So here we were… in Bohol! What an island!!! I mean : It is neither Palawan nor Manila. Actually I can’t help to wonder if it is really the Philippines. Bohol satisfied so many of my needs! Eco-tourism, history, natural science, food, beach, price range but also my need for organization and ethical behavior.
Our visit started with the Chocolate Hills! The chocolate hills were in itself, the main reason I wanted to make my way to Bohol. It is truly a sight unique in itself! Just over 1700 “chocolate color” hills within 50km2. But we also made our way to a butterfly conservatory, the tarsier conservatory and the black compass monument. But here are some cool facts about the island of Bohol!
· Manufacture are not allowed on the island.
· “franchise store or restaurant” have to be locally owned
· There is a 8pm curfew for underage children
· There is no nightlife except for 2 dance hall open until midnight on the weekend. (If one hall is a disco, the other one must be ballroom dancing)
· There are very strict rules about cutting threes
· Agriculture land is equally divided between the people.
· The crime rate is the lowest in the Philippines.
· The Catholic and Muslim communities are at peace.
· There has been great effort of reforestation
· There are laws protecting the dolphins, whales, tarsier and other wildlife
· There is a recycling program
· In hospitals, babies must be breastfeed until the age of 6 months. There is a strong campaign against formula feeding.
Can I say: I love love love this island! Such a nice change for the chaotic Manila! There are also many beautiful mansions on the island. None of them are surrounded by gigantic walls topped with broken glass. None of them are “barricaded golden cages”. You could argue that the rules might be a bit steep but the result is a nearly crime free, clean and friendly society.
So that was out first day in Bohol… our second day, we were supposed to spend it on the beach… But that night, as I laid down in bed with my daughter, I realized she was burning hot. I knew she hadn’t been feeling well lately, but as I took her temperature, I was shocked to find out that she was pushing well over 40 degree… after treating her all night with Tylenol, early in the morning, we made our way to the community hospital of the main island of Bohol. What we found there looked more like a market place where you would expect chickens to be roaming around. We sat in a hot room waiting for our turn. They wanted my daughter to have a dengue fever test done, but the hospital ran out of test so they sent us over to the next nearest hospital…. A private hospital…. Since according to them “we could afford it anyway”. So we jumped back in the car and headed over to the Holy Name University Medical Center… I don’t want to sound too snobbish but this hospital was a lot more “hospital-like”. We made our way to the emergency room and were seen right away (we were the only one there). The doctor decided on a full blood test (including dengue fever) and on an uti test. Hoping to avoid a catheter, they installed a urine collector first. Unfortunately it did not work… At that point, Tristan and I discuss it and decided our daughter could just go “potty” for a sample. After all, we have been doing with her “elimination communication” since she was 4 months old… at home, our daughter always goes to the potty and rarely misses… so why would it be different here. The doctor agreed, and within 30 minutes, we had our sample and no catheter! At that moment, Tristan and I both agreed, all the effort we put into elimination communication was worth it just so Hudson did not need a catheter! (that and also the fact that I use 75% less diapers)
So the tests were sent, and off we went to Jolly Bee for lunch while waiting for the results. We came back an hour later and the verdict was out! No dengue fever to worry about. Hudson has an uti. It was such a relief for us to find this out! We were really worried that it was going to be some dangerous exotic illness or even worse… that they could not tell us what was wrong. I was ready to jump on the next plane back to Manila is that was going to be the case. But in the end, somehow… and uti was the best news we could wish for. And so we went back to the hotel, with a sleepy baby, some antibiotic and a few shopping bags.
And if you wonder… our travel insurance will be picking up the tab. They were great on the phone all day with us, walking us through the process. As for the actual cost of the private hospital…. Consultation, tests and medication for just under 25$. The most expensive part ended up being the transportation from the resort to the hospital.
And if you are wondering, as I write this, Hudson is already doing much better. Her fever is almost completely gone and her energy level is coming back. She’s been on the antibiotic for less than 24 hours but we are already noticing a big difference.