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Expat In Bacolod

Stephen Bentley - Writer

Category: Bacolod Life (page 1 of 12)

Bacolod Life is a category composed of posts all about my expat life in Bacolod, Negros Island and the Philippines in general. Bacolod City is where I live and write. I love it here.

With one exception! The road culture!

It inspired me to write my first book “How To Drive Like an Idiot in Bacolod” – An Expat’s Experiences of Driving in the Philippines and How To Survive.

It is available on Amazon and other online retail stores. Click on the image below to take a free preview before you buy.

Four Year Review of Life in the Philippines

It’s exactly four years to the day I arrived in the Philippines so I guess now is as good as time as any to post my four review of life in the Philippines. Before I do, I have noticed recently that some WordPress followers have signed up to follow this blog and not my author website. I don’t believe that was intended. I no longer have a newsletter for this blog but if you want to keep up to date with my author stuff then you may sign up over on my author site here. The first question I have is where did the time go? Tempus certainly fugit 🙂 I wrote this on my Facebook timeline today and every word is true: Four years… Read More

Amendment of Temporary 13A Residency Visa to Permanent

This is as factual a post you will find anywhere on the internet¹ about ‘Amendment of Temporary 13A Residency Visa to Permanent,’ if you apply from within the Philippines. Note: It is possible, and advisable, to apply from overseas using that country’s Philippines Embassy if you (applicant) and your spouse (petitioner) are residing overseas (and married in that foreign country), and wish to live in the Philippines on a permanent basis.  Also, in those circumstances, you will skip the ‘Probationary’ period and go straight to ‘Permanent Residency,’ as I understand it. Once you have jumped through the hoops and the visa is approved you are good to stay indefinitely as a permanent resident of the Philippines.  The only thing that has to be renewed is… Read More

Bacolod City Embarks on Clearing Illegal Structures

The report below my comments is reproduced from the Visayan Daily Star Facebook page. Bacolod City embarks on clearing illegal structures and it’s long overdue. Some of these illegal structures cause danger on the highways as they restrict the free flow of traffic and pedestrians. While admiring the ingenuity of some of the people involved in expanding their businesses, it should not take precedence over public safety. The reference to river banks must involve squatters who choose to live near a source of running water. That is understandable but once again, it causes problems. Firstly to the people themselves in their makeshift homes perched on the river banks. They are often flooded out during rainy season. Plus, these squatters deposit trash in the rivers including… Read More

LBC Shipping Cart Now Open in the UK

It has just been announced the LBC Shipping Cart now open in the UK. That’s great news for a number of reasons especially if, like me, you hail from the UK and want goods shipping to your door in the Philippines. Marks & Spencers’ bigger mens’ sizes anyone? 🙂 If you need to know the details of the LBC Shipping Cart system, I have written about it before here and here. The LBC system has always delivered for me. Safe in transit, insured goods, tracking, great communication by email – all of those things and the price you pay includes any relevant taxes. They take care of the Customs declaration so it isn’t impeded on arrival in Manila. At the moment I await delivery of an… Read More

Monthly Newsletter: Past Present and Future

The Expat in Bacolod monthly newsletter is to be cancelled from February 2019. The updates from my author website will continue as usual. The main reason behind this is I had combined my subscriber list from here and my author website. The newsletter went out with a combined RSS Feed* showing posts from both sites. Sadly, the January newsletter looked a mess owing to some glitch with the RSS Feed. I am unable to fix it. Here’s how it will affect you if you are an existing subscriber to the newsletter. If you see my posts via WordPress and/or WordPress Reader – nothing changes If you only follow this blog via the newsletter, there will be a link back to this site from the author… Read More

Crafty Fartsy Opens in Bacolod: Party Events & Personalized Gifts

Crafty Fartsy? Good question. Who are they or what is it? And what does it/they do? Luckily I’m in a position to tell you. It specializes in,  and I quote from the Facebook page, ‘Personalized Products Free Personalization! Make any celebration better with personalized party supplies, gifts & more!’ It’s operated by my wife Zabrina. She works closely with good friend Shar Mayne who operates Michs N More Events and Coordination. It specializes in party events and poses this question with the solution: Planning a party and need something unique?  We can help you, we are your one stop solution to your events and party.  Together, they provide a one-stop solution for all party needs whether a birthday, Christening, small corporate functions etc. They are… Read More

Bacolod Bicycle Lanes – Will They Work?

That’s a good question: will they work? I’m talking about the new Bacolod bicycle lanes project. I hope they do partly because they have cost P62M (about 1.1M USD). That’s a lot of money to spend on some yellow lines painted on the road. However, the main reason I hope they work is to make the roads here safer for all users including cyclists and there are many of them in this country. You see the serious ones every day of the week clad in Lycra furiously pedaling away on their top-end machines. Here is one reason why the good intentions are immediately dismantled by selfish car drivers. Take a look at the picture below. You can immediately see what the problem is and how… Read More

Carabao Confrontation: A Near Death Experience

Okay, I admit it, “near death experience” is a tad exaggerated, but it was damn scary! As most of you know, the first book I wrote was about the abysmal driving standards here in the Philippines. It’s available here if you want to read it. And all my other books in digital format may be purchased here at Books2Read. The paperback and audio book versions are only available through Amazon. Plug over! 🙂 So here is the story of the carabou., a big heavy water buffalo type thingy.   It all happened on a weekend away. A wonderful trip south to Hinobaan,then onward to Bayawan and Siaton. The last named town is the most southerly point of Negros Island. We meaning me, my wife Zabrina,… Read More

Tragic Slaying in Silay

Many murders have an element of tragedy but this is truly a tragic slaying in Silay. Silay City is only a fee kilometers from Bacolod so the entire expat community and thousands of locals were saddened to hear about this tragedy, I reproduce the story below  as reported by Lifestyle Bacolod, a Facebook page.  Let’s help Erik… Your P50s can go a long way. Erik was shot dead as 5-year-old son waits in vehicle in Silay City. The victim identified as Erik Norman Hendrickson, 57, of Wisconsin, United States, was declared dead on arrival at the Teresita Lopez Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City, according to Supt. Noel Polines, officer-in-charge of the Silay City Police Station. Hendrickson, who was temporarily residing at Loney Burgos in… Read More

California Coral Beach Resort, Guimaras

This post was intended to be about Guimaras. However, seeing ninety-nine percent of our time was spent at the wonderful California Coral Beach Resort at Nueva Valencia, Guimaras, then it seemed right to me to blog mainly about the resort. Firstly, a little about Guimaras. It’s a gem of a small island situated between the two larger islands of Negros and Panay. Here is what one Philippines website has to say about the island: ABOUT GUIMARAS PROVINCE Guimaras Island varies from level to steeply sloping, with land elevation ranging from 0 to nearly 300 meters above sea level.  Mt. Dinulman, located in Millan, Sibunag, has the highest elevation of 267 meters above mean sea level. A great part of the island’s land area is above… Read More

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