A Day at Dingalan, Aurora

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Dear Universe,

I’ve shelved our Dingalan, Aurora trip article for over a month, so forgive me if this is not one of my best.

I know I’m defeating the whole purpose of why I put up the blog in the first place since I’ve not written for a while and have not written a lot that’s happened. But consider that a good thing: maybe I’m too busy living? Maybe there’s just so many books to read, work to do, friends to see, series to binge watch, cafes/restos to eat at,  goals to work hard for, life to live, etc.?

Anyway, this trip took place a few days after New Year’s Eve – our first trip for 2017 (Hurrah!)

You know how it’s one of my dream to retire in Batanes? And how I always joke around that the reason I’m saving that for when I’m older is because once I get there, I may never come back?

Well, they say that Dingalan is “The Batanes of the East” so I guess I saw a glimpse of the old age I want – though I’m really not a fan of comparing places to other places since I feel they should all be regarded for their own beauty and not for which other places they resemble.

So here’s how it went, Universe. A day at Dinagalan, Aurora. Adventures and such.

 

1. Get lost around EDSA at midnight

Hahaha. Started the adventure by getting lost!

Okay, I know this is not shocking, knowing that I have the navigation skills of a blind rat but it was still nerve-wracking. Oddly enough though, it’s not the first time I lost my way around EDSA during the wee hours of the night. Huh.

That night, I pinned the wrong McDonald’s (there’s just too many of them!) when I booked an Uber. Astonishingly, I was able to find my way. I calmed myself by saying “EDSA is just one big highway and I’m surely around EDSA, so the McDonald’s I’m looking for is just around here somewhere”.

Though it was funny calling my friends saying I was at the meeting place but couldn’t see them, and them telling me they couldn’t see me anywhere too, thinking “Well, this is fairly small Mcdonald’s, how can we not see each other?” only to realise I was at the wrong place and had no idea yet as to where everyone is.

2. Meet new friends

For this trip, we joined a group tour since there were only four of us.

I didn’t expect that it’s nice to share a ride, food, jokes, and Dingalan with people we’ve just met. Luckily, it was easy to get along with them. We had a boodle fight for lunch and everyone was sharing the prawns (and everything else), making sure each one has had their fair share– really cool bayanihan experience. Faith in humanity restored.

Check out and Like The Wander Kingdom’s page in Facebook to be updated of tours you can join (thank you, Kuya Ricky!)

3. Trek, trek, trek

Ugh, Universe, I broke my no-trekking/hiking-for-two-years rule.

As much as I respect the activity, I’m just too weak – and whiny – for it.

But there were THREE (!!!) light treks I had to endure if I really wanted to experience Dingalan. One was to get to the viewpoint, another one to the lighthouse, and another one since we also went to Tanawan Falls.

In all fairness, it really was just a light trek and there was a good trail so it wasn’t so bad. I may even say I’ve enjoyed it. The view was spectacular. See photos.

 

4. Beach, please

One word: Serenity.

Honestly, it was so peaceful by the beach I considered just staying there and not seeing the other places listed on the itinerary. I had a book with me and was really tempted to just sit along the sands and read.

It was so calm. And the water’s so clear. And the weather was perfect.

When will I ever get tired of a good day by sea? Never probably.

 

5. Sleep aboard a fisherman’s boat

One of those well-f*ck-it moments was when we realised there weren’t any life vests on the fisherman’s boat we were about to ride to get to the viewpoint and back. There were other boats with available life vests so we suggest for other people to go for that.

I’ve forgotten how it ended up that the four of us did not have vests but it just goes to show we weren’t such worriers (and maybe that we were reckless – don’t be like us). We didn’t worry about the boat sinking or whatever. We even fell asleep during the ride because it was so peaceful. Go figure.

6. Jump off a cliff

Ahhh, I’m really proud of this! I’ve always had chances to jump off a cliff but have never taken any until I’ve had the chance to do so with Tanawan falls as a backdrop. I’m so glad I’ve finally had the guts because now I know I can do it and can’t wait to experience it again.

Awesome life goal checked.

7.  Coffee, anyone?

On our way back from Tanawan falls, hair still damp from the after-swim shower, there was a light drizzle. So we had coffee by a sari-sari store overlooking the mountains. I’m not a fan of the cold and the rain, to be honest, but that day, it wasn’t so bad.

It even felt like the perfect way to end the adventure before we rode the van going home. Then again, maybe I’m biased because a good cup of coffee is never a bad idea.

I know I’m really a lucky girl to get to experience these things and I do feel guilty that I’m not always grateful enough.

 

So allow me to thank you again, Universe, for moments like these.

Here’s to 2017: to new friends, taking the leap, feeling alive, and most of all, to a good cup of coffee.

 

Love,

N

PS. Spent around P1,300 all-in for the trip. 🙂

alettertotheuniverse.com