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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Partying--Davao Style (2007 article)

Published BUGS Newspaper, 2007

Here’s the deal. You are an average student. You enjoy partying more than school (duh!). You know Davao like the back of your hand. In a sense, you are me.

You’re drowning in projects, and you’re stressed like shit. You need to enjoy. Tonight, just like every other Saturday night, you’ve set out a plan. You have gathered all your closest friends and you’ve donned your fabulous gimmick outfit and you’re ready to live it up. This is your itinerary.

First, you go to the Venue Compound-- the safe haven for the “older” crowd. You choose to visit the Venue Compound first because it’s pretty peaceful, they open earlier than other party places and there are a lot of interesting establishments (KTV Bars, Restos, Coffee shops etc) in the area. You enjoy a scrumptious Korean Meal at Ab Gu Jung and then get your fill of local comedy at Laugh Tough while drinking the cheapest beer in town at twenty pesos a bottle. You decide to pass on the Venue bar, a huge two story building with an in-house coffee shop, a massive dance floor and a live band. The Venue bar used to be the biggest in the country, but now that your friends’ parents are regulars, you only visit the bar when Manila-based artists hold concerts there.

You then transfer to Bacbac at F. Torres Street. You order some ice-cold, brain-freeze inducing, frost-encrusted frozen beer. You urge your friends who haven’t tried it to give it a taste. The beer in itself is an experience. You remind your self that this is the only way to drink beer. You enjoy seeing all your other friends and schoolmates here. Like you, they prefer to get their fill of booze and grilled fare here before moving to the Wheels and More Drive Compound.

When you get to Wheels and More Drive you suddenly feel like you’re under-dressed. You shrug it off. You remind yourself that Davaoenos just don’t care. You survey the bars. You choose from Brugger’s Café (they serve great pizzas), Hypnotiq (posh interiors and a billiard table) and Urban Club (the current crowd favorite).

You decide to go to Urban Club. You pay a hundred bucks to get in. They give you a stub for two free drinks. You take notice of the music. The DJ is serving up great music tonight, as always. You approach the bar to claim your drinks. You appreciate the crowd of students and yuppies. You realize this is where all of gorgeous Davao has been hiding. The DJ has stopped mixing some tunes. There is now a live band that plays house music. They are great. You go out to get some air and again scout the premises. Yes. This is where all the cool people go.

You check the time and realize it is three in the morning. You transfer to Rizal Promenade and get inside 183. They have stopped asking for an entrance fee since it is beyond three in the morning. You step inside and realize the whole bar has transformed into a dance floor. Someone grabs your ass from behind. You turn around and remember that this is the favorite cruising spot among the gay crowd. Also, there are a lot of foreigners and non-locals. You dance a little until you realize you are too sleepy. You regret not hooking up with that cutie in Urban Club.

As you lay in bed (after puking your guts out) you plan out next week’s schedule. You are too drunk to function. You turn the television off. You remember you have a project due on Monday. This Saturday was uneventful. You have to check out some other bar next week. You still regret not hooking up with that cutie in Urban C

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