Friday, September 2, 2016

Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3- Jollibee [Philippine Adventures Quest 1: Homecoming - Sept. 1, 2016]




Philippines! It was 2:47 am when my Cebu Pacific airplane successfully landed in Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). Everybody was so excited to get off the plane that some of my fellow passengers already stood up and started to get their bags. They did this even though the seat belt indicator sign was still on. The pretty flight attendants just reminded us to remain seated. My flight 5J 311 was ahead of its schedule and I was supposed to land at 3:10 am so everyone waited patiently while still inside the plane. It was a good thing that there was Wi-Fi signal that I was able to send a message via Messenger to my mom. “Ma! I'm home”, I said to her.




NAIA Terminal 3 is said to be most modern airport in the Philippines so I was expecting something great as I stepped out of the jet bridge. But I got disappointed! All the arriving passengers were just greeted by colorful paintings of different tribal clothes probably coming from the different parts of the Philippines. It was ugly for me because I had my point of comparison. I was referring to my first experience in Taoyuan International Airport where returning citizens and international visitors were in awe with the technological achievements of Taiwan as well as the different tourist spots in the island.








Anyway, I continued my journey to the Immigration where a plain looking hallway awaits Filipino passengers and international visitors for a stamp on their passport. I then went to the first floor of the airport to get my check-in luggage before I walked to the arrival hall where I was supposed to meet my parents. “Go to Bay 3”, said by my mom upon checking my phone. My parents rented a van to fetch me but for those who wants to go to the Philippines for a vacation one can just hire a taxi or use your Uber app to hire a driver and a car. Always remember that the Philippines is a third-world country where there is no efficient and safe public transportation. Don't expect a train station nor a bullet train inside the NAIA to take you to Manila directly.



“Sir, taxi?” a man approached me and offered a ride on his taxi. I ignored the man and continued walking until I found myself outside NAIA in the Bay 3 area. My mom and dad were sitting on a bench and I was the first one to recognize them. I had not seen my parents for three years and I was a bit surprised to see how fast their faces had changed. My brother, cousins and my uncle was also there to give me a warm welcome.




The Jollibee at Philcoa

At Jollibee Philcoa








My uncle drove fast along EDSA and I noticed that nothing much had changed within three years. We made a right turn at East Avenue until we made a temporary stop at Philcoa in Quezon City. I was so hungry and it was time to eat Jollibee. Jolly Spaghetti and the classic Jolly Hotdog were my orders. The sweet-style spaghetti sauce of the Jolly Spaghetti was still the same. However, I noticed that my Jolly Hotdog was not packed anymore in a white Styrofoam. The bread also got smaller! I remembered the time when the bread of Jolly Hotdog was so big that I it couldn't fit in to my mouth. The cost of producing one Jolly Hotdog might be so expensive nowadays that the company decided to make the bread smaller without sacrificing its delicious taste. Haha! 


My family's small multi-purpose store
I gave my loved ones pineapple cakes from Taiwan.
tinola - a Filipino chicken soup dish

After eating our breakfast, my uncle drove fast along Commonwealth Avenue until we finally reached our home in the province of Rizal. My mom had a small multi-purpose store where you can buy anything. The warm smiles of my other brothers welcomed me in our house and they were all excited to hear my stories of my adventures and misadventures in Taiwan. At noontime, my mom cooked “tinola” and it rejuvenated my energy. I was still sleepy while eating but I was very happy deep inside my heart. I was home and I had a lot of plans for my homecoming.
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