On our way to Los Angeles from Manila in June, my cousin Iva suggested that we stopover in Hawaii for a few days. She said it calmly, like we were just taking a basic road trip somewhere. I freaked out. I didn’t even bother to play it cool, and started jumping around, and dancing in the room.
Aside from the free MNL-HNL-LA plane tickets (!!!), she treated me to a stay at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort. This was the view that we had from our balcony. There were times when I had to remind myself to actually go out and explore the area because I was too awestruck; I’d just hang on to the railing, and stare at this.
Ever since I was a kid, it had always been my dream to visit Hawaii. I had learned about it in books, movies, TV shows, songs, people’s travel stories…Hawaii just seemed like one of the ultimate bucket list destinations for sea lovers, and I’d keep imagining myself going there someday. Thank you so much to Ate Iva for making my childhood dream come true.
I’ll be sharing more about our experience at the resort, walking around town, and venturing off to North Shore…Until then, I hope you can keep me company!
- 2005 Kalia Road Honolulu, Hawaii, 96815
Brave the waves,
A Backpacker’s Photo Diary: Davao
Hop on a plane, head to the foothills of Mt. Apo, work the whole day, then wake up at dawn to have breakfast by the beach? No problem. Just kidding, there were times when I wanted to pass out, but I was super excited for this Davao trip because I was with one of my favorite people in the world—Mary!
When we first met at work years ago, we immediately clicked, like bluetooth connected levels. What I love about her is she’s so real, and she’s like that perfect cocktail drink, strong enough to amp you up with the right buzz, while also allowing you to still have meaningful conversations. She’s amazing at what she does too, never hesitates to help anybody out, and all the while manages to see the brighter side of things.
This is one of the reasons why I have a blast being sent on out of town business trips with her. We always have a great time. I can’t wait to see her again when I go home next year, and have new adventures together.
Brave the waves,
A Backpacker’s Photo Diary: Bais
Absolute highlight of this trip: having live chickens beside me, as I sat in a battered van with the windows rolled down, to get to the Manjuyod Sandbar in Bais. I still couldn’t figure out what made me decide to stay behind in Dumaguete, when the rest of my friends had already headed home after our Siquijor getaway. I had no clear cut game plan, no (silly) existential crisis of the month, no desperate need to escape from everything. And yet there I was, traveling solo, brushing off the occasional stray feather, enjoying listening to all the clucking, and hopping on a small banca upon reaching the port.
It was just me, the fishermen, and this slice of paradise.
Traveling by myself had been part of my job for the past seven years, and you’d think that I’d get so used to it, nothing would amaze me anymore. But my heart still beat wildly as I saw the clear waters, and felt the sun burning my skin. I couldn’t help but feel small and thankful talking to the locals as they pulled the fishing net together, and cheered as they checked their fresh catch of the day. I thought that this trip had no purpose, but it turned out it was one that I needed all along.
Brave the waves,