Leaving the Philippines

The Decision to Leave the Philippines

   March 16, 2017 – I traveled to Manila with my niece and we met up with another niece, her cousin, who lives and works in Manila. The purpose of the trip was to investigate 4 different Flight Attendant schools in the Metro Manila area for the younger niece. Over the course of three days we visited the different schools and gathered information about the training, opportunities, and assessing career choices. It was a rough three days as we zig-zagged our way across Manila making use of both UBER and GRAB Cars instead of taking the standard yellow or white Manila taxi-cabs. There is no better way to travel around Manila in style and save a little money. You will need a smart phone and the app download (UBER or GRAB) is free.

   The time spent in Manila would not be complete of course without visiting Robinson’s Mall, Greenbelt and Glorietta, and the MOA. If I don’t see another mall in my lifetime, it will still be too soon! Anyway, I’m sure the two young ladies that accompanied me had enough of me as much as I had of the Malls.
After several days of school visits and mall hopping, my wife flew up to hangout with me with me for a while in Makati. The two young’uns departed and the wife and I enjoyed some private time together, did some shopping and a little fine dining, wrapping up our stay in Manila with a visit to City of Dreams, Manila’s newest casino. It is a very nice Las Vegas styled casino… with a bit more technology than what we ever experienced in Vegas, Reno or Tunica. Did we win? I will leave the answer to that question to the reader’s imagination.
   During this little mini-vacation, the topic of doing some more travelling came up. Last fall when we took a trip to Clark Field in Pampanga to catch a space available military hop, we were met with the reality that in order to fly to many foreign destinations, it was almost impossible to do with a Filipino passport. A permanent Green Card means nothing to anyone outside the U.S. To travel to Japan would require the issuance of a Japanese Visa with Teri’s Filipino passport. So, we made the trip back to Manila to the Japanese embassy and discovered it was more than a huge hassle – the requirements for Filipino travellers to Japan are stringent – and it was almost akin to proving she wasn’t a twin separated at birth!  We quickly gave up on the idea of travelling to Japan. It turns out that, travelling Space A to many foreign destinations would be a hassle without first obtaining visas for those countries. To continue our travel at that time, we were faced with having to purchase commercial air fare to Guam.

   So we decided that Teri should finally obtain her U.S. citizenship. I mean you should only put it off for so long… like 27 years, and the only way we can now accomplish this is to re-establish our U.S. residency on U.S. soil before applying. With the current emphasis by our new president placed on immigration issues, we realized now is not the time to drag feet with her permanent Green Card. It was time to ditch the card and get a blue passport. Hence, the only logical decision was to move to Guam… where America’s Day Begins, remember?

We may have waited too long already, but the decision was easy. Planning a permanent move on short notice… not so much.

Next up – The Return to Guam



10 thoughts on “Leaving the Philippines

  1. Explains a ton… I had many questions but now it is clear as a bell! JEFF

  2. It won’t be the same here in Calbayog without you 2 around. We’ll miss you especially at the get-togethers. I do have my 4th of July party coming up soon and Larry has his birthday party in June. Hopefully when we make are trek to Texas in September we will go through Guam and maybe get to visit. Maybe even on the way back, probably in very early November. I need to get back before 11 November because I will be having my Veteran’s Day party at the house. I guess after the 1 year period y’all will have to make another decision on whether or not you should move back here. All this talk of brown outs here is not helping the moving back cause, but maybe after paying Guam prices for a year, you’ll remember why you moved to the Philippines to begin with. I hope you enjoy the decent food there, especially the Subways and I’ll stay in touch for sure.

  3. Hopefully everything works out. And we can meet up with you someday maybe we will take a trip to Guam.
    Glad my wife opted to get her u.s. citizenship many years ago. The reason she got her citizenship was to be able to draw her social security. When we decided to move to the Philippines she got her dual citizenship. Which makes it nice and easy for travel.

  4. U.S citizenship is not a requirement to earn and draw SS… quarters worked and/or residency are the only requirements. My wife is fully vested in SS and hopefully she will soon have accomplished all her citizenship goals. Let me know when you are in this part of the world.

  5. I’m beginning to think the prices we pay in Guam are commensurate with the reliability of electricity, cable and internet. I’ve been here for 17 days and not one brownout. I almost don’t know how to act! he he We will be coming and going and if you ever drop in for a visit here, I will have some Red Horse for ya!

  6. Hope you and the wife continue to enjoy your retirement in Guam. You’re really great people. We will miss you on Samar Island. We really enjoyed your hospitality at your ocean side paradise. take care!!! Live life to it’s fullest!

  7. Samar Island wont be the same without you and the wife. I know the expats will really miss you folks. It’s very understandable why you’re doing it. The key is to enjoy your retirement life to the max no matter where you live it. I have great memories of you and your wife being so hospitable in providing myself and wife a tour of your beautiful ocean view paradise. Take care. May the good lord bless you always.

  8. Thanks Charles. We hope to come and go more often once Teri can travel more freely. We are looking forward to visiting more sites before we drop anchors for good. Give me a shout if you are ever in the vicinity again!

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