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Goodbye Davao Jan 23, 2013

Goodbye Davao

Meeting the Panabo Surfer Boys
I would have just passed thru Davao coming from Dahican Beach, but while at Dahican, I met the Panabo Surfer Boys who told me about the tourism focus of Davao mayor Sara Duterte. I thought I could be instrumental in making that happen faster through my online machinery. It would be a challenge since tourism isn't exactly Davao's branding, but that's what I do best.

Davao's Tourism Office
In Davao, I met with Mr. Jason Magnaye, OIC of Davao Tourism, who liked my idea. In his words, "that's exactly my vision for our own Davao tourism website...soon to launch". Through his staff, LA Duque de Dios, he arranged to have some industry representatives to listen to my presentation. They all expressed approval but qualified that they are not the decision makers...that it will take a few days. I said I'll stay longer in Davao. I never heard from them. I also spent a lot of time on my own talking to anyone who I think can benefit from the program. They all liked it, but couldn't get themselves to act on it.

Chasing a Mirage
As a general rule, whenever I'm in a new place, I find compelling reasons why I should stay. If I don't find any, or if another place calls out, I move on. Here in Davao, I tried to stay as long as I can, finding creative ways to make my stay sustainable. But after a month with nothing to show for all my efforts, it was time to pack up again. Ironically, the money dried up while looming possibilities lay on the horizon. I keep thinking...a few more days here, exerting best efforts and it'll all come through. As I got closer, it disappears...I was chasing a mirage. I was left exactly where I took off a month ago.

I've talked, texted, emailed and knocked on doors to business owners, marketing directors, sales officers, spanning industries from hotels, resorts, restaurants, cafes, etc. about my vision to develop a one-stop online travel portal for Davao through search-engine-optimization, selective information posting, Facebook integration, etc., but I came out empty-handed. Despite the establishment nods and agreeability, nothing came out of it. North American companies would gobble-up and pay a premium for what I put on the table, but in Davao, it was ignored. I don't understand. How can you ignore the potential to dominate the search engine rankings? How can you not feel a sense of urgency to grab that competitive edge? How can they look the other way when I offered that service with no cash outlay? I remain clueless.

Asset to the City
We both lost. I was an asset to the city as I tried to extend myself - teaching free weekend yoga at People's Park, influencing public opinion through the positive things I write about Davao, and yes, offering my unique internet service designed to rebrand Davao beyond a destination for durian (at no cost to the city). I was gung-ho about Davao.

Cutting my Losses
At the end of the day, the promise of Davao and all its potential remained exactly unrealized potential despite my due diligence. I've left other places with a sigh of relief. But in Davao's case, I can't help but feel defeated. In my birds-and-the-bees parlance, Davao is that unfathomable lady you can't put a finger on. She's beyond my comprehension. I need to cut my losses and move on. Davao is not for least not for now. In surfer paradigm, the next big wave lies somewhere else.

Ending Thoughts
Even though I'm obviously disappointed, transcending this feeling of defeat offers me a glimpse of the bigger picture. Perhaps the expected outcome (deveoping an online travel portal for Davao) is not necessarily the goal. I've seen that happen before. And given the repeating pattern I see in the natural order of things, my coming to Davao definitely serves a purpose. Perhaps it's to reconnect me to family, perhaps it's to meet the wonderful yoga people of Holiday Spa, perhaps it's to dissolve my ego as I pawned my stuff for money...I don't really know. In time, the purpose usually becomes clear. For as long as I've done my due diligence I won't be haunted by the nagging "...should have done this...and should have done that" spectre. This episode can only be part of a process that needs to take place. With that, I'm grateful for the peaks and valleys I went through during the month I'd been here. My 'setback' does not in any way diminish the wonderful things that make Davao a place worth going back to. Until the next time, Davao :)

--- TheLoneRider

ps - If you want me to objectively cover the features of your city or municipality or barangay for this website (fiesta, waterfall, mountain trail, lake, river, cave, food, islands, beach, etc.), email me.

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Google Map Davao City, Philippines

tourist attractions in Davao City tourist attractions hotels in Davao City - hotel van rental in Davao City van rental
  • Apollo Van Rental Apollo Van Rental - Davao City tour, Samal Island tour, airport transfer
    0925.500.3211 |
yoga in Davao City yoga | health | fitness food tour in Davao City tour food in Davao City resto | cafes in Davao City cafe autism in Davao City advocacy

Great Things Going for Davao City

  • one of the cleanest potable water in the country
  • smoking is banned from commercial establishments
  • pineapple samurais are endemic here and nowhere else in the country (pineapple vendors who cut-up whole pineapples into chunks with just a few strokes of their carving knives)
  • public utility drivers conspicuously display their IDs
  • durian Mecca of the Philippines (not to mention Marang, Mangosteen and Sweet Pomelo)
  • you want to add some more? please submit on the form below

Not So Great Things Going Against Davao City

  • the weighing scale of fruit vendors specially the durian push cart vendors are a blatant cheat - showing almost twice the actual weight

Davao Related Articles

Davao City Travel Information
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Reader Comments:

"So where to now?" -- Blanne Ann Acosta
(Jun 24, 2013) Malaybalay, Bukidnon

Blanne Ann AcostaBlanne Ann Acosta
(Jan 23, 2013) So where to now?


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Davao Hotels


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Health and Fitness

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Lucy Rivero
T 0917.660.9529

Food and Coffee

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Van Rental

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