Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Bittersweet Mt. Apo Climb

I won't make this long. In fact, I am just going to copy what I have said on Facebook. I don't really feel like writing anything as I am going through something quite devastating. But I owe this blog a lot of posts already. So if my thoughts do not come out nice (or do not come out at all), please pardon me. The fire that is devouring more than 300 hectares of Mt. Apo National Park feels like a stake being driven into my heart. And the bigger and further the fire goes, the deeper the wound gets. I might sound a little too overreacting but this is how I truly feel.

Today is the sixth day Mt. Apo is engulfed in fire. It pains me to know a place I've always considered home turn into ashes. And what hurts more is when I have seen it with my very eyes. I hate a lot of things this moment. I hate the irresponsibility that caused the damage. I hate how inept, inutile, and insensitive our national government is when it comes to matters like this. And I hate being weak and frail for I cannot do anything but watch helplessly from the sidelines and pray to the Almighty for a heavy downpour. If only I can do something more, other than just disseminating information and offering monetary help, then I might feel a little better.

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A few days ago, I came home from a bittersweet climb. Unfortunate things do happen, I just didn't expect it to be this horrible and depressing.

I am posting this because I want to share with you Mt. Apo in its full magnificence and glory - which I never thought would be the last we'll ever see.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The Street Art Experience

I wish one day I'd be able to paint one of these walls... 

These are exactly the words I told myself a few years ago.

I have always been fascinated with street art. How they are a mystery. How they keep people in constant wonder. How and when did it effin come up here? What the hell does that mean? Who did it? Much more fascinated by how street artists can hide in plain sight like ninjas - except, they're not bound to spy or kill but sure they know their way around spray cans and brushes and make something alive with it.
Coffee Bean and Tea  Leaf Street Art

Sunday, February 28, 2016

My Life as a Blogger and Other (Not so) Recent Shiznits

I have over 50 drafts to date and not one of them is worth publishing anymore. Panis na kasi.

I don't know if I should feel bad about that or the fact that I got more stories still waiting to be written (cue: I Can Wait Forever by Air Supply). The blogging wells could run dry sometimes and I have a few things to blame. One, I am busy. And by busy, I mean, I do a lot of things that has nothing to do with productivity. Two, I have never failed at procrastinating. Three, blogging on a mobile device is absolutely frustrating.

But none of that really matters. No one's holding somebody a hostage to get me to write. So it's not really a big deal. Heck, the word deal should not even be brought up here. On the other hand, I feel like I am the one being taken hostage by this blog and it is demanding me to write something - and it does not matter if it is sensible or not. Damn you, blog. Why don't you just leave me alone?!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Mt. Pulag: The Playground of the Gods Part 2

Brrr.

We were about 2,800 meters above sea level - that's just a hundred meters more to summit, maybe a few miles left to trek. I was clearly unfazed by the terrain. I was already told it was an easy trek. But still, for weeks, Jan and I conditioned our bodies for this. And it did pay off for it was definitely a walk in the park with a few uphills and steep climbs that did not seem to bother me. I never found myself catching my breath. And I could go on without taking little breaks. BUT I had to will myself to endure the cold that's never in Davao nor in any place that I've been to. Not even in Mount Apo. I have never shivered like this in Mount Apo. I had on me three layers of jacket and I can still feel the cold pierce my bones.

But the thought of those photos of every blogger who posted a perfect photo of Mount Pulag's summit was enough to propel me to go on. I know that's not what climbing is all about. But you see, we traveled more than a thousand miles from Davao and had to file a 2-day leave (without pay) for this. Judging from our time and financial resources, this is a climb that I might only do once. So a foggy view at the peak is the last thing I would want. Whatever we see up there, I sincerely hoped it was worth it.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Mt. Pulag: The Playground of the Gods Part 1

Mount Pulag
How do I even begin this post? I have already spent 10 minutes just staring at the blinking cursor of this blank page and the rest of 50 minutes were spent just looking at all our pictures in Mt. Pulag (for the nth time).

I'm still lost for words.

With this beauty, who wouldn't?


Well, first of all, I would like to thank Jan. Just a few months ago, he surprised me with a flight itinerary from Davao to Manila. Plus pogi points agad. Siyempre, I would finally be able to conquer Luzon's highest peak, not to mention, on a Valentine's Day. How's that for a gift? Better than all your bouquets, chocolates, teddy bears, and cheesy cards combined. Haha. ♥

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Quaint Little City, Baguio!

Baguio is by far my favorite city next to Davao.

There are actually lot of things to do and places to go to in Baguio. But I'll be honest, the very reason why I was excited to visit Baguio would be the strawberries. I can ditch just any other tourist spots in Baguio, but not the experience of picking strawberries.

Jan and I only had a day in Baguio, so I have to make sure we get to pick strawberries and have a lot of rest afterwards because we'll be having an exhausting adventure the next day.

We arrived in Baguio at around 5 o'clock in the morning and the first thing that greeted me was the cold breeze. I was already having chills inside the bus and it even got colder the moment I stepped out of it. I would rather board back into the bus, and even with the aircon turned into full blast, I would still feel much better.
© Life is so full of tae!
Maira Gall