Since I decided to settle in Manila (a month ago), I take a cab to different places most of the time, maybe 90%. I am trying to learn the routes of the jeepneys, the FXs, and the MRT but I rarely actually do it because firstly, I have a choice not to and secondly, I am scared to try things on my own, not wanting to be lost all by myself.
This is why I was so proud after my two-hour travel from AdMU all the way to Paranaque, where I stay. Well, I still took the taxi but I rode the MRT, a jeepney, and an FX as well. This all happened May 15, just yesterday.
I worked half day so I could go to Makati for my admissions interview for the next school year. Fortunately for me, a colleague has a 2pm client meeting in Buendia, which meant I wouldn’t have to be alone on my way to Makati. We rode the tricycle to Puregold, then an FX to Buendia. From there, I was again all by myself. I took a taxi to the school – my future school.
My interview was finished in about an hour. It was still early and I have nowhere to go. I thought of my friends (former teammates) who arrived in Manila earlier that day. I texted them and knew that they were in Quezon. I know it’s far already but the fact that I’m already in Makati makes it appear close, compared when I’d visit them coming from Paranaque. I took the risk of taking a cab, with no idea on how to get back home on the evening. And oh, my dad’s flight will arrive in Manila at 11:40pm and I have to be back home when he arrives.
After a long ride, I have finally arrived at Trinity College of Asia and met my friends. We finished the Women’s Basketball game – AdMU vs LPU. I went with the highschool team, my former teammates, and my coaches, to the AdMU campus because that’s where they’d be staying. We had fun – lots of it. Well, anyways..
After dinner, about 8:30pm, I decided to go back home because I know it’s still several kilometers away. I wanted to ride a cab all the way to Paranaque but when I asked the taxi driver, he told me it would cost me at least 600! i wouldn’t pay that much for transportation. That’s just too much. Instead, I told the cab driver to drop me at the nearest MRT station – GMA Kamuning. I thought I could learn my way back home and I’d start at the station.
Way-finding is a lot more difficult when you have no internet connection. My pocket wifi doesn’t have battery so there’s nothing I could turn to when I need help. I’m so dependent with my Google Maps that I feel helpless without it.
I saw at the ticket booth that the end of the MRT3 line is at Taft Avenue. I have no knowledge in the streets of Manila so I asked a person where Taft Avenue is. That must be a lame question for him but it sort of meant my life to me at that moment. It is in Pasay. I am relieved because I know the airport is in Pasay and I’ve lived my first two weeks in Manila in a budget hotel in Domestic Road. I thought to myself I’d be more enlightened the moment I’d be in Pasay because the place is a bit familiar to me.
When I arrived at Taft Avenue station, I was shocked how different the place is to the ‘Pasay’ that I know. I just followed where the crowd was heading and it took me to a jeepney terminal. I saw a ‘Mall of Asia’ sign and rode that jeepney. It took me to MOA in no time and I knew I’d be fine.
I planned to take the taxi from there, as I always do when I’m going home from MOA but then I saw that there’s an FX with the Sucat sign. I went inside the FX and handed the driver fifty pesos telling him I’m going to Multi. The driver gave me change which confirmed that I am finally on my way home.
That experience was scary, really. Also challenging in a way because of the super crowded MRT, the dark streets, and the uncertainty. I was glad to be home and even happier when I get to count how much I saved from taking all those modes of transportation.
I guess when we are forced to face a situation and we don’t have the choice but to overcome it, we will succeed – we just have to. The thought of commuting that far is already a nightmare to me but knowing that I could do it, makes me believe in myself more. Sometimes we have to be in desperate situations in order for us to learn.
Taxi to GMA Kamuning Station from AdMU: 170
MRT to Taft Avenue Station: 14
Jeepney to SM Mall of Asia: 8
FX to Puregold Paranaque: 40
Tricycle to Kassel Residences: 30
I saved 338 pesos! 🙂