Dienstag, 14. November 2017

Fasten your seatbelts, teh ruler's back! #manilaments

Sup boys and girls, guess who's back?!

After more than 2 years i decided to keep this precious blog alive - i hope all you beggars are happy now!

To my own suprise over those 2 years alot of people asked me what happend to this blog, alot of people of whom i have never heard of before which indicates there may have been a bigger readership than i was aware of.

Anyways, i don't wanna dwelve too much into the past and more focus on present and future but will still give a short overview of what happend and what lead me to the decision to put this blog on ice.

Shortly after my last post in 2015 i got banned on Pokerstars for 3 months period for buttoning (was it 3months im not even sure anymore) but it was certainly long enough that i couldn't just sit this one out.
So i got creative and was probably the first guy or one of the first guys playing SNAP on 888 with a HUD, this was working fine for a while until everybody got a HUD and games got worse again which lead me to going back to the cadillac of Poker which is and always will be No Limit Holdem 9max.
2015 was a pretty shitty year rungood wise and this didn't change much in 2016. This was also the first time in my life where i could see the end of the rainbow in sight. Yes, i was still making money, yes, i was still making more money than most other people BUT i certainly wasn't making anything close to what i made in my golden years or what i wanted to make and the big question was: for how much longer all this will work out...
So with seeing Poker coming to a possible end in a couple of years i started getting into Price Action Trading and focussed alot of my time into this endeavour. The problem with this was that my days became pretty much 12 hour days, 6 poker, 6 trading and there wasn't much time for anything else.
Unfortunately Trading for me never took really off because i definitely underestimated it's complexity. Everybody who gets into this has the mindset "well, im a smart guy, if i put x amount of time in i will see results by date y". Unfortunately you have to multiply Y by 5 to 10 to maybe get a realistic picture. Overall Trading is still my longterm plan (even though currently on Ice) but i'm quite sure if i want to do the transition i will need at least 2 years fulltime nothing else to maybe be able to get profitable there. After all i've seen though so far i'm convinced that almost all decent pokerplayers could be very decent traders given they put in enough time. It just will take alot more time then you would estimate/hope for... But yes, if it would be easy everybody would do it.

But enough of this. So i basically was on my way out of poker when the call of a old friend from my Bangkok days pulled me straight back into it. I cant recall what he said word by word but it was something along the lines: "dude, fucking go out buy 6 fucking ipads and dont fucking ask why" "why?" "because fucking china man, thats fucking why" and the rest is pretty much history.

So yeah, fast forward to today, im still in this fucking industry of poker which i love to hate and im already having my best year financially ever by a longshot but im very aware that this shit has a limited lifespan and i dont care how good you are, what stakes you play and how big your cock is, all this is true for you as well and you should prepare for day X and put some money on the side in the meanwhile ;)

But let the past be the past. Since a couple of people asked if i would blog abit about my time in Manila here we go:
After 2 fairly boring winters in Vienna i decided some time during 2017 that i wont bother with the cold again and move for a couple of months to my spiritual home which is and probably always will be Asia. How exactly i ended up in Manila isn't even superclear to me but now i'm here. I wanted something new and i wanted a big asian city so Bangkok was out from the getgo (even though i plan going abit to Bangkok beginning next year), Singapore unecessarily expensive, same for Hongkong, Jakarta probably abit too mental to really live there (even though i loved my weekend there back then), Kuala Lumpur too boring and the Japan and Korea stuff just too cold. Other options probably would've been bigger town in Nam or Cambodia but now i'm here - and i couldn't be more happy but more about that soon!

The original feedback i got from people about Manila was nothing to be ecstatic about: too dirty, its a shithole, its dangerours, yadayada. But since i like to paint my own picture of things i had to see for myself.

In the end as almost everywhere it comes down to 3 things: Location, Location and you guessed it, location. I did alot of research prior to going here and ended up with 2 options, either Makati or BGC. Both are fairly similar but BGC is certainly newer, more modern and cleaner so guess what i decided for. It's actually quite funny because this district is almost like another world. As strange as it sounds driving into here is like you arent really in Metro Manila anymore but in Singapore or a CBD in Sydney. But more later.

So my flight out of Europe was on 30th of october and the connection was horrible (2 stopovers) but since i was able to afford business it wasn't the end of the world:

Vienna waiting for departure
Cathay business

After 20 hours or so i arrived fairly exhausted at the airport and directly got scammed for 20x the normal fare of a taxi. FINALLY BACK HOME i thought with a smile on my face and it was a fairly decent hustle so the guy for sure deserved his money.

As with almost everywhere, where you go shortterm but not holiday shortterm, it is a massive headache to sort out a flat. Most landlords wont rent to you because they want 6 months+ and because of this you are mostly limited to hearsay and airbnbs. Viewing them prior isn't really an option either which means you have to book the good old cat in the sack so to speak. However i spent alot of time looking into those Airbnb flats and boy i ran good this time for once:

view from balcony

living room 
more living room


one of the best showers i had up to date

left tower is mine (not literally unfortunately)

other people use this place to cook i think

So as you can see the flat looks quite decent, was exactly as advertised on the pictures in Airbnb. Obviously all this comes w a pricetag especially renting monthly which costs me pretty much exactly 2k Euro/month. But i even looked for how much they asking if you rent them for good which is 2k usd as well. Probably will get it abit cheaper than that but i doubt it will be significantly cheaper.
However for that price you also get amenities which are fairly sick. The pool in those modern asian condos is generally always nice but the gym mostly consists of 2 steppers and one machine but not here. Over 2 floors you have pretty much anything you may need for a solid workout (unless you are a professional athlete in which case it may not be enough). But for a small kid like me it's just perfect. No more time wasting commuting to the gym, i just run up one flight of stairs and im ready to roll:

Lobby and entrance hall of the tower

So far i make heavy use of gym and pool and i hope this will stay like this and i may see some interesting results in a couple of weeks. Even did some doubledays and will try continue doing so as long as the body allows it.
As i mentioned the district i settled in is by far the newest which Manila has to offer. Unfortunately they are still heavily developing it which makes the view from the place quite mediocre:

balcony view
However given that my tower seems to be very good qualitywise you hear next to nothing from the construction and from what i've seen so far in BGC it's almost impossible to not end up next to some sort of construction site because they building literally everywhere.

Another big plus of the area is that it is very well planned out and mostly consists of high and midrises which means it's not very big and you can pretty much walk everywhere in in max 15minutes. It's most likely also the safest area in the entire Philippines with several security guards in front of each building there is even at night. I have to be honest apart from BGC and Makati i haven't seen much yet but there isn't any reason to really get out. Everything you could ask for in regards to daily life is here: clubs, restaurants, malls, parks, whatsoever but fear not i will try to travel to some other places as well during my stay here.
So far i planned to move on in january after 2 months but given how much i like it so far i could easily see me staying abit longer than originally planned. I can't really remember the last time i felt that good at a certain place. Everything is just perfect from a worklife balance, it's warm, the people are friendly - just really really good overall. I should note though if you come to Manila to save money you wont save too much money compared to most places in Europe if you decide for this area. It's by far the most expensive and everything will be on par with western prices, some things like taxis for instance alot cheaper but on rents and restaurants you wont be able to save much if any. You get a pretty decent value in return though.

Don't really wanna drag my blog comeback out for too long so i will close with one interesting observation i made so far in regards to employment. From what i've seen so far and what it feels like everybody who comes to Manila and wants to work is getting a job. I don't really know how they do it but it has some hilariousness especially if you lived in Malta for a couple of years. In general i would call it overstaffing of places.
You often have 20-25 waiters in midsized restaurants, you have 10-15 people working in a small phonestore, you have 10 sometimes armed guards at just one gate of my compound (there are probably 15gates total), you have 5 people running the reception at my tower and the most obscene one up to date is: my tower has 4 elevators and in each of those 4 there is 24/7 one person in who's sole job it is to remember what floor you live in and to press the button for you - complete insanity if you ask me but all this leads to a very high standard of service in the majority of places you go to.

That's it for now, i hope the guys who asked for teh comeback are happy now,

peaze and good luck to whoever is following my adventures!

almost forgot to add a ytd garph for teh fanboys: