SAGADA Beyond the Usual Itinerary

For a couple of weeks now, I have been feeling stressful at work. I have been planning to go somewhere the past weekend to just chill and relax but I always end up staying in bed or just giving in to the whims of my family and some friends. Also, I have always been eyeing on a possible return to Sagada because it has been a while since the last time I was there. I guess the thought of that long bus ride during weekends is just to tiring. However, after acknowledging to myself that work has been really burning me out, I made a spontaneous decision to push my long overdue Sagada return. This was further ignited when a friend of mine recommended me to stay at a seemingly relaxing place that is not yet known from among travellers and tourists.

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The next thing I know, I was already inside the 3a.m. Lizardo Lines bus, sleepy and no concrete itinerary at all. However, at the back of my mind, my goals for this trip are: to gather my thoughts and have my dwindling supply of motivation be rejuvenated.Having been to Sagada 8 times between 2007 and 2014, I have to say I have done the usual “tourist activities. So here is my “beyond the usual Sagada itinerary” over the weekend.


Staycation. Staycation at a relatively unknown (slightly operating) accommodation a good friend offered me to stay at. They call it “Shire of Sagada” Looking at the photos, you will automatically decipher why it is called such. To my friends who’ve been asking about details, I will post soon contact number and possibly rates as the owners are yet to officially launch it.

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Bring a book to read. I brought with me a Haruki Murakami book that I get to read from time to time, even in between walking and resting while trekking my way to some unknown Sagada woodlands near my accommodation.

Explore off the radar restos. I went to eat at restos/cafes that are off the tourists’ radar. It is nice to try the unpopular one’s and you’ll be surprised as to how cheap they can be. Although I went to eat yoghurt at the Yoghurt House and have a slice of lemon pie at the Lemon Pie House because I can’t help myself not to. You can’t blame me if my palate misses them after not visiting Sagada for 5 years and 4 months.

Walk – whenever, wherever. I just walked around whenever I feel like doing it. I did not want to pressure myself that I should go see this or that place. I literally just walked wherever I wanted to without a certain pace. I walked the main street stopping every now and then checking out what is new, grab some street food to munch or just go randomly take photos. I even trekked my way to a relatively unknown pine trail passing by some rice paddies.

Sleep. Rest.Having just arrived from a 3-month Europe trip, my sleep hasn’t been going well. Jetlag must’ve hit me terribly. So, I promised myself to grab as much sleep as I could while in Sagada though it was tough not to wake up really early for the sunrise. But yes, I did a lot of lazing around while reading a book.

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Try local beer! Go drink a glass of beer… At a brewery… Inside a pine forest. I may have been to Sagada several times but it was my first time to go see the Sagada Cellar Door, known for their craft beer. And even though I ain’t a beer drinker, I just had to try it since a Php250 fee is a must pay (but is consumable). I had my beer with a delicious, spicy sausage!

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Wait for the sunset and sunrise.I wanted to watch the sunset at Lake Danum, something I have done during my 2nd Sagada trip. BUT, my legs were too tired from walking so I didn’t push through. But lo, and behold! The sundown was visibly stunning when I was at Sagada Door Cellar. Despite the high pine trees, the tangerine hue from the drifting sun swathed the forest.So yes – to watch the sundown somewhere I didn’t intend to watch it – CHECK!

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As an early bird, waking up early isn’t really much of a problem. Just like my initial plan for sunset watching, I wanted to wait for the sunrise at Kamanbaneng Hill (aka Marlboro Hills). However, the same excuse as to not going to Lake Danum applies. Marlboro requires extra time and effort of walking. So when I woke up the following day, I gazed outside my window and I was greeted with a pretty sunrise. I guess my wish to view the sunrise from some place no one knows happened! Yay!

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Laugh with locals.What makes an experience unforgettable is our encounter with people we meet along the way. As I was staying at a local family’s house (being turned into a homestay), I had a great time talking with the owners. It was a happy feeling laughing my heart out while sharing stories with locals around a fireplace, which in turn kept my sometimes cold heart and feet, warm.

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It was a short but relaxing weekend in my happy place. I pray that all these good things would happen again. So there, I hope you would have the courage to treat yourself a well-deserved getaway. Believe me, the mind, the heart and the body will love this kind of pampering.

Shout out to Mitch Pelayo’s fam for having me, and to Robin for the recommendation.

Cheers to spontaneous weekend getaways! Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy.

G.O.T Memories in Dubrovnik, Croatia

I did not go to Croatia (Dubrovnik specifically) because of the series, “Game of Thrones” or the relatively new Pinoy series, “Make It With You”. I was never a fan of  GOT and I am just recently liking the latter. My desire to to visit this Balkan country came about because a friend of mine had awesome stories (years wayback) prompting me to include this country in my travel bucketlist. The next thing thing I knew, I was already booked and the rest is not history, but is shown in this post.

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And so before I am totally corrupted by my laziness, feast your eyes on how charming Dubrovnik is through these photographs! Taking it from the GOT reference, Dubrovnik as an experience is Great, Otherworldly, Tantalizing (G.O.T)! The moments I had are now some of my all-time favorites.

Both the sunrise and the sunset are magical in Dubrovnik. The Adriatic Sea is just lovely when the golden glow wraps its waters.

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Old Town Dubrovnik is probably one of the most beautiful “old towns” I have visited in Europe! Every corner is picturesque!

They also have lovely beaches with crystal clear, turquoise water that is very inviting (only that it is freezing at this time of the year – December).

I was, for a moment, lost for words… and truly happy I got the chance to experience this place.

PS: All photographs were taken using my phone camera.

Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy.

 

BAGA: A Spanish Medieval Village

Bagà is a Spanish municipality located at the head of the valley of the Llobregat river, at the foot of the high mountains of the Cadí range in Catalonia, Spain. The town itself is at 785 metres above sea level making this medieval community chilly in temperature.

My day trip to this place was a quiet, serene one. The town is really small with some of the following as the places that might interest you. Plus the small streets/ alleys are very picturesque too.

  • Sant Esteve de Bagà — is the parish church of the town, built between the 14th and 15th centuries.
  • Santuari de la Mare de Déu del Paller is a neoclassical sanctuary two km outside town, dedicated to the town’s patroness, the “Virgin of the Haystack”
  • Plaça Porxada, the town’s central square, built in the 13th century
  • Placa Galceran de Pinos, another interesting gathering area of the town.
  • Parc Naturel de Cadi-Moixero, which is a lovely hiking destination in the area.

I was in Barcelona when I did this day trip trip. It is approximately 1.5 hours from Barcelona.

Don’t be a wasted soul, be ‘juan’derlust. Take it easy.

Thailand: Prasat Hin Phimai

If there is one thing you will never run out seeing anywhere across Thailand, that is finding incredible temples of various kinds.

My recent trip to the Land of Smiles gave me an opportunity to visit one of its northeastern provinces, Nakhon Ratchasima. Upon googling, I have learned that place is home to Thailand’s largest Khmer temples – the Phimai Historical Park or Prasat Hin Phimai.

With over 1,000 meters length and an almost 600 meters width, this rectangular complex houses some of the finest examples of Khmer architecture in the country.

My colleague from Thailand who accompanied me in this quick visit said that the reason why these temples are unique is that they were constructed as a Buddhist temple, even if the Khmer people who built it were Hindu.

Basing it on how it looks like, Phimai’s temple style resembles that of Angkor Wat in Cambodia and maybe bit of Prambanan in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

As a travel enthusiast who has a soft spot for ruins, I can not help but be amazed while I walked around its complex. You can feel how much history is embedded among the seemingly fragile walls. I found myself musing and wanting to stay longer.

It was a short visit at this side of Thailand but definitely something I will always remember. True enough, there is beauty in everything… Something ruined included.

Don’t be wasted soul, be ‘juan’derlust. Take it easy.

Musandam: A Dose of an Omani Dhow Cruise

I was in Dubai for a business trip when one of my UAE-based friends suggested that we visit Oman on a weekend. As neighbouring countries, Oman can be accessed by land. One frequently visited place is called Musandam. It was my first time to hear about this region in Oman and so I was prompted to google about it.

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Boy, I was surprised to learn that such natural wonder exists at this part of the Arabian Peninsula. So without much of my friends’ convincing powers, we found ourselves one weekend, on our way to Musandam. The land trip wasn’t really long and the sights along the way kept me musing.

We later on reached a gate where our papers/ documents were verified. It signaled that we have already reached the Sultanate of Oman. A few more minutes and we were already parked at an area that is so close to the waters. It was pretty impressive. My first impression is that Musandam is a place where the mountains meet the sea (in this case, the Gulf of Oman). We were then transferred to an Omani Dhow or a traditional Omani cruise boat. These kind of boats are very popular in this side of the world. They have been used to sail into the fjords and have been the perfect mode of transportation for a relaxing trip into the Musandam Peninsula.

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As we begin our dhow cruise, I couldn’t help but be in awe of the picturesque landscape and seascape of Musandam: from the lovely fiords (a long, narrow inlet with steep sides or cliffs), to the stunning contour of the Hajar Mountains, and the emerald to azure waters of the Arabian Sea. These sights of blues and browns are a total opposite of Dubai and Abu Dhabi’s steel and glass vista. No wonder this has become a famed getaway destination for tourists. The dhow experience itself is very relaxing as the cool sea breeze waff through my face.

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After an hour or so, our dhow stopped in the middle of the cerulean waters of Musandam. We were then told to get out of the boat and explore the waters. My friends and I decided to go swimming, snorkeling and later on tried the banana boat. I was laughing at myself because it was my first time to ride the banana boat. You see, in the Philippines, banana boat rides are very popular especially in Boracay and Puerto Galera. I have been to these beaches several times yet I haven’t tried going for a banana boat ride before. After we did these water activities, we were treated to a sumptuous lunch. Later on in the afternoon, we got to try boat fishing.

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The dhow cruise experience ended with a sunset view of the ‘Norway of Arabia’. True enough, Musandam is a remarkable blend of seaside fun and quaint mountain views. What a weekend getaway with friends (shout out to Elaine, Ela, and Hazel for joining me in this trip), and that truly makes you realize that “Oman is an island…” I mean, “No man is an island”. So what are you waiting for, “don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust”. Take it easy.

Don’t Hurry, Don’t Worry

Some six (or seven) years ago, I entertained the idea of wanting to set foot on all 81 provinces in the Philippines. The goal seems far-fetched until I noticed that after a couple years of local traveling, I have been to more than half. And so, I became more assertive to put that goal into fruition.

At one point, I went to a certain region for 5 days and visited one province per day. It was exhausting. Later, I realized I have missed a lot because it felt like I was racing just to see more. And as I am given more travel opportunities, it has dawned on me that it should never be about how many places you’ve been (provinces or countries or continents). No offense to my friends who are aiming at going to all 81 provinces, or those who have already achieved such a feat. I am close to ticking all 81 with just 5 more to visit, but it made me think that there should be more to this goal.

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My Europe trip in 2017 gave me a chance to visit countries I have always wanted to see. It was an almost 3-month backpacking but obviously, it wasn’t enough to see entire Europe. Not even an entire country. I didn’t even get to see all the “basic” sights of each key city I have been to. When I came to Europe, I have set my mind to take everything slow and easy, and shy away from the idea that “I should be able to visit all places that I want to see”. I didn’t see Spain or Switzerland and other must-see countries in Europe during that trip. And it was okay. I told myself that missing out some would serve as an inspiration for me to come back.

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Traveling taught me that when we are out there, we must slow down and try not to rush. It may not be true for everyone but, I have come to ascertain that people who do everything quicker also do it worse. I always say, “Take it easy” and it is but proper to really go slowly. Being in a new place usually makes us feel excited and it is no surprise if we find ourselves not wanting to miss out on anything. Hence, the tendency to try everything, see every place like a mental suitcase that’s one size too small. Every traveling person should battle this temptation because one will end up weary and worried and end up missing out the fun and the very essence of being in a certain place.

Ever since my Europe backpacking, I am becoming more of that “slow down and try not to rush” kind of person. I have been trying my best to take time in everything. I have learned to enjoy every bite of food I eat and at times closing my eyes, allowing my palate to relish every taste. Instead of taking a taxi and the metro, I have come to enjoy long walks at a slow pace and be more observant of the things I pass by. This allowed me to have more meaningful interaction with people I encounter along the way. Things like this one made me appreciate the importance of letting every other person finish their side of the conversation while I listen attentively. Perhaps, one of my favorite thing to do in every place I went to was to stop in the middle of the day, (whether I was in a park, a busy street, a food house), closed my eyes for some fleeting moments, and be aware of my breathing. And it felt so good.

Funny, and ironic it is to ponder that as we hurry more, we experience less. Although we may do more things, eat more food, or visit more places, in our haste, we end up seeing less of them. We end up feeling tired missing out on the actual fun, and that surreal sensation being in that place. From now on, remember that when you travel, make the most of what you’re doing by allowing yourself to remain in the present moment as much as possible.

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Of course, I still want to visit my country’s 81 provinces. BUT for now, I don’t want to see more, instead, I want to feel more, and BE more! And I will take my time. Take it, easy everyone.

Ka-Prague Tumibok ang Puso

Prague, Czech Republic’s capital, is a city you shouldn’t miss when you are in Europe. Here are 5 reasons how Prague swept me off my feet in a heartbeat.

1. Prague’s allure is like seeing a Disney movie, only that it is real. With its castles and other medieval-looking buildings to its narrow, cobblestone alleys, Prague will leave you in awe. The Prague Castle specially is a vision to behold.

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2. Prague and it’s view from atop offers a spectacular sight of the city. St. Vitus Cathedral has this view above, and so as the tower at Charles Bridge, where Vltava River showcases its splendor. Or maybe make your way to one of those hilly sites of the city, grab a beer, and watch Prague glow as night envelopes the city.

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3. I love sweet food. And the “trdelník”, a traditional Slovak rolled pastry originating from the Hungarian-speaking region of Transylvania, managed to tickle my sweet tooth. This delicacy is roasted over an open fire and covered in sugar (and at times, nuts). I had a great time observing how this pastry is prepared, more so when your tongue gets to taste it.

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4. Besides the gothic architecture evident around Prague, pastel-colored buildings (that looks like gingerbread houses), and unusual, modern ones do exist too. The contrast make the city more appealing, and pretty. The Dancing House is such a stand-out, you’ll find yourself having a selfie in front of it.

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5. Prague is a cheap city. Or maybe it is the entire Czechia that is affordable. From among the many European nations I have been to, this country stands out for its affordability – from the transportation to entrance fees to food.

Oooops, by the way, I also love their train stations. Each station seems to have a distinct character because of its artistic interior.

Have you been to Prague? What do you love most about this city?

Don’t be a wasted soul. Be JUANderlust. Take it easy everyJUAN.

 

Puraw-a-Darat: Poro Point, ELYU

I am glad that some things never change. (Okay, they may have changed but not very significant). Over the weekend (actually, it is still weekend while I am doing this piece), I went to re-visit a place I have been to 9 years ago.  It is a beach in La Union that remains to be relatively unknown to a lot of people. You see, when you say La Union or ELYU, most travelers, tourists, and even locals would storm their way to San Juan (for surfing and beach bumming), San Gabriel for a Tangadan waterfall getaway, or Luna for an artsy day at the Bahay na Bato Art Gallery.

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La Union is not really the best province to visit if you are after white sand dotted beaches and crystal clear waters for snorkeling. Nonetheless, this small Northern Luzon province have some little secrets. One place I have featured last time was Immuki Island of Balaoan. This time, I am introducing the not so familiar White Beach (or locally called “Puraw-a-Darat which literally means white sand) of Poro Point in San Fernando City, La Union. ♥

So how does one get here?

1. Get off the National Hi-Way in Brgy. Paringao, Bauang, La Union. (This is the most common jump-off point, and the one I have tried on two occasions).
2. Choose any of the many beach resorts lining the area. (eg. Coconut Grove, China Sea Resort, Bali Hai etc.) I have tried China Sea Beach resort way back 2009. And just this weekend, we went to try Coconut Grove Resort. Ask about their boat rental going to White Beach aka Puraw-a-Darat.

A small outrigger boat costs around 600-800php for a 2-hour stay at the beach. We haggled and got it for 700php. If you wish to stay there longer, you inform your boatman, but an additional fee needs to be paid. The boats are really small, with which it can only accommodate a maximum of 5 people plus the boatman. I am not just sure if there are bigger ones since all boats I saw were of the same size.

They also offer snorkel rental for 100php/ piece. (Which I think is pretty pricey). When we were already approaching the island, our boatman offered the snorkel gears again, but at half the price. (So kelangang lang munang magpababebe sa una para makadiscount pa. hahaha).

Going to the cliff and the hidden white sand beach of Poro Point takes about 20-30 mins depending on the waves. I find the experience not for the faint-hearted as the waves can be quite big and nauseating. Once you pass by the famed Thunderbird Resort, and you see a white lighthouse – you are already near.

The beach isn’t really a long stretch but is enough for a few group of people. It features some rock formations, pebble and coralline rock sand, and a clear water for swimming and snorkeling. The best part is a short walk up the cliff (which is generally an off-limits area), so one can only stay the edge part. This elevated part gives a really lovely view of the beach.

So in summary, the jump off to this place is the town of Bauang but the beach is actually part of Poro Point in San Fernando City. So the next time you want to be in the beach, try to check this place, and you might be surprised that you would find yourself having the entire area to yourself.

Don’t be a wasted soul, be JUANderlust. Take it easy!

Portugal Kitang Hinintay

Dear Portugal,

Portugal kitang hinintay (can be translated as “I have long waited for you, Portugal)!, Was I happy? Are you kidding me? I wasn’t happy! I was enamored, over-whelmed (insert all superlatives here). Okay, so how did the desire to visit this travel destination start? Read along…

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2013. I was watching Leg 4 of the 23rd season of the Amazing Race. This Leg was filmed in Portugal, and the detour task then was a choice between putting together a life-size puzzle using porcelain tiles or retrieving a giant-sized compass at a monastery called Jeronimos (with which the team will use it to map out the distance traveled by Ferdinand Magellan). Search on Youtube should you be interested to see more of what happened during that episode. Because of this feature on Portugal, I randomly tweeted “makes me wanna see Portugal #AmazingRace”.

Since then, I always have Portugal in my list of “Places I want to Visit”. You see, I often jot down the things I want to accomplish, and that includes enumerating in my journal the places I want to see. (If only you’d get a peep at my personal notes, you’ll see a loooong list, hahaha). Last year, I managed to go to Europe for the first time. It was a 10-week backpacking across the continent. At the end of that one-of-a-kind solo adventure, I realized that I wasn’t able to put into fruition my desire to set foot on Portugal. (Magellan must be really disappointed in me). I, myself, was tad disappointed. I guess it wasn’t the right time, just yet.

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Fast-forward 2018. Another opportunity to visit Europe came about. This time, I made sure that Portugal is on top of my list. I asked my boss at work if I could go for a vacation after my work-related travels, and boy I was glad he would allow me to. Just this 1st week of May, my long-time longing of seeing, experiencing Portugal came into realization. And wow, what an experience!

The moment I set foot outside the Porto airport, and that time I left the Lisbon airport, everything that happened in between during my stay in Portugal was just beyond happy, memorable, and nothing short of amazing! My first post on my social media accounts about Portugal was all praises, and words of admiration. I was all smiles sharing stories about Portugal, and I feel genuinely happy reminiscing every bit of my experience. When someone asks me why I speak so much joy and love for this Iberian nation, I end up being speechless just because.

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You know that feeling when you are in love and you are being asked what made you fell for that person you love? You just can’t put it into words. I try, but, I think I am failing big time. I mean, I have lots of reasons in mind but I just can’t seem to find the proper way to put them into words. It felt like Portugal and I were fated for each other. Hahaha. Okay, I may be a little exaggerated. Nonetheless, I will try one more time in this write-up to share reasons why “a feeling of certainty” came over me when I was in Portugal. I hope that the photographs I took will suffice what you would perceive maybe lacking later on.

I find Portugal’s Porto and Lisbon to be vibrant, and really charming. It felt like these cities have a pinch of something from the various European cities I have visited since last year. I’d be hypocritical if I’d say I didn’t set some expectations prior to my visit. Having been elected as the BEST European destination for 3 years — 2012, 2014 and 2017, Porto, specifically made me really excited. But I had to manage my expectations as well since I was already getting jaded of seeing street murals, cobblestone streets, historical monuments, museums, and the like. BUT, both Lisbon and Porto will prove you and your anticipated boredom, mistaken!

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Porto is amazing BECAUSE:
The view overlooking the Douro River is just impeccable. The colorful houses that dot the riverside, the Dom Luis metal bridge, the sighting of the Rabelo boats, the unsullied cold air wafting at my cheeks while atop Mostero da Serra do Pilar – were just too good to be true. Except that they were real and really lovely.

Walking along the narrow (and sometimes confusing) cobblestone streets seem to have transported me back in time. Every corner of which is “instagrammable”, hence one MUST stop every now and then to capture some moments.

It’s romantic! How do we know that a place is romantic? We just do! Or maybe the old art deco cafes, the street graffiti, and other architectural wonders (from churches to museum to apartments) within the city all contribute to this romantic sense.

Just like Lisbon, the mode of transportation, especially their tram and train, are not just cool ways to travel but are also aesthetically delightful pieces you’ll see in Porto.

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Lisbon is love BECAUSE:

Food is splendid. From the renowned “Pastel de nata” (Portuguese tarts) to their bacalhau, and seafood risotto — every restaurant and cafe I ate left me feeling tremendously gratified, without being guilty of spending much on food.

I am such a big fan of murals and street art. Colorful tiled buildings are everywhere. One thing I have noticed while walking along the streets of Lisbon, graffiti on walls (even houses), and abandoned buildings (with some garbage) are everywhere. BUT, unlike other cities I have seen with this similar depiction, I didn’t feel perilous. Instead, the shabby vibe added to the charm I mentioned earlier. It made Lisbon have a more distinct personality.

I love long walks through meandering and hilly paths. Reaching the top portion of these hills (whether you are on a castle or some random viewpoint within the city), you will be rewarded with an all-encompassing view of the city and its picturesque classic red-roof houses.

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I love the people I have met. As my travels get more frequent, the people I meet in a certain place is now a big factor towards the creation of a long-lasting impression. And the Portuguese surely made a positive impact on me for they are genuinely helpful and approachable (especially in time s I find myself getting lost). Special shout out to the staff/people I met at the hostel I stayed at!

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There are other reasons why I fell in love with Portugal but I am leaving those for you to find out. I left Portugal with admiration and respect. The way it impressed me has been lingering since I got back home here in the Philippines. It made me realize that just like people, only a few places will leave a lasting impression. And now, I have come to recognize why a lot of people speak highly of Portugal. I do, too, now. And as my plane took off from the Humberto Delgado Airport, I said my prayers of gratitude and hoped that soon, I will get to see Portugal again.

Most of my travels started as a dream, which eventually became part of my goals. I did put them into writing, wrote down possible steps how to achieve them. I directly and indirectly claimed they will happen. And guess what? A lot of them already did.

Don’t be a wasted soul, be JUANderlust. Take it easy.

 

Slow Down, Take It Easy.

The secret of living a happy life is to “slow down and do one thing at a time”, my grandmother once told me.

At this day and age what people call millennial generation, it seems that almost everything has been replaced by something “instant” or readily available. Various social media like Facebook, Twitter, Tinder, and the like have served as the mainstream and traditional ways are rapidly being put into oblivion. Disappointing as it may sound but the era of fake and unverified information or news are becoming the standards of truth.

Nowadays, one could order food, clothes or whatever material thing one has in mind, online. Pay it online, and after a few days, they are delivered at one’s doorstep. One could also meet people in certain dating applications and voila, you are up for a romantic date or more, at an instant. Even in schools, some institutions would require their students to submit their outputs through emails. In workplaces, one could conduct trainings virtually. True enough, these things are indication of progress, and comfort to most.

On a hindsight, I have noticed that because of these convenience, people have become more demanding, and have lost grip of the essence of waiting, and yes, taking things at a slower fashion. These things are very evident specially in big cities wherein most individuals seem to be racing with each other – where everyone is in a hurry to book a ride home thru transportation apps, in a hurry to finish work inorder to accommodate and accomplish more tasks, thinking that being able to do more at a faster pace makes one more superior, admirable, and incredible.

I am guilty of these claims. I am aware that I spend a significant time checking on my phone for notifications in my social media accounts, checking on the latest news/things in Twitter or in Instagram, and would just prefer a quick hi/hello in Viber, Whatsapp and messenger to friends instead of meeting them in person.

My recent travel to Europe served as a timely reminder that I should take time to genuinely experience what life has been offering me all along. Things like taking my time to eat and to actually enjoy the food I am eating, to not worrying of getting up really early and hurrying myself to be dressed up in the morning so as to accomplish alot of things, to appreciating long, leisure walks while talking to random people, exchanging views about many things — are just some of those that I have learned to value more.

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While I have learned to set aside checking on my emails and socmed notifications for a few hours,  I am still guilty of being a gadget-dependent individual.

It is true that grabbing every opportunity coming our way is a good thing, and accomplishing more seem a really impressive idea, but then again, we should remind ourselves to enjoy and notice the smallest of the things around us. We should not be too preoccupied with our destination. We should learn to appreciate the journey per se and keep in mind the possibilities of encountering U-turns and dead-ends, and of course enjoying every moment along the way.

“Take it easy” — I always say this in most of my posts, and maybe it is time to practice it more whole heartedly. I guess taking time, taking a few steps back shouldn’t hurt our way towards achieving our main goals in life. Who knows, if we do these, we might just end up being happier and more satisfied.

***This write-up is a product of my jetlag. Since I cant sleep and these thoughts have been racing inside my head the past weeks, might as well jot them down here.

Lester out.