Tag Archives: Travel

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar acuzar-wedding-300x225
Wedding photography at Las Casaas de Acuzar. Pic: Rod Fleming

Last week I visited Bataan, here in the Philippines, for the first time. I was amazed by the scenery, which is remarkable; beautiful mountains, beaches and sea views, amongst everything else. What a richness this country has! Anyway, the highlight of the tour was when an old friend suggested going to Las Casas de Acuzar at Bagac.

Bagac is south of Olongapo on Subic Bay and is accessible by bus. Once again, the scenery en route is spectacular.

I was expecting a beach and maybe a nice old village — my friend and guide, Belgie, said ‘There are old houses’. I wasn’t even slightly prepared for what I saw. Continue reading Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar

Happy New Year 2017 from the Philippines

Happy New Year 2017 from the Philippines 20161218_plaridel-canon_0132
Pic: Rod Fleming

Well, a belated Happy New Year to everyone and my apologies for the long hiatus.

I came here to the Philippines in early December after three months of flat-out work, to the point of exhaustion. I achieved a lot but I think regular readers would have noticed that my focus was not on the blog here but on other things, notably my new books — of which, more later. Continue reading Happy New Year 2017 from the Philippines

Philippines 2016: Markets and Mountains

Philippines 2016: Markets and Mountains IMG_2155-300x225
Sunset over Manila Harbour

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.

Continue reading Philippines 2016: Markets and Mountains

Ladyboys in Pattaya

Ladyboys in Pattaya walking_street-300x225
The entrance to Pattaya’s famous Walking Street

So you’re planning to meet some ladyboys in Pattaya? Read this.

The whole of south-east Asia is remarkable for its highly visible populations of transsexual women. These are not at all the same as you may be used to thinking of, if you are a Westerner. They’re not like Bruce ‘Caitlyn’ Jenner. (See my discussions on Ray Blanchard for more details.)

Pattaya Ladyboys

Ladyboys in Thailand and across Asia are not like that at all. They are

Ladyboys in Pattaya walking_street-300x225
Well known porn star Amy spotted in Walking Street.

beautiful and very sexy. They are extremely feminine in appearance and manners. From their early teens they use female hormones, often birth control pills which are freely available without prescription. These can turn them into staggeringly beautiful women. And the fact is that many men are powerfully attracted to them. Continue reading Ladyboys in Pattaya