Philippines Diary # 23 – Hi Joe

October 14, 2009 ā€“ Wednesday

Whenever we travel I encounter the Hi Joe greeting from strangers. I believe this hails from the days when there was a strong American military presence here. It seems very strange when you hear it for the first time but apparently people mean no harm. I am a foreigner, not even English or European, just a foreigner. In Santiago Ciy I am a rarity so always attract stares and whispers, particularly when they see Gina and Justin. In Cebu I would probably not be noticed as so many expats from many countries, particularly from the USA, live or have settled there. Here in Santiago Cit locals are perfectly friendly towards me but the staring does take a bit of getting used to. Sometimes children in particular will stand right opposite me and stare at me like Iā€™m an alien from outer space. I should buy a Martian mask to complete the effect!