There are many things in the Philippines that are just simply "unique" to them...or perhaps to much of Asia...but, basically, different from what we are used to in the western part of the United States. I am going to list those that we especially noticed. Some will have photos and some I will just tell about.
1. Free Size...interpretation: One Size Fits All
2. Buy One Take One...interpretation: Buy One Get One Free
3. Isles and isles of boxed milk (not in a cooler) in every supermarket...it lasts for months!
4. Many shelves of Vienna Sausages, Spam, and Sardines.
5. "Batch of 2012"...interpretation: "Class of 2012"
6. The need to build a new chapel anywhere is determined, in part, by how many jeepney rides a member must pay for to arrive at the chapel...if over 2, then they start to consider a new building.
7. Cigarettes...MANY Filipinos smoke and they buy one cigarette at a time, not a package. Vendors sell them along the street and walk out into traffic to sell them also. If someone stops in their vehicle to buy one, then the vendor also lights the cigarette for them.
8. Eggs are in cartons on shelves in supermarkets...not kept in coolers.
9. Security guards are in every store or business (usually at the door) with loaded guns.
10. Workers in the Philippines work very long hours 6 days a week, and sometimes 7.
11. When shopping in a department store or clothing store, a sales clerk tries to stay right by you. If you want to try something on, they are more than happy to come right in the fitting room to help you.
12. Every grocery, department, or clothing store has soooo many employees...and they all have their college degrees to get these jobs!
13. The Philippines is quite the "shoe capitol" of the world.
14. Even though many people are very poor, they will be dressed very stylish.
15. In many of the "wet markets" you pick out the chicken you want and they kill and prepare it right there before your eyes!
16. The pigs are truly "pink"....just like a crayon!
17. The nice malls have beautiful movie theaters and the concessions are very inexpensive.
18. Every supermarket has a "senior citizens" line and they are so quick to assist you.
19. The most popular thing for tweens and teens to do when they hang out is karaoke...they ALL love to sing!!
20. Nannies are EVERYWHERE!!! If you are even middle class, you have a nanny. Labor is so cheap, but goods are not!
21. Restrooms....you must always carry your own toilet paper, it is rarely supplied because people steal it. Used toilet paper goes in a waste basket...not down the toilet! Many times there will be no toilet seat...just the bowl!
22. Male Urinals....yes, there are quite a few of them on the sidewalks in large cities...but, most often, you see men relieving themselves everywhere and anywhere!!!
23. Everything that grows in warm humid climates, grows extra big...including the bugs! The cockroaches are SUPER-SIZED!!!
24. When you lead the singing in church (if there is no piano), the chorister sings the first line to the congregation and then says, "Okay, sing" and she leads away.
25. Christmas music starts being played on September 1. Decorations may be up until February.
26. There are no "heaters" in the cars, or businesses, or homes, or our apartment....just air-conditioners, if you are very lucky.
A Majority of the Homes are Made of Cement and Cinderblocks, with Pieces of Metal for the Roof
Much of the Cooking is Done Outside
The Caribou is the Most Valued Work Animal
The Wiring for Phones and Electricity is Just the Craziest Ever
A Good Place to Buy Fish...S&R (like Costco)...the Fish are on Ice
The More Common Way of Finding Fish for Sale
Typical Morning Meat Market
Mowing a Lawn
Fun Shopping at a Flea Market