Third Week: This is Living Now

It may be week three but there’s still much to see.  Things have really slowed down this week, as I’ve been falling into a routine.  This week at work I have been preparing for my education session presentation which I will be presenting on July 6 to DOST-FNRI employees via zoom.  I am quite nervous but my coworkers and supervisors have been very kind and helpful in alleviating most of my worries.  On top of preparing for my presentation, on  Thursday (the 23) I was invited to attend the afternoon batch of virtual site visits which is a part of the technology transfer activities.   

Food delivery apps are truly convenient.  I’ve finally gotten the chance to try foodpanda which is like DoorDash, you order your choice of food and someone brings it to you.  On Monday night I ordered from Jollibee and it was nice not having to walk all the way to SM Bicutan.  Typically after work, it’s more convenient for us to stop on the way home to eat dinner at SM Bicutan. Side note, I now understand why my coworker told me it is common for Filipinos to go to the mall everyday.

This week we’ve taken three grabs to work instead of walking to work every day of the week.  Grabs are like the Philippines version of uber.  Back in the states, I am used to driving my own car and not having to rely on anyone else to get somewhere, which was why transportation was confusing and a tad stressful at first.  Now that I’ve gotten a hang of booking grabs I’d like to try other modes of transportation, ones that will be. . .  kinder to my budget.  

By the way pro tip, it’s definitely easier (or the only option) to pay in cash for literally everything from foodpanda to grab to buying food in the canteen or even at SM Bicutan.  I only ever use my card at the hypermarket or when dealing with ATMs to withdraw cash.  Another thing to take note of is the wait time.  Drivers are very likely to cancel on you.  It’s honestly faster to walk to work when you factor in the time finding a ride, waiting for them to pick you up, and then the traffic on the way to your destination.      

Sarah and I took the weekend to rest and spent most of our time at Siena Park.  On Sunday (the 26th) I walked around the area while trying to find a way to the National Shrine of Mary Help of Christians.  I never made it there but I enjoyed walking around the area and seeing all the stores along the street, Bicutan market, and Marimar 1 Village (located on the street behind our residence).       

Week 3 takeaway:  Covid restrictions are pretty strict here.  I am honestly impressed with how regulations are and how the majority of people appear to be taking the pandemic seriously here at FNRI.  Before entering the building there is this device that scans our temperature through our palms, we are then required to fill out a daily check-up form before we can time in for work, and it is mandatory to wear masks at our work stations.  Here in the Philippines masks are still required within closed public spaces and some places even require proof of vaccination before entry (hotels/resorts and movie theaters).   

Till next week, Jess 🙂

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