Dreaming. Searching. Adapting. Adjusting. Learning. Loving. Realizing. Contemplating. Living. It has been a year full of introspection, a year of figuring out my purpose, a year of laying out a plan for the future, a year of experimenting life, a year of new experiences, a year of responsibilities and decision-making, a year of creating, and a year of young adulthood freedom… It has been a year around the calendar with marked days of great memories as a traveling web designer.
One Whole Year with 8 Awesome Travel Highlights!
Highlights that give more emphasis on the lessons picked up in my small collection of whereabouts around the country rather than just the whereabouts itself. 🙂
Highlight #1: A year of curiosity and research
The chemical bond of Sodium and Chlorine sparked my interest in knowing how it is being processed and formed into what we normally know as “table salt.” That curiosity paved the way of discovering a process known as “bud-bud” (from the fishermen and coastal area locals) which makes use of sea water to make salt. 🙄 Focusing on the process of salt-making brought me to places like Miag-ao (believed to be the first in bud-bud), Sipalay in Negros Occidental, and Guimaras. Up to this day, my research is still at its early stage of development.
Highlight #2: A year of eating what the locals ate
Be it “Tayom” or Sea Urchins in Bohol, Sea Cucumbers in Negros, “Taklong” or Forest Snails and “Puyoy” or Grilled Eels in Capiz, “Balot” or Raw, Nearly-developed Duck Embryo in any part of the Philippines, as long as people are eating it with delectable pleasure, (what the heck) go try some! This year I had several “firsts” in my palate history all because every time there’s new local cuisines being offered, I grabbed those opportunities and shoved it up my mouth to try. Gross in some way but it never kills to try… (unless otherwise you’re allergic) 😀
Highlight #3: A year of ignited dreams
Being blessed to travel with several amateur and professional enthusiasts is one phenomenal chapter in my travel-work lifestyle. From different parts of the country, either in Luzon, Visayas, or Mindanao, or in other countries aside from our own, these people pack incredible stories and lessons that serve as a guide for young travelers like me. Their never-ending tales of adventure, misadventures, love-affairs, horror, and unforgettable memories fascinate me.
Highlight #4: A year of getting lost and epic adventures
Whether you’re maneuvering over the busy streets of Metro Manila – staring at the jumbled snake-like architecture of the roads, or heading further up in the mountain away from the sound of the riverbank’s streaming water in Capiz, or circling around the same tree several times in a trek in Cebu, or getting confused where the north or south is in a simple street map of Davao, it’s still part of getting lost. 😉 Of all the things this year had offered, getting lost was by far the most amazing and “thrilling” experience ever.
Highlight #5: A year of scars and bruises
It is inevitable not to have some small or large “travel marks” etched along any particular part of your body. Take for example my 2-inch (in diameter) depression on my right thigh from a jeepney bump in Iloilo City, or the burnt skin on my left hand from cooking when I volunteered in the Young Life organization in Compostela, Cebu, or the tiny scratches on my legs from the recent trip in Bacolod, or the scab I have now that took 3 weeks to heal from a trip in Capiz, or the scar on my left foot from the rafting in Cagayan de Oro. Each with its own story. Each with a memory that’s very easy to recall.
Highlight #6: A year of confusing temperatures
It’s more like a uniform for me rather than just a “casual” wear. Long-sleeved polo dress shirts are my thing – paired with shorts, bangles, shoes, sling bag, and top it with a hat. You get that signature look of the person behind Between Coordinates. 😛 Well, living in the lowlands where it’s all warm and cozy – this uniform of mine works best. But sometimes my good brain tends to forget the temperature of the next destination: giving me this chance to feel really, really, cold… and stupid. Take that time in Tagaytay where I did not bring any extra jeans, or in Bukidnon where I just fought the cold by rubbing my palms, relying on friction. Lol!
Highlight #7: A year of savoring every darn experience
“… live while we’re young” lyrics of One Direction’s song explains the whole essence of being alive. This song was being played over and over (and over) again when me and my college friends endured the Advanced Level White Water Rafting – 21 Rapids of Cagayan de Oro, or when we glided across Asia’s Longest Dual Zipline in Bukidnon, or me crossing over a 30ft-high canopy walk in Samal, or sliding for my life in Maxima’s giant tarpaulin slide. I guess I give more credit to things that “I thought I’d never do” but have done anyway. 😀 Cheers for being young and alive!
Highlight #8: A year of endings and beginnings
The last month of this year posed a new challenge for me in 2013. A few days before Christmas, I received one of the best “useful” gifts given to me (and it’s not even under a tree). I got a travel guidebook of the Philippines by a notable author who fell deeply in love with our beautiful country. This highlights that in every ending, there’s always that new, and unbelievably awesome beginning! 😉 No doubt that I value experiences more than just the number of destinations I have been to. No doubt that I treasure friends met along the journey rather than just photographs of different scenic spots. No doubt that I value life lessons more than just the objective facts being provided by guides… 2012
is was the start of my “not so impossible” dream of traveling the world…
This is my first ever entry for the Pinoy Travel Bloggers’ Blog Carnival December 2012 with the theme “2012: This Year In Travel” Proudly hosted by: Gay Mitra-Emami of Pinay Travel Junkie and Regine Camille Garcia of Between Coordinates For previous Pinoy Travel Bloggers’ Blog Carnival topics, click the logo on the left.