Gameplan: Jack of all tours
KALINGA, Philippines – Getting to new destinations and exploring the different nooks and crannies of coastal villages, mountain communities, cities and suburbs is less daunting nowadays, especially when in the company of a well-versed and friendly tour guide.
Throughout their trip in Kalinga, the Gameplan team was assisted by 53 year-old Francis Pa-in, who has been a tour guide since 1991.
"Pag nagguide po ako, talagang pinapakita ko na yung mga tao hospitable. Pinapakita ko yung magagandang tanawin, at nagjojoke din ako para maalala nila ako (When I guide people around, I show that the people here are hospitable. I show them the beautiful views, and I crack jokes so they remember me)," said Francis.
Different villages in Kalinga have different dialects, which may make it hard for travellers to understand them. Fortunately, Francis, who has been doing this for 24 years now, has already learned to adapt to the different languages and customs of the tribes.
He also makes an effort to learn different languages of various countries, depending on the nationality of the travellers he meets.
"Meron akong book mula pa nung nag-guide ako nung 1991. Ang sinusulat ng mga gina-guide ko, mga address lang. Pagkatapos naisipan ko pag German ang guide ko, sinusulat ko ang German language. Pag Japanese, sinusulat ko ang Japanese. Pag Denmark, sinusulat ko ang Danish (I have kept a book since 1991. The foreigners wrote their addresses in my book. And then I thought of learning how to write in German. If the traveler is Japanese, I'll write in Japanese. If they are from Denmark, I write Danish in my book)," he shared.
"Kahit nahirapan ako, magaganda ang tanawin. Fresh air, walang pollution. Our life here is very simple but very happy. Kaya tuluy-tuloy lang ang trabaho ko kasi I love to guide a tourist. Hindi ako napapagod. (Even if it's hard, the sceneries are beautiful. The air is fresh, there is no pollution. Our life here is very simple but very happy. That's why I keep doing my job because I love to guide a tourist. I don't get tired)," he said. – Rappler.com