The last few weeks I've noticed an increasing number of negative posts about Cebu and the Philippines, from forums and other websites. Posts about murders, robberies and other bad news. This is from sites you would expect promoting the Philippines. Instead, reading them, a person with no knowledge about the Philippines, would be very hesitant to go there.
Of course, informing about the Philippines should also include the dangers. But do you have to be a news ticker about every time somtehing bad happens? I could perfectly well do so too, not only about the Philippines, but for any country in the world. I could post at least 10 daily incidents in Norway about robberies, rapes, violence or murders. What would the impression be for the reader?
I want Ycebu to reflect my thoughts and my experiences. And the truth is, I have never ONCE felt unsafe here. Noone has ever threatened me. And I have never threatened anyone. I treat locals with respect, I smile and try to look streetwise. I avoid drinking sessions with locals, except the closest family. I have met nothing but correct attitude from officials I have dealt with. It's not really that hard.
That doesn't mean bad things can't happen. Most of the times it's just being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Could happen to anyone, anywhere. Do I think everyone loves me? Certainly not. And the truth is, I couldn't care less. Meaning I still nod and smile to the neighbours but if they like to gossip about how I can drink a bottle of 400 peso wine on a Saturday, not giving the neighbor a bottle of Tanduay, so be it.
The Philippines will be as good as you make it, and you have all the opportunities creating your own little paradise. If you cannot find it among the 7107 islands, I suggest you look other places. Focus on the solutions, not the problems. You can live like a Robinson Crusoe, in a condo bubble in Makati or something in between.