Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Boracay Without The Sun

If money were no object, I would perhaps be having regular trips around the country with the hubby. Maybe once every three months or even more. I've been thinking a lot lately about my failure to release the adventurous genes in me which may have come from my father's bloodline. Sometimes, I feel like it's rather too late now for me and my husband to put on our rubber shoes and go just anywhere and have a good time, feast on the beautiful spots the country has to offer and be professional local tourists. But despite my age and the limitations attendant to aging, my inner being is still raring to go.

To celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary this year, the hubby and I flew to Boracay for a four-day breather- from June 18-21, 2011. It was a fitting celebration since the 35th year is the coral anniversary, according to tradition. And where else do corals come from but the sea? The trip was booked by our very loving and generous daughter Timmy as early as February and though we were all set to go, the rains that came in mid-June diminished the excitement. We were thinking, how will Boracay look without the sun? It turned out we didn't have to ask the question- we will find out ourselves- because constant monitoring of the weather situation told us that it will be quite rainy but the low pressure area somewhere in Eastern Visayas (Boracay is in Western Visayas) won't be turning into a storm -yet. So on we hopped on a plane to Caticlan.

We checked into a very modest lodging house, Veli's Inn, mid- afternoon of June 18. It is situated between the main road that cuts Boracay island in two (east and west) and the well known, long, white beach. The rains started coming and so we chose to take a power nap first and planned to explore the island later. By 5pm, the rains stopped so we hit the path to the beach. We were welcomed by the big, dark clouds that spelled heavy rains. Despite the darkness, I felt some kind of excitement. So this is Boracay, I thought. Lovely, even without the sun. We went back to the inn soaking wet, drenched by the rains and not the sea water.

June 19 was a Sunday as well as Father's Day. All our children called to greet their Tatay a happy father's day. Think about blessings that come abundantly. You are having an r&r in paradise and your children call. What more can we ask for? I'm a late riser at home, but whenever I'm away, I find it hard to sleep. So early Sunday morning, we went to the Holy Rosary parish church to hear mass. The fathers were blessed by the priest towards the end of the mass. Afterwards, I went up to the priest, Fr. Placer, as he was preparing to go down from the altar and requested him to bless us for our 35th anniversary the next day. After a little introduction, he gladly blessed me and my husband. He also wished us long years of togetherness, which made me smile, because at the back of my mind, considering every difficulty and adversity that we faced head on, it seemed like 70 years have passed.

Because of the strong winds and the rains, the shores of Boracay was filled with dirt. I understood why there were no cleaning done on the first and second days when the wind was so strong, but when the sun came up on our third and fourth days, we began to wonder. Nevertheless, the dirt, mostly dried seaweeds, did not avert our resolve to swim, nay, dip, into the waters. The best thing about it was that we can freely roam around dripping wet, even in D'Mall.

One good thing about seeing Boracay during the days without the sun is that there are very few people around- much unlike the scenes during the peak months when one can hardly walk without bumping into someone. During those four days, there were many Korean visitors (since there are daily Kalibo-Seoul flights) but only a few of them dared to go into the waters. Bottomline, you have the beach all to yourself. (Incidentally, I learned days later that there is a local campaign in the island for the use of the full name Boracay, instead of Bora, since there is an island in French Polynesia with the same name.)

Going back home, we took a ride to Kalibo Int'l Airport, instead of our way in- Caticlan. We figured that since we're at it, we better try and see some other places in Panay island. Kalibo impressed me as a rather sleepy town, but like Bohol, it is clean all around. We still had a few hours left to explore the city, but upon learning that an earlier flight back to Manila still has a few seats available, we decided to cut our exploration short.

We arrived home around 2:00pm, June 21. After an hour of kuwentuhan with my daughter, I hit the covers at 3pm. I woke up 6am the following day.

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