mangilao

Mangilao Night Market

It’s nice to get out of Tumon to visit other villages. I finally went to the Mangilao Thursday night market! I don’t spend much time in Mangilao, but I will be going back to this market. Most markets in Guam start either super early in the morning (4am) or in the evening because of the heat. I’m not sure what time this night market starts because some of the vendors said they had been there since 3pm and sold out of most of their food. We left our house at around 6:30pm and stayed for maybe an hour. By that time, some of the vendors were starting to close up.

The market is located in a park next to the church and when we walked in, a lady on a loud speaker was calling out numbers from what I assume was a drawing they held. When she was done, they started playing island style music from a stereo. I immediately spotted the elusive tamale guy! Actually, I learned that his name is T.C. and he is from Guam but lived in The States, where he learned how to make pretty delicious Mexican food. He now sells them at various markets on island. He’s always very nice and friendly and we like to support his business. We bought some beef tamales and drinks.

DSCN6312

Across from him there was another food stand where I ordered a plate (pancit, bbq chicken sticks, lumpia). There weren’t too many places to sit, but we found some bleachers next to the playground and ate our meals. SOOOO yummy!

DSCN6313

After that we walked through the rows of vendors. Some were selling used items and some new, lots of fresh local produce, clothing, DVDs, handcrafted wooden tables, shell jewelry, and lots of other things! If you’re looking for an old school video game (NES, Super Nintendo, PS, original Gameboy…) you might want to check some of these vendors because they sell used games for older consoles.

DSCN6318

I’m always on the lookout for locally made products, which seem to be hard to find, and stumbled upon this booth. They had a variety of locally made products. One of the vendors ran over to me as I walked away and handed me their business card. The website is pretty cool and I’m definitely a supporter of the small business owner. They sell individual products and gift baskets, for those of you who are homesick, you should visit their website Guam Gift Baskets and for those of us who just want some cool products like coconut oil sugar scrub, body oil (a fav of mine for my hair), cookies, tea, clothing and other handmade items.

DSCN6319

On our way out we met a very friendly man who was trying to raise money for his cousin or sister who was running for Donne Queen for the Donne Festival! We bought a book of raffle tickets from them because they were so nice and funny.

DSCN6322

The Donne festival is in September and will be at the same location as the night market. Thanks for a good night Mangilao!

 

Step, Step, Slide.

I hope you all had a wonderful Labor Day weekend! This is what I did on Monday to celebrate and enjoy my day off from work.

The past month Guam has been experiencing some heavy rain and thunderstorms so I haven’t been able to spend too much time outdoors. On Sunday the storm seemed to get worse with loud thunder and heavy rain again. I was hoping for some sun on Monday, but I had no idea what I would wake up to. When Monday arrived, the sun was shining through my blinds and it seemed as though the storm from the night before was just a dream…a bad dream.  Immediately I dressed for hiking and knew exactly where I wanted to go. I packed some snacks, lunch, camera and bug spray and hopped on the scooter. We drove to the village of Mangilao, down a dead end residential road, passed between two large cement boulders, through some bushes and parked in a very secluded parking lot. Here we began our journey down the 256 steps to Tagu’an Point (also known as 1000 steps).

Much like the rest of Guam, this park looked like there was a lot of effort put into it to make it accessible but then forgotten about. There is a large parking lot, steps, trails, benches and picnic tables. The only thing missing…a road that leads to the parking lot.

We headed down the trail, under mystical looking canopies of palm trees and various shrubs and bushes. The heat from the sun was blocked out by all the trees in the jungle. There were so many lizards and crabs and probably monitor lizards hiding around us. We hit the first set of stairs which then turned into a slippery pavement (thus the name of this blog post). We walked slowly because of the slippery pavement and the massive cobwebs surrounding the path. Finally, we reached the last set of stairs which had the best view of the ocean and jungle. The hike was roughly 1.25 miles and the only hard part was the heat/humidity.

As soon as we took the last step, the entire landscape changed. It almost looked like we were back in Oregon, with what looked like pine needles scattered all over the ground. There were some really interesting leafy, green plants that I wish I knew the name of (if you know the names of any of the plants in the pictures, please let me know). In the middle of the path there was this oddly-shaped tree stump, which formed a perfect seat. After the last “pine tree,” we reached the large coral formations and found a nice, flat spot to sit on. On good days like Monday, you’re able to snorkel and swim around on the ledges that formed along the shore. I don’t know how to explain it, but it really is amazing and I wonder how these platforms are made. The water is very shallow, but there isn’t a reef to break the waves so swimming can be dangerous.

After awhile the sun became unbearable and we ended our hike. Of course the hike back up the 256 steps was hard!