing
diet
 to eat more adequately and healthy, 4-5 times/day and by including supplements will strengthen the immune system.

6. Chemotherapy involves poisoning the rapidly-growing cancer cells and also destroys rapidly-growing healthy cells in the bone marrow, gastrointestinal tract etc., and can cause organ damage, like liver, kidneys, heart, lungs etc.

7. Radiation while destroying cancer cells also burns, scars and damages healthy cells, tissues and organs.

8. Initial treatment with chemotherapy and radiation will often
reduce tumor size.  However prolonged use of chemotherapy and radiation do not result in more tumor destruction.

9. When the body has too much toxic burden from chemotherapy and radiation the immune system is either compromised or destroyed, hence the person can succumb to various kinds of infections and complications.

10. Chemotherapy and radiation can cause cancer cells to mutate and become resistant and difficult to destroy. Surgery can also cause cancer cells to spread to other sites.

11. An effective way to battle cancer is to starve the cancer cells by not feeding it with the foods it needs to multiply.

*CANCER CELLS FEED ON:

a. Sugar substitutes like NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, etc. are made
with Aspartame and it is harmful
. A better natural substitute would be Manuka honey or molasses, but only in very small amounts. Table salt has a chemical added to make it white in color Better alternative is Bragg’s aminos or sea salt.

b. Milk causes the body to produce mucus, especially in the  gastro-intestinal tract. Cancer feeds on mucus.. By cutting off milk and substituting with unsweetened soy milk cancer cells are being starved.

c. Cancer cells thrive in an acid environment. A meat-based
diet
 is acidic and it is best to eat fish, and a little other meat, like chicken. Meat also contains livestock antibiotics, growth hormones and parasites, which are all harmful, especially to people with cancer.

d. A diet made of 80% fresh vegetables and juice, whole grains, seeds, nuts and a little fruits help put the body into an alkaline environment. About 20% can be from cooked food including beans. Fresh vegetable juices provide live enzymes that are easily absorbed and reach down to cellular levels within 15 minutes to nourish and enhance growth of healthy cells. To obtain live enzymes for building
healthy cells try and drink fresh vegetable juice (most vegetables including bean sprouts) and eat some raw vegetables 2 or 3 times a day. Enzymes are destroyed at temperatures of 104 degrees F (40 degrees C)..

e. Avoid coffee, tea, and chocolate, which have high caffeine Green tea is a better alternative and has cancer fighting properties. Water-best to drink purified water, or filtered, to avoid known toxins and heavy metals in tap water. Distilled water is acidic, avoid it.

12. Meat protein is difficult to digest and requires a lot of digestive enzymes. Undigested meat remaining in the intestines becomes putrefied and leads to more toxic buildup.

13. Cancer cell walls have a tough protein covering. By refraining from or eating less meat it frees more enzymes to attack the protein walls of cancer cells and allows the body’s killer cells to destroy the cancer cells.

14. Some supplements build up the immune system (IP6, Flor-ssence, Essiac, anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals,  EFAs etc.) to enable the bodies own killer cells to destroy cancer cells.. Other supplements like vitamin E are known to cause apoptosis, or programmed cell death, the body’s normal method of disposing of damaged, unwanted, or
unneeded cells.

15. Cancer is a disease of the mind, body,and spirit. A proactive and positive spirit will help the cancer warrior be a survivor. Anger, un-forgiveness and bitterness put the body into a stressful and acidic environment. Learn to have a loving and forgiving spirit. Learn to relax and enjoy life.

16. Cancer cells cannot thrive in an oxygenated environment.   Exercising daily, and deep breathing help to get more oxygen down to the cellular level. Oxygen therapy is another means employed to destroy cancer cells.

1. No plastic containers in micro.

2. No water bottles in freezer.

3. No plastic wrap in microwave..

Johns Hopkins has recently sent this out in its newsletters. This information is being circulated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center as well. Dioxin chemicals cause cancer, especially breast cancer. Dioxins are highly poisonous to the cells of our bodies. Don’t freeze your plastic bottles with water in them as this releases dioxins from the plastic. Recently, Dr Edward Fujimoto, Wellness Program Manager at Castle Hospital , was on a TV program to explain this health hazard. He talked about dioxins and how bad they are for us. He said that we should not be heating our food in the microwave using plastic containers. This especially applies to foods that contain fat. He said that the combination of fat, high heat, and plastics releases dioxin into the food and ultimately into the cells of the body. Instead, he recommends using glass, such as Corning Ware, Pyrex or ceramic containers for heating food. You get the same results, only without the dioxin. So such things as TV dinners, instant ramen and soups, etc., should be removed from the container and heated in something else. Paper isn’t bad but you don’t know what is in the paper. It’s just safer to use tempered glass, Corning Ware, etc. He reminded us that a while ago some of the fast food restaurants moved away from the foam containers to paper, the dioxin problem is one of the reasons.
Also, he pointed out that plastic wrap, such as Saran, is just as dangerous when placed over foods to be cooked in the microwave. As the food is nuked, the high heat causes poisonous toxins to actually melt out of the plastic wrap and drip into the food.. Cover food with a paper towel instead.

(A few days before I received this information, which I have read in bits and pieces from earlier articles, a guest at our Rotary meeting named Sifu Jen Sam spoke to us.  He called himself a “Barefoot Healer”  and runs the International Shaolin Yau Kung Mun Foundation, Philippines. He deals with acupuncture, bone setting, Chinese herbal medicine, nutritional therapy and detoxification.  In other words, alternative medicine in dealing with many medical problems, especially cancer.  I cannot relate all of what he said because I did not take notes and it would be too long but, in much more detail, he echoed what I present above by the John Hopkins Update.  Additionally, I have been perusing a book written by Suzanne Somers titled “Knockout” Interviews with doctors who are curing cancer and how to prevent getting it in the first place.  In this book she interviews 11 different “alternative” doctors who treat cancer victims.  I am beginning to believe in the many reports I have read in which American Medical Association medical Doctors inadvertently align themselves with the multibillion-dollar pharmaceutical Industry who really do not want to support cures in which there is no money to be gained.  It is something to look into but one problem that I see is that these treatments are not covered by insurance and most of us are too scared to try something so radically different from what we have been told.  But, on 21 April I will be meeting with Sam again and try his treatments.  I am not so sure that I can change my life style and diet that radically but if it helps my circulation problem as well as other ailments then it is worth a try.  I will try to let you know how it goes)   

3J’s got robbed Tuesday night (10 Apr). They kicked the bottom of the door in and had the smallest crawl through and unlock the door. They took the computer, all the frozen food even the ice cream, all the American Steel t-shirts and everything else they could carry.

(This is not headline news but it is a bit disturbing.  3J’s is a small store/bar located in Villa Sol.  It is kind of isolated, awkward to get to but it is a gathering place for the neighborhood guys and they have their own familiar clique of drinkers.  It has been a long time since I dropped by there.  It sounds like teenagers might have been the thieves, man, it is pretty bad when you have to take frozen food and ice-cream.  Why take all the American Steel T-shirts?  The American Steel is a motorcycle club in which I believe everyone has to be at least 250 lbs and at least 6 ft. so the thieves should have left the XXL, XXXL and XXXXL shirts behind)

This year, July has 5 Fridays, 5 Saturdays and 5 Sundays.This happens Once every 823 years.This is called money bags. (I wonder what the world will look like in 823 more years?)

Last month was a time to remember Deery, past owner of the Thi-Hi on the 1st anniversary of his death.  His employees and many friends visited his grave-site at the Clark cemetery and left a few mementos there then made it back to the Thi-Hi where drinks and finger foods were available.  I do believe Deery would have approved and been quite touched by such a display of employee loyalty and the outpouring of friendship.  He is still missed by many and Josie is still keeping the place going.  That year sure did pass quickly.

The 19 Apr issue of the Sun Star newspaper featured the headline “Disneyland at Clark Eyed”.  My first reaction was “Holy Shit, you have to be kidding me” then as I read the details it described how this was an idea by 1st District Representative Carmelo “Tarzan” Lazatin who feels that the Clark Freeport Zone is an ideal spot for a Disneyland theme park.  He has written a letter to Thomas Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts to offer the area within the Freeport for their next Disneyland location.  He pointed out that the Clark Freeport Zone offers tax free privileges to locators.  I have the greatest respect for Lazatin, one of the finest Mayors this town has ever had and he is fully supportive of Angeles City and Pampanga and it sure would be great to have his offer seriously considered by Mr. Staggs but I wonder what the odds are for his offer to be considered.  For years I have hoped that there would be more family entertainment within Clark but the emphasis has always been focused on locators and not entertainment, other than Casinos.  The one point he made that I have a bit of trouble with is referring to the Clark International Airport (CIA) as a “World Class Airport”.  I sort of think that the CIA (or DMIA if you wish) has a long way to go before it would qualify as a “world class” airport.  It certainly has the potential to enter that category and there are plans to do just that but for now, well, it is a decent airport with a future.  For now Lazatin has a dream and I sure would like to see it come true.  If anybody could turn a dream into a reality it would be the grand old man, the “Tarzan” of Angeles City.

The solution to the negative image of Fields Ave will be resolved by 2050.  No longer will there be a problem with underage girls.  If a robot is made to look like a 15 year old then there is no breaking of the law.  How about Angelina Jolie look a likes?  Men could live out fantasies.  One problem, if these ladies are built, then women will be looking for male counterparts.  Husbands or boyfriends cannot be jealous as the women are not messing around, same for men with the women.  Wow, no more divorces for cheating.  The price could be a problem.  I think I would rather have a robot maid that I could trade in every two years.  Check this out:  http://www.smh.com.au/technology/sci-tech/robot-prostitutes-the-future-of-sex-tourism-20120419-1x8eq.html

The new Kalaklan gate at Subic is great and wisely, they put a traffic light at the main road going to the Barrio Barretto to avoid accidents.  But, it is out of order and here is where you get one of those only in the Philippines situation.  SBMA built it but they say the town should patrol it since it is on the highway, and of course, the town police say, SBMA built it, so they should patrol it.  Result – Stalemate!

The Coyote Ugly story - I have had people writing to me asking why I did not write more details about the closure of Coyote Ugly and the arrest of Ken Graham.  Mainly because I wanted to wait until things settled down, find out the facts and give a status report.  First off, Ken Graham, Joyce Pungos and Rose (Mommie Rose) Craste are now confined at the Angeles City jail after being transferred from Camp Olivas in Manila.  They are charged with human trafficking and Prostitution.  Jocelyn Ordinario, the registered owner of the Coyote Ugly Bar was not at the Club and escaped arrest.

How did all this come about?  The following information is from the statements of the ladies taken during the investigation and of course, does not prove guilt or innocence until the judicial process is completed.  Supposedly Mommie Rose recruited 16 ladies from Tacloban City and picked them up in Pasay City on 23 Feb. The girls were brought to Angeles City and put to work right away without any ID or permits.  One girl, 14 years old was alleged to have serviced four customers at different times during that night and two of the girls, 16 and 17 were also with customers.  They said they were forced to work.  Some of the girls were left at the Coyote Ugly and others taken to the Coyote Ugly Hotel in Dau.  Over time three of the girls that were used as door ladies outside the Club befriended a Mamasan from a neighboring Club.  This Mamasan assisted the girls in escaping from the Club.  She had attended Balibago Barangay Captain Tony Mamac’s PEACE meetings at the Barangay Hall and was well aware of his no tolerance approach to underage girls in the Clubs.  PEACE is an approved SEC organization called “Pro-active Entertainment Association of Concerned Establishments, Inc.” established last year which is slowly gaining in membership.  She took the three ladies to Tony Mamac and he secured them for ten days.  He then requested assistance from General Ladao, Regional Director of PNP, Region 3, Camp Olivas.  He was directed to take the girls to Camp Olivas and report to Col Jacky Puapo, head of the Women’s desk at Camp Olivas.  All three girls were underage.  After statements were taken from the three girls with lawyers present, DSWD assistance and representatives from NGO Visayan Forum requests for two search warrants was requested from a Judge in Manila.  The reason for using a Manila Judge instead of one in  Angeles City was to avoid any chance of leakage of information.

Saturday, 31 Mar - Two teams were formed, Tony Mamac provided marked money.  Col Jacky, Women’s Desk, acted as a girlfriend of an American asset in the company of another American asset.  They entered the Coyote Ugly Club as customers with the knowledge of the name of an underage girl working there.  The name was provided in the statements of the three girls mentioned above.  With this knowledge the American called over Mommie Rose and asked for the girl by name. The girl was brought over and stood next to Rose.  the marked money was used to consummate the transaction for the girl to leave and when Rose took the money a signal was given to those waiting outside and they entered the club to serve the search warrant and rescue.  Capt Mamac was standing by in his office.  At a planning meeting, prior to going to the Club, Tony insisted that no customers in the bar will be detained or harassed in any way.  His wishes were carried out as all customers were allowed to exit the Club peacefully.  The second team was notified that they could proceed with serving the search warrant at the Coyote Hotel.  When they entered and presented themselves to Ken Graham he kind of had an Asthma attack or something, ran to his room and locked himself in.  It took them 30 minutes to coax him out of his room.  He, along with 37 ladies from the bar were taken to Camp Olivas.

Sunday, 1 Apr - Barangay Capt Tony Mamac drove to Camp Olivas to seek the release of the girls that were not underage and not directly involved with the human trafficking charge.  He did not want them kept longer than necessary.  He brought them food and drink from Jolly Bee.  He could not get them released that day as they were all undergoing medical examinations so he had to wait until Monday.  On Monday he sent two vehicles to pick up the 23 staff that were innocent and not underage.  Fourteen were kept by the Visayan Forum for coordination with the parents and to secure NSO certified birth certificates.  That is what Tony did with the original three girls that escaped from the Club, one of whom was 16 and was still bleeding one month after she was roughly treated by a 6′ 2″ tall foreigner.  The 23 staff were brought to the Barangay Hall, LACEM leader Cel Paran was contacted to come and assist them which she did, even assisting a few with transportation expenses.

What now - Ken, Rose, and Joyce have been transferred to the Angeles City Jail and await trial.  No bail is allowed.  Ken might be able to work something out in court on a technical point in that Jocelyn is the registered owner and there is no paperwork connecting him with the Coyote Ugly.  One thing is for sure, he will have to find one hell of a good lawyer to head up his defense.  I was told that there have been various well known people contacting Tony to offer “incentives” for reduction of charges or even more.  Tony Mamac says absolutely not!  Everything was done legally, according to law and he does not condone the presence of underage girls being employed in the entertainment zone.  Those members of “PEACE” understand this from the meetings they have attended and know that as long as they comply with Philippine law and directives from the Mayor’s office that PEACE will be available to assist and advise them as needed.  Fourteen underage girls employed in one bar can cause adverse affects to all Clubs in the Entertainment Zone, forget 14, even one is too much.

Once again, dear Club owners, keep an eye on your Mamasan’s and floor managers, they can get you in deep shit.   Plus one bad Mamasan can cast a shadow on all Mamasans and that is not fair to the many that are loyal, good and honest at their jobs.  So, that is the story, remember, these people are innocent until a Judge decides otherwise.  Regretfully, the process will take a very long time.

This is Ken Graham of formerly Coyote Ugly Bar and Coyote Bar.

You have probably heard that we were unfortunately closed by local government at Coyote Ugly Bar and had to close Coyote Hotel when a lot of our hotel material was seized after a raid by Department of Justice.

As a result we have a very nice near new Pepe Damien pool table 9 foot by 5 foot with top class pool balls and light shade. We paid 60,000 pesos for everything about a year ago from the now RSL Treasurer Ron Parrott.

We now wish to sell the item as we have no where to put it and we need the money (I’m still in jail).  We will accept 40,000 pesos. This table new can cost around 200,000 and its hardly used.  yours sincerely.

(I wonder what items had to be seized and why?  I asked Tony Mamac if he knew and his reply was: “I dont know about materials seize cos i was not given a copy of the list of items taken into custody by the team which are subject of the search warrant.” Why was it necessary to remove materials when the objective was to remove any underage girls and to detain Ken?  It would be interesting to know what materials were removed and why?)

Treasure Island – has relocated and reopened.  You can find this very popular club directly across the street from the Wild Orchid Resort.  Scott, long time popular manager is on board to make sure you are well looked after. The hours of operation are 5pm -2am, Regular prices are 75p Local Drinks, 150p ladies drinks.  Happy Hour 5-7pm Local Drinks 55p, Ladies Drinks 135p.  I hope that I can make it there to take some pictures but I am getting close to dead line time.  Will do my best.

(Darn, I did not make it.  Will get pictures this month)

I am sorry to report that Douglas (Dougie) Frost and his girlfriend, Grace, were involved in a serious car accident last Sunday, 22 Apr.  Initial police report indicates that he was driving too fast and hit a steel post on Ma.Roxas Boulevard.  They have both undergone surgery for head injuries. Douglas also has a broken arm and broken leg and although conscious has not spoken yet.  They are at the Angeles University Foundation Hospital (AUF).  Dougie is the owner of the Hang-out bar onPerimeter Road, between the Thi-Hi and Honey Ko’s clubs.  Doug is a long time ex-pat resident ofAngelesCityand his many friends here will be praying for his complete recovery and also Grace.  This news was a bit of a shock to all of us.  Update:  Grace has been released from the hospital (26 Apr), Doug will be confined longer.  His arm is broken in three places, but does not have a broken leg.  Instead, they are looking at his hip as despite extensive pain killers he still has a great deal of pain in that area.  More X-Rays are needed.  He has someone watching him and he is able to talk but is in and out of sleep and wakefulness.  Additionally, he wants out of the hospital and he has mood shifts.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) and Mark Begich (D-AK) recently introduced legislation aimed at restoring the Clark Veterans Cemetery, which is the final resting place in the Philippines for more than 8,300 United States service members and their dependents.  The “Remembering America’s Forgotten Veterans Cemetery Act” would require the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) to restore, operate, and maintain Clark Veterans Cemetery to honor the courageous Americans buried there.

(This is very good news. Finally, it appears that our cemetery here is beginning to get its deserved recognition)

The Mark Dizon trial dates are scheduled for 8 May and 26 Jun at 1330 hrs.  I hope to be at both hearings.  This is for the Mitchell complainant.  The other two murder cases have separate dates.  The good news is that Trial Court 58 has moved into the new Justice building which is much more comfortable and convenient than the old location.  What a great renovation project for the Justice building.  What a remarkable transformation from the old building.  Now, if they could only find more spaces for parking everything would be perfect.

ANGELES SPORTS AND COUNTRY CLUB GOLF NEWS:  Jimmy Allen updated the following event on “ASCC” site. Here are the details:

Event:

Four Person Player/Caddie Best Ball Tournament

Date/Time:

May 12, 2012 8:00am to 12:00pm

Notes:

Please sign in no later than 8:00 am. Tourney starts at 8:30 am.

 

GRANDVIEW TOWER:  I stopped in there last week and was surprised to learn that they will be selling the hotel room units, just like condos, with title and will be managed by them.  Good investment opportunity?  I don’t know.  Those rooms not sold after a certain length of time will be rented out as regular hotel rooms.  I was also told that the offer to buy from well known businessman Noel “Toti” Carino was turned down as the bid was too low.  Right now, there are no plans to sell the GrandView as they feel so much work and drama have taken place over the years that they are determined to finish the project and establish it as one of the prestige addresses in Angeles City.  Work on the pool is nearing completion and I should be able to get a picture next week.  I asked the Promo lady “Kitty” to send me the pricing details on the hotel room sales but despite her promise I have not received anything yet.

Look up Ann Barnhardt on Google.  A very interesting lady.  She has a few strong words about different subjects.  Not bad looking either.

At last a direct European, USA & Australia flight to Clark (via Hong Kong), on one ticket, coming up… Direct transfer at Hong Kong, bags checked straight thru and no HK immigration requirements, also at 10am arrival into Clark.
Dragonair starting 29MAY12 is launching HongKong – Clark service,on board mono-class Airbus A320 aircraft. The airline will be the 4th carrier offering service on this route. Overall service on this route will raise from20 to 27 weekly.
Reservation is available, however this route remains subject to government approval:

KA375 HKG 0755 – 1005CRK 320 234 Tuesday Wednesday Thursday
KA376 CRK 1055 – 1250HKG 320 234 Tuesday Wednesday Thursday
and
KA373 HKG 0800 – 1010CRK 320 157 Monday Friday Sunday
KA374 CRK 1110 – 1305HKG 320 157 Monday Friday Sunday

KA service is currently scheduled to operate until 27OCT12,  (have heard it was extended to Dec 2012) but may extend to year-round at later date
.

His name is Bong Bandada and I see this face all over the Club scene, year after year.  Every time I see him I give the same greeting “you again”.  Then he gives me that big Bong smile and says yes.  This man has to be the king of Club design as every time I attend an opening of a new bar or walk into one newly renovated I see Bong.  He is a very talented man who is well known by bar owners and is in great demand.  He is the designer, builder, innovator, the man that brings that special look to a bar.  He is reliable, honest and just one hell of a nice guy.  I saw him at the opening of the One-Eyed Wench and even in the company of others at Honey-Ko’s.  He is talented and fair with his pricing and in all the years I have known this man I have never heard any negative comments about his work.  That makes him kind of special in my book.  He can be reached at cell phone number 0927 219 2010.  For sure that is one number you want to keep on file.

Thai Horror Story – This is long and I did not bother trying to correct spelling, punctuation or sentence structure.  I can only hope the cops here in AC never try to copy this procedure.  If you like visiting Pattaya, be advised, do not drink and drive!

WARNING - DRINKING AND DRIVING IN PATTAYA - Beware.  This was written by a Pattaya resident and happened recently.  Be warned.  Best regards and Happy  Songkran.  Ted.

A word of warning for those farang who may occasionally have a drink or two, and then drive a motorbike or car in Pattaya.

As of Friday 13th April Pattaya Police are actively using breath testing to test for people over the drink driving limit of 0.05. They have digital breath testing units they can setup and will stop all traffic, as they do when they have a blitz on.

On Friday 13th April at 2am until about 5am they setup on the corner of 2nd Road and Pattaya Thai (Pattaya South Road), where they often sit looking for people not wearing a helmet. They were stopping all bikes (didn’t see any cars but they were on the road blocking most traffic) farang and Thai. They were breath testing all – not sobriety test, straight onto the digital breath testing units. The units have a digital display and a printer. Once you blow if the reading is about 0.050 then they print out the reading and you are arrested on the spot. You will then be taken to the Pattay Soi 9 watchhouse and locked up in the holding cells.

Your phone will be confiscated and you are not allowed a phone call or to contact anyone. Farang’s are locked up with Thai’s (men and women) in the one lockup in the police station. Not air conditioned, very basic, no seats, just concrete floors, the toilet is behind a waist high concrete barrier and is a bowl with no seat, just a hose and a bucket. This doubles as the shower area, if you were so inclined or happened to be locked up for many days like some of the farang over stay people in there. No water or food is provided, you need someone on the outside to bring you that – and they are generally allowed to hand it through to you. On Friday about 18 farangs were detained (Australians, Americans, Italians, Iran, Israel, India, Swiss – holiday makers and long stayers) and 10+ thai’s for drink driving and other offences. If you don’t have your passport – it’s more difficult – they need to be able to positively ID you to begin processing the paperwork. You are generally not told what will happen or what the process is – if you have someone on the outside then they can get some of the story and relay it, but generally you do not know what will happen or when. And if you are told – it’s likely to change, and of course “just wait 10 minutes” really means 2+ hours at least.

Once they have processed all the paperwork, and you have signed some documents in Thai (no translation available, no legal advice, just “is this you? sign here), you will be finger printed (in the cells, Thai long stay prisoners do the finger printing). This took from 5am until midday of waiting in the holding cells at the watch house. Then when everyone is processed you are ready to be moved to the Privincial Court House at Jomtien. To move you all the prisoners (Farang and Thai) are handcuffed and chained together in one long line. Then marched down to a paddy wagon, all squeezed in, some standing for the drive from Soi 9 to the court house at Jomtien. You are then unloaded into the holding area in the court house. The holding area is under the building, not air conditoned, You are unshackled, you have to take your shoes off and sit on the concrete floor. No seating, no smoking, no standing. Sit on the floor with all the other Thai’s waiting to be processed. The only toilet available is very bad, there are rubber boots outside that you need to wear because the floor is 1cm deep in urine and the smell is so bad you have to hold your breath (it makes the toilet in the watch house look luxurious). The whole area wreaks of urine as the other holding cells (for those Thai’s being held for more serious crimes) just has open urinals. During this process – no communication, no advice, no phone calls allowed, you are told “just wait” … if you have someone on the outside who knows where you are they can bring you water and snacks, you can also buy some thai food that is sold by a local kitchen. The farangs were processed in the last court sitting of the day, after sitting on the floor from midday until 6pm, signing various court documents during the afternoon.

No translation is provided into any language, all documents are in Thai, no legal advice provided, no explanations – very little english spoken, only enough to get you to sign documents and tell you “sit down”, “stand up”, “come here”. If you dont sign the document you will not be processed – there is no option. In the court room there is no visitor gallery, no visitors allowed, no legal representation, no translation available. About 40 people are processed at the same time, sitting on wooden benches or on the floor. The judge (a woman in this case) speaks NO english (she even had to get help from someone to read out the amounts of the fines in English). Each person with a related charge has their name read out in turn, then stands, the judge then addresses everyone in Thai, then decides on a penalty and reads that out in Thai. For drink driving a motorbike you can expect a fine of 2500 to 2700 baht … Thai and farang the same. There was no discrimination, positive or negative – you get treated like a Thai. Once all have been sentenced you have to pay the fine to the clerk of the court, on the spot. If you couldn’t pay you would be locked up again until you can pay. If you have someone on the outside you are permitted to liaise with them for them to get you the money. You may also be escorted to your accommodation to get money as a last resort.

You will now be relieved that it is all over and ready to walk free, as you have been watching all the Thai’s do once they are sentenced … but wait, there is more!!

If you are a farang you now need to have your passport checked for any possible visa violations – overstay’s, back to back tourist visa’s etc. However at 6pm on a Saturday night (even worse on a Songkran long weekend) there are no immigration officials available to check your passports. So it’s back to the Soi 9 lockup. The trip back to the lockup is sitting packed into the back of a police utility truck, all sitting around the edge packed into the open tray (interesting lack of safety concern given you have just been booked for an equally dangerous driving offence). You will then be locked up again until the police can arrange for immigration to check your passport. None of this is told to you in advance, you are told as it happens, and after thinking you are processed and free, being put back into the holding cells at Soi 9 is a shock – particularly then being told it’s likely you will be held until the next day (which is a Sunday – so perhaps 2 days, but Monday is a public holiday in Thailand – so perhaps 3 days). Fortunately through some furious negotiations by some Thai supporters of some of the farangs how had been assisting, those farangs who had been able to provide a passport to police were advised they would be let out immediately, and then return at a later date for the immigration check (the police will hold your passport). This was at 11:00pm (after returning from the court about 9pm), the farangs with the passports were then called out and released from the cells one at a time. The group being released is then detained further in an office while the head of police decides how to handle the processing, you then have your passport photocopied (main page and visa page), you were given the copy and asked to return to the police station the following week to meet immigration, and collect you phone, passport and motorbike at that time (assuming no immigration violations). Only then, after the 18 hour ordeal are you free to leave.

NO “tourist police” were present or available at any time during this process (not that I believe they would be able to help anyway – but interesting in their absence the entire time considering how high profile they like to be on walking st).

Also – don’t think you can flash a few baht and get let off. I’m aware of a number if discreet attempts directed to the police at the testing station of amounts up to 3k baht which were politely returned.

This story if from my personal experience, I was riding a scooter. I have lived in Thailand for 5+ years, I speak reasonable Thai, I have a Thai drivers license, I had 10k baht in cash on me, I had Thai helpers on the outside who know police and were able to plead my case to all levels of police. None of this helped me get processed any faster or dealt with any better. Not that would expect it too – but just as advice for those farang who think they are “special”.

I have no complaints – I was guilty. In future I will be catching a taxi.
There is a new police chief in town – and he is cracking down on drink driving.   Be warned!!!  (TY Rupert for sending this to me)

Frank Drakopolous – It was Nov 2010, Frank had his operation at the 1230 Pizza on Fields Ave.  I am sure many will remember him or at least his name.  Life was good for Frank until he was accused of raping 15 year old Cristina B.  That is when his life changed dramatically and he was able to leave the country before being arrested. According to Frank and Sean he was assisted by Steve (in Black) Hidosan.  Charges were filed and many people who knew Frank at that time did not believe he would do such a thing and that he was somehow, set up.  For 18 months Frank led a quiet life in Australia.  He was able to make contact with a man here named “Sean” (Expat) who does investigative work and agreed to work on his case since he believed that Frank was innocent.  Sean is an Australian and had already known Frank from a time that they met in Australia.  After an extensive investigation one Riza Maglaqui Y Sambile, 21 years old submitted a statement to Assistant City Prosecutor Mark Oliver C. Sison on 2 Apr 2012 clearing the name of Frank.  In the statement she indicated that “after we have been to City Hall, we left and while we were outside the City Hall, Christina B. told us the truth that she was not raped by Frank Drakopolous.  And she told us that her Korean boyfriend was the one that had her and not Frank Drakopolous.”  There is more to the statement but the Prosecutor had enough to where any charges against Frank will be dropped and Frank can now walk the streets with his head held high in that the truth has finally come out, and he is vindicated.  Frank has returned to Angeles City for a short visit but will be returning to Australia with Sean to clear up personal items there in preparation for a return to Angeles City.  Plans are for him to join with Sean in his investigation company.  I and many others will be wishing Frank good luck in his future endeavors.  Sean can be reached at:  0915-404-6766 or G0D_sean@yahoo.com.  That is the #0 not the letter o.

TAPS

John Amos, 75 years old, an American expat that has lived in Angeles City for many years passed away on 9 Apr.  He is survived by his wife of 8 yrs, Nereza.  He was bedridden for the past 2 yrs, had tests which showed he had lung cancer.  He was buried in Samar.

DICK CLARK, 82 YEARS OLD – THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES.

TOURIST OF THE MONTH

Yes, once again I happened to be in the Thi-Hi after an absence of two weeks and in walked Charles Wills with a big happy smile on his face.  The man was so happy to be in Angeles City that he could have been a poster boy for the Dept. of Tourism.  He was in the company of best friend Keith Carpenter who has been visiting Angeles City for many years as has Charles.  His first visit was ten years ago but has been back 5 or 6 times since then.  He is from Charleston West Virginia but is now a semi-retired music teacher, specializing in brass instruments.  He taught school in Ohio but also in many different countries like Ethiopia (his favorite was there for 15 years), Dubai, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Bahrain.  I was surprised when he said Ethiopia was his favorite place until he showed me some pictures of the ladies he knew there. I believe I would enjoy being a teacher there as well.  He always stays at the Central Park Hotel because of the relaxing atmosphere.  His favorite bar is “Just My Luck” and he made special mention of Jessica and Jocelyn, Twin ladies working there who he has known for a long time.  He also likes “Barhoppin” and “Strawberry Fields”.  He is still single and is a youthful 62 years of age.  I had him pose with one of the Thi-Hi dancers so his friends back in the US could see what they are missing.  Keep that smile Charles, it was a pleasure to meet you.  Update:  You interviewed me about tourist of the month in Thi Hi last week. I would like to change one thing. My new favorite bar is The One Eyed Wench because that is where the twins, Jessica and Jocellyn are working now. Also there are many attractive, very friendly girls working there. Chuck  (This is a first for me, an update from a tourist of the month before it was printed.  Now I have to go to the One Eyed Wench and get a picture of the twins – Ah hah, I did go on the night of 14 Apr and to my surprise it was the official opening of the new One Eyed Wench.  Now you have to read further down for more details on that)

NEWBIES AT THE THI-H

Yes, of course whenever Josie brings on any new ladies at the Thi-Hi I have to post their picture here. You better believe that some are better looking than others but you can pretty well depend on them looking pretty good and also being very friendly.  Now, if Mouse will let me, I would sure be happy to pop into Honey-Ko’s and see how the line-up of dancers looks lately.  For no logical reason I have not visited the place in a while.  I guess because Des is no longer there and Damien doesn’t stick around as much as he used to.  Mouse is doing a great job holding things together and keeping the ladies on their toes.  I don’t want the readers thinking that Thi-Hi is the only Club I visit.  I have heard some good words on the Candy Bar so I have that place on my list as well.  OK, the two ladies, oh boy, I nearly forgot the details.  On the left is Rose, 22 years old, 2 kids, hails from Binan, Laguna.  Email: rose_annlascano@yahoo.com.   The lady in white is Michelle, 27 years old, also with two children and she is from Olongapo.  Email address:  jmgambal16@yahoo.com.

PROFILING PROBLEMS AT THE DMIA

I have received, in the last few months, complaints from foreigners about their girlfriends being stopped at the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA) by Immigration officials and not allowed to travel because of some agents interpretation of profiling rules that appear to be confusing.  The Immigration Chief in Manila admits to the use of profiling but denies any abuse of policy.  If a single Filipina woman is traveling by herself she is targeted and subjected to intensive questioning.  All too often this leads to being refused admittance to the scheduled aircraft.  This results in loss of money as her ticket is non-refundable.  Naturally, the excuse used is to eliminate human trafficking.  Usually I receive complaints via Email but this time one lady came to my stable, nearly in tears to seek assistance.  Her name is Ms. Lilybeth T. Bernabe.  Her boyfriend of 10 years is Arne Robert Hansen, a ship’s Captain of many years and long time visitor to the Philippines.   Robert had a break from his ship duties and was in Thailand.  He asked Lilybeth to join him there for a little over a month.  He wrote her a letter of invitation providing all the details to include the hotel name, address and telephone numbers.  Lilybeth had her old and new passport which showed her previous trips outside of the country, even to Egypt.  The agent at DMIA was extremely sarcastic in his questioning of Lilybeth and no matter how specific she was in answering his questions, it appeared that this agent’s only objective was to dismiss anything she said.   Be advised, this is not a single incident, many foreigners, accompanied by girlfriends, have had their ladies denied the right to board.  How many of these incidents go unreported?  Lilybeth will purchase another ticket and try again.  This time I have asked for the assistance of a government official to assist lilybeth in her second attempt to board her flight to Bangkok in two days time.  Even if she does succeed in her travel plans, she has agreed to submit a formal complaint upon her return.  Update 1.  No matter what, she was required to attend a seminar in Manila for two or three hours and obtain a certificate of attendance.  This seminar is normally for OFW’s and ladies getting married to foreigners.  My question is this.
If this is a government requirement for single ladies traveling abroad to meet a foreigner for a short vacation or to accompany a foreigner, then why not publicize this and why doesn’t every travel agent know this so they can advise their clients before they purchase a ticket? Saturday, 21Apr – Finally, Lilybeth was able to board a plane at the CIA/DMIA to join Captain Robert.  I hope they have a fine holiday, but Robert, do not feed her too much, she needs to get her figure back.

I had another visitor yesterday, an American who wanted to travel with his live in girlfriend of five years.  He went through an intensive process at CIA as well.  He had gone through Immigration but they held his girlfriend.  The agent told the girl to go to a different area.  When the guy went with her and sat next to her he was told that he could not sit there.  He got up, moved away but still had eye contact with his lady.  He was told he could not be there and they made him move out to where he could not see her.  After five minutes or so, she came out and said they refused to let her fly. The guy asked the agent why not and was told it was the head agent inside that said no.  He asked why?  The reasons, one at a time were:
She has nothing to prove she is coming back.  American – She has a round trip ticket, she is with me, this is only a four day trip.
She has no income, how will she pay?  American – We have lived together for five years, I support her, she has money from me, I am responsible for her.
She was not able to convince the head agent – American – She is from the Province, not well educated, you have uniforms, she is scared and nervous.  You give her a harsh third degree – what do you expect?
Sorry, she can’t go.  American – OK, then give me my money back as I am not going either.  Oh Sir, you won’t go?  No, she is with me and I won’t leave her.
They finally let her go on the flight.
Bottom line -
The current Immigration rules make it difficult to travel with girlfriends and sometimes wives, out of the country.  Domestic travel is OK.  This requirement to go to Manila for a seminar that is geared towards OFW’s and ladies marrying foreigners usually comes as a surprise to travelers, especially foreigners and their reactions do not go over well with the Immigration folks.  Why do the travel agents not know about this policy?  I checked with one travel and they were not aware of it.
ANOTHER INCIDENT AT THE DMIA:  I just had an incident at Clark airport with immigration yesterday. They refused my girlfriend to travel to hong kong despite the fact that she was travelling with me and we had a round trip ticket. What’s worse is that we have traveled to Singapore, flying out of Clark, 3 times in the last 6 months together and have no problems. The immigration official at the counter asked her a bunch of personal questions about how long we have been dating, were we living together, how long, have we traveled together before, how many times. They stamped, signed, and approved her passport but when I started asking the guy why he asked her so many personal questions he got mad and said she was not able to go now and had to do a secondary screening. I was told that I had to go to the departure area and wait until they were finished with her. She called me 20 minutes later to tell me that they denied her. So I went back to immigration and tried to speak with someone about what happened. No one would explain what happened or why she was denied and the actual officer who made the decision went on break and left. Obviously I was angry having just wasted $450 dollars on the plane tickets and also missing a boxing match we were going to Hong Kong to see. When I finally got someone to explain what the rationale was for denying her they said she didn’t have a certificate of Filipinos Overseas document called Guidance and Counseling. It made no sense that she required this form, especially since all the other times we have traveled out of Clark together they never asked for it. Even worse, they didn’t ask her about that at the counter when they initially approved her to travel and stamped her passport. This was done purposely and I think to try and teach me a lesson for speaking up and asking questions. I’ve already brought this to the attention of CIAC and plan to get this in the press and try to meet with other government officials in Manila. If anyone else has similar stories can they please share. I want to build a case showing that the immigration officials at Clark are corrupt and should be fired. The officials my incident involved were Omar Yunus, Jeffrey PinPin, and Zoneida Cruz. (Folks, whenever you experience this problem at the airport, please get the names of the officials. Send me the information, I am forwarding each complaint to the Dept of Tourism in the hopes that the confusion connected with these human trafficking checks and profiling can be resolved and clearer guidelines published)

Harry, Here is what I found in the DFA website (www.dfa.gov.ph). Pls check this out:
Under the law, all contract workers are to show overseas employment certificate from POEA. BUT if an individual is on a VISIT or FIANCEE / DEPENDENT / SPOUSE status (or training, foreign residence, student and business), he or she is required to register with the Commission on Filipino Overseas and attend a 2-hour pre-departure orientation seminar. If you read the provision, it only refers to Filipinos traveling to Korea! Why apply the law to everyone? They say it is meant to protect Filipinos from threats like human trafficking, from potential abuse, etc).
Please review this link:
http://immigration.gov.ph/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=239&Itemid=37
And here is the link to the Commission on Filipino Overseas (CFO):
http://www.cfo.gov.ph/pdos.htm.
It contains the Presidential Decree that requires your friend to undergo these “harassment” at the airport. 

Fiancee, Spouses and Other Partners of Foreign Nationals

What you need to know…

As Filipinos going abroad as fiancé(e)s, spouses or other partners of foreign nationals, you are required to attend the CFO’s guidance and counseling session in order to secure the Guidance and Counseling Certificate (GCC) and theCFO sticker. You need this certificate to renew or apply for a new passport at the Department of Foreign Affairs (per Department of Foreign Affairs Order Nos. 11-97 Implementing Rules and Regulations for Republic Act 8239, “Philippine Passport Act” and 28-94). You will also need to present this certificate together with your spouse/partner visa, at the Immigration office at the international airport on your day of departure.

To attend the seminar, you may proceed to either two of CFO’s service providers: the St. Mary Euphrasia Foundation-Center for Overseas Workers (SMEF-COW) or the People’s Reform Initiative for Social Mobilization, Inc. (PRISM).

You will have to bring with you the required documents to be accommodated in the counseling seminar. The counseling session runs for a minimum of two hours and is meant to provide you with adequate information regarding inter-marriage and migration, the cultural and social realities abroad as well as available support networks for women in distress, among others.

After you comply with all the requirements and finish the counseling session, you will be given the Certificate of Attendance by SMEF-COW or PRISM which you will have to bring along with other pertinent documents, to the CFO, for registration. Once you already have your valid passport and spouse/partner visa, then you have to register with the CFO. You will then be issued the GCC as well as the CFO Sticker.

Important Notes:

  • The CFO and SMEF-COW have offices in Metro Manila and Metro Cebu. PRISM is in Metro Manila only. Visit the offices where it is most convenient.
  • Please check the schedule of the counseling session before proceeding to SMEF-COW or PRISM because it is country-specific and the slots are only limited. It is on a first-come-first-serve basis.
  • You may avail of the Guidance and Counseling Session even while you are still processing or waiting for your visa. If such is the case, you will only be issued the GCC. Once your visa is released, you will return to CFO to continue with your registration. The CFO sticker will then be affixed on your passport.
  • You will pay a fee totaling PhP 650.00. The PhP 250.00 is paid as counseling fee at SMEF-COW or PRISM while the PhP 400.00 is for registration at the CFO.

(I think that the Immigration folks at DMIA, in some cases, have mis-interpreted these directives or not made them clear to the traveler in a manner in which the lady is not embarrassed or become fearful.  and are simply using them to harass Filipinas.  Some have felt that they were verbally abused.    

I have had a lot of back and forth communication with DOT on this and now we hope to have the President of the Philippine Travel Agents address this issue. Meanwhile, do not stay with your girlfriend when wanting to travel together.  Give her money, tickets, go to the airport and have her pretend she is traveling alone, strictly as a tourist.  Do not tell anyone at the airport you are going to meet a foreigner.  Meanwhile, I am sure clear advice will be forthcoming and all travel agents will be able to give specific instructions when one is purchasing a ticked to travel out of the country.) 

 

 

 

 

 

The three pictures above is my style of motorcycle.  In fact I am thinking of ordering this sort of limo to compete with the Lewis Grand Hotel’s stretch limo, eat your heart out James.  This is an attention getter.  To find the right driver I interviewed the five members of the Outlander Motorcycle Club who visited my humble hotel last month.  As you can see, they all fit the right size and weight for motorcycle aficionados.  I am not sure of the delivery date for my special “Limo” but a case

Yeah, I know, this ain’t the best picture to promote a Club that just opened but, hell, that is the best I could do.  Scott had his reopening of Treasure Island at the new location, opposite the Wild Orchid on 26 Apr which is my dart night.  Additionally, I do not go out that close to when I have to finish up my column.  So, better pictures will have to be taken this month.  The main objective is to let you know that it is open and I am sure will be offering up the “treasures” that make this bar so popular at its old location.  For sure I will be heading there to get more details and to let Scott buy me a drink.  I bet you I can find my “I would if I could” lady there for June.   The door was open and I was going to peek in and take a picture but could not find anything to hold onto for me to get up that high step to the sidewalk.

THE ONE EYED WENCH

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There you have it, nine pictures taken at the opening of the super renovation of the one eyed wench.  The first picture highlights a few beauties along with Manager Alan.  I was surprised to see Gordy in attendance (Picture 4) as he is calling Thailand his home.  He is working hard at a language school but told me of some of the benefits of being in Thailand where the rental costs are lower and most definitely, electricity bills are not heart breaking like here.  Food is better as most of us know but then, he has to admit the drinks cost less here and yes, the women here are much easier to get along with.  The last picture features one of the twins (Jessica) that Chuck (TOM) likes so much.  Her sister was not present so I guess I could have taken her picture twice to make up for the absence.  She admitted that she met Chuck 10 years ago and man, that is a long time to stay friends with one, eh, I mean two ladies.  She named the many clubs she has worked in over that period of time.  She is 29 years old but if you would like to communicate with Jessica and be added to her “friends” list then drop a line to jessica.porras33@yahoo.com.
What did I think of the new look?  Great but when crowded it is difficult to maneuver from the entrance to the back because of the narrow aisle.  Hell, only old guys like me would find it difficult.  I do agree with Chuck, there were plenty of cute ladies on hand.  I am not sure the pool table is necessary as players disturb customers sitting along the one side wall near the table.  But, I suspect that on most nights it is not quite that crowded.  The face lift was successful, Bong did his magic once again.   This was a small club, made bigger and when you enter, the atmosphere grabs you by the ass with the lighting, the decor, the happy ladies and well, doggone it, it is a happy place and the customers mirrored that happy mood.  It made you want to stay, and I did stay stay longer than I had intended.  You can keep those big clubs with the big prices and ladies on stage so far away that you can hardly see them. Give me the One Eyed Wench where all your eyes glow with the light of anticipated pleasures.

THREE LADS FROM ADELAIDE

These three energetic folks took the time to stop by my stable for a chat and they were so happy to be here in Angeles City that I had to take their picture so those folks who have never been here might consider a first visit.  Going from left to right we have Kieran Owens who has been coming here since 1985.  Kym Leak since 1994 and David Morgan only goes back five years to 2007.  Naturally Kieran and I told stories of how great it used to be prior to Mt. Pinatubo.  Kym and David kind of wished they could travel back in time to see what it was like.  Kieran is an accountant, Kym runs a Bistro at the Racquets SA Club in Adelaide and David is semi-retired.  They all stayed at the Sunset Gardens and have done so for many years.  Kieran is sort of a matchmaker as he has convinced a few lads to visit here and many have been married off to some local ladies, eh, a few not successfully but enough on the positive side to keep his good reputation.  The Clubs that met their fancy were the Thi-Hi, T & A, Sunshine bar and Dirty Duck.  Naturally I agreed with all of them, especially the Thi-Hi.  These are three fine representatives of Adelaide, in South Australia and for sure, I know I will see all three again in the near future.

I WOULD IF I COULD 

This young lady of 28 years is employed at Honey Ko’s as a waitress.  She has only worked there for 7 months and in that time has developed a very nice personality.  She is a high school graduate who likes to read and exercise, especially swimming.  Guess that is why she has such a nice figure.  She hails from Leyte, has 2 brothers and 1 sister.  Yes, she also has one child, a 6 year old boy.  Naturally, she would like to meet that special guy who would love and respect her and does not have to be rich.  She just wants to meet that guy with a good heart who is kind.  Ah, now the age preference – how about 45 to 75!  I think she said 75 after I told her I was 74.  Her Email address is:  myrna@yahoo.com.  If that Email address does not work, let me know because I think she might have left something out.

GASTHOF CAFE DELI

 

 

 

 

 

Do you want some great salads?  How about German sausages?  Do you yearn for terrific baby back ribs?  These and many other delicious meals await you at the Gasthof Cafe Deli.  I attended a Hotel and Restaurant Association luncheon at this establishment located at A-Line Bldg, Ramon Tang Ave, McArthur Hi-way, Balibago, AC (across the street from Pure Gold Jr.) and everyone was very impressed with the food and the owner Bot Gersbach.  Bot was married to a German chef for 20 years and while in Germany owned an authentic German restaurant in Frankfurt.  From Germany they moved to Angeles City and opened a Gasthof in Mimosa from 1996 to 2000.  According to Bot, when the “invasion” began they moved to Boracay where they opened what became a very popular, famous Gasthof which, after 10 years was sold as a franchise.  A second franchise was opened in Legaspi City and also Naga City.  This tireless woman then opened her restaurant in Makati which became popular and after she sold it, made her final move back to Angeles City on 4 Dec.  Wow, what a lady and thank goodness she has brought her talents back here so that her talent can be shared with all of us here.  She has 2 daughters and one son.  Sadly, her daughter, Melody, was the beauty queen that was killed in an auto accident on the Expressway 2 years ago.  I remember the story and it was tragic.  But, Bot has overcome her grief and you can’t help but enjoy talking to her.  Her specialty is Baby Back Ribs and for sure I will be taking Priscilla the horse there very soon as she loves ribs.  By the way, they cater events as well and you can call 624-0097 or 0927 508 1975.  The Email address is:  sanktadelheid@yahoo.com.

ROCKIN HORSE RIDES AGAIN

Thanks to an Englishman and an American with a talent for Italian cooking the Rockin Horse Bar is back with us.  It has been closed for a few months after Tim sold out (have no idea why since he appeared to be doing a good business) and after some very decent renovations we now have another small, cozy, friendly bar to cool off in on these very hot days of summer.  I noticed on the signboard that it is also named “Zarducci’s Cocktail Lounge” but Rockin Horse is a lot easier to say.  Once again you can say that this is the very first bar you come to on Perimeter Road, or the very last.  Depends on whether you are exiting Clark from the Friendship gate or driving from Fields Ave.  Makes it kind of unique.  The decor is well done.  When you enter you immediately feel welcome and a festive mood hits you.  The colors are bright, the staff are friendly and the dancers are very happy to see you.  Right now they are a little short of dancers because of vacations, days off and of course, those that just decide not to bother going to work. That is a problem easily resolved and the very nice manageress, Rosel, will take care of that.  She used to be the manager of Club 68 on Fields Ave before it was sold to Koreans.  They are open from 1 to 11 PM.  Happy Hour is 1 to 5 PM where local drinks are only P45.  Regular price is P60.  Ladies drinks are P120, but they do have those darn double drinks which are P200 so be careful when ordering.

Outsourcing of ladies will run you P1300.  Every Sunday from 4 to 5 PM snacks will be on hand for you and starting in May, food can be ordered to eat in or take out.  The Italian stallion will be whipping up some spareribs, chicken cordon bleu,  burritos, lasagna and I am sure, a few more items.  What I like about this bar is the location, plenty of space to park which is convenient for those of us with cars but they are a bit off the barhopping zone.  This is one of those bars that will start off slowly and gradually build up a steady fan base.  Will it succeed?  It will be up to the two owners as their presence and personalities will be of utmost importance.  One of the two will have to be there at all times.  Don’t leave it to the Filipino staff to bring in the customers, it won’t work.  I wanted to mention their names but the Englishman said no.  I don’t know why since the last name of one of them is already on the signboard and he is well known in town anyway.  I look forward to seeing them both and getting a taste of some good lasagna.

Saint George’s Day - 

is the feast day of Saint George. It is celebrated by various Christian churches and by the several nations, kingdoms, countries, and cities of which Saint George is the patron saint. Saint George’s Day is celebrated on 23 April, the traditionally accepted date of Saint George’s death in AD 303. For Eastern Orthodox Churches which use the Julian calendar, 23 April corresponds to 6 May on the Gregorian calendar.  April 23 is also the anniversary of the St George Dragons Rugby League Football Club. The St George club coincidentally played their inaugural NSWRL first grade match on St George’s Day, April 23, 1921 at the Sydney Sports Ground in Australia.

There,  you have the meaning of St. George’s Day.  Now, here are a few pictures taken at Honey Ko’s of the dedicated Subic Crusaders, led by Tony Strokers, who started celebrating on 22 and 23 Apr, took a day off to rest and then finished in Angeles City on 25 Apr.  By the time I saw them at Honey Ko’s they were still up beat and partying hard.  I must say I have never seen a happier group of inebriated, saintly Crusaders.

CLARK ODE COUNTY

For us old timers that have been here in Angeles City for 20 or more years we have seen a lot of changes.  I am always sentimental about the Clark Air Base (Freeport Zone) and how much it has changed since the US Military left.  We got used to the Duty Free Stores, McDonalds, hotels, 7-Elevens, a University, and so much more.  But, now look at this fantastic new Condo complex put up by the Korean Dongwang Clark Corporation named the Clark Ode County (DCC).  440 condo units are available and underground parking for 440 vehicles.  It will house a casino, restaurant, shopping arcade, gym, coffee shop, spa, pool and even its own duty free store.  Already 41% of its units have been sold. They are leased for 50 years plus 25and they offer an in-house property management service.  You can choose from studio units to 1, 2 and 3 at prices ranging from $84,400 to $196,000 which is a healthy amount of money.  
Don’t forget the maintenance fees which range from P3,200 to P8,500 a month.  The sales staff are all Korean with a fairly good grasp of English.  I did not tour the place as the folks there kind of lost interest in me once they realized I was not there to purchase a unit.  Needless to say they never heard of “Harry the Horse”.  It is a beautiful complex, very secure and I was fascinated by the underground garage.  But, you are still living within the Freeport zone, on the main street surrounded by Duty Free Stores and not the best view in the world.  Good investment?  Maybe, especially if the Philippine Government ever gets moving on developing the Airport.  By the way, this same company is currently developing a 304-hectare area into a tourism, recreational and leisure estate, including the construction of a new golf course at the former True North inside the Clark Freeport Zone.  This True North area has had its ups and downs over the last few years as one company after the other bid, bowed out fought with CDC officials.  I guess, this time, enough folks made enough money to finally get it off the ground.  Should be nice, but no doubt, exclusive.  If you would like to contact a salesperson directly drop Jay Kim a message at kimkihyung@hotmail.com.  Try the website at www.clarkodecounty.com.  Oh, before I forget, you can rent units on a yearly or monthly (six months) contract.  Prices are not bad, studio P24,000 a month.  It sure is a nice looking building, impressive as hell.

DENNIS, PETER AND JOHN 

There is not much to say about these three lads.  The one on the far right, John, is married to my wife’s best friend.  They knew each other here in Angeles City from their school days. John does not get over here that often and I have never put his picture in this column.  This time he and his two mates consumed enough beer in my stable to justify an honorable mention.  John has been a bit sick with a serious foot problem that kept him in bed for some time and now his wife has a few problems that prevents her from traveling.  He was in good company this trip as all three of them come from Sydney, Australia.  I asked my staff to pose with them as I felt the picture needed a bit of a dressing up.

THE BLISS HOTEL

 

 

 

 

 

I know that most of you would wonder why the hell I am writing about a hotel that is well off the radar for tourists to Angeles City.  Your curiosity would be justified.  The Bliss is located at 17-22 Lazatin Blvd., City of San Fernando.  Lazatin Blvd. is that bypass road you take off of McArthur Hi-way when driving to San Fernando to avoid the main congested intersection with the overpass.  OK already, I am sort of taking editorial freedom here because I think one of the best hotel general managers I have ever met is the head man at the Bliss.  His name is Noli T. B. Reyes who used to be the General Manager at the Mimosa Golf and Country Club on Clark and is also the past President of the Hotels and Restaurant Association in Pampanga (HARP).  The Bliss Hotel is lucky to have Noli as General Manager and I am highlighting him this month in case some big Hotel in town or anywhere in the Philippines is looking for a good manager.  Additionally you never know when you might have a need to look for a hotel in the San Fernando area.  If you are on your way to the SM Mall in San Fernando, Robinsons or S & R stop by and have lunch at the Bliss and look for Noli. The Hotel has 19 rooms plus 38 in the drive-in area (3 hrs only P416).  The hotel rate is P2,500 featuring twin or king size beds.  The have a bistro offering a full menu.  I like the Chef’s special menu offering 6 choices ranging from P250 to P350.
I would suggest you hang around the front desk and talk to Jhaylin, 20 years old, working college student who is “very much single”.  She is majoring in tourism, graduating in Oct.  Her Email address is:  maylyn_manalili@yahoo.com.  I have a bit of a problem here, there are two ladies pictured above, one is Nancy and the other is Jhaylyn and I have no idea where to place the names.  I forgot!  I think Jhaylyn is the one on the right and I have a 50-50 chance of being right.  Noli, I’ll be up for lunch one of these days, see ya!  (www.blisshotelsanfernando.com)

WHY THE LOCALS LOVE CONG. LAZATIN

 

 

 

 

 

From the time he was the Mayor of Angeles City and now Congressman his popularity has never never slipped, in fact, he is like the father of Angeles City and his heart is in Pampanga.  He may be getting a bit old but he remains a sly, wise, energetic politician, one in which you never know what he will do next.  His latest idea is to bring Disneyland to the Clark Freeport and why not?  It may or may not become a reality but if anyone can get it on the drawing board, he can.  They don’t call him “Tarzan” for nothing.  That road construction pictured above is a major project and will certainly help move traffic along the circumferential road but it is only one of many projects that have been completed and more in the planning stage.  Lets hope “Tarzan” keeps on swinging and has no ideas of retiring just yet. Angeles City needs him!

It is time for me to sneak on out of here. My feet are swollen, back is sore and my fingers protesting.  Plus Priscilla keeps asking me “are you finished yet”.  Maybe she wants me to take her to dinner.  It has been one dry, very hot month and May should be the same.  Thank goodness for air-conditioning.  Many thanks to Howard McKay and Doggie Dave for another fine evening of great music.  They seem to get better with age.  I also thank all the visitors that popped in to see me last month, it is always such a pleasure to greet you, and of course, get a picture or two.  That’s it folks, remember, be kind to old horses.

POLITICAL RANTINGS SKIP THIS PART

ATTENTION – YOU HAVE TO WATCH THIS:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbMnA3uO9As

Dear Americans, Canadians, Australians, read this and believe in what you see.  It is nearly too late for Britain, France, Spain and England to stand up for a Christian, Democratic way of life.  How many videos do we have to watch before we realize that what this Muslim man says is true?  All, and I mean all Muslims come under the influence of Sharia law.  Many might talk a different line but they are powerless to stop the insidious spread of this law, which, believe me is not good.  Call me whatever you want folks but our lawmakers and citizens better wake up.  I am old now and will not live to see this transformation take root but regretfully, I will live long enough to see the seeds that are being planted today take root and start to grow.  With our current President, current political leaders and extremist left wing groups who are more intent on political correctness rather than protecting our country.  We are heading down the path to a loss of our basic freedoms!  How many times do we need to be slapped in the face by illegal aliens, New Black Panther groups and now radical Muslims who are intent on degrading America?  Maybe someone should organize a “White Tiger Party” that would be a bit more aggressive than the “Tea Party”.  America has a history, not always perfect, but by golly, we stood together and grew great.  We had democracy, but now I wonder how much of that democracy we still have left.  With the advent of “Super Pacs”, “Czars”, “Lobbyists” and “Super Delegates” how much of an individual vote do we have?  Do we really still need the electoral college?  How about the Supreme Court and appointing judges based on their ideology instead of their mission to support our constitution?  Why do we have a President that attacks the Supreme court because he does not like anyone going against his will?  Why do we allow our history books to be rewritten in such a way to distort our history?  At one time I remember the use of the words “silent majority” but now that group is no longer a majority.  They are sleeping, trying to survive under the pressure of a government that is intent on promoting class warfare and rewarding those who do not work but want free handouts.  America is in decline and our present leadership will try to finish what one inept peanut farmer tried to do in the past.  The first battle to be fought is this year, at the voting booth. There are various organizations organizing voters among various ethnic groups, getting them to register and get them to the voting stations, but who is organizing the “silent, used to be majority”?  The tea party?  Yes, to a certain degree, but those Americans for America have to wake up and get off their collective fat asses and register and fight the war at the 2012 election.  This is a war folks, and the freedoms of Americans are at stake.  If you do not believe me then listen to some of the rhetoric coming from members of the New Black Panther party. When words such as “we will have the red sea of blood” and “suit up and boot up” are used, those folks are not talking about peace.  This is the speech and organization that Obama condones and supports.   Use the privilege of that vote in 2012 , do it now before even that is taken away from you.

Subject: OBAMA DID IT ~ BY EXECUTIVE ORDER!> TRUE http://www.snopes.com/politics/immigration/dreamact.asp

Obama passes “amnesty” act by Executive Order..
Let’s move this forward and fast.
He’ll do whatever it take to get the votes…Be sure that you send this to everyone you know!
Obama passes amnesty by executive order.  Written by Gil Guignat, Border & Immigration, Breaking News.
Last Friday, with no fanfare, no press coverage, and with every effort made to hide his actions from the American people, President Obama enacted the DREAM Act by executive order.
Opposed by a majority of the American people and twice defeated in Congress, the DREAM Act grants amnesty to any illegal alien residing in the United States if they agree to enlist in the U.S. Military or enter college.  (OK, this was sent to me and I did read the Executive order and the Snopes report.  There is room for various interpretations of what is intended here.  He did not pass amnesty, per se, but he sure does come close.  The Dream Act by Senator Durbin has NOT been acted on yet but it is obvious that Obama and the Justice department are not waiting for a vote and very sneakily enacting some of its provisions in the way Obama likes to act, by saying “screw you Americans” I am not waiting for a vote, it is my way or the highway.  This man wants to be a dictator and he will do anything he can to bring in more votes for the Democrats.  He is slipping in a policy of “Amnesty” without even using the word.)  

One misguided Latino appears on TV demanding the the “I” in Illegal be removed as it is racist against Latino’s.  Hello, wake up lady.  If you cross our border illegally, you are in the US ILLEGALLY.  It is not applicable only to Latinos but every nationality that decides to sneak into the United States.  Boy or boy, why is that so hard to understand?

 

 
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SERIOUS CAR ACCIDENT

Posted by admin on April 25, 2012 in Breaking News

I am sorry to report that Douglas (Dougie) Frost and his girlfriend, Grace, were involved in a serious car accident last Sunday, 22 Apr.  Initial police report indicates that he was driving too fast and hit a steel post on Ma.Roxas Boulevard.  They have both undergone surgery for head injuries. Douglasalso has a broken arm and broken leg and although conscious has not spoken yet.  They are at the Angeles University Foundation Hospital (AUF).  Dougie is the owner of the Hang-out bar onPerimeter Road, between the Thi-Hi and Honey Ko’s clubs.  Doug is a long time ex-pat resident ofAngelesCityand his many friends here will be praying for his complete recovery and also Grace.  This news was a bit of a shock to all of us.

Photo from the Punto newspaper, photographer Joey Aquilar.

Thank you Victor Dufort for forwarding me the information.

 
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TREASURE ISLAND GRAND OPENING

Posted by admin on April 24, 2012 in Breaking News

FIRST THE GRAND OPENING AND NOW THE GRAND OPENING ON THURSDAY.  DARN, I HAVE DART LEAGUE THAT NIGHT.  WILL HAVE TO TAKE SOME PICTURES THE NEXT NIGHT, I STILL NEED MY “I WOULD IF i COULD LADY” FOR MAY.

 

 
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NEW TREASURE ISLAND OPENING

Posted by admin on April 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

Check it out folks and say hello to Scott for me, the hard working popular manager.

 

 
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LOVE IT OR HATE IT

Posted by admin on April 13, 2012 in Breaking News

Here is something that might have you scratching your head.  Is it ridiculous?  Is it evil?  Is it a joke? Is it true?  Does it give you pause or does it piss you off.  Depending on which side of the political fence you are sitting on I am sure it will elicit some strong opinions.

Check it out and then open for discussion.

 

This just broke. Share quickly as YouTube may scrub it!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Jhx_2TqffE

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