Instant spouses not allowed?

We’ve been looking through HCR’s archives and have asked our founder, Dr Ross James, to explain the story behind some of the photos. 

By Ross James

An innate sense of survival is a key aptitude if you are thinking of applying for a position with HCR’s international project workers. I won’t talk about surviving the sniper (he missed), the bomb explosion (at the barber shop while I was having a haircut: close shave; yes, I’ve heard that one before), nor being tear gassed in the company of police (the police fired into the wind!). Nor will I talk about a client booking me into the second floor of a hotel and it taking me a few days to realise the smiling, prettily-dressed females on the landing of the first floor were offering a room service involving more than clean towels each day. No, I’m talking about the skill of making sense of signage and I’m restricting this to the Philippines. 

The Kodak photography blow-up services sign takes on a different meaning when you’re walking down the main street of Cotabato, the scene of decades of violence, killings, bombing and kidnapping. 

Then, I’d like to know how the hotel, popular with travelling business people, determined whether a spouse was or was not ‘instant’. Did they just add water and see what happened? 

spouses not allowed.jpg

And if the hotel doesn’t allow me an instant spouse to do my laundry*, then why pay laundry services to dry undies and socks when the air conditioner is perfectly adequate? And no sign forbidding me to do so! 

Then there’s the escape or exit route. Would I have the strength to do this on my own? With no instant spouse to help, I guess I could always call ‘blow-up services’.

*(just kidding, folks)