The dive boat docks at sea near Apo Island. We swim to shore and later snorkel with the giant turtles that nest in shallow waters. The turtles are huge, old and are larger than me!!! I counted five big ones! Around lunch time we are hungry and find the sandwiches on the boat insufficient. We need a rice dish because we are Filipino. We swim back and search for food among the natives in this little remote island.
Me: “We would like to order fish or seafood for our lunch.”
Local lady : “No fish available”
Me: “But we are on an island!”
Local lady: “This is a marine sanctuary, no fishing allowed, chicken only.”
Me: “Okay, chicken for four people with rice. How much would it cost?”
Local lady: “I don’t know. First I will catch the chicken. Then weigh it after it is killed and the feathers are removed. Then add the cost of the other ingredients”
Me: “Oh so you need to catch a chicken first ?!??? Alright let me know how much. Can we eat in that little hut by the beach?”
Local lady: “I have to rent place from friend, not mine. Also need to borrow plates and utensils.” Then she starts computing.
Me: “Can you just give me a price? How about P200 (4 Euros) per person for everything?”
Local lady: “ Okay I catch chicken now. Come back in 2 hours”
I was expecting simple food but she served us a perfectly cooked chicken stew with paprika and bell peppers using wood fire. Where she got the other ingredients I still wonder. It was nourishing and pleasantly delicious!
Accommodation and best place to stay in Dumaguete:
Dumaguete to Apo Island:
Harold’s Dive Center – snorkeling P1000 whole day with land arrangements, boat, gear and sandwich on the boat