Thursday, May 26, 2011

№ 10. Calaguas & Bagasbas

The sea looked glassy and calm in the dusk that Saturday. It certainly belied the journey to Calaguas Islands and Bagasbas Beach, Camarines Norte.

Our weekend getaway began Friday night with work-rat-tired steps to board our bus. We left Manila at around 9 pm. It was a ten-hour sleeper ride on cramped seats. By 11 pm, we were fast headed south for the Bicol Region---famous for its fiery dish of coconut milk, taro leaves and red chilies. Laing! 

Towards the end of the ride, however, we got 5 am jabs out of our sleep from Bitukang Manok. It’s that segment of the national highway that zigzagged like chicken entrails, hence the name. Then after that, yet another two-hour ride on the outrigger, out towards the Pacific. Happily, the banca ride, about an hour and so, was much easier on our sore backs and ornery bums this time.

That Saturday evening, while waist deep in the cool seawater, with sand on my arms and while stalking the shadows of the boat waltzing in the quiet sea, I remembered the long trip. The zen of the destination somehow tempered the tumble of the roads.

Indeed, the elusive Eden had to be earned by surviving some ordeal and making briny offering of sweat from one’s brows.

Bento Box:

1. The Travel Factor itinerary was laid back and compensated for the long bus ride. I loved the food, especially the fried chicken dinner and the crispy fried fish breakfast. A whole day spent swimming opens up a black hole in the guts.

2. Useful sites about Calaguas and Bagasbas:

     * Just Wandering – Calaguas
     * Lakwatsero – Calaguas
     * Wanna Surf – Bagasbas
     * Let’s Go Sago

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