In the 21st century, I believe that Robert Kiyosaki is right. I believe that you need to have multiple streams of income if you want to earn the income you need to have the life you want to live. And one of my sources of income is flying night freight around the globe. This month, being December, I think I am working or Santa Claus.
I have a break in my flying schedule for several days so it is time to head home to ‘Paradise’ - our life on an undiscovered tropical island in the South Pacific.
How will I get home? I wish Santa Claus could do some magic, but it looks like I will be doing it by planes, buses, boats and more.
What is my route? I will be flying from Chicago to Louisville to Anchorage, to Incheon, South Korea, to Kalibo, Aklan Island. From there, I will ride a bus to Catalan and hire a motorcycle with a side care to take me to a boarding house for the night. The next morning I will catch the first boat out from Caticlan to Looc, Tablas Island - Home.
Chicago to Louisville was a pleasant ride on SouthWest airlines to where I would catch cargo flights to Incheon. Thirty-two hours later, I arrive in Incheon in a sleep deprived daze. I’m processed through immigration and security at the cargo terminal before I transition to the Incheon passenger terminal to ride on AirAsia airlines. Four hours later I board Asia in seat 1C and I’m greeted by the flight attendants, ‘I know you. You live in the Philippines. We are from the Philippines too! We read your book. Let us know if we can do anything for you during your flight to Kalibo.’ During the flight, I slept the entire 4 hours. So I never got to talk to take them up on their hospitable offer.
‘Welcome back to The Philippines, sir Pasden. How can we help you this evening?’ I was kindly processed through immigration, customs and put on a comfortable air conditioned bus just before it began to rain. The ride on the curving 2 lane mountainous road was nerve wracking, but our driver expertly negotiated all the hazards with experienced ease.
‘Sir Pasden, can I hail you a trike to take you to the boarding house after we unload the passengers going to Boracay?’ I drowsily nod and smile.
Thirty pesos later I’m welcomed into Em Dukes boarding house. ‘May I carry your bags to your room sir Pasden?’ I am the only guest. With a smile they tell me breakfast will be served at 630am.
I don’t know how many hours it has been since I had last taken a shower, but my body told me it was over due.
I walk out my room clad in a towel and enter the shower. I know I can take a hot shower, but I choose not to. Not because I want to take a cold shower, but because I don’t like the idea of using what I call the ‘suicide shower’. The locals find it normal to attach 220 volt electrical wires to the plumbing pipes. Me… I want to make it home unfazed. So I opt for the ‘refreshing shower’ (Rose calls a cold shower ‘refreshing’. Me, it’s only 1 step above better than the ‘suicide shower’).
After are few minutes of a teeth chattering shower, I go back to my room and quickly fall asleep on the bed.
What seems like minutes later…
‘Sir Greg. I hope I’m not disturbing you, but your breakfast is ready. You need to eat before you go home to your family.’
Eggs, pancakes, bacon and black coffee wake me up and I realize that I’m almost home. Enjoying my big breakfast in the tropical bird garden makes me smile as I realize the serenity of these tropical island surroundings. I really enjoy it’s beauty and simplicity.
I pay my bill, and I ride a trike over to the pier to where my next mode of transportation awaits. It’s what is locally known as a ‘pump boat’. What is a ‘pump boat’? The best way for me to describe a pump boat is a large hand made wooden outrigger. But instead of using men with oars to get us across the water, the boat builders kindly installed a diesel engine. This means that we traveling at a blinding speed of 3 miles per hour across the water :-)
This means that my 8 mile boat ride will take me 3 hours. At least it will be an adventure.
Fortunately the seas are nearly calm and our ride is uneventful as we pass the islands of Boracay and Carabao before entering the bay of Looc (pronounced Low-oak).
After traveling 59 1/2 hours, porters help carry my luggage off the boat and into another trike.
‘Welcome to paradise sir Pasden. To your home?’
‘You are lucky to be home today. Did you hear a typhoon is coming soon?’
I smile… because even with the longest commute I have ever done (59 1/2 hours) It’s more fun in the Philippines.
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