1st Philippines Independence Day (Freedom) Climb – Remembered

There is nothing special for this year 2018. But I just realized that one of the celebrations I did for Independence Day (June 12, 2009) of my country (almost 9 years ago) was not published here in this site but was partially posted in my old blog site which focused in featuring solely of my country Philippines. This time, I just wanted to remember and celebrate even in simple ways that my country got its own sovereignty more than 100 years ago, to be exact, its celebrating 120 years of Independence Day since 1898 today.


The mountaineering group that I belong was invited and selected to join Independence  Day Climb or Freedom Climb last June 2009. And we are assigned to climb Mount Maculot located in Batangas. And our group successfully completed the climb for the celebration.


In this post, I collected all the previous posts that I created from my old site. A reminder to myself that there was part of my life that I got a chance to raise my country’s flag in the mountain together with other mountaineers around the country on a special occasion, the days to celebrate Independence Day. The post is not describing chronological order of experience, but a mixed one.

“Taal Lake At Different Perspective”



Photos above were captured during the 1st Annual Freedom Climb happened across the whole country. These were taken after starting to trek Mount Maculot from the jump off area. The lake seen here is Taal Lake, the view is another perspective of the lake since I have photos captured of Taal Lake came from Tagaytay City in Cavite. This time, photos taken from the base of Mount Maculot. These were captured last June 13, 2009 – Saturday in the afternoon.

Think Green But Using A Rubber?


The photo above was a capture of sleeper I brought and used at the summit of Mount Maculot. The picture was taken last June 13, 2009 during the night where the group was having fun at social activities.

One thing struck my mind in this sleeper, well there was a written message “think green planet”. It seems the message and the sleeper convey contradicting ideas. “think green planet” leads to taking care of environment while the sleeper was made using a rubber material which appears to have issues againts the safety of environment.

Post For A While





Here are some of the photos with a human or people concept. I never used to take pictures of people, but there are moments that I myself tend to do it naturally like the moment that we are waiting for the public jeepney that will bring us to the jump-off area of Mount Maculot, before the climb formally started and while resting in the middle of the trek.

Jump-off Area – Cuenca Batangas Municipality Building and other Municipal Government Offices





This is the place where we prepared ourself before climbing Mount Maculot. The mountain behind this building (which cannot be seen in this photo) is Mount Maculot itself. This is the municipality building of Cuenca, in Batangas province.

Looking Beyond Batangas And More

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The photos above are some scenery that can be found while trekking Mount Maculot in Batangas. The climb held last June 13 to 14, 2009 as part of our both fun and historical first freedom or independence day climb.

Amazing Outlook of Taal Lake From Mount Maculot





While climbing Mount Maculot, this was one of the best or I can say the most stunning view I ever see while trekking the mountain. By just looking into it, I can feel that I can see beyond what I can. And the wonderful color of the lakes made me feel I am seeing a paradise that so near on me.

Mount Maculot Marker


This is the mountain marker which can be found facing the rocky part mountain of Mount Maculot. We found this when we descent the mountain partially to transfer to rocky part of the mountain. This photo was still part of freedom climb held last June 13-14, 2009.

The Maculot Trail


Here are some of the photos that I was able to capture while we started trekking the Mount Maculot. The last picture shows the mountain itself.

The Maculot Mountain Itself


Mount Maculot from a far, after we reached the bridge that we are going to cross before reaching jump-off.





Mount Maculot Mountain

Here are some photos of Mount Maculot, the mountain that we climb for the 1st Freedom Climb held across the whole country. Photos are still part of my photo collection captured last June 13-14, 2009.

Taal Volcano In The Middle Of The Lake

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The above photos captured before darkness after reaching the summit of Mount Maculot last June 13, 2009. These were taken when I tried to view the rocky part of Mount Maculot which I will showcase in another day.



The photos above were captured last June 14, 2009 during the time we raised the Philippines Flag in the rockies of Mount Maculot as part in Independence Day Celebration.

The mountain part that can be seen here is the Taal Volcano lie in the middle of the lake.

The Critters At Mount Maculot

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Butterfly, Bug, Grasshopper, Millipede and Centipede


Panoramic View : Pinatubo Crater Lake

Panoramic View (Post#34) : Pinatubo Crater Lake

Pinatubo Crater Lake is one of the lakes that I can say met my expectations. Because of crystallized scenery, I thought that is was similar to lakes that I found in Banff, Canada. These photos are part of Mount Pinatubo Trekking Adventure Photo Collection January 2017.





Precious Moment In The Mountain : Mount Pinatubo

Precious Moment In The Mountain (Post#27) : Mount Pinatubo

Before my hike in Mount Pinatubo, seeing similar photos before made me felt envy with people who were able to hike the mountain. And when I got a chance to be within the crate of Mount Pinatubo, one of my wishes became true. These photos are part of Mount Pinatubo Trekking Adventure Photo Collection January 2017.






Name Of The Place : Pinatubo Crater Lake

Name Of The Place (Post#36) : Pinatubo Crater Lake

When we reached the crater lake of Pinatubo, it was an achievement for us. The trek was not really difficult but since we walked around 7 kilometers, it was a tiring trek. At the viewing area of the lake, there are people having rest and lunch and enjoying the scenic view in front of us. The photo is part of Mount Pinatubo Trekking Adventure Photo Collection January 2017.


Chromatic Outlook : Lahar Carved Canyons

Chromatic Outlook (Post#40) : Lahar Carved Canyons

During our trip towards the jump-off area of the walking trail towards Mount Pinatubo, I did not expect that there are scenic wonders that we will see along the way. I am referring to Lahar Carved Canyons. Seeing these lahar carved canyons made me felt that I was in another world while we were taking the river bed. These photos are part of Mount Pinatubo Trekking Adventure Photo Collection January 2017.





















Transportation : Zambales – 4X4 Owner Type Jeep

Transportation (Post#9) : Zambales – 4X4 Owner Type Jeep

Trekking Mount Pinatubo requires 4X4 to be able to reach the walking trail towards the mountain. Because of Lahar that flows in the river, the change in the Lahar deposits that became concreted after years that passed had major effects on the river bed that used by 4X4 to send tourist and hikers near the walking path which still kilometer distance to the Pinatubo Crater Lake. These photos are part of Mount Pinatubo Trekking Adventure Photo Collection January 2017.








Travel Diary 101 : Flight Bound to Taiwan

Today is my flight bound to Taipei I decided to work from home to avoid too much traffic from the city since its Friday and to give me a chance to prepare my stuff as I am avoiding to miss anything in my backpack. While I am packing, I’m still working, monitoring all incoming emails from time to time. I am lucky as not much work for me today since it’s just few days after New Year, most people at work has still hangover from recent major holidays. It is a quiet day for my work life which is great.

I left home 5 hours before my scheduled flight. I traveled at least 1.5 hours from home to Ninoy Aquino International Airport, to Terminal 3 to be exact. I withdrawn few cash to pay for my travel tax. There are self check-in kiosk available at the front of Air Asia counter, which is my airline for my travel. I felt at ease at first since I don’t have luggage to checked-in. After checked-in at the kiosk, I got my boarding pass from the machine, but when I checked the boarding pass printed, I saw that there is travel document verification mark on it and instructing to go to document verification counter. I inquired in one counter of Air Asia about it, I was advised the travel document verification is the same as checked-in counters. This means the self checked-in I did earlier in their kiosk is useless because I have to queue in the long line too. I wondered why they put those self checked-in kiosk, when they cannot provide a counter that only checks travel documents. It’s one of the disappointments that I experienced today.

I queued more than 1.5 hours just for travel document verification. When its my turn, I only spent around 5 to 10 mins. I was advised for the gate for my flight and instructed that the next step is immigration. If there was separate counters for verification check, the 1.5 hours may have been spent to other things than queuing and waiting, but that is reality of life when dealing with budget airlines.

I went to the immigration gate and passed easily without questions. Then, I passed the last scanner and I walked straight to the gate for my flight. One hour to go before my flight and I thought all will be good and then, as we approached the time of the flight schedule, there was announcement that the plane is being serviced and therefore the flight will be delayed for at least 40 minutes. Like other passenger, I can’t do much about it but to wait.

Next announcement was past quarter of 11 PM that night and they mentioned that we will be boarding soon. Then after few minutes, boarding the plane has been started. The plane took off past 12 AM in the morning. Estimated time to arrive Taipei was almost 3 AM, 2 hours delayed than scheduled time.

The usual experience inside the plane happened, the flight crew checks everything, demonstrated safety procedures and evacuation process during emergency. Then, the plane took off, after we were stabilized in the air, the crew started to do their chores, since I booked my flight with food, they served the food to the people who ordered it prior to the flight. I know that we cannot expect too much quality of the service in a budget airlines, because customer service comes with a price nowadays. That’s why I have to order my food together with my booking so that I can take advantage of serving the food at the earliest. Ordering food on the spot while inside the plane, can be daunting, as most of the time, your order will take sometime and if unlucky, the food you wanted to order is not available anymore.

My food served at the earliest and I ate and finished early, while the other crew still serving the other passengers. Because the flight was not too long, I just closed my eyes and took a nap. When I woke-up, the crew announced to prepare for landing to Taoyuan International Airport and I knew that in a matter of few minutes, I will be in Taipei,  Taiwan, new city and new country for me. Until then


Written this diary last January 6-7, 2017.
Updated, June 8, 2017

We’re the Travelers – My First Post Published

I joined one of the travel blog site not only to promote my blog but to experience as well to write articles to another website. Honestly, I am quite nervous because its first time that probably more people going to read my post who are traveler enthusiast and writer or blogger as well. So fingers crossed that my first post will be appreciated more by many people.

Please visit the site link below:

Trekking Mount Pinatubo – A Tragic Creation of Natural Attractions

I hope you enjoy the post.

Walking, Crawling and Climbing the Trail of Mount Mariveles – Tarak Ridge

I had vacation in my country last October 2010 since at that time I was still employed in Singapore. But to be honest the main reason I came back in my country after around 6 months (I had vacation last May 2010 too) was to sign a job offer for my next job back home. Yes, I returned to my home country to work (other people surprised because there are lots of Filipinos dreamed to work abroad and yet I am returning to my country). And I used the climb event as a reason when I requested for approval of my vacation leave so that I can return to the country without so much effort of reasoning.

The climbed that I joined in was a training climb for all the members of the group that will climb Mount Pulag which happened the following month as preparation since they took the difficult trail of the said mountain. I was not able to join that climbed as I went back to Singapore to formally submit my resignation letter to the company I was working with.

The climb happened last October 16-17, 2010 and the mountain  was Tarak Ridge. Before my flight back home in my country I informed the group that I will be joining the climb. I missed the group because I was away in my country for almost a year. I was both excited and worried because it’s been almost a year that I wasn’t climbing. As most of us knows that there’s no really mountain in Singapore aside from Mount Faber.

The whole group that joined the climbed met in 5 Star Bus Terminal in Cubao early Saturday morning . We took the bus that goes to Mariveles Bataan. After almost 3 hours of travel from Metro Manila to Bataan, we reached our destination and we got off the bus near the jump-off area which located in Barangay Alas-asin.


Barangay Alas-asin

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Barangay Hall Alas-asin and nearby local stores (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

When we reached the jump-off, we spent sometime in preparations (buying water, food and other essentials) and registrations in barangay hall before we started the formal trek. Then, we begun our journey to reached the base of the mountain. I remembered that the climb was still unique from the past mountains that I climbed. I cannot really compare every mountain. They are like human with distinct personality inside.

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The Group before the climb (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)



Jump-off point before the start of the climb

At the start we had a long walk in a wide grassy plains before we reached the base of the mountain. Then it followed the forest trail. After a long walk, the real climbed started. The walk and trek up to Papaya River can be considered as the easiest part of the climb.

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The pathway to reach the base of the mountain

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The pathway to reach the base of the mountain (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

Like every mountain that I climbed, we passed trails where there were rocks besides the trail. Most of the time, if I can pass the trail normally like walking while standing and does not require me to sit down it will be an easier one, I used big rocks to hold myself or sometimes I used to stepped on them.

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The Group while waiting inside the forest before reaching Papaya River (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)




The Group while waiting inside the forest before reaching Papaya River


At the forest trail

As I remembered Papaya River, it was one of the river that is still used by people as a main source of water in the area not only for household use but for safe source of fresh water to drink. Yes, we drank the water from the river. That was why when we rested a bit for lunch near the river, we were prohibited to use dish washing or any soap detergents when we were in Papaya River.

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At the forest before Papaya River (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

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At Papaya River

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At Papaya River (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

After lunch, our lead in the group gave us a heads-up that there were no more gradual trail ahead of us. This means that the trail all the way are all steep and it’s all assault. I was a bit nervous because I really don’t know what to expect. We got our backpack again and prepare for full assault climb.

The next trail we need to pass was the trail where the only way to do was to crawl to the roots of trees strayed and branched in the ground. Trekking pole cannot be used in the trail, both hands must be free from holding anything to be able to hold tightly the big roots while trying to push ourselves upward with the help of our feet. That moment of my climbed, I felt like we were spiders as we were crawling to the roots and branches of the trees, its similar to rappelling and the difference, we were not holding on to the rocks but were holding to the tree roots that we can grab on so we can hold on of ourselves while ascending in the trail as the roots were only our support.

I thought that the trail will never end. I reached the end of the assault trail. One of my group member experienced muscle cramps and it’s a good thing that before it become painful, he still able to reach the end of the assault trail. We advised him to rest a bit and one of us gave him pain reliever. We continued our trek, we carefully passed the narrow trail until we reached the campsite which near before the summit.

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Just after the crawling trail (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

Tarak Ridge campsite is like an open area similar to Gulugod-Baboy mountain that I climbed. The summit is at the other side of the camp site. And for what I heard, the summit trail is not an easy task as well.

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Surroundings of the campsite before the summit

Like the most climbed I had, we pitched our tent so we have place to stay at the top of the mountain. Next thing happened, the group prepared for its dinner and followed by “socials” (group activity where most of the members were gathered together to talk and chat about anything) that the group always does if weather in the mountain permits us. After hours of “socials”, all of us concluded the day.

The next day, we woke up early to climbed the summit of the mountain. The good thing about it was, we don’t have our backpacks anymore. We left everything in our tent.

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On the way to the summit from the campsite (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

We started our trek to the summit. Like what I heard, the trail was not simple, though there’s some difficulty along the way, the group safely reached the summit. It was a fulfilling task. I felt it was really great to be at the peak of the mountain again.

The common hikers does when it reached the summit were the same things we did. We spent time for photo shots, individual and group pictures. At the summit area, there’s a huge rock where it is slightly hanging and some of my group went there for a great individual shot.

We came back to the campsite and started our break camp. We had the last moment of group pictures with the summit and we started descending the mountain.

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Group Picture with the summit of the mountain (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

We used the same trail when we climbed the mountain. Therefore we passed again the treacherous trail where we become a spider. And because we have backpacks it’s more challenging to go down as our bags scratching to the roots and branches in the ground. Even it was more difficult, we successfully passed the trail and reached Papaya River again. We used the place to rest a bit and refill our bottles for water. Then, we moved on and passed the grassy wide plains.

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Group Lunch (Photo Courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

After the climbed, we had lunch altogether and we had a great time going back to the city to return once again to the real life that we have.

Abeling Tribe Outreach and Mount Tangisan Side Trip Climb 

The mountaineering group that I belong did a lot of adventures, trips and climbs. Some were in abroad but mostly were within our beloved country. This group gave me a chance to see a lot of places, unforgettable and unique experiences.

Another type of adventure that the group involved with are doing outreach activity mostly to remote places. The group does it regularly, at least twice a year for the past recent years, which gives us a chance to give back something to community.

One of the outreach activity that I got a chance to join was the event held last June 30 – July 1 2012. The group selected a school in a remote community which located in the middle of vast farmlands in Tarlac. The event held in Sitio San Pedro Elementary School, Barangay Iba in San Jose, Tarlac.

I knew it’s been a long time when it happened, it was more than 4 years had passed but I still remember a bit something about it.

In every travel that I did with the mountaineering group I belong to, I usually join them. I never really got involved in planning. Honestly when roaming around my own country, I was not really good at it. The planning of itineraries are far more difficult compared to other countries. The planning does not only involve a research, it involved communication to people, groups or even individuals.  It requires network and connections to different people.

We traveled to the designated place of outreach. From Metro Manila, we took NLEX (North Luzon Expressway), followed by SCTEX (Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway). Then we exit at Luisita Access Road.

One of the thing that I cannot forget in this event was when we were on our way to Barangay Iba. We traveled a bit in a rough road and we took some rough roads in the middle of the farm (not a typical or common concrete road). For me it was an experience because I never really been inside the vehicle in middle of the farm. Yes, I saw farms or rice fields almost all around me, but never really drove in the middle of it. After a while, we reached a small community, the Abeling Tribe one of the indigenous community in my country where the school located which we planned to visit. I was surprised because I never thought that there was such community in the middle of rice fields. Most of the time, communities are near in main roads or local roads.

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Outreach Event Photos (Photos are not mine, photos courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

Every time the group does its outreach activity, the group usually prepares before the big day. The group does ocular to see the school and the people whom we will collaborate the event. Next, we solicit to friends, colleagues and some corporations for some voluntary funds which within the network of all members of the mountaineering group. Then, all the funds we received were audited as the mountaineering group is non-profit group. Everything is transparent to all members specially when we do this kind of activity. Finally, the group prepares activities for the outreach. In the planning, it involves creation of games and entertainments for children. It will follow by  providing food and giving school supplies. We also provided equipment that the school basically needs such as speakers or generators.

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Outreach Event Photos (Photos are not mine, photos courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

With these experiences with children that lives in provinces specially in remote places and all of them usually lives in poverty, during outreach, it feels something special part in my life. Sometimes I am thinking if there’s still better way to help them aside from what we were already doing. Then, somehow there’s sadness that I felt too because children in the city lives comfortably while the children we visited lives in frugality. But, I knew as well that’s the reality of life of communities that outside the major cities in my country. And the outreach activities that we did may not really address the problem but at least it alleviates some of the gaps that the government should be doing.

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Outreach Event Photos (Photos are not mine, photos courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

The next day, the group did a side trip activity which climbing the mountain just beside the community that we visited. The mountain we climbed was Mount Tangisan with an altitude of around 490 masl (meters above sea level).

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Climb Event Photos (Photos are not mine, photos courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

What I like about this mountain? First thing  was its trail (not too difficult), next was its altitude (just enough to see views from the ground), third was its location (located in open space) and finally the scenery at the top or the summit surrounded by farmlands.

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Climb Event Photos (Photos are not mine, photos courtesy of SMB Mountaineering Group)

I really enjoyed the activities that includes both of outreach and nature adventure, I felt both alive. It is one of the contentment that I treasure in my life.

Photos that I captured while at the summit of Mount Tangisan

Baguio – A City at the Top of Mountainous Region

For as long as I remember it was my fourth time that I went to Baguio City. First was a long time ago during my senior year in high school, next was during college, then with my deceased sister in year 2007 and the most recent and up to date was last May 2010 together with my mother and my youngest sister. It’s been more than 5 years that the trip happened and I wanted to remember everything as much as I can about the place and the photos that I  still have really helped me a lot to write this post. Some part of the writings supported by photos and some were from the memories that I still remember. Some stories added influenced by reminiscing the visit during my high school and college year.

At that time, I was still working in Singapore and I rendered two weeks vacation back to my country. In those two weeks, we spent three days including our travel time to and from the Summer Capital of the Philippines which is Baguio City. I did not have a solid plan on what we were going to do in Baguio, what I only prepared was the hotel where we stayed during the visit.

We stayed for two nights in Hotel Veniz which located at the heart of its Central Business District near in Burhham Park. I preferred the hotel in CBD as we do not have our own car and I don’t even know how to drive, accommodation near in public transportation was the best option for us.

We left Manila at early morning and we slept inside the bus as I targeted that in the morning we were already in Baguio. As budget traveler, I wanted to maximize the hotel and the days that we were in the city. Around 7am or 8am in the morning we arrived at the Victory Liner Terminal in Baguio. We took a jeep to our hotel to leave our luggage before we started our self-guided adventure in the city.

Day 1 (Sunday)

Baguio Central Business District – Session Road

We left the hotel, though it’s been a while since my last visit in the city, I just followed the road from the hotel. The hotel location was at Shanum Street corner Harrison Road. We crossed Harrison Road and we reached Magsaysay Avenue where we started our stroll in the famous road in the city which is Session Road.


Hotel Veniz

Shanum Street and corner of Harrison Road

As we walked in the same road I just reminisced the first time I saw the road. As I understand that time that the road represents the center location of the central business district of Baguio where commercial business can be found such as banks, restaurants, shops, boutiques and others. The part of the road started in Magsaysay Avenue is inclined road up to the part that it split into two. For me, the road is very appealing as it maintain its neat ambiance even though it is location of major businesses where most people comes and go.


Session Road

After we reached the top of Session Road before it split into two, there is famous catholic church in the area called Cathedral Baguio. We stroll in the area and the three of us had some photos in one of the nipa hut displayed in the garden near the mentioned church.

While I was thinking out of nowhere which places that I can bring my mother and my youngest sister with consideration that it’s their first time visiting Baguio.  I remembered all the places that I had been before. And then, we took a cab. I made a deal with the driver to rent his cab for the day for a minimal amount, the trip started around 10AM, we ended the trip in the afternoon before 4PM as we had appointment before evening of that day.

The Mansion

The Mansion is the official summer residence of the President of the Philippines. At the time that we visited Baguio, we only able to see the residence outside the gate. For many visits that I did in the city, I haven’t got a chance to see what’s inside the President’s house.

Philippine Military Academy (PMA)


Camp John Hay

After visiting Philippine Military Academy, we went to Camp John Hay. The camp became United State military base station at the time that US started controlling the country from Spain around 1900. Since it is located in mountains with a cool and mild climate, it was chosen as their station. Aside from being US camp, it also became Japanese post when Japanese controlled the country and they forwarded up north while fighting with Filipino and American soldiers until their regime ended, few years after World War II.

The major part of Camp John Hay that we spent time were Cemetery of Negativism which is a unique garden that showcases different negative thoughts that we should not be thinking at all and the Bell House Museum which named after General Franklin Bell, a general during Spanish-American War. The general also managed the constructions of the amphitheater (photos not available) near the museum.

Cemetery of Negativism


Bell House Museum

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Inside Bell House Museum

Botanical Garden

One of the famous garden not only in Baguio but all over the country is Baguio Botanical Garden. This garden is near from Teachers Camp (the first accommodation I had during my high school trip). And because my mother loves flowers and gardens, she enjoyed our short visit in the place.

Mines View Park

I remembered that we visited Mines View Park too, another famous tourist destination in the city. At that time, my mother and my sister tried to ride a horse and post their selves for photos. The park is one of the best and most accessible lookout area at the mountainous region around or within Baguio. The lookout in observation deck was a great location for photos as it reveals scenic background. Because it’s popular, it is expected that a lot of people coming with the same reason to take photos with a picturesque background. We did enjoy the place as there are lots of local shops in the area to enjoy our eyes and to buy souvenirs too.

During college time, I remembered that Mines View Park was one of the places that we used to take photos with my college mates, the thoughts made me smile because everyone wanted to be in the photo under the Observation Deck of the lookout area.

Day 2 (Monday)

Baguio Central Business District – Burnham Park

It was our second and last day to spend for touring around the city, we concentrated enjoying Burnham Park in the morning. We walked in the gardens and played around in Burnham Lake.

Rose Garden

Rizal Park (Baguio)


At Rizal Park Looking Towards Shanum Street and  Rose Garden (Burnham Park)

At the park we started walking at Rose Garden and we went up to Rizal Park crossing Shanum Street. We took photos at the statue of Dr. Jose Rizal my country’s National Hero. Next we walked back to the Rose Garden until we reached Burhham Lake where people used to paddle duck boat with their feet. The three of us tried it as well and spent our time paddling around the lake. Because of this, I was able to take snapshots of the lake in many angles as much as I can.

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Burnham Lake (Part 1)

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Burnham Lake (Part 2)

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Burnham Lake (Part 3)

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Burnham Lake (Part 4)

Walking Area (around Burnham Park)

Burnham Biking Area

The open ground of Burnham Park reminded me that this was the place we used to play games during high school trip and I will never forget that this was the same place we had our team building during college.

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Burnham Park (Open Ground)

Harrison Road (near Burnham Park)

Baguio City Public Market

La Trinidad

The last place that we visited which is outside the city of Baguio was La Trinidad, a municipality which famous for its strawberry farm  and vegetable plantation where you can pick strawberry and pay for it. We had a great time in the farm.

While writing this article, I just recently learned that the municipality earns the Guinness World Record for baking the Worlds Largest Strawberry Shortcake last 2004 (Wikipedia). That’s good to know.

For the places that no photos available, not sure if all of them were lost when my hard drives got failed. I will just update this if I still found available pictures related to this travel post.

Philippine Military Academy – A Military Institute with Touch of Tourism

When we roamed around Baguio City, one of the places we spent our time was Philippine Military Academy which happened last May 2010. As we took our way to the said academy, I remembered the first time that I visited the academy when I was in high school, we visited the academy during Rizal Day which is a national holiday in the country that pays respect to the country’s national hero – Dr. Jose Rizal. Every 30th of December, the date that Dr. Jose Rizal died, the academy conducts military parade and we were able to witnessed it. I was reminded again with some amusing activity we did as we were young and playful that time, we saw some soldiers standing seriously on their post after the parade and we tried to make funny faces to test how focused and disciplined the soldiers in their duty. We tried some tricks and the soldiers we tested passed our expectations because we felt that we are not existing in front of them, as if they did not saw what we did, doing some crazy stuff in their front but they never smiled nor moved and never wavered on their post. Since then, even if I saw soldiers that seriously standing in some statue or similar to what we saw, I understand how serious they are in their post.


Main Gate

At the road inside PMA


Relics Point

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Relics Point

Our cab took the road after we passed the main gate. The first thing we saw inside the academy was the Relics Point. This area is in the middle between roads not too far from the main gate and displaying historical equipment and weapons used during World War II.


Korean War Memorial

At Relics Point, we also found a Korean War Memorial which built to commemorate the Filipino soldiers who were members of Philippine Expeditionary Forces to Korea (Peftok) which was contingent of the United Nations forces that fought in the Korean War  happened between 1950–1953. After Korean War Memorial, the next thing we saw was Cavaliers Park and Cadet Circle.


Cavaliers Park

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Cadet Circle

Our walk continues until we reached Quezon Avenue, the road where most of the academy’s building can be found.  We saw one of the main building which is Melchor Hall. At the opposite of the building are Sundial and Lim Hall (PMA Headquarters). At the side of the Lim Hall, we found helicopters, planes and jets displayed in open Air Force Museum.

Quezon Avenue (Inside the academy)


Lim Hall (Headquaters)



Looking towards Lim Hall with Sundial

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Air Force Museum


Tree House

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PMA Grand Stand

Lopez Hall and Magilas Visitors Center


PMA Souvernir Shop

There is a Tree House just beside Air Force Museum where everyone can enjoy the view around the academy from the top. There is an open ground where they call it as PMA Grand Stand which it is like a sunken garden with Bermuda grass. Other buildings that we saw were Lopez Hall and Magilas Visitors Center. We found the PMA Museum as well and here we saw related artifacts about Philippine Military and its history which. And it was our last destination in the camp as we ended our tour inside the academy.

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PMA Museum (Part 1)

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PMA Museum (Part 2)

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PMA Museum (Part 3)

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PMA Museum (Part 4)

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PMA Museum (Part 5)

Home : Tabunan Beach

Home (Post#25) : Tabunan Beach

Last year of my travel in the island where my family roots begun, I had a quick visit and a bit of walk in Tabunan Beach at Banton Island in Romblon province. Above photo is just one of my collection during my walking tour along the beach. The beach is located at the western side of the Island in Yabawon where my uncle Napo lives. Photo captured last March 2015.


Juncture With Folk(s) : At Silanguin Beach

Juncture With Folk(s) (Post#3) : At Silanguin Beach

Summer Season is the period that most of Filipinos got a chance to go to beaches and because my country home is an archipelago and surrounded by body of water, there are lots of beaches available in the country that we can adore and enjoy. Last March this year (2016), I got a chance to join the mountaineering group that I was affiliated with and this year’s summer season I was able to be with them after such a long time. It’s been 6 summer seasons that I never joined them because I was out of the country and for other scheduling conflict reasons. I was glad that this year I was able to go with them once again.


San Pablo Seven (Crater) Lakes or Seven Lakes of Laguna

I was invited to join an adventure which not carefully thought and planned. It was an out of the box adventure wherein it was discussed few days ago and then last September 30, 2011, we were on the road to San Pablo City. The city is located at the southern portion of Laguna Province.

The specific reason why we were in San Pablo was because of the Seven Lakes. Some people says it is Seven Lakes of Laguna but to be exact it is called as Seven Lakes of San Pablo. All the Seven Lakes are near to each other. Before I came to the city, I had no idea that there is such Seven Lakes until I got a chance to see all of them with my own eyes. We were five people who made it to the said adventure and all of us were belong in the same mountaineering group. All of us were just enough people to fit a 4×4 vehicle that brought by the person (Jimmar) who popped out the idea to us for an adventure.

I researched and I learned an interesting information about the Seven Lakes. The Seven Lakes are not just common lakes as they are all crater lakes which means that all the lakes was formed from inactive volcano crater. I cannot imagine if San Pablo were composed of seven inactive volcano or just one huge volcano with lots of craters? Well, I will leave that idea to the Volcanologist to think about that.

The Seven Lakes of San Pablo are:

1. Lake Bunot


Panlalawigan Pagamutan ng Laguna


Barangay Concepcion

The road to Bunot Lake or Lake Bunot

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As we started our journey to find all the seven lakes in San Pablo. After passing “Panlalawigan Pagamutan ng Laguna” (Laguna Provincial Hospital) in General Luna Street in the city, we found Bunot Lake or Lake Bunot as we reached Barangay Concepcion. Here we had a chance to walk at the side of the lake to see it closer.

2. Kalibato Lake / Lake Calibato


On our way to Calibato Lake or Kalibato Lake

Our way to Calibato Lake with the 4X4 that Jimmar brought

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This is the lake where we drove down a rough road until we were able to park the vehicle to the nearest distance it can to the lake. We trekked going down the lake for a little bit until we reached it. As per Wikipedia, Kalibato Lake is the deepest lake in all seven lakes (as Lake Muhikap does not have existing records for its depths).

3. Pandin Lake

On our way to Twin Lake (Pandin and Yambo Lake)

Pandin Lake is one of the Twin Lake (the other twin is Yambo Lake). After coming from Kalibato Lake, we drove again for few minutes and we got lost as we can’t really see the Twin Lakes name or lake sign name. We were forced to asked locals to gave us the hints where it is until we realised that we already passed the sign of the lake and we had to turn around to see it.

Walkway to Pandin Lake

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Pandin Lake

Pandin Lake (Photo courtesy of Jimmar Lagazo)

We walked few minutes before we were able to see the lake. This is the lake that it seems it is exposed to tourist as I saw a lot of bamboo boat with seats for the visitors which seems that the boat is used to go around the lake.

4. Yambo Lake

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Yambo Lake (Photo courtesy of Jimmar Lagazo)

Yambo Lake is one of the Twin Lake (the other twin is Pandin Lake) and my favorite among the seven lakes that I saw. First thing, we need to climb a bit of high altitude of land (like hills) to be able to see this Lake. And it was worth when we were at the top because we saw the lake that looks like it was untouched though there are some fish ponds existing in one side of the lake but comparing it to other six lakes this one for me was the most likely unused by people in terms of fishing and recreational activities. I saw the water on it very serene state.

And I was also wondering why we need to hike just to see the beautiful lake if there is another way to see it.

5. Palakpakin Lake


Palakpakin Lake (Photo courtesy by Jimmar Lagazo)

Palakpakin Lake is just near from Muhikap Lake. This Lake like Kalibato Lake has photographic scenery with Mount Banahaw though this lake is farther than Kalibato Lake.

6. Muhikap / Mojicap Lake

Mohikap Lake (Photo courtesy by Jimmar Lagazo)

This is the lake with nearby hill called Imok Hill. For me, because of the hill in the background, the lake has striking scenery.

7. Sampaloc (Sampalok) Lake

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Sampaloc Lake (Photo courtesy by Jimmar Lagazo)

The last lake that we visited after we came from one of the beach in Sariaya, Quezon (another province we visited within more than 24 hours). Sampaloc Lake is the biggest among the seven lakes. And its location is just beside the city hall of San Pablo.

This was one of the discovery trip that I did treasured, worth doing in my own country. It made me feel that even in my country home we have this unique natural beauty that needs to be appreciated and requires to be protected. I hope that these seven lakes stay beautiful for so long and for what I learned about these lakes, they are lakes which considered endangered as it becomes exposed to human activities such as livelihoods and tourism.

For more information of the Seven Lakes of San Pablo, here is the official site from its city’s web site where it tells us more information of the lakes. Seven Lakes.

Until then.

Note: This post has been written more than 3 years ago, wasn’t published immediately.

Beyond Our Reach : Overlooking the Other Summits and Peaks at Mt. Tangisan

Beyond Our Reach (Post#2) : Overlooking the Other Summits and Peaks at Mt. Tangisan

When climbing the mountain, one of the moment that I really appreciate whether in the trail or at the summit of the mountain is the view where you can see lots of summits or peaks from other mountains. I will be always amaze with the scenery. With that in mind, those beautiful peaks of other mountains seems to be so close yet so far and beyond my reach. But with endurance even the things we thought impossible sometimes become possible. Photo snapshot last July 2012 during the side-trip climb we had after outreach activity done by the mountaineering group in San Jose, Tarlac.


Banton Island – My Ancestors Homeland

It was almost 17 years ago had passed when the last time I visited the island province of my parents. The visit was unplanned as I went there with my father because my grandmother at father’s side had passed away. I heard the news at the night of 27th of February 2015, after I came from work as my father heard the news in the afternoon at the same day. At first, it was decided that only my father will go to province until I decided to cancel my summer outing plan that weekend with my mountaineering group together with my sister. At that time, it struck me that it seems it was time for me to come back to the place where my roots begun. Without thinking twice, I told my family I will cancel my summer trip and I decided to go with my father.

The next day morning, I packed my stuff while my mother was preparing my father’s belongings. We left our house around 10AM in the morning. From our residential village we took public jeepney to Paliparan, next, we took multicab public transportation to Pala-pala. From Pala-pala we took public van to Lucena Grand Terminal in Lucena City. At the terminal, there was supposed to be a transportation directly to Dalahican Port but unfortunately it already left before we arrived and we have to wait for the next available one. My father and I decided to take alternative public transportation to the port by going to the ‘Bayan’ (City Center) of Lucena and from ‘Bayan’ we took tricycle to Dalahican Port. We arrived at the port around 3:30PM in the afternoon.

Jellyfish I saw while in the ferry at Dalahican Ferry Terminal

Dalahican Port

At Dalahican Port, we paid terminal fee and went straight to the waiting area. As we look around if we knew someone familiar, my father went outside and looked for Kalayaan Ferry and checked if some of our relatives were there. In few minutes, my father returned and told me that some of our relatives were already boarded in the ferry. The next thing happened, I picked up our stuff and went straight to the ferry that will bring us to my home island – Banton, part of Romblon Province.

At the ferry, I met some of my uncles, aunt and few of my cousins. Some of my relatives were not familiar to me since we live far from them and I seldom meeting and talking to them. We waited for more hours as the scheduled departure was around 8PM that night. While waiting for our ferry’s schedule departure, I spent watching drama online in my phone and eating some of the food pack that we brought from home. After getting tired of watching drama in my phone, I took a nap. I woke up a bit when I heard that the ferry started leaving the terminal. Since its twilight and I can’t see much around, I decided to sleep again.

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Banton Island (captured from the ferry on the way to the island)

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Banton Island (approaching the island)

I woke up in the morning, then I stood-up, walked to the nearest window from where I was slept, I looked at the window and I saw a mountain shape as our ferry  is not far from it, and I knew its island in front of us. I asked my Aunt Inda whom nearest to me and confirmed if it was Banton island, the island where my ancestors and family roots begun. I watched the island for a while until it sync to me that the time was almost up and soon we will be arriving at the ‘Bayan’ (Municipality Center) of the island. After half an hour, we were close to Banton Port and in few more minutes passed the ferry stopped. All of us got ready to leave the boat. And as soon I deserted the ferry and stepped on the ground of the port, I looked around and checked if there were familiar faces waiting for us but none was recognizable to me.

Approaching Port of Banton at the Municipality Center (‘Bayan’) of the Island at Banton Bay

At Port of Banton

Uncle Napo’s Store (rented commercial space located at Municipality Center ‘Bayan’ of the island)

At the port, there were motor bikes waiting for a chance to fetch passengers coming from the ferry like us in exchange of transportation fee. Some of us took the available motor bikes, some walked a little and we come together again in the store owned by one of my uncle, Uncle Napo which not far from the port. From there, we waited a little more for other motor bikes that will pick all my family and relatives before we headed to the local town or village of one of my relatives where the remains of my grandmother was laid.

Directions and Road to Sibay

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Road to Tongonan

While riding the motor bike, I got a chance to see again some surroundings of the island. We left ‘Bayan’ and followed the track of Banton-Libtong-Yabawon Road. From ‘Bayan’, we ascent a bit and passed Togbongan. Then, we descent and we passed the road beside the shore in Nabalay where the sceneries are really great. When we reached Sibay area, I tried to recall the place in my memory that I remembered 17 years ago, it was not the same as before because that time, when the small boat we took from Mindoro and arrived at the shore in Sibay not Banton port, we walked passing Sibay area and there is no concrete road available at that time.

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I remembered Sibay as place where lots of huge rocks strayed in the area. When we reached Sibay, we switched the road and we took Tan-ag Barangay Road. After Sibay, we passed Libtong area, the school where my brother graduated in elementary. I still remembered the school because I was there in one of the recognition years of my brother and I went to the stage to give some gifts to him after he received his awards. After passing Libtong Elementary School, one of the most challenging and accident prone area of the road in Tan-ag Barangay Road was almost near, Uncle Richard (uncle from cousins) was the one taking me as passenger in his motor bike and since it is his daily jobs, he’s really familiar how to prepare for taking the road. We drove ascending the concrete road like driving to the top of the mountain, the road inclination is quite steep and requires to be really careful, or else either you will die or you will caught accident and ended with severe injuries.

My Lola Bebe’s New Built House

Around Tipo

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We passed the difficult part of Tan-ag Barangay Road. At the same road we reached my grandmother’s house in my mother side in Tipo, a small place with few houses which located just beside the road before reaching Tan-ag. ‘Lola’ (Grandmother) Bebe was the only person in the house when I came in, as my uncle Jay (my mother’s brother) was at the farm working. She’s surprised when she saw me, but even it was a long time ago that the last time she saw me, she still remembers me. My ‘Lola’ Bebe is most likely around 85 years old but she’s still working like a normal aged adult when I found her at her house. I greeted my grandmother and paid respect to her by putting one of her hand in my forehead. Her house changed a lot from the last time I saw the place, the last thing that I remembered, the house was built by coconut dried leaves as its roof and wall while its flooring was made by bamboo. But now it is a concrete house with metal roof. I was glad the house had changed, it was a good thing for them so that my grandmother and my uncle have a comfortable home that will shelter them. I missed my grandmother and we talked a bit. Then, I bid a quick goodbye as I have to go to my other grandmother to see her remains in Tan-ag. I promised ‘Lola’ Bebe that I will come back to visit her again.

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Random post of my relatives and visitors

We traveled back to Tan-ag Barangay Road until we reached the home of my Aunt Benny, wife of my father’s brother Uncle Dupo. Inside her house, I saw my grandmother or Lola Tasing’s remains. When I saw her, she’s like sleeping like my late sister that passed away few months earlier. Since it was morning, there were few people around my Aunt’s house. Since its almost 17 years that the last time I visited my parent’s province I am not familiar  with most of the people visiting and paying their respect to my grandmother and one by one I was introduced to them. My relatives at father’s side are more than my mother’s side because my father has 8 siblings while my mother has 4 siblings and 1 out of 4 are still single. I knew some of my cousins but the faces that I remembered was long time ago as most of us were still children at that time and now most of my cousins has their own family and kids. I knew that my age is within marrying age and having a family, it’s just that it’s not yet time for me or maybe it’s not my destiny. I met the brother of my ‘Lola’ Tasing who still alive and we call him ‘Lolo’ (grandfather) Kunos, but even though he did not remember his exact age, it was mentioned that he was younger than my ‘Lola’ Tasing.

In a while, both my Father and I returned to Tipo where my ‘Lola’ Bebe’s house is. After meeting again my grandmother, my father and I strolled around Tipo, met some people live in the area and had time talking to them. At that time, I tasted coconut adobo. I learned that the people in the island, if they don’t have money to buy meat because its expensive for them, what they do is replace it with alternative. They used the coconut kernel (the white part)  when it still soft and crush it uniformly like a spaghetti strap, and that’s the meat they used and they cooked it with adobo recipe, the only difference was the meat, it was not chicken, not beef nor pork, it is coconut kernel. We are fresh coconut kernel as well as desert and partnered with coconut water as drinks. It’s one of the proof that coconut is a tree of life.


To Mayabag

From Tipo, we went to Mayabag, the place where my deceased grandmother used to live and realized that it is where one of my uncle now lives, Uncle Fred . As I approached the house, I can still remember the place, the old house of ‘Lola’ Tasing that I knew was not existing anymore, the land where the house used to stand is now used for vegetation. Uncle  house was built just beside where my grandmother house used to stand. His house is a bit modern because half of the materials used  were hollow blocks and cements, the other part of the house were made in wood and bamboo. At my uncle’s house, I met two of my cousins and honestly I don’t remember them at all nor I even met them before.

After spending time with my uncle ‘s Fred house, we walked back home to Tan-ag and on our way, we met few people whom my father and my uncle knows. Even its been so long that my father visited the island, it seems there are still people do remember him and they exchanged greetings and talked a bit.

Coming back at Aunt Benny’s house, though my father and I had different religion compared to my relatives, we just let them do what they planned to do when a person died. Catholic is major religion in my country and my relatives followed the practice when someone passed away like they conducted daily  prayers for my grandmother. We silently respected the practice though we never involved ourselves in such activity as we have different beliefs and doctrines when people died.

Both of my father and I stayed in Aunt Benny’s house for our first night in the island. At night, there were more visitors coming and most of them, I did not recall who they were, but the surprising thing, they knew something about me. They knew me as one of the grandchild in the family that lives in the city, they knew me as my Lola’s grandchild and they knew me as my father’s daughter. They knew me because my family’s name was known to them.

During the trip, there was a part of me that I realized why it took so long for me to come back and visit my parents province. Thinking the reason why, because my family not practically used to visit the home province every year. The province was too far from the city and the only way to get to the island was through ferry, and the ferry traveled back and forth to the island was seasonal. Usually, if its off-peak season, there is at least once a week schedule coming in and out of the island. During summer at least there’s more schedule. For almost two decades, I reminisced what I had done for not coming to the island, busy at work and busy with life. To be able to visit the island, it seems that I need a reason to come back and it seems it happened at the time that my grandmother died.

Remembering the island from the last time I had seen it, a lot were changed in the island. Because the province is an island mountain, where you cannot see too much of a flat ground. I can say that the island is practically a mountain submerge in the sea. Because of this, even constructing roads around the island is really difficult. The end result of the road infrastructure in the island was just enough to accommodate single motor bike, not even a tricycle will fit in the narrow road that the government provided. Aside of having tight road, there were parts of the road that are dangerous and prone to accidents because the other side of the road is a cliff, just with a wrong manuever, it will cost life. But people who lives their whole life in the island, knows how to take care the dangerous point of the road and they are used to it, it’s already part of their lives but still extra care really required.

My trip in the island was a short one and to think I was not in the island for at least 17 years, I knew for myself I still wanted to stay longer in the island, but I have commitments back in the city that I cannot neglect.

Sunday, my second day in the island. I went with my Auntie Norie back to the store. There we stayed a bit. Aside from roaming around in the island the other things that you can do is lay around the house.

My grandmother scheduled burial was Monday which was my third day in the island. From Tan-ag, the planned activity is to walk up to the cemetery which is located near the telecom tower site near in ‘Bayan’. At the start of the walk, mostly were family and relatives were accompanying my grandmother. And then every time we passed some houses or small communities, our group become bigger and bigger, that day I saw a lot of people who wanted to walked with my grandmother up to her last destination. When we reached Libtong, most people hopped on with their motor bikes, but the immediately family and close relatives of my ‘Lola’ Tasing still decided to walk, I promised that I will try my best to walk with my grandmother remains from Tan-ag up to cemetery, but I was not able to keep my promise. During the walk, people who joined the parade with my grandmother and even my family and relatives walks so fast and I wasn’t able to keep my close distance from them. Uncle Richard asked me if I wanted to take a ride in a motor bike instead of walking. I decided to take the motorbike. I can understand that people in the province walks so fast as they are used to it.




During my Lola Tasing’s Burial Walk

There are other ‘barangays’ (small community) that we passed along the way before we reached the municipality center. We reached ‘Bayan’ of the island and I thought we were going straight to the cemetery and I realized that my grandmother remains went straight in one of the church in the island and then it followed a church mass. My father and I waited outside while the mass was happening and waited until it finished. Then, my grandmother casket were brought outside from the church to the cemetery. The cemetery is located in a hill. When we reach the base or ground of the hill, close family and relatives went up to the hill, other people stayed in the ground. My father, my uncles and aunties are all silent at first. But when we were approaching the cemetery and just few walks away from its gate, I heard a lot of cries and screaming coming from my family. My tears fell down and just realized that I spent a short time with my grandmother. I never grew up with her and I seldom met and saw her. There was just few moments that I recall that I talked to her. I remembered that she spent some time in our house in Cavite and I remembered she’s not used to a city living, she wanted to go back  immediately in the province where she used to live. At the time that my grandmother casket was laid down in the ground, it was the last time that I saw her. At that time, I just realized why I never spent a lot of time with my grandmother. Now that she passed away, I will never be able to say or I will never be able to call my grandmother’s name again in front of her.


old technology of flat-iron still used in Banton Island as there are people live there that don’t have electricity

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My Relatives

After the burial, we came back to the Tan-ag and all were silent back home. I understood the atmosphere.

The afternoon that day, my cousin Kenneth and I decided to visit my Uncle Napo’s house which located in Yabawon. I haven’t been to his place even when I was young. And as per my Aunt’s description that Uncle Napo’s house is really beautiful and standing near the beach. With that thought in mind, I was quite excited, first to see my Uncle’s house and second is to see another part of the island. I requested again Uncle Richard to fetch us again to bring us to Yabawon. From Tan-ag, we took Tan-ag Barangay Road again, then near Libtong Elementary School, we turned left and took Banton-Libtong-Yabawon Road.

We reached my uncle’s house and his house is colorful and lively. It is one of the house that I saw that was built beautifully in the island. We spent sometime inside the house and because the floors were tiled and clean, and there’s TV, I felt like I live in the city, I never felt that I was in the island. I almost fell asleep until I decided to get up to see the beach.

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Tabunan Beach (Part 1)

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Tabunan Beach (Part 2)

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Tabunan Beach (Part 3)

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Tabunan Beach (Part 4)

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Tabunan Beach (Part 5)

We went to Tabunan beach in Yabawon. Before we reached the shore we did a little bit of trekking because my uncle’s house is at the top area. When we reached the ground which is the beach area, we walked a bit, I saw how the place is so serene. I really like what I saw, there were few people in the place and in matter of few minutes my cousin and I  were the only person left around the beach. We never planned to swim that’s why we just strolled around the area. We walked in the sand and took pictures of the place. At Tabunan beach, there is a nearby island named Polluc Island and I heard the island used to grow farm animals.

We came back to my uncle’s house and we spent sometime talking about the house and some mysterious stuff that surrounds the island.

We returned in Tan-ag and I learned that the grand-daughter of Aunt Lucy was celebrating her birthday and my father and I dropped to their house and spent time playing with the baby and talked with Aunt Lucy.

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Aunt Lucy’s Grandchild

When we came home in Aunt Benny’s house, I told my father that I wanted to sleep with Lola Bebe’s house as I knew that I may not have a chance to sleep over to her place as I have few days left in the island before going back to the city. With that, my father and I went to my Lola Bebe’s house. It was already dark at the time we walked from Tan-ag to Tipo. On our way, what we only have were torch in our hands. One thing that we experienced in the walked was we saw a small snake along the road and we just passed it by avoiding it. It was before 7PM that we reached my Lola Bebe’s house but it felt like it’s really late at night since the whole surroundings of the area are dark and covered with trees. Lola Bebe’s does not have electricity installed since the house just finished recently. We used candles or lamp with gas and fire. That’s a common and typical life in remote island.

My Lola Bebe

My father and I had breakfast and had photos with my Lola Bebe. We decided to come back to Tan-ag. Then I packed all my stuff as I planned to go back on Tuesday or Wednesday alone in the city as my father decided to stay a bit in the island and comeback together with my Uncle Napo. Uncle Napo is part of group that operates the ferry coming in and out to the island.

I came down to the island’s municipality center called ‘Bayan’ and stayed at the store of my Uncle Napo’s since I will be waiting for confirmation whether there was ferry schedule to leave the island going back to Lucena, my way to go back to the city. It was confirmed that there was ferry scheduled to depart on Wednesday night that week and because of that I was able to spend a night and day in the ‘Bayan’. My cousin Kenneth came with me in the store since Auntie Nories was there to take care of the store.

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Around Banton Port (Part 1)

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Around Banton Port (Part 2)

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Around Banton Port (Part 3)

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Around Banton Port (Part 4)

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Around Banton Port (Part 5)


My last day in the island was spent walking around the town proper. While strolling around I was wondering how people survived in the island where the major job available is farming and I heard that few people abandoned that job nowadays. Tourists in the island are not so many. Some does own a small stores as their livelihood. That’s why it was not really surprising when people are leaving the island for better opportunity. The common jobs aside from farming in the mountain is what they call koprahan (copra plantation). Kopra is dried coconut meat or dried coconut kernel which being used to extract coconut oil. But I observed that most people  abandoned this livelihood too. I was not really surprised why the growth of the island is slow, it’s combination of all. Banton is an island, few people live in the island, the island offers few jobs and opportunities, transportation challenges and few tourist spots interests. I think these reasons probably the same with other islands with the same situation.

Around ‘Bayan’ (Municipality Center)

When I left the island, I felt some empty part of my heart. I knew it was not great as other popular islands in my country but my heart aches because that is the island where my roots come from. I may be a foreigner on it because I never lived in the island for so long but that’s where my identity came from. I considered myself lucky because other people doesn’t have a place to return to see where they came from because the place may be gone or abolished, but the island where my family came from still there and I knew will stay longer or maybe around for hundred or thousand years to come.

Until then.

Colors : Tent City Area – Ciudad de Victoria

Colors (Post #3) – Tent City Area – Ciudad de Victoria

When my family decided to celebrate the New Year’s Eve at Ciudad de Victoria in Bocaue Bulacan where the biggest dome-arena in the world is located which is Philippine Arena, at the time of celebration there were Tent City area that surrounds the place. The photo above was just one of them. This photo captured last December 30, 2014.

Home : Pandin Lake


Home (Post#24) : Pandin Lake

Pandin Lake is one of the Twin Lake (other lake is Yambo Lake) that can be found in San Pablo City in Laguna province in my country Philippines. This lake is also included in what currently they call Seven Lakes of Laguna (or Seven Lakes of San Pablo). The said lake is one of the volcanic crater wherein according to Wikipedia that it means circular depression in the ground caused by volcanic activity. It is typically a basin, circular in form within which occurs a vent (or vents) from which magma erupts as gases, lava, and ejecta.

This photo is part of my photo collection of Lakes in Laguna and which captured last Sept 2011 during the unplanned trip with few of my fellow mountaineering group.

Note: This post has been updated to add the link of and to participate in Blue Monday – February 15, 2016,  Watery Wednesday, Water World Wednesday and Outdoor Wednesday – February 17, 2016

Chromatic Outlook : Mortar M120 (USA) At Relics Point


Chromatic Outlook (Post#24) : Mortar M120 (USA) At Relics Point

Mortar M120 is one of the World War II archived weapon that can be found displayed in Relics Point inside Philippine Military Academy. As mentioned in the excerpt in the photo, the weapon was used against the invading Japanese imperial army. Photo captured during the trip in Baguio City last May 2010.