Not a beach person

Months of unintentional hiatus and honestly, I don’t know how to start writing this entry. Anyway, here it goes.

Last Wednesday, me and some friends from work went to Calaguas. (Calaguas, where? Here is a Wiki link on Calaguas) We wanted to save money, so we opted to go DIY. I planned our itinerary and budget, thanks to the help of travel bloggers who posted their experience of their Calaguas trip.

We went there by land via bus en route to Daet. We left Cubao at 9 in the evening, and alighted at Talobatib junction, the next day around 4.30 in the morning. From Talobatib, we were supposed to take a bus to Paracale, but apparently, buses bound to Paracale start picking up passengers at 7 in the morning, we decided to take a tricycle instead.

We arrived at the Paracale market at around 6 in the morning and shopped for supplies to be brought to the island. It is important not to forget the following items:

  • Water
  • Rice
  • Tent
  • Eating utensils (paper cup, paper plates, knife, spoon and fork)
  • Cooking utensils
  • Flashlight/Candles
  • Lighter
  • Charcoal
  • Canned goods (or raw meat for your viand)
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Garbage bag

While shopping, I texted our contact person, kuya Nelson (he who owns the boats for rental), letting him know that we were already in Paracale. He waited for us to finish buying our goods and helped us look for potable water. A gallon of water costs P50 but you have to deposit an amount of P200 for the container.

From the Paracale market, we headed to the Paracale fishing port. Let me emphasize that it is a fishing port, so there are no waiting areas for passengers. Simply put, the port is simply a shore where fishermen dock their boats.

Since we are not campers, we do not have our own tent and cooking utensils. For the tent, kuya Nelson let us rent one of his and for the cooking utensils, he lent us some, thanks to his good-natured heart. Ha ha.

Calaguas is a two-hour boat ride from Paracale. Out boat ride experience was quite smooth, contrary to what other bloggers have experienced. And do not fret, the boat comes with life vests.

You’ll know you’re near when the silhouette of the islands become detailed, giving you a truly majestic view.

I seated myself in the most front of the boat, even though I was exposed to the sun, to give me an unobstructed perspective of the sea. How often do you see places such as these?

Ang ganda! We were shouting  and jumping when our boat finally docked because, with a sight like this, who’s not to go batshit crazy?

Our boatman even claimed that the water is so clear, you will still be able to see a coin even you are submerged neck-deep into the water. And it is actually true! Even though we didn’t try dropping a coin into the water, the water is indeed crystal, we can certainly see the color of our nail polishes of our feet!

After we have calmed down from our excitement, we looked for a cottage to settle to, set up our tent, and cooked brunch. Cottages range from P300-P350. Tent costs P300 (good for 4-6 persons)

After eating, we rested a little then went for a swim.


Calaguas is not developed commercially (and honestly, I hope it stays that way forever), so there are no bars or activities for you to enjoy, unless you bring your own booze or you bring your own sports equipment. The island has its own volleyball net, so you can bring a volleyball or you can bring your own skimboard or frisbee. You can also bring your own playing cards (just like what my friends did) or you can catch up on sleep and enjoy the fresh air (just like I did).

After swimming, you can wash yourself in the communal bathroom or go hardcore and experience bathing with a poso.

During night time, you can bask at the view of a, literally, star-studded sky. The lights from the cottages do not go off until 11pm.

Next day, the view pretty much stays the same. It is still breathtaking.

Also, during the morning, some locals sweep dried leaves off the shore. It is good knowing that locals do their part to preserve the beauty of the island.

Eventually, we have to snap back to reality, pack our bags and head home.

Our boatman (NOT kuya Nelson) claims he doesn’t know how to take pictures, but I suspect he is just aloof, heh. So we have to take turns in getting our group picture.

Parting is such a sweet sorrow.

Goodbye, wallpaper-isque view.

I am not a beach person because I do not tan nicely and I do not know how to swim (he he) but after this trip, I might have a change of mind. The hassle of the journey overly compensates the picturesque scene and the simple life Calagauas has to offer.

I hope Calaguas stays the same until I come back.

—-

Total damage: P2,500

All photos taken with a Vivitar EZ35 x Fujifilm Fujicolor 200

Kuya Nelson’s contact number is 09095259821

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Simple

Last September, Igiboy (my friend from college) and I went to Mindoro to visit our friend. It was an overnight trip but we made sure to make the most out of it. We went to the nearest beach, hence, the pictures:

Staying in the province, I realized that life is should be simple. People living in the province seem content with what they have, even it seems little for us who live in the city. They are not obsessed with gadgets, or knowing the latest trends in fashion, or with posting everything on the Internet. They live, and sometimes, I cannot help but envy them.

I do not want to settle in a province, but I do not want to be consumed with the worldly possessions that come with living in the city.

I just want a simple life.

All photos are taken using a Canon FX and a 35mm Solid Gold 200 film | Mamburao, Occidental Mindoro

The Magic Stays With You

Note: This is part two of a two-part post.

From Picnic Grove, our tour bus headed to Enchanted Kingdom. It was a weekday and luckily for us, the place is not packed.

We tried most of the rides but what we liked the most is, of course(!),  the Space Shuttle.

We were raving! It was my second time to try Space Shuttle and originally, I thought it was the second lift (the one where you have your back turned) that is more frightening but I was wrong! It was the first lift! Did I even make sense here? Whatever. Ha ha

Ferris Wheels are photogenic.

And truly, the magic stays with you.

-End of Part Two-

People’s Park in the Sky and Picnic Grove

Note: This is part one of a two-part post.

After the weekend in Batangas we, together with my workmates, went to Tagaytay and Enchanted Kingdom for the high school division’s year-end activity.

First stop is People’s Park in the Sky. Most of the structure in People’s Park is (disappointingly) deteriorated.

Still, the place gives a majestic view of the city/rural area below

Then, we went to Picnic Grove to have lunch. Picnic Grove has picnic huts all over the place and gives you a view of Taal Volcano.

After taking lunch, we played a little of Pinoy Henyo, and took pictures here and there. Then, off we go to Enchanted Kingdom.

-End of Part One-

Anilao, Batangas

April turned out to be pretty eventful than I expected and this month’s wrap-up will be a series of posts of pictures shot in film. First, let me tell you about our weekend in Anilao.

My cousin and her girlfriend at a stopover, somewhere in SLEX

This April, our family went to Anilao, Batangas. It was our second time to be there, last 2010 being the first.

Youngest brother

We stayed at the same resort and did the same things as last year. However, this time, we get to ride a banana boat…

…which is quite disappointing because, we never really toppled over. I mean, that is why people ride banana boats, right? To be thrown at the sea? Ha ha

Anyway, the scenery makes up for the lack of thrill in the banana boat ride.

Rock formation 

Sailing

We are more likely to go back next year, I hope we get to try scuba diving next time!

Empowered – What happened this March

I took these pictures a long time ago but had them processed just this first week of March. I have been neglecting my point and shoot ever since I bought a film camera but I regret nothing. More pictures here.

Faculty 1 doing the Ruizian Handsign. Character. Mind. Ideals.

This was during the last day of exams. After taking MATE, I met with people from work for a lunch out at Shakey’s. We are very vain people so expect a whole lot of picture taking when you are with us.

L-R Ate Mae, Me, Cess, Marijoy, and Kin

Watched The Hunger Games movie with friends; Cess, Marijoy and Kin. Special thanks to Ate Mae, we got discounts for our tickets and she chose good seats for us, right in the middle, perfect for the screening. I love the book and, needless to say, I also love the film adaptation.

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March is not as eventful unlike with the past months and frankly, I am anxious with how my April or the rest of the summer will go. However, earlier today my mother told me a very useful advice i.e., I should stop worrying about problems that are not happening yet (which I am very guilty of).

Happy Summer! :)