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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Our Bicol Experience

On our fourth night on the road, we got a chance to perform our nightly gratitude ritual we normally do at home after dinner. It was late in the evening but it probably felt right after not having done it the past nights mostly because of the difficulty of getting the right opportunity while on travel. The babies were asleep so we're focused on catching up with the thoughts of our two older kids and for a recap of our long day in the southern Bicol. We also felt at home at Fritz Homestay with the personal attention given by the owner, Jocelyn. We're gonna share our unique experience at Fritz in a separate blog post.

Here's some highlights of the many things we're thankful for today:
  1. Butanding and firefly encounter at Donsol. We thought all along that the babies might not be able to join in the boat ride to watch the whale sharks. But we were all there to experience it. We count this experience at Donsol as one of the best not only for the kids but for us as well. We're giving details in a separate blog entry.
  2. Flat tire in Daraga. Not that we relish that thought of delays and repair costs, but it happened at the right time and the right place. We were about to leave Jollibee Daraga after a late lunch, when the flat tire at the right rear side was discovered. Actually this was already the second one because the left rear tire was damaged the previous day and we were already running with the spare tire. Because it was in the middle of the city, it was easy to ask around and we found a tire/vulcanizing shop just a block away. We paid P160 for the assistance and vulcanizing on both tires. Really a good deal when almost everything was done for us at the spot where we're stuck. Imagine if it happened in the middle of nowhere.
  3. Meeting Genean. Because we were stuck for a while, we got a chance to coordinate with a friend from college who lives in Bicol. We thought she cannot make it because we knew that she was having a meeting this afternoon. But to our surprise, she was only a few minutes away and she asked us to wait so we can meet. The 30 minutes was not enough to catch up for the many years apart, but we were able to exchange basic contact and schedule info for a chance later on to talk some more.
  4. Bicol hospitality. Our encounter with the Bicolanos in Sorsogon, Donsol and Daraga areas were mostly positive. For a weary bunch of travelers, the last thing we want are rude unhelpful people.

As we head to Southern Tagalog, we look forward to a nice final day in Bicol, maybe not as awesome as our Butanding and firefly experience, but close to it wouldn't be too much to ask LOL.

In our interaction with our boatmen while waiting to launch for firefly watching, we learned to say: Maray na banggi sa inyo na gabus.

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