by Bash Lory
Two nights ago I arrived in El Nido, Palawan – link to map – after two days of travelling, 4 flights, 16 hours of flight time, followed by a 6 hour bus journey, I had arrived. Not much excitement happened on my travels, slept most of the way, bit of turbulence here and there, but mainly just got to where I was meant to go. Bus journey was horrendous though. If there was a bus journey that took you to hell, that would probably be it. It was literally 6 hours in a bus (night bus, from 22:00 to 4am) jam packed with Philippinos, driving on a dirt tack littered with pot-holes that could have easily been mini craters as far as I’m concerned – massive. This didn’t stop the driver from going 60kmh+. I don’t know who or what he thought he was, what kind of average speed he was trying to achieve, or whether he was simply trying to make the trip as uncomfortable as possible. He barely braked on corners, and I swear to you, on a few occasions he two-wheeled it – everyone on the bus screamed.. Well I couple laughed, but I don’t think they understood the true severity of what was happening. I couldn’t decide whether the bus driver was extremely good, or extremely bad and very lucky. I concluded that he must be quite good, because the corners he didnt two-wheel, he drifted. I spent most of the journey figuring what would be the best thing to do should the bus roll on its side, and decided it would be to jump up out of my seat, and cling onto the luggage compartment above me, so that when the bus tumbles on its side, I’d be standing up right.
The bus arrived 1 hour early. I didn’t get any sleep.
I arrived in el Nido at 3am, got myself booked into an over priced hotel (only one that was open) and slept for a good 5 hours. Woke up, met my friend here who spent the good part of the day with me sorting out my accommodation and bike that I’d be using for the next 2 1/2 months. I ate my lunch in one of the two restaurants here ran by westerners (by accident). Wasn’t feeling like eating anything adventurous just yet, had a long few days, was sleep deprived and just couldn’t be bothered with not knowing or understanding what I was eating. I got a pizza (Hawaiian, tropical at least). You’d think a westerner would know how to make a pizza. The only thing pizza about what I was served was that it was round.
Here are some pictures of my room, my bike just outside parked outside, and the view from one of my windows! More posts coming very soon!