Saturday, July 18, 2009

Steve and Marcia on the Rock, the Official Blog Site

We continue to enjoy our vacation. We’ve been assured that there is heavy rain every day back in the Philippines, which is typical for July. What is not so typical is that it continues to be cold here in Minnesota, with record lows being set during some nights. Currently we are in the southern part of the state, but the temperature has been 20 degrees Fahrenheit below average, extremely unusual. This is historically the hottest week of the year in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Fortunately the forecast for next week looks more promising.

We took a day-trip to Duluth, Minnesota, last week. Steve grew up in Hermantown, a rural community up the hill from the city. Duluth bears little resemblance to Corregidor except for two immediately visible things. One is that it is on a large body of water, Lake Superior, and has large vessels entering the harbor daily – at least when the lake isn’t frozen over. The other is that it is basically one steep hill, with a change in elevation a little over 600 feet, very similar to The Rock. When the sun is shining it can be very picturesque, and we include a few photos. Ships entering the Duluth/Superior harbor must pass under the Aerial Lift Bridge: cars must wait while a part of the bridge is raised in order for ships to pass beneath the roadway.

On an entirely different topic, we are happy to announce “Steve and Marcia on the Rock.” Several of our readers have suggested that we start a blog. We thought that it was probably worthwhile, but delayed doing anything at the time due to the very slow internet service on Corregidor. We figured that once we were in America for a few weeks we would have the time to find a good blog site and publish all of our previous newsletters. That is what we have done. In order to keep maintenance to a minimum we are not allowing comments on the blog site. You can continue to send us comments via email. We read all of them, whether or not we have time to answer each one.

Marcia’s niece, Marnie, suggested we look at She told us how easy it was to post the blogs and add pictures. We took her advice, and Steve published all of our previous newsletters. He could not find a way to caption each photograph, but we’re hoping that by placing photos alongside the related text whenever possible, most of them will be obvious.

Some of you have been with us from the beginning, while others have only recently signed up, many because of the newspaper and internet article about us in the Philippine Daily Inquirer. Newbies especially may be interested in going back and seeing how we came to stay on The Rock and what happened in our first several months.

Our first newsletter read like something out of a Lemony Snicket book, as we had the “unfortunate event” of a could-have-been-fatal automobile accident two days before we were to fly to the Philippines. To read about it, go to:

At the bottom of the page you will see “Blog Archive.” Click on “2008,” then on “October,” and finally on the blog at the very bottom entitled “Steve and Marcia’s Excellent Adventure begins with a Great Escape.” (Blogs are listed from newest to oldest.)

Our previous newsletters also included topics such as:

• Steve learning to drive a stick shift all over again
• Lost keys, cutting trees, misunderstandings and monkeys
• Learning to understand monkey talk
• Walking the first 14 kilometers of the Bataan Death March route
• Eating squid soup
• Re-discovering MacArthur’s house on Corregidor

And there are many, many more you can choose to read.

In the future we hope to post our blogs as they are written, but only time will tell. Until we are back on Corregidor and our “mati mati internet service,” we won’t know if this is even possible. Otherwise we will post them whenever hi-speed internet is available.

We are grateful for all of the encouraging emails we receive, and are humbled by the fact that many of you tell us how much you look forward to each newsletter. We enjoy the writing process.

Steve and Marcia on the Rock -

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