Philippines Assessment Trip – Day 1 & 2
Manila, Monday, 4/25/2016, 9:00 am
Everyone arrived safe and well in Manila. Yesterday, after a 50% American 50% Filipino breakfast we hit the massive malls, scouring them for solar panels, batteries, and a cordless drill for the logger install. We bought none of these things. We now have a beautiful understanding of the hardware/automotive retail market in Manila. Do not despair, we still have good leads to acquire all of these things. On the up-side, we did buy all the remaining small hardware we needed for the install. Natalie and Ben are having a fight over batteries. The winner buys the first round and the bookies have strong odds on Natalie. Everybody’s Filipino phones work very well. Last night we had a beautiful view of Manila from the 44th floor roof deck of the AirBnB accommodations.
Today, we’re splitting into 3 teams for vendor visits: the vanless A-team (Ben and Rafael), the K-team (Natalie and Niall) and the U-team (Loreli and Vincent). The A-team took the very crowded MRT train, pushed and prodded to get on the train, and established very close contact with the local commuters.
On the road to Sitio Fianza, 26/April/2016, 8:30 am.
Big Salamat to John Ro (Loreli’s brother) for driving us up North towards Sitio Fianza. It took some creativity to get everyone and all the gear into the car, but we managed.
Yesterday we had a very successful day visiting vendors and obtaining the remaining equipment we needed to install logger – the solar panels, mounting racks, hardware and battery. For the sports fans out there, we’re pleased to announce Natalie won the battle with Ben over the batteries – we were all secretly rooting for her. Having said, the league has only just started, the next match will be about connectors. In the evening, we successfully tested the datalogger and pre-drilled the mounting rack.
Loreli had a big milestone – she rode the MRT train in Manila for the first time. Meanwhile, Ben walked two blocks between the mall and the condo, doing bicep curls with a 65Ah car battery in one hand and a watch battery in the other.
We’d like to thank the following vendors, for their support of our assessment trip:
– Solar Energy donated racking to mount the panels and sold us heavily discounted panels
– United Solar let us borrow a battery kit to demo at the Sito
– Optimus Energy donated racking to mount solar panels