Wednesday, May 4, 2016

To More Adventures and Beyond (An Anniversary Trip in Iligan)

"You have found a keeper", a friend once told me.

"Why do you say so? You don't even know him."

"I don't. But not all couples are cut to travel together."

I flashed a silly grin.

Jan and I concluded our second anniversary with sore bodies from our recent trip in Iligan City - at least a ten-hour drive away from home. Not that I am complaining. I could never, in a hundred lifetimes, get tired of going away and come back with aching muscles a few days later.
Mimbalut Falls, Iligan City
Mimbalut Falls
I used to have vague ideas of traveling alone. But money (or the lack thereof), work, and fear always consume me. And it felt like life was slowly slipping away until Jan rekindled and strengthened my love for traveling (the surprise flight tickets get me all the time. teehee).

For the past two years that we have been together, we were taking a plunge to the places we've never been to to refresh and pause from the fast-paced city life. This would mean at least 48 hours of quality time spent together, which could also mean becoming a frequent unsuspecting victim of each other's nastiest farts. But if traveling opens doors to rediscovering each other over and over again, then how bad can a fart really be?

Traveling taught me a lot of things. It bestowed me abilities not everyone can possess. Like the ability to sleep anywhere, the ability to eat almost anything, the ability to be flexible to any given situation, the ability to have an enormous amount of patience, the ability to accept the unfamiliar, the unconventional, and the unwanted, and most importantly, the ability to appreciate the little things. In short, it made me a better human than when I started off.
Tinago Falls, Iligan
Tinago Falls
Traveling with Jan taught and showed me a lot of things about him too - his flaws, his bad side, his odd quirks, his weaknesses. Pretty much everything people don't really see when he's within the boundaries of his comfort zone. But the more I see all of these is the more I fall in love with him. Actually, his imperfections are what I deem lovable. And I, on the other hand, can be in my fugliest and most unflattering self around him, and I know it's still okay.

Relationships are all about growing together. And I believe traveling together contributes a lot to that. Those butt-numbing bus rides, crappy hotel rooms, disgusting food, bad weather, wrong turns, and everything in between could bring out the worst in us. But it also became the key for us to look beyond the bad and the ugly. It allowed us to see and put things in a simpler and better perspective. And so we understand each other better.
Mount Agad-agad, Iligan City
Early morning hike to Mount Agad-agad
Being with Jan makes me feel completely at peace. Maybe that's why despite all those unpleasant surprises, mishaps, or misadventures that come along our way, I still find comfort in the uncomfortable, I see good in a bad situation, I consider every uncertainty an adventure worth taking. Because no matter what the hassle and how frustrating a situation can become, at the end of the day, we would find ourselves home - lost in each other's arms. And I would not have it any other way.
Maria Cristina Falls, Iligan City
Maria Cristina Falls
This Iligan trip - although not grand or fancy for an anniversary celebration - was a blast. I guess, we just don't like to settle for the ordinary. Because sooner or later we will forget about that expensive dinner and how fine-dining food tastes, and flowers will wilt in no time. But our misadventures create memories of those crazy but amazing moments and will forever be etched in our hearts. How we were mesmerized, how we walked on the wrong side of the road, how we got scars, bruises, and dead nails, or how a trip changed us in one way or another is definitely something we would talk and laugh about when our hairs turn grey and not that blockbuster movie on a date night.

I am looking forward to more travel adventures with him. I can't wait to see where our feet will take us next. Life is too short to just stay in one place. So travel as much as time allows. :)


© Life is so full of tae!
Maira Gall