I know this post is long overdue, but my life has been pretty busy lately. I got engaged, I got a puppy, I moved to another city, and I’ve been training for a new position at work. All pretty lame excuses, right? Either way, I finally uploaded some photos from my trip to the Philippines in March and there are a lot of them, so I’ll spend the next few days posting them in sections.

Within a day of arriving in the Philippines we caught a ferry from Manila to Negros Occidental (a 26-hour ride) with my mom’s brothers and sisters and some of their children.

Most of the ferry had organized sets of bunks like this. There were no arranged sleeping assignments unless you paid for a cabin or chose to be indoors with the a/c or outdoors with the elements.

We bought some handmade jewelry from a nun.

I don’t know how often this happens, but we were invited to steer the ferry by the ship’s third mate. It was only by chance TJ and mom were smoking in this area of the ferry and maybe he had seen my camera and decided it would be fun to have his photograph taken.

Fish and rice was pretty much the staple breakfast through the whole vacation.

With each new port arrival, a group of porters would put on some music and dance for the visitors to welcome them.

And then they would grab and sling luggage in a frenzy that caused jams among the passengers exiting the boat.

You have to be careful about who picks up your bags to load them onto jeeps and taxis like these guys who we thought worked for the man driving the jeep. They hung onto the back telling us we owed them money for putting all of our gear on top of the jeep when we had never asked them to do it and actually almost had to fight them off so they wouldn’t take our bags.