They tend to pile as many people in the jeepney as possible so on the longer trips it's not always the most comfortable way to get around but they can be fun.
We managed to get diddled by some money changers on the very first day in Manila. It was only after we had made our transactions and sat down for a bite that I discovered that I had in pesos, roughly half of what I should have had. Sure enough it was the same for the others. We had been duped by some pretty deft sleight of hand as I for one, was watching them like a hawk as it all went down. Next came the all important question of how to respond to the situation at hand. My initial reaction was to write it off and chalk it up to experience, having little faith in the police forces (the best that money can buy) of South East Asian countries. Colin was more in favour of seeking recourse to the law and indeed he had lost the most of all of us. He was vindicated as surprisingly the police came through for us. As we entered the booth, cops in tow, the money changers capitulated before a word was spoken. We returned to the station to sign some documents and one of the officers assured us "This will not happen again" at which point another officer walked out with a large weapon over his shoulder. Public execution? Surely not.....
On our return to Manila from Palawan Makati was rocked by a bus bombing thanks to the muslim seperatist faction Abu Sayyaf who wished to send a "Valentines day message" to President Gloria Arroyo Macapargal. Bombs also went off in General Santos and Davao. As if this wasn't enough, communist rebels in the north shot four police officers in a shootout at an airport, on the very same day, a reminder of how unstable the Philippines can be.