On Nights Like These, I Hate Living in the Philippines

It's not always going to be paradise

Jason Weiland
4 min readMar 4, 2023
This is not a real place — it was created in Midjourney, but damn, doesn’t it look nice?

I must begin by saying that I absolutely love living in the Philippines - most days. I have a great family, the people here are top-notch, the food is world-class, and the weather is about as good as it gets. I love my days here with my wife and 2 little ones, even though I miss the kids and family back in the USA.

I am just jazzed to be living here, and most days, you will see me with a smile and spring in my step.

But there are days, like today, when I would just love to be anywhere but here. The power has been out three times in the past 12 hours. Last week we had three 12-hour days without power. We have no water. Yes, we get our drinking water delivered, but we have no water to shower or flush the toilet. We can’t wash dishes.

It just cost $60 to fill up the car, and we overspent at the grocery store. The traffic was horrendous, and on days like this, I am convinced that no one here knows how to drive. People just pull out in front of you wherever you go, and my wife gets mad when I honk at them for being dumbasses.

Add this to the damn itching. I am allergic to something here and my body is itchy beyond belief. Yes, Benadryl helps, but it also makes me want to sleep and I have to work. Put anxiety and itching together and you have a recipe for disaster.

The icing on the cake is the birds that shit all over my car no matter where I park it. What do these fucking things eat? Looking at my car I would say they are eating caribou whole, bones and all.

Most days, I am flexible and take everything in stride. The power outages pass, the water comes back, I realize that prices will be high no matter where we go, and I can easily smile and go on my way and not worry about others’ driving.

But there are those days. The days when the voices in my head are loud and obnoxious. The days when my anxiety is so intense that I can’t stop moving my hands and it feels like bugs are eating their way out from under my skin. The days when I am angry and irritated for no reason and want to snap at people (considering my wife, it would be a “dumb way to die”).

I feel like that tonight, and all this angst has made me not want to sleep, which is what I need most right now.

On days like this, I wish I was sitting in the USA, just me and a vape pen full of the best hybrid and a cold Michelob (don’t judge me for my beer choices). Just me, in a quiet room, maybe playing Left for Dead on the Xbox listening to my entire collection of Tool albums.

To a married guy with a stubborn yet passionate wife, a loud, autistic toddler, and a schedule that would break many a young man, that sounds like heaven at times, and it is my go-to fantasy. Some guys dream about sex — my wants are a bit simpler at this age.

But then I come back to myself and realize that when I had all that — the alone time, the quiet, the Xbox, and the empty apartment, I only wanted what I have now — a family, a wife who loves me, and kids running around screaming at the top of their lungs. That is what I signed up for and that is what makes me happy.

If it were a perfect world, I would have both — the family on one side of the world, and the bachelor pad with the stereo, console gaming, and good weed on the other.

But I don’t have that kind of money, because that is what it would take to have it all — money. My wife would let me have it all if I had the money, she loves me and if it’s something I wanted, she would give a thumbs-up, but the dream of having a life where I could escape to a dark, quiet room somewhere when things got to be too much is just a dream.

Maybe one day I will have houses in the Philippines and in the USA, and when things get to be too much in PH we can hop on a plane and enjoy the US for a while, but right now, I have to live in reality and realize that it's not always going to be like I want it to be, and there will be power outages, and no water, and screaming kids, and sweating my ass off with no air conditioning.

It's not always going to be perfect, and I need to stop complaining and whining and just get through the hard times with a smile on my face and my sanity intact.

Wish me luck!



Jason Weiland

Personal essays and articles from a guy who never tires of writing about his life - jasonweiland.substack.com