You might tell them you're a Seventh Day Adventist (called "Sabatista") -
many people know about Sabatistas especially in the Manila area. They used
to (and maybe still do) have a hospital or hospice in the Pasay-Baclaran
area someplace. It used to be the only place you could get vege-meat type
products, like vege-hot dogs and vege-burgers, etc. We used to make special
trips there just to buy that stuff.
Of course you can always say you're Budhist, or a Hindu which many people
also understand, especially if you wear orange robes and just chant "hare
krishna" whenever someone offers you some meat or fish. :D Seriously
though, my son is vegetarian, though not strict - he will eat fish
occasionally, spent a month with ex-wife's family last year, and had no
problem. One advantage is if you tell the airline you're vegetarian a few
days before your flight, you get your meal served ahead of everyone else! ;)
The downside is that raw veggies are often loaded with pesticides and
herbicides, so wash them well. My mom would soak our Baguio lettuce
overnight before serving.
Even cooked vegetable dishes will probably contain some pork or shrimp
because they typically sautte with pieces of pork and/ or shrimp, so unless
you do your own cooking you really have to do some searching. The ubiquitous
Pinakbet will be served with bagoong or alamang (I can never remember which)
unless you specify beforehand to "Paki wag lagyan ng bagoong po". I don't
eat bagoong either, but I like patis, so my share of pinakbet must be
separated out before the bagoong is put in, and I just add my own patis
after. I'll also eat the vegetabes out of the kare-kare with patis.
On the other hand if you shop around you can find a few "organic vegetables"
stores - the ones I know of are in Makati (Legaspi St near de la Rosa in the
Greenbelt area, right next to Max's parking lot) and in Tagaytay. There is
a growing organic vegetable industry in Cebu and Tagaytay and other places;
using the hydroponics technology, they are able to grow Baguio type lettuce,
green beans and tomatoes which are then sold to the hotels and high-end
restaurants. When I was there I noticed at least one vegetarian restaurant
in Greenbelt, and I'm sure there are many Indian eating places that will be
happy to indulge your vegetarian tastes.
In my case I don't eat shrimps, crabs, lobsters, shellfish, crustaceans in
general, so I tell people I'm a "Shrimpologist", kinda like a Scientologist,
but we believe that humans are decended from giant shrimps who came from a
distant planet millions of years ago- and so shrimps are our distant
Post by Arptro
Post by H. David Pembrook
You're right. I have a very good friend who made his Pinay girlfriend swear to
become, and stay, a vegetarian in return for him marrying her.
Marriage shouldn't be in return. It's shameful for him to blackmail her and
a shame she relented.
Post by H. David Pembrook
I'd be damn careful about eating uncooked greens too.
ZLorca, just a suggestion, to keep 'em from thinking your are nuts just say
you've given up fish and meat for lent. That they will understand, even if
lent doesn't start until March.
Pass the baby back ribs pig
Good idea. I might have my girlfriend tell them I am Christian Quaker and we
don't eat meat. It's a great religious group, but I'm not Quaker, it is just
convenient. Her town is religious and I figure because they are religious
they'll be able to respect that other people are religious and have beliefs,
too. I'm not out to convert anyone and I don't expect people from secluded
areas to understand things which are greatly different from themselves. I'm
a stable, kind, ethical person who people like alot so I hope this shows
through and outweighs other concerns.