Monday, January 19, 2015

A Surprise in Cebu

What a surprise to see that it was called the Kukuk's Nest. It was a hippy, grungy 24/7 restobar with even some accommodations for overnight stays. The surprising thing about Kukuk's Nest was that I did not realize that Paul Kukuk---a childhood friend, and neighbor of my folks up on Whidbey Island---had made such an interesting investment in the Philippines.

 

After ordering breakfast, I asked the waitress if Paul Kukuk was the owner of the Kukuk's Nest, she did not think so and she knew of no one else to ask. So the mystery remains. I guess I will just have to ask Paul next time I see him at our next Kangaroo reunion.

After breakfast, I headed to downtown Cebu where most of the tourist sites were located. The Fuente Osmena Circle is the dividing line between Uptown where I was staying and Downtown. On both sides of this 4 lane divided road flowed the many colorful jeepneys jammed with up to 20 passengers.

 

I walked down Osmena Blvd where I first came to the Basilica Minore del Santo Nino. The Basilica was festooned with pennants, balloon, and candle votive sellers, some of it was leftover from the Ninos festival and Pope Francis visit.

Once inside the compound, I saw racks of votive candles and pilgrims lighting them---in some places it resembled a bon fire. The faithful were both giving and receiving blessings with many of them reverently touching most of the religious figures placed around the inside of the cathedral.

As I passed outside the cathedral compound, I came to Magellan's Cross in a gazebo with its floor stacked with unlighted votive candles. Opposite that was the Cebu City Hall.

I continued past there to see if I could get to a restaurant with a water view, but it was not to be. Instead I came to the Ferry Terminal where I saw scores of boats---many of them passenger boats---but no place to eat with a view.

I ended up eating some pork adobo in one of the many restaurants up the road from the terminal. After lunch I toured the Fort San Pedro before catching a jeepney back up to my hotel. After walking about 11 miles for the day, the crowded jeepney ride was a welcome respite.

 

After a delicious meal which included pork adobo and rellonong talong--fried eggplant with eggs and veggies I returned to my hotel for the evening.

Although I was planning to leave early the following morning for Argao, I decided to stay to watch President Obama's State of the Union Address. I was so glad I did since he did such a wonderful job celebrating the successes our country has had in economic recovery, lowering unemployment, providing health care for millions, regulating consumer protections, etc.

I also appreciated hearing his goals for the next two years, especially the two years of free education for all. I remember when I attended the U of W where it cost me just $300 per year for tuition for me to receive my BA degree. College education costs are now a huge burden to students and parents and are preventing many in competing in an increasingly complex job market.

A quick taxi ride at 70 pesos---about $1.50--got me to the bus station where I immediately got a Ceres A/C bus with WiFi aboard to Argao for 83 pesos---a 2 1/2 hour ride.

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