MUSTANGMANIA INVADES ASIA PART 3: Philippines
Last but Not Least: Philippines.
I landed in Manila an extremely hot Sunday Morning. I quickly understood that the number of veichles on the road was much more than i was used to.
Philippines have been a Spanish colony, went under the control of U.S.A., Japan, and back to the indipendence after the end of second world war. Nowadays they are a developing country. The feeling i had when i landed, tasted more of South America than Asia. The American Military bases helped to sreapd around the passion for the American Cars.
Few people from Abroad will know that there is a Ford Mustang Club from Philippines(http://www.mustangclubphilippines.com/) Could i resist to contact them Before Leaving China? OF COURSE I Can’t.
I got a very quick reply from Capt. Vicente Brian P. Conde Jr., the Founder and the President of the Club, that proposed to me a meeting Sunday afternoon.
Vicente came and pick me up from my hotel in a lovely 2014 GT, white. A Ford Mustang is not the car you expect in Manila traffic, for sure. After 300mt, i understood why he said “ i twill take 1 hour and a half to do 15km, if we where lucky.” We got stuck in the traffic Jam straight away. I was pretty sure we will reached our location dinner time, But this gave me the opportunity to have a chat with him, and speak about the club, and how is passion started.
The Mustang Club of Philippines has been founded more than 10 years Ago, and has more than 130 subscribers. As many clubs around the world, they organize events, cruise, driving classes,etc. They are splitted in few groups to better handle the situation in the Country.
Vicente passion started when he was a kid. “ I saw a small mustang model, very nice and shiny, in a shop. But the price was too high at that time. I can’t afford it. I saved for months, and i was able to buy this small diecast mustang, that i still own” said.He came from a really tough environment, and with hard work, dedication and sacrifice he bulit up his carreer till today. He is the Captain of a container Ship, and owns his own naval school. There are really few things that i respect more than a person that built up his/her success from scratch.
We reached our destination at the sunset. A lovely, nice and modern Area, with another Mustang ready to welcome me. It was Vicente’s wife car.
I was pretty shocked: Vicente welcomed me at his Sunday dinner out with his family. This is something you usually don’t share with a complete stranger. “I had a good feeling about the person you are, Fabrizio” said “That is the reason why you are out for dinner with us today”.
I gave him some presents i brought from Italy for the club, and i seated in the corner ot this big table, near Vicente and his two daughters.
After dinner, we had a couple of beers in Manila city center, than Vicente dropped me back at the Hotel.
i honestly felt a part of his family, and i hope to meet him again.
I definitely have to come back to Philippines, as a tourist, this time!