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14 Friends in Kananga

So, to start, I typed this whole post only to have it be erased. I have had some technical difficulies, like right now I’m typing in my phone due to my iPad being out of commission. Dont judge all my missspellings. I am basically texing this whole post. I need to get back to Manila to see if someone can fix it. Oh, the joys of bing in a remoteplace.

This morning we woke up in beautiful Ormoc. Daniel and I walked around the resort taking photos and videos of the sun rising around 6am. I still have a sore thoat  from yesterday, and it seams to be getting worse. Good thing I am surrounded by medical professionals. TC, Daniel’s dad, and Mike, Daniel’s brother, joined us for breakfast a little before 7. I was half adventurous and ordereed french toast, bacon, and dungit. Dungit is a salty fried fish head, eye balls included. I’ll let you decide whether or not I ate the eye balls. Oh, I can’t forget the coffee and hot chocolate. The hot chocolate isn’t sweet because it’s native. It tastes like it has a hint of penuts.

Around 7:30am we left to go back to Kananga for day two of the medical mission. It is about 45 min ride to Kananga. We stopped off at a local bakery and bought bread for all the mission workers. Daniel, Mike, and I got out to order. I ordered the food beacuse the boys can’t speak much Tagalog. Everytime I said something in Tagalog, she laughed at me. It was more of a “hehehe” than a “hahaha”, but still! They all think its funny that a white girl is attempting to speak. I know I say everything with a white acccent, but still. I am trying here. It is a slight deturant, only because it happens so much. We arrived shortly after 8am, and ther was a line around the gym! Oh, boy it is going to be a long day! 


We walked to the gym. It was great to see everyone so happy to see us. I quickly started helping man the pharmacy. I was not handing out drugs or proscribing them. I was only keeping the doctors and nurses supplied with drugs. I was basically making sure drugs were easy to find when they needed it. No medical studies neeeded to unload boxes and organize the table.

I made a friend, Bridget. She sang to me for the better part of an hour. She’s 9 years old and has dreams of becoming a singer. She speaks English very well. In Kananga, they do not speak Tagalog, they speak another dialect of Filipino. Its more of a mix of Spanish and Tagalog.
This has been some of the best food all trip. It has been authentic and it actually has all the food groups. I was thinking for a while that I was going to have a heart attack because I could feel my veins restricting with the lack of vegetables. Plus everywhere I turn, there are sweets. This is not the country for a diabetic.
After lunch we went back to distrubing medicine. We went through so many boxes of pills!1 Also, I had never thought I would know the real names of so many different types of drugs. Although I am not part of the medical community, this was really a great thing to be apart of. It is a fantastic change of pace from manila. This is much more my speed.
Around 4 we had finished up in Kananga. It was time to wrap up all the drugs, or what we had left. We ran out of almost all the kids drugs, and still had a wide variety of adult medications for the next city.
I was able to ask Bridget if she wanted to be my pen pall. She anwsered very abrubtly, “No.” After explaining what a pen pall was, she was quite interested in the idea of writing letters.
 The medical mission group were going to have dinnder in the mayors office in a hour and a half. So Daniel and I walked to a local shop and bought water. I have to kick this cold before it gets bad. I am not spending my vacation in bed.
Somehow on the way to get water and coming back to the mayors office, Daniel and I made friends. Basically about 6-7 friends of Bridgets started following us and talking to us. A kid ran up to Daniel and started speaking in another dialect of Tagalog. Daniel repied, “Uhh, English?” The kid then asked somehing of the equivalent of, “Arn’t you Filipino?” Daniel replied, “Yes, I’m Filipino.” The kid then replied wit something along the lines of, “You don’t speak Filipino?” Daniel replied, “No, English.” The kid then slammed his palm to his face and made a crack at Daniels lack of Filipino knowlodge and had all the kids laughing at him.
By the time we made it up to the mayors office we had several more kids following us. It was like thw Walking Dead with kids. They just kept coming. We couldn’t tell where they were all coming from.
Daniel taught one of the kids Muy Thai. Of course we can’t let a week go by without some sort of MMA, even in the Philippines.
Dinner was served and we said goodbye to all the kids. “Bye amiga!” After dinner a driver took us to Ormoc. I opted to stay at the hotel to write. TC, Mike, and Daniel left to check on TC’s fishing boats here in the Philippines. They were back within 2 hours and I was still typing on my little phone.

Categories: Leyte Philippines

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Perriann Hodges

I am not an author. To be quite honest, I always hated English class. I write so I may share my experiences and remember the man I met on a bus who treated me to dinner with his family, paying and booking a hotel only to find out its out of business, fake crying in the Athens airport to get a ticket home, or remember the strangers who looked out for me on a bus. Some live, experience, and are fulfilled by what’s in their backyards. I find there is something truly exhilarating about cramming as many possessions into a bag as possible, only to complain you brought too many. This is my life out of a suitcase, hope you enjoy.

1 reply

  1. Hi Perriann…I’m really enjoying reading about your travels in the Philippines. I didn’t realize you were doing a medical mission. What a wonderful experience! Your lack of sleep is making me sleepy. We are busy watching the winter olympics here in the good ole USA. Have fun, but get some sleep, you need that to stay healthy. Take care! Love & Prayers, Aunt Shelley

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