Because of the bad weather, what was supposed to be a weekend in Dumaguete ended up being five days long. The weekend itself was lovely, spent the way we like spending our vacations, by transporting our habits to a new place: long hours in bed, meals with beer and pineapple juice, short walks (by the sea this time), bargain book-hunting, reading marathons. We added cable tv to the repertoire (we are television-less in Manila) and caught a couple of movies in between watching the news. On our walks we took note of Dumaguete’s conveniences: where there’s wifi, it’s free, the food is affordable, the seafood fresh, and everything seems to be a five-minute pedicab ride away. As usual, we noticed the sex tourism (which is of course very much alive in Manila but always more apparent to me when I’m elsewhere). We took a break from our hermit ways and met up with a friend for dinner. All in all a short and sweet stay.
And then our morning flight back to Manila was canceled, and the earliest flight out the airline could offer us was in the afternoon… two days later. After the initial panic and a mild debate over panic as an inevitable vs. unnecessary response to unforeseen circumstances (which cast a cloud over though failed to ruin a ridiculously delicious lunch involving pork ribs, a truffle-infused burger, and a watermelon margarita popsicle), calls were made, emails sent, and schedules rearranged to accommodate the forced vacation.
Given a few more days in Dumaguete, we were (as expected) our predictable selves and carried on with our routine. We determined our favorite breakfast order at the inn where we stayed (boneless bangus), our favorite cafe for reading marathons (Sans Rival, often too crowded for comfort but the brewed coffee is cheap and the sans rival addicting), and our favorite restaurant (Casablanca, where we ate dinner when we first arrived in Dumaguete and where we had lunch before we left for Manila). I got to spend quality time with a few French philosophers and A got to read the history book he picked up at the airport. We did two more dinners-and-drinks with our friend, this time with his boyfriend. All in all a short and sweet stay, enough to make us decide to live in Dumaguete at some point in our lives, i.e., maybe a trial month in the summer of 2014? Abangan!