Last year we hung out half the season in Davao which is typhoon safe, but full of manmade dangers. The Philippines only offer a few options to avoid the typhoons and storms, one is to be in the safest most protected place in the country, Subic Bay. So this year we decided to hold up in Subic Bay for 5 months, July to December. This will be the longest Furthur as stayed in one place since we left Seattle.
Subic Bay is the old and now again starting up US Navy base. Closed in 1992 ending hundreds of years of foreign occupation and the subsequent 20,000 jobs it provided, the base is being used again on a limited basis. The government has always maintained the distinction of being “on the base” of “off the base”. The driving rules are much stricter on the base, ok there are actual rules. I have already been stopped for: wrong shoes, must wear closed toe shoes, Donna sitting side saddle in a short dress, and for forgetting to turn my headlight on. The cops are getting to know us hahaha but so far talked them out of all three tickets.
We are staying in the Subic Bay Yacht Club, a once noble establishment that is very run down now but promising to be rebuilt. We do have a pool and small gym which I enjoy. There is a modern mall, five screen movie theater, multiple restaurants and shops all within walking distance. There is even a Costco type store with Kirkland brand products priced in dollars. One can bask in the modern world or Just a hop away you go off base and bim bam boom you are back in the Philippines, where the traditional Jeepneys and tricycles zip about and girly bars, street venders and street food is everywhere.
One of the main attractions and deciding points for Subic Bay is the supply of talented capable boat workers. We have befriended one guy who is a top notch electrical genius. He has already unraveled a few long term mysteries and gremlins. Furthur is in excellent shape and there are no big projects at hand, just a long list of minor ones and a full bow to stern inspection. My quest for minimizing generator time is now taking us in the direction of a wind gen to add to the solar panels. After sitting at Puerto Galera in good wind for a month I decided to harness some of the cosmic juice. We are doing a month to month project list to spread the work and expense out, another benefit of five months at the dock.
Modern as it may be we still enjoy Philipino type prices, that movie theater with first run flicks, three bucks a head. Donna thoroughly enjoys the beauty treatments; hair cut/color, all her nails, make up and one-hour massage birthday gift was under forty bucks. There are top notch medical facilities, I am going in next week for a long overdue physical. Get this, they have a menu with pricing, I am getting the full meal deal, chest x-ray, bull blood work-up and exam for sixty bucks, try that at home kids! So Furthur and I will be in fine form. Speaking of form, a few months of lazy cruising, Donna mastering her cooking skills and me not getting any younger, have piled on a few extra pounds around the ol girth.. So my time in Subic will be spent getting back in shape, daily running and gym work outs already tightening things up a bit.. Oh and I am only eating a tiny bit of ice cream each night now, oh the sacrifices hahaha.
So the next few months will see a Furthur that is standing tall, a slimmer captain, and provide some great adventures on two wheels. Then we are off to the next boating adventure
Make Your Dream Your Story
Capt. Brian Calvert