Ysai was here turned 2 today!
I haven’t blogged in months but I’m back! This 2nd year signifies a new chapter of my life as well. I look forward to more adventures in store for me. Let’s all unravel the world together ;)
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
― Lao Tzu
Crystal clear blue waters, towering limestone formations and a survivor island/the beach themed adventure was my expectation for our El Nido getaway. However, because of the bad weather we were having, my spirit was dampened a little along with the rains that greeted us in Palawan.
But as the picture suggests above, we got the sun that we prayed for :) And how was the experience? Let’s me jot it down in 2 parts.
It was a gloomy Friday morning and everyone was on whims on what the outcome would be of the NBA’s season finale; while for us, we were on whims for what the weather would be for this weekend.
It was a busy couple of months for me at work and I needed a well deserved vacation. We decided to book with an agency for I didn’t have the time to make reservations or do the planning. Though I would’ve enjoyed planning myself, my workload was just keeping me away from it. And since, I was craving for a “sit-back-and-relax” moment in my life, I decided to leave it with the professionals.
I am very grateful for Ms. Vivien from APT Travels for letting me have that. I felt very well taken cared of in the duration of our trip (despite the set backs-will explain later) and I didn’t have to think of everything ahead like I always do on trips. And with our paradise destination, vacay mode was so on.
THE UNDERGROUND RIVER TOUR - ATTEMPT 1
We woke up as early as 5am for the agency’s call time was at 6:30. We hurriedly ate our free delightful french toasts and omelet from Crossing Bridges (the restaurant in Natua) for they came earlier as expected. The foreign owner of Natua (didn’t get his name) was chummy with us and was nice enough to stall the agency before we were ready to depart.
Since it was a shared tour, we had to go pick up the other tourists and luckily, they happen to be bisaya as well. They were a funny bunch from Davao who was always picking on our tour guide.
The Underground River (UR) was in the town of Sabang which was about 2 hours from the city proper. It was a long ride but was enjoyable with the new people we met.
One of the things I’ve missed so much while I was away from Cebu was the beach (aside from lechon and barbeque). Though, I can do without the heat and humidity, I was glad to be back home.
My friends and I were planning this weekend for a while now, but did not come to a decision where to really go until the week we were to set out for it. There was a lot of trouble with our schedules because it was busy season for some of us (who were auditors). We decided to go to Camotes Island for we really wanted to hit the beach, though the auditors could not make it, it was still fun.
Business trips can’t be all work and no play. Seizing the opportunity of being in a different place takes away the pang of loneliness from being away from home. With the 3 weeks I had to stay in Budapest, I learned a lot from the new environment I was in and being totally on my own.
The Eiffel Tower, croissants, macarons and center for high end shopping are a few that pops in your head when you hear the name Paris. Or, a once tabloid header who is heir to a hotel chain, whichever.
Who would have thought there was a ton of Yakiniku joints in Cebu? A friend of ours who was to join us for dinner at Wakamatsu Yakiniku got confused while finding her way. The one we were at was along F. Cabahug in Mabolo before Castle Peak Hotel. The one she went to was IN Castle Peak. Shortly after dinner, I found out there were other Yakiniku’s in town and it was wrong of us to direct her to look for the sign Yakiniku along that road.
Yakiniku is a Japanese term which, in its broadest sense, refers to grilled meat dishes. I’ve tried O’mart before near Metro Sports in Lahug but that was more Korean influenced. As to who (Korean or Japanese) originally started this trend of grilling their own meat to eat at a restaurant, I don’t really know. What stirred up my interest of this place was the reviews I read about it and pictures I saw on the internet of how Japanese the experience was of eating here.
There’s just something about Filipino cooking that gives you a very heart-warming feeling after. It tastes just like your mother’s, grandmother’s or great grandmother’s cooking. In short, it tastes like home. And in Ilocano food, there’s something even more.
Halo Halo de Iloko is a native Ilocano restaurant in La Union that was dubbed to be a must try by our surf instructors for first timers in town. We didn’t know where exactly it was located other than it being in their bayan (town center). If you’re good with reading maps, google always helps :) We could have consulted google as well in that situation only if we didn’t have an Ilocano speaking friend with us. Hence, we asked around instead.
Shredded (by Crystal Heredia)
Sun-kissed or Nog-nog (burnt)? After our first surfing lesson. Check: http://crystalshires.tumblr.com/post/36788956478/la-union-surfing