The weather finally gave me a break! The rain stopped around 1 AM on Wednesday where I was staying in Pampanga. I was packed and out the door by 5:30 AM. A short jeepney ride followed by a short wait and I was on the bus to Manila at 6. The ride to Manila was 2 hours as we hit morning rush hour. Got off the bus in Cubao and waved down an ALPS bus going to Batangas (175 pesos). Morning rush hour was well underway and it was 3 1/2 hours by the time we made it to the pier.
I was swarmed by “porters” as soon as I got off the bus which I ignored all the way to the ticket window. Ferry was 230 pesos. The boat was already loading so I allowed one to go and pay my port fee (30 pesos) and another to help with one of my bags. When the porter came back with my slip for my port fee, I let him take another bag and we started towards the ferry. The security checkpoint was just up a few steps and inside the doorway. About 10 yards…. this is where I found out they couldn’t go any further! They wanted a 100 pesos each. I laughed and gave them 50 pesos and felt like I paid to much! They did help a little, but I would have just took the bags myself had I realized that.
I was the last one to board the ferry. The ride wasn’t that rough I thought, but I noticed a few people were looking a little green. I chatted with a retired Australian guy who was on holiday. The crew went around and passed out little green bags (appropriate color I thought). A couple of people in front of me did ended up puking… not just once, but several times!
The passage took about an hour and a half to Puerto Galera Town. Which surprised me as I’d bought a ticket to Sabang. Guess there weren’t enough passengers for separate ferries since it’s the off-season. We were told there would be free transportation to Sabang so no worries there!
Upon arrival we paid a 50 pesos fee and then went to a large jeepney. A porter had taken my large bag to the jeepney. It wasn’t far but its my heaviest bag! I gave him 50 pesos and he seemed happy with that. When everyone was loaded (I got the front seat :)), we left for Sabang. After about a 10 minute ride we were at Sabang Pier.
Again there were numerous porters available. I allowed one of them to carry my bag as it was a bit of a hike to the dive shop. I checked in their and left my dive gear. Then walked to Jack Daniels Apartments where I’m staying this month. I dived on Thursday and Friday. Today I’m catching up with my blog and editing photos, although I suspect I’m going to dive later!