If you don’t know what the inside of one of those gateways to Heaven, otherwise known as a ladyboy bar, is really like, I hope this little video will help you visualise the legions of loveliness that populate them. I found the video a few years ago and decided to re-edit it to Billy Idol’s ‘Rebel Yell’. It’s an all-time favourite and frankly, is far more in tune with the passionate yelps of a toothsome young transgirl in bed than the music the video originally had!
You’ll need a ‘guest-friendly’ hotel, if you don’t use one of the ubiquitous short-time hotels which are, by definition, open to customers bringing along a girl or three. Although generally, budget hotels are fine, it’s probably better to avoid those run by farangs. I have to say, with regret, that the only time I’ve ever had any real issues with ladyboys in bars, restos or hotels in southeast Asia, it has been in establishments run by that species of bigoted Australian male who would, frankly, have been better left as a stain on his mother’s bedsheets.
Here’s the first of our video diaries from the Philippines to be uploaded here. Future videos from all of my channels and playlists will be backed up here because I no longer trust YouTube! Crazy world we live in.
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The ‘wet market’ or palenke in Pasig City is really huge and spectacular. You can buy anything there, believe me. it’s a fun place too, literally open 24/7/365. Keep your wallet in your pocket and you’ll have no problems.
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I am not ashamed to say that I love the Philippines. Nowhere else that I have ever visited manages to capture so much of humanity’s amazing variety. It’s an incredible place and I am so lucky to have found it. This is a selection of pictures from that trip. I’ll let them speak for themselves.
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This was a crazy trip in which the weather did all but defeat us. But we still had fun.
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The Philippines has become very important to me over the last four years. It’s now the focus of much of my life and I want to spend more time there. The winters in France are just too cold for me now.
When you visit a country for longer periods, months at a time, as I do, you can’t do quite what the holiday tourist does. It’s partly to do with budgets but also with burnout. You have to learn to chill and take it easy.
Flying out to the Philippines
Before the start is always the bit that has me in a fankle. I get travel stress a week before The Flight. No matter how long I give myself for preparation the last few days are a nightmare — and I always forget something. (This time it was the sandwiches for the train — but I had time to go back.)
Because I live in rural France, just getting to the airport is a journey. I take the train from Chagny to Charles de Gaulle airport. You can either go direct to Paris Gare de Lyon and then get the RER across to Roissy, or take a direct train. I do the latter. And after nearly missing the flight on a previous trip to the Philippines — because of a train delay — I always leave a lot of time now.
When I find myself on the platform at Chagny, it’s OK. The pressure goes away. I’m in the pipe now, and at the other end of it is the Philippines. All I have to do is get on the right trains and planes and I’ll get there.