‘What do you mean you are taking us to your sister hostel?!’
This was the last thing I needed to hear after a long journey from Manila to Tagaytay, Philippines. We stayed in Tagaytay to visit the volcano, Taal, which was amazing and I loved it! What I didn’t love was everything that happened prior. Here is a re-cap of a our Bad(ish) day at Tagaytay and what happened to us on our arrival.
Issue number one. When we found the bus we wished to take from Manila to Tagaytay, we asked where to put our luggage, the response was ‘get on the bus.’ So for over two hours we sat on a coach with our 70 litre, 14kg rucksacks resting between our legs. 2 bags, 4 legs and 1 bottle of water in a foot-well. Fun!
Oh, and by this point Pete and I are stressed and snapping at each other like piranhas.
Issue number two. This issue is only minor, but I can’t find my sunglasses. We have to walk from the coach to our hotel and I can’t find my sunglasses. I wouldn’t usually care but they weren’t cheap, they weren’t bought from a seller in Thailand if you get what I mean?
Issue number three is the worst. We followed the map to where it said the hostel was, and it wasn’t. It wasn’t there. We walked further down the road, not there. We walk up the road parallel, not there either. We go further along, nope. We go back on ourselves, can’t find it. We stop in McDonalds thinking that they may have WiFi and we can double-check. McDonalds Wifi wasn’t working (that was Issue number four). So we walked back on ourselves again and stop in a bar which did have Wifi (yay!). Oh, and by this point Pete and I are stressed and snapping at each other like piranhas = Issue number five.
After using the bar’s Wifi, we realise we were close to the hostel when we were back at McDonalds, so off we go again. When we finally find the hostel, we have been walking in +30 degree heat, with 14 kilograms of luggage on our backs, for 45 minutes! We arrive, (yay!) Then BHAM, Issue number 6 – ‘We are going to transfer you to our sister hostel.’ WHAT???!!!!!!!!
Where are the free toiletries?
We asked ‘where is this place’ and the vague answer was ‘its not far.’ We got into the tuk tuk and drove to the ‘sister hostel.’ I was already stressed so this new place would have to be either, 1: nearer to town than the originally booked place or, 2: a massive improvement to what we booked. Neither of these things came true. The new hostel was in a weird, gated-off street. It was truly run-down. The shared bathroom was a dirty toilet that didn’t flush and a tiny sink. No shower, no bath, nothing. It was like a prison cell. I am on holiday dammit! Where are the free toiletries? So we were at Issue number 7. Stay or go?
Issue number 8. We decided we weren’t staying and so had to book a new place. Stuck in this hostel, the Wifi only worked right by the ‘reception’. I say reception, I mean the man in the hallway. He approached us with documents to sigh. HA! Sorry mate, we’re stood here to use your Wifi to book another hotel. Which, we had to pay double the amount originally paid to find something decent.
Issue number 9. We walked – again! Bags back on our backs, in the sun, sweating like a sinner in church. Finally, after another 15 minutes of sweat-filled walking (remember Issue number 2, I still don’t have my sunglasses) we make it to a newly booked hotel.
Shower, rest, eat. And all is well again.
To be fair, if this is a bad day for us whilst travelling, then I think we are doing pretty well!
PS – my sunglasses were found, they were in Pete’s bag!