It's 'Phase 5' not 'District 12'

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September 24th 2016
Published: September 26th 2016
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Another hearty breakfast buffet selection containing such items as chicken ham and bread pudding filled us up ready to take the day on. Cesar picked us up in the posh Kadasig jeepney and took us to HQ where gifts of food and bracelets were immediately bestowed on us. A little awkward, considering they're the charity and we should be the ones giving. We did drop off a couple of bags of supplies donated by Dean's school but realised we'd left the bag of goodies we bought for the kinder at the hotel. We have never lost something on holiday before but we don't usually carry so much. Although we did leave two bags there, we gained what seemed like a week's worth of food. Mangoes, water, some lychee type of fruit, bananas and half a large tea cake. It felt like we were part of an Enid Blyton picnic in the tropics.

The next stop was 'Phase 5' to visit the kinder. El thought we were being taken to a place like District 12 in 'The Hunger Games'. Which we may as well have been. Perched on a hill overlooking the city, we were dropped off at the top and walked down through the maze of ramshackle structures to the kinder, about halfway down. The teacher, a qualified architect, looks after 17 kids in the morning session and 13 in the afternoon. It's a fairly small room, simply furnished and very hot inside. The teacher's desk is taped together and she sits on a plastic chair. We spent a little while there, and then found ourselves being watched by some curious villagers and their offspring. The kids were intrigued by El's braces and enjoyed Dean's drawings.

We continued down the hill, through the alleyways and creatively designed electrical wiring. A fire had recently destroyed a section of this area and it is amazing that it was able to be contained. How it didn't take out the whole area, I don't know. We said our goodbyes to Cesar's wife and his mother, our lovely guides, and jumped back into the jeepney for the trip to Moalboal.

A lunch stop at another Kadasig sponsored village was a welcome respite from the bumpy and winding road. Once again we were embarrassed to be given gifts of food, although at least the little lemons and coconuts were grown here and they seemed plentiful. Our journey continued through towns where basketball courts and cock fighting arenas were common sights.

Arriving at Moalboal, Eleanor let out an audible sigh of relief. We had turned off the main, concreted road, down a track that gave no indication that an ocean, nor any habitable buildings were nearby. I must admit I was starting to feel a little apprehensive but behind a big white fence lay the place that was to be our home for the next few nights.


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