Monday, 11 August 2008

Our Boracay Adventure: Day 4

I know, by now I shouldn't even be titling this as an adventure in Boracay, since this day begins with us in Kalibo at the resort.

You remember the resort, right?

No, I won't include any more photos of it. We've all suffered enough.

So, we awoke, had a great breakfast (their food is good!) and the resort vans drove us the 10-15 minute drive to the airport.Standing inside waiting to check-in and see if we'd be delayed yet again.
That's the entire ticketing area as can be seen by the 38mm wide-angle of my compact camera. To my extreme left is the entrance and an inoperable x-ray scanner. An operable unit is located as you enter the departure lounge (note its entrance in left of photo above).

We stayed in the departure lounge long enough to see the end of a Chinese film about soccer teams, full of special effects, flying people, demons, fiery, supernatural soccer balls, etc...probably all against the rules in soccer, but it all makes sense in a Chinese film. Then we saw the last fifteen minute of the 1980's film The Goonies.
That was followed by some inane Philippine game show before our flight finally showed up, almost an hour late.

So out onto the tarmac in the sweltering sun we strode.

One of the great things about rural runways is that they aren't surrounded on all sides by crammed squatter communities constructed of scrap tin, wood, and cinder blocks. Instead, you see quaint farm dwellings. Why people want to locate the structures so close to the noise of the runway is beyond me. To each his own.
At long last we were in the air on our return to Manila. That's Kalibo below.
For much of the flight back we had a view of nothing much more than clouds...and the wing of our Airbus. Cebu Pacific's fleet of Airbus jets are very new, making this my first flight on an Airbus product that I enjoyed. On all others the fit and finish of the parts seemed very much lacking compared to Boeing, and even older McDonnell-Douglas planes. Before, I was used to Airbus planes rattling away like crazy once in flight and wishing I'd been aboard a Boeing. This time I didn't worry about the wings falling off.
About an hour after departing Kalibo we were over Manila. We could see a few landmarks below. Here's Cubao and the Araneta Coliseum:

And here is Quezon Memorial Circle:

Upon landing, the plane made its way to Terminal 3 and stopped...hundreds of yards away from the waiting gates.

There were a lot of waiting gates.

But, like the two planes ahead of us, we were stuck waiting for airport personnel to give us access to said gates.

So we waited.

And our exasperated pilot apologized. He'd been dealing with these delays every day for the past three weeks. It's one thing to experience inconveniencing delays as a passenger. It must be really aggravating to experience them every day, though!

And we waited.

In all, we sat there looking at the back of the new terminal for between thirty and forty minutes before the airport got their act together and grounds crews appeared to guide us towards the gate.

It was half past three when we deplaned; just about twenty-one hours late. Edson was supposed to have been at work at nine that morning, as were his two officemates traveling with us. Of course we'll all have something the others in the office never experienced: the precious moments of our stay at the Sampaguita Gardens Resort.




No, I'm not going to end with another picture of the resort. I'm not that cruel.

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