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How to Find a Philippines Mentor

Humor Alert: Sorry but there isn’t much. This is a subject I’m serious about, emotional even. I’ll make up for it next time, I promise.

I see and hear about all kinds of guys who go to the Philippines and hate it. Of course tastes aren’t universal and not everyone loves 90 degree heat and 90% humidity as much as I do, so maybe I can’t blame them. White sand and cheap beer is overrated – if you’re a priest or mental case. But when they complain about the women, say they can’t find a good one, say they’re all dumb, and worse still, claim they are all unattractive – well then I scratch my head and wonder whether we visited the same country – or live on the same planet.

Not to be indelicate, but if you are a single Westerner and take an extended trip to the Philippines, or a short trip; hell, even if you do a 10-hour layover, and can’t find a youngish, sweet, bright, fun, and attractive girl to spend time with – then there is something seriously wrong with you, probably either involving mental illness or the fact that you’ve recently passed away and no one’s bothered to tell you.

…if you are a single Westerner and take an extended trip to the Philippines, or a short trip; hell, even if you do a 10-hour layover, and can’t find a youngish, sweet, bright, fun, and attractive girl to spend time with – then there is something seriously wrong with you…

While it seems very easy to me and many of my friends, since it’s not easy for everyone I searched my mind for solutions and finally realized one of the main differences between success and failure; I found a good mentor and most don’t. Here’s my mentor story and how you can find one too.

First let’s talk about why you need a true mentor in the Philippines:

Going to the Philippines and figuring you’ll run into a fellow Westerner who will give you the lay of the land is not a wise idea. Most expats living in the Philippines are either old and cranky (that is older and crankier than I am); drunks; evading the authorities, their ex-wife or their drug dealer back home; or make their living as professional whore mongers. “But Dave, you say that like it’s a bad thing,” I hear you all saying. Point being if you meet a fellow Westerner and sit down for a San Miguel and friendly chat on life in the Philippines, the guy may have no more in common with you than the average inmate in San Quentin, and may well have once resided in a comparable federal facility.

Let’s say you meet a guy (in person or online) who isn’t too bad; he’s long-nosed and white, speaks with your accent, is articulate and doesn’t appear to be a total drunk or evading the law. Does that make him a good mentor? Not necessarily.

I know a well-educated guy living in Manila, who can tell you in great detail every aspect of every girlie bar in EDSA, which is fine if you are interested in finding a bar girl in Manila (and BTW, if you need a mentor for that, you’re beyond hope) but who defines a long-term relationship as “she spent the night.” The point is, you have to find someone on the same page as you. Which means you have to genuinely know yourself well enough to know what you want. Wife, girlfriend, temporary girlfriend, very very temporary girlfriend, catcher’s mitt? Are you interested in the big cities (Manila, Cebu), smaller cities, or provinces? Are you young, middle-aged, old as me, or living in an intensive care unit? Well, you get the idea. While a guy with different goals than you might provide some valuable information, he’s not gonna be a proper mentor to you.

I found my mentor through a circuitous route. As in all modern research methodologies, several years ago I turned to the Internet to find out the best way to discover the joys of foreign women. It led me to a couple of men’s forums. There I chatted with a guy who led me to yet another forum, specifically on living and meeting women abroad. He told me, “the owner of the forum’s nuts, but there is some good information there.”

I visited said forum and found a ton of information, some even useful, and a cast of characters that would fit right in with a pornographic version of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.

In reading between the lines, there were two guys who appeared to be slightly less deranged than the forum owner and his minions. I contacted both. Turns out that one, Pete, lives a couple hours from me. We connected quickly; as I said above finding someone with similar interests is important. Pete had been married quite a while to his Filipina wife, Cathy, and came off as a very happy guy. He immediately encouraged me to join Cherry Blossoms as a paid member, as he had done years before.

He patiently answered all my questions, which looking back were mostly lame and novice, with genuine enthusiasm for the journey I was beginning. A month later he told me that he and Cathy would be coming though my city and asked if I wanted to meet for lunch. I jumped at the opportunity.

At lunch, the main thing I noticed (other than the fact that Cathy was very attractive) was that even after nearly ten years together they seemed as close as newlyweds; holding hands, cuddling next to each other. I remember having an intense feeling of envy but that feeling reinforced the fact that I was going in the right direction and wanted exactly what Pete had. Well, not exactly; Cathy was taken and Pete’s a lot bigger than me.

Pete stuck with me all the way. I made a mistake or two, which I have documented in other blog postings. But each time he’d guide me in the right direction, confident that I could do it. He was a friend, guide and cheerleader all rolled up into one.

Funny thing is that almost no one else on the forum took him up on his offer to guide them. Perhaps this is men’s nature; the “I can do it myself” male ego. Lucky I was a bit more open.

Two years later, after trials, tribulations and with great excitement, Janet arrived. Not long after, Pete and Cathy came through town and the four of us met over dinner. Janet and Cathy bonded immediately.

Due to the K-1 Visa requirements and our own excitement, our wedding was put together quickly and was to be held in the garden of our neighbor. Since Janet’s family could, of course, not attend I asked her who she might like to walk her down the aisle and without hesitation she responded, “Pete.”

Pete walking Janet

Pete – if you’re reading this – well my words of gratitude seem inadequate. Janet and I owe you so much and I hope our friendship to be a lifelong one.

So guys, if you’re searching for the right girl, find the right guide. They are out there and willing to help. Even Pete and I might lend a hand.

6 thoughts on “How to Find a Philippines Mentor”

  1. Good article Dave. I’m with you on the mentor thing. As there are many forums, there are even more knuckleheads that hang out in these forums and attempt to provide advice…much of it innacurate or plain wrong. As you point out, there are many personalities residing in the Philippines, and each and everyone of them has their own take or perception of “reality” here. Many even interpret the laws wrong. Get connected with a like-minded individual to help…although that may prove to slightly more difficult than finding the right women. Come to think of it, it might be much easier to find a good woman long before before finding a good mentor!

    1. You’re right Randy. It might be easier to find the girl than a good mentor, but still it’s worth a go. BTW, while I don’t know you in person, from what I do know, you don’t fit any of the negative characteristics I joked about among expats and I am sure would make a good mentor for guys looking to know what life is like in the Philippines. And I know you will be able to guide me to where to find the cheapest San Miguel prices 🙂

  2. Wow, I’m honored! You were the perfect student. I’m just so glad that you and Janet meet and married. Here’s to years of you guys being happy. Cheers!!!

  3. What a great article. Lucky for me I have done much traveling abroad. I found the love of my life in the Philippines and married her. Visa process is almost complete. Proud to be married to a Filipina. 🙂

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