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Til next summer

It’s the first day of June. Time sure flies so fast. Summer vacation for most students ends today as classes open tomorrow. Summer, my most favorite time of the year, will soon be over. 😦

This year’s summer had been a very memorable one. I got to meet my adorable niece Emma for the first time! I made it a point to take some time off from work to spend quality time with my family, especially because my cousins from Canada came home for a vacation.

I love going home to the province, even on short vacations, because I get the chance to watch the sun go down everyday at the beach near our house. I could just sit there on the shore or take a dip in the inviting water to cool down the sweltering heat of the summer sun until it had finally set. But mostly, I love going home because I miss home cooked meals and the comfort of being with my family.

Even at work, the past two months had been quite busy. I was mostly out on fieldwork gathering stories, capturing photos, facilitating workshops, meeting people, organizing events. I rode motorbikes, walked in the sugarcane farms under the scorching heat of the sun, and traveled from one island to the next. I’m not complaining. I love my work, actually. Because at the end of the day, in the few hours before I head home to Manila, I get to see the beautiful sights in the area.

As I was browsing through my summer photos, trying to relish the fun memories, I realized I had on this one top in a lot of photos! Yikes, I need some serious wardrobe change! I badly need to buy some pretty beach dresses online. And new swim wear, too (maybe something that could hide my growing curves).  Besides, summer may be over but it’s always good to be ready with the outfit. There’s so much picture perfect places waiting to be explored all year round.

Anyway, check out these pictures to see what kept me busy this summer:

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Thank you, summer, for the great memories and the darkened skin! Til next year.

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Don’t Look Back

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You can’t look back – you just have to put the past behind you, and find something better in your future. ~ Jodi Picoult

Rockin’ the White Rocks

During one of my recent trips to my province, Ilocos Norte, my friend Rocky and I decided, out of the blue, to visit Kapurpurawan White Rock Formation in Burgos, about 30 minutes away from my hometown Pagudpud. The reason why we both really wanted to go there was simple – we thought it was weird that we haven’t been there when everyone else we know had been. I, for one, found it embarrassing when my Manila friends asked me how it looked like and I didn’t really know what to tell them. Before the trip, I only saw it from photos of friends who’ve gone there. Armed with the determination (and my iPhone) to finally see Kapurpurawan, we rode in Rocky’s motorbike to Burgos at 10 in the morning, not minding the uncomfortable heat of the sun.

On the way to Kapurpurawan on a motorbike

The place is about 30-45 minutes of dusty road away from the highway.

From the jump-off point, we walked for about 5-10 minutes. You can also take the option to ride a horse for P100 pesos.

Getting nearer. We still have to go around the hill to really see the whole thing.

At last!

This is no place for swimming. Too rocky. 🙂

At 12NN, we were both drenched in sweat when we got back to the jump-off point but I felt so glad that we pushed through with our unplanned trip to Kapurpurawan. It was an adventure like no other, and I was amazed with what I saw.

I’m happy that there aren’t any hotels or resorts or restaurants in the area yet. Although there are vendors at the jump-off point and one along the trail, I just wish they’d remain at that number. Too many vendors mean food and plastics and garbage. I hope they can maintain the pristine-ness of the place.

Now, I can finally confidently describe how beautiful the White Rock Formation is to anyone who’ll ask me. On our way home, I closed my eyes and offered my face to the wind and sun and thanked God for a wonderful day.

Check out the sceneries that we saw on our way home:

Bangui Windmills

The town of Bangui

Pagudpud. Home.

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