December 9, 2008

My Last Day in Manila

We spent our last day in Manila with family, at a coffee shop, then dinner with friends.

I have enjoyed our stay in the city – meeting and visiting with Jonathan's friends and family, sightseeing, shopping, and eating. The city is like no other place I have been previously, full of extremes. The gap between wealth and poverty is extreme. The traffic on the streets is crazy, unlike anything I have seen anywhere. The gap between wealth and poverty is a great chasm. On the other side, everyone I met has extended overwhelming kindness and warmth. Food has been wonderful. It's been a great place to visit!

For dinner on our last evening we were invited to meet friends at Chef Laudico Bistro Filipino serves creative and fabulous Filipino fusion cuisine. It was amazing! The food was delicious and beautifully presented. The wine list was extensive and very good. The service was impeccable. Everything was perfect!

Also, I am vegetarian. This can be a bit challenging, especially in the Philippines where there are very few completely vegetarian dishes. But, at Chef Laudico this was not an issue, the menu contains several vegetarian appetizers and soups. In addition, our friends called the chef before our arrival and a special menu with plenty of vegetarian appetizers, salads, soups, and entree choices was printed up for me. I decided to get crispy kangkong, shitaki mushroom soup, and bistek-style tofu. Each dish was absolutely fantastic! We ended dinner with the dessert trio – a must for all dinners at Chef Laudico!

I am glad I had the opportunity to dine at this bistro – it was a great way to conclude our week in Manila.

Visiting Manila has been a wonderful experience. It has been great to tour and learn about this fantastic city! (And for me, it's been really neat to see where my husband grew up.) I am thankful for the warm hospitality that has been extended to me throughout my stay. I look forward to visiting again in the future!

Next, we are heading to Boracay! I am looking forward to seeing another area of the Philippines!

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