Saturday, October 04, 2008


Well we're back now. It was an amazing experience, something that anyone would find challenging to sum up and answer when given the question, "So how was it?" Instead, over the next little while, I'm going to put up some of my journal entries or reflections from the separate days of the trip, to try and give you a better idea of what went done and how I was feeling about it.

Before that, just wanted to point some stuff out. It's hard not to experience culture shock when you come home, even worse than when you go there. As our fearless leader, Linda, was saying, you go over there expecting difference, so it's not as big; but when you come home, you expect it to be the same, and it never is. So here's a list of some differences I've noticed over the last two days I've been back + some random notes + thoughts:
  • I can't help comparing everything. Especially telling stories about houses we were in and trying to use a room in the house (usually bathroom or kitchen or one bedroom) to describe the size.
  • Everything is so organised in Australia. Everything is so neat.
  • The roads are quiet and one billion times more orderly here. But there are more jerks.
  • In the Philippines I saw one traffic light. It was red, and our driver Alan just drove straight through it. So did everyone else.
  • I ate ridiculous amounts in the Philippines, partly because I was hungry and also because they were so hospitable and made us so much. Despite all that... I lost 3 kilos.
  • I keep thinking, "A week ago I was..." or "A week ago I was with these people..."
  • I'm annoyed that I feel so back to normal.
  • It's weird to be back to being so short. And not interesting to people. Perhaps it was the just the novelty, but it felt like people were more friendly there. At least at uni, it's hard not to feel like everyone puts up a shield.
  • A great guy Jimwell (who I will write about soon) was so desperate to stay in education, but had to give it up for the sake of his family...and I can't even be bothered to read my textbooks. I know that guilt will never be a good motivator for doing anything, because it'll just run out or you'll get used to it or just that negativity isn't very good at producing positivity, BUT...I still feel like I should suck it up and do my work just because I have the chance to.
  • Church was different. Better, I felt freer and happier. But that might also be because it was my first time back and I was excited to be there.
  • There's heaps more stuff, but I just want to post a bit. More will come.
PS. I have now learnt that the mountain in the picture in the previous post is Mount Mayon - a tourist attraction, a live volcano, and the subject of legend: If you can see the top, you supposedly have a pure heart... We did not see the top the whole time we were there. Unfortunate.

PPS. Speaking of photos, if you want to view all my Philippines photos, go to my Facebook. Here is one of my favourites:

Kel, Matt + I with the local kids in Cumadcad


  1. Welcome back! If I may use that generic phrase.

    It all sounds very interesting and fun.
    Cam + Linda + Joy came over for dinner last night, so heard some more adventures then.

    I have looked at your many many photos, and I challenge you to a duel.

  2. /Just felt like challenging you to a duel. There is no way I can beat seven million albums of photos.

  3. Ha...unless you decided to take a few photos everyday. And post them each day, making that lots of albums with not many photos in it. But eventually..more than seven million.

    Admittedly... you've had a bit of a handicap and you probably have to post quite a few albums a day. Time's running out Emily. GET TO IT!