FLORA . There is a wealth of fascinating plant life all over the Philippines. The flowers are beautiful; they are smaller but more fragrant than American flowers. In June and July you can get quantities of gardenias for practically nothing. The sampaguita, a small, white, multi-petaled and exceedingly fragrant flower, is the national flower. Orchids grow in abundance. The Vanda sanderiana species, or waling-waling, is the most famous of all Philippine orchids. This highly esteemed flower has large brown and purplish tinted blossoms which survive more than thirty days.
FOOD : All kinds of foods are abundant. Rice is the staple food. Native dishes include: ado bo (a mixture of chicken, pork, and beef, and lots of garlic), lechon (a whole roasted pig), and sinigang (stewed fish or meat with vegetables). The mango is the best liked of all Philippine fruits and is available from May till late October. Good American, Spanish, Filipino, Chinese and European meals are available at $2 up. There is plenty of pasteurized milk produced by sanitary dairies.
GAMBLING The most popular form of gambling among Filipinos is cockfighting (two gamecocks fight with sharp leg spurs) which is held Sundays and holidays in the suburbs of Manila, and horseracing on Saturdays and Sundays at the San Lazaro and Santa Ana racetracks. Jai-alai is played nightly except on Sundays at the Jai-Alai Building on Taft Avenue, where one may find at the same time excellent music and food at its Sky Room and Keg Room.
LANGUAGE The Tagalog dialect, which is spoken in Manila and in the surrounding provinces, is the national language, better known as the Filipino language. English is taught from grade school up: the Filipino language is similarly taught as one subject. The Philippines holds the distinction of having the highest rate of literacy in the Far East. English is spoken and understood in any part of the Archipelago. Mabuhay is the Philippines’ welcome to tourists and friends to the Philippine soil. It means welcome, long life, farewell or good-by and Godspeed. Because the Philippines were under Spanish sovereignty for almost 400 years, Spanish culture and language are still dominant. (The Philippines were named after King Philip II of Spain, who at the time of their discovery was the ruling monarch of that country.)
LAUNDRY AND DRY CLEANING : There are excellent laundries and dry-cleaning establishments, where work is done in In a hotel, your roomboy will make the necessary Rates are moderate. Pick-up and delivery service is a few hours, arrangements, available. LIQUOR .
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