Random Thoughts about Life & Love

So here is to veering away from my usual posts. Admittedly, I do not feel inspired to make an entry here in my WordPress account the past weeks. So many travel backlogs that need to be shared but it seems that my laziness is hitting me to the core. Every night though, I find myself clouded with so many racing thoughts. So I am giving in to these random things that has kept me quite jittery for some time now. And yeah, this entry is in Taglish. So bare with me.

Kit McCallumonce once shared,

“How often we must bear the challenges of living and loving?
The endless roller coaster between happiness and sorrow;
The constant ups and downs of daily strife.
And always the question remains …. why?”

Perplexity
How often do we ask the question “Where do I go from here?” If life is a series of challenges and lessons, then only by reflecting on our past triumphs and mistakes, can we wisely choose the next path that we will ultimately embrace.

I have always wanted to write something to address such question but then I always find myself feeling dumpy doing it. There are things kasi na parang mahirap isulat. Sigurado ako, marami sa atin ang dumating na sa puntong nahihirapan ng magdesisyon sa ilang mga bagay… leaving us wondering on how to deal with delicate things. Iyun bang tipong nag-aalala tayo about choosing the slighter of 2 tribulations (or iyong mas maganda sa dalawang positibong bagay). Most often than not eh, it’s a choice between doing the decently right thing (or giving in to a new judgment) at kung anu-ano pang mga bagay (ie let go of something you think is hurting us, or get hurt and hold on because you love that person). These, perhaps, are very rigid actions lalo na sa isang kultura kung saan lahat ata ng bagay eh personal.

I was in a state of hurly-burly for the past few days. Baffled. Depressed. Anxious. Devastated. Napaka-indescribable yung feeling, un lang – it was in a badlight. I was in a dilemma.

Should I stay? Or was it time to leave?
Kailangan ko pa bang maghintay pa o tama na kasi nakakapagod na rin?
It’s a battle between holding on and letting go.

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Boomerang
As with most things in life, just when we think we had something going smoothly, life throws us a boomerang; causing our relationship with someone hard hit; something none of us was at fault with, but nonetheless, leaves a stubborn scar. I had a misunderstanding with a good friend the past days. My friend was more resilient, offering to piece things back. But my survival instinct got the better off me. And so I walked away. Ma-pride ako, kaya hanggang ngayon, hindi ko pa rin kinakausap. I still am doing the silent treatment. Sigh.

Next topic: Na-miss kong magsulat ng tungkol sa love.

I could not even remember when was the last time I wrote something about love. Yung classic na entry tungkol sa pag-ibig ha. Sa totoo lang, magmula ng ma-broken-hearted ako 7 years, 6 months, 1 day, 23 hours and 55 minutes (as of this time I’m typing this) ago, eh hirap na ako gumawa ng mga tungkol sa love. Hirap man, I still try my best to extract some creative juices. So, if there are things I have learned from my past relationship, eto ang mga ilan sa mga yun.

Battleground
Love is a battleground. Nabanggit eto ng isa sa mga characters sa series na Chuck. I texted this line to my friends. Surprisingly, one friend of mine naively texted back and said – “So if you know that you have all the weapons, don’t get yourself defeated…” (na may kasama tawa sa text).

Her candid remark made me think. OO nga naman. Why would I just walk away and concede, eh marami pa namang paraan jan na hindi ko pa ginagawa; marami paakong weapons na hindi ko nagagamit. It has dawned in me na, may mga bagay nga siguro na hindi nagtatagal… But it is always our choice if we won’t make them last. Na hindi naman talaga sila mawawala if we didn’t choose to let them go. Na hindi naman sila aalis if only we kept our hands gripped together. (Kaso umalis at iniwan pa rin ako…)

In a Nutshell
Relationships come and go like people on a rotating door. Gaya ng mga gamot, its shelf life is finite, although it doesn’t necessarily have to mean short. When it’s time comes, it usually means it’s also time to move on. Moving on does not necessarily mean you have given up. Sabi nga sa kantang One Hello, “endings are beginnings”. Yeah right, there are more magnificent lives to be encountered, more people to meet who are just around the bend.

A magical relationship does not happen everyday. Every once in a while, it needs to loosen too. But at the end of the day, it will always be our option to let that magic stay. Haaaaaaaay, kelan nga kaya ulit darating yang magic na yan?

Love is not an easy road for most;
It twists and turns with many forks in the road,
Although always, and inevitably, we are given a choice …

Do we turn to the right … or the left?
Do we take the high road … or the low road?
Do we take the easy path … or the difficult one?

It’s your choice. It’s our choice. As the Karate Kid’s master says – “Life will knock us down, but it is our choice to get up back.” The warning though, is to catch yourself when it gets too easy.

Lester out. Take it easy everyone.
Lester out.

Hurts & Broken Hearts

Most of you might be surprised to see yet another entry that deviates from my usual posts. Let’s just say, I am trying to share a little more of myself. So here’s something I wrote some 9 years ago.

Loving, getting hurt, and loving again and getting hurt again may sound over-used as a blog topic and it may sound cheesy. But on second thought, it doesnt matter since its always relatable.

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We are all human. Even superheroes have there human side. No matter what our economic background, cultural standings and our chosen profession is — we all bleed the same color if we are cut. But more than that, we are prone to heart break and old battle scars from old relationships that somehow went wrong.

Relationship failures, if we knew why they went wrong or not, we still ask ourselves with “Why? What did I do wrong?” And this could be one sided or on both sides of the relationship.

Some affairs are made in heaven. And there are certain relationships that are simply not meant to be. They are doomed from the very beginning. Then there are those that start off as a storybook romance, and then they sour over time.

After being in a string of bad relationships, we start to wonder if we are defeated… defective… useless… It becomes hard to open our heart again to anyone and to trust someone again. Even if it involves trusting yourself to let go to love again.

BUT, if we don’t let go — how are we going to get over the heartbreak and turn it into another battle scar? Too bad they don’t award the purple heart of valor and bravery for surviving undesirably painful relationships.

“The only way to forget is to accept, and the only way to move on is to look ahead. And let the footprints of the past, be blown away by the wind of time. Only then can our hearts find a partner in the dance of life.” — This is one of my all-time favorite lines from Joe D’Mango.

BUT, again, we have to take baby steps in learning how to let go of the past and how to trust again, even with all the wounds and scars and broken hearts.For if we don’t, our heart would not heal enough to give ourselves another chance at the crazy roller coaster called love.

Perhaps, one difficult situation one could possibly be into is when two broken-hearted individuals collide. I wonder if together, it would help them heal each other. Sounds weird, but it could be something that could happen. Its about taking chances, its about taking risks, its full of uncertainty… but who knows… a sweet love story is on the brew.

I wrote (and first posted) this blog at my Multiply account on October 24, 2008. It was inspired by my bonding with some friends who have shared their love stories with me – most of which were tales of being broken-hearted. During those times, I was in a seemingly perfect relationship and so hearing their stories made me realize how fortunate I was with the person I have. Some 9 years after I wrote this one, it made me reminisce my personal “hurt and brokenness” experience 7 years ago. So I guess we all have our fair share of injustices when it comes to love. Nevertheless, I am still on high hopes that someday, I will meet that someone who will make me believe in love again.

***Photos used are 9 years old as well 🙂

If it is meant to be, our hearts will find each other when we meet. And if our hearts melt together so will our bodies and souls. Then every word and every touch will fuel our passion flame. I will be yours, you will be mine, and we will be one.

Memories of Anawangin Cove: Zambales, PH

Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory.

– Dr. Seuss

This is a flashback post. It’s been 12 years and 7 months since the first time I have set foot in Anawangin. And today, I went on to visit memory lane and put into writing the memories of this trip with a group of friends.

It was January of 2005. Panagbenga Festival in Baguio City. For most of us living in the City of Pines, this means getting out of Baguio so as not to feel the congestion of the city. You see, people would usually flock their way to witness the annual flower festival. My friends and I decided to spend a 3-day getaway in Anawangin Cove. During this time, Anawangin was barely known as a beach destination. I have heard of it from my mountaineering friends who did an exploratory climb at this side of Zambales.

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So, 5 days before the Panagbenga, I did the planning for this getaway. Actually, the first plan was to saunter Mount Pinatubo. But then, I was more enticed to go on a beach escapade. So with limited time, I disseminated our itinerary hoping more of our friends will come join us on this trip. Luckily, 10 friends decided to come along even if most of them didn’t really have much of an idea on what to see in Anawangin. I remember myself assuring them that the place is something they’ll like just to make sure no one would back out on the last minute. Here goes our itinerary:

Day 1 – Baguio to Zambales: Mount Pundaquit Trek

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There are no direct trips to San Antonio, Zambales from Baguio. Since we have a friend from Pampanga who is joining us, we agreed that we would meet there. So we took a bus that passes by Mabalacat (Victory Liner), from there, Gladys (together with her cousin) fetched and all together we went to Angeles to take a bus that is bound for Iba, Zambales’ capital. It was a pretty long (and tiresome trip). All in all, it took us around 9 hours to reach San Antonio town proper.

Upon arrival, we decided to buy some fresh produce in the market since there are no stores or restaurants in Anawangin. After which, we took a tricycle to reach Brgy. Pundaquit – the jump off to Anawangin. Good thing I have a prior contact with a guide, Manong Alfring a local. We were asked as to how we would like to reach Anawangin. You see, there are two possible options. One is to trek Mount Pundaquit, and the other one is to ride a boat. Of course, the boat ride was the faster means however, we opted to do the climb. Some of our stuff was taken by Manong Alfring and his companions, who are taking the boat. So they will just wait for us at the beach camp.

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And so we went on with the hike. Our guide told us it was a pretty easy climb. Having climbed Pulag before this trip, I have to agree with what the guide claimed. However, as the sun goes up, the weather became warmer that eventually made almost everyone tired. It was a mistake on our end when we didn’t bring much water. The heat was sweltering and our water supply was rapidly dwindling keeping our pace slower. We had to motivate ourselves and patience became the key for us to reach our campsite.

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After 3 hours or so, we reached the peak and its breathtaking view made up for that very weary feeling we were all experiencing. It was a 360 degrees view and Anawangin Cove was already visible from where we were. The sea view further motivated the group not to give up. Two more hours and we finally reached Anawangin with the pine trees seemingly welcoming us. A few more minutes, and we were treated with a spectacular sun down. It was lovely. It made all the weary feeling melt down.

We did set up our tents (yes, there were no resorts/ cottages before in Anawangin), and cooked our dinner with the help of our guide. We had a simple dinner by the shore while sharing stories under the full moon. Recalling that night, it was so serene and really relaxing

Day 2: Anawangin Cove Explored

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Some of us woke up early, the others stayed a little longer inside their tents as they were still feeling fatigued from the other day’s trek. I went to stroll along the beach while taking some photos. Waking up to the sound of the waves and the smell of saline water was energy revitalizing! It is such a picturesque place. Looking back, Anawangin’s picture perfect backdrop contributed to my being a photography enthusiast. We actually spent almost the entire day wandering around. The waters of Anawangin was crystal clear and really refreshing so we had a great deal of time swimming or just wading in water. We also went up a hill where we had a jaw-dropping view of the cove and the mountains. The mini pine tree forest at the foot of the mountain is unbelievably photogenic. There is even an estuary that leads to the sea. And at the end of that day, we again waited for the sunset. It was yet another spectacular sundown.

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Day 3: Capones Island

Everyone had to wake up early on Day 3 because it was time to leave Anawangin. However, before going back to mainland Pundaquit, we went on for a side trip to a nearby island called Capones. There are actually two islands near the cove, however, we have to stick to our itinerary since we still have to go back to Baguio. It was a 30-minute boat ride amidst huge waves… From afar, the island looks like a shoe. The island’s main attraction is an old lighthouse. Unfortunately, it wasn’t open when we got there so we ended up taking photos along the shore amidst huge, exquisite rocks. I had an unforgettable experience here since I had a bit of an accident. I didn’t anticipate that some of the rocks were slippery that caused me to slip off and have some bruises. Nonetheless, the happy experience overshadowed this minor incident.

Before going back to Baguio, Gladys invited us at their home in San Fernando, Pampanga for a food treat and for us to freshen up ourselves. It was yet another long and tiresome bus ride. But who cares, we just had an awesome and adventure-filled trip! I told myself I’d be back in Anawangin. (And guess what, after 5 years since that first trip to Anawangin, I was able to visit it again. Plus, I was able to visit also another cove – Nagsasa and the other island near Capones, Camara). Yay! Cheers to more travels!

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*Thank you to Kuya Jerry for sharing some of his photographs to us.

Also, you might want to check my write up about other visit-worthy coves here in the Philippines.

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