Serenading Bohol

It’s love month once again and love is in the air so let me be a little romantic on this post.

When my husband told me two weeks ago that he needed to go to his home province (Bohol) to visit his ailing grandfather, I did not ask how long he would be away from home because I knew that family visits could mean overstaying. Two days after that, he asked me to join him on the trip. Being a working mother, I told him that I could only be away from February 3-6; I needed to be back in the office by February 7. Then, he thought it would be nice to bring with us the kids. The initial plan was, he would be bringing some goods with him to Bohol via roro and I and the kids would fly to Tagbilaran two days after his roro trip. In the end, we decided to fly together as a family.

I was expecting a problem with Cebu Pacific but to my relief, everything went fine from my phone booking to our flight to Tagbilaran. The flight attendants were not only good-looking but they were friendly as well.

We left Manila at 10:50 AM and reached Tagbilaran at 12:20 AM. It was quite cloudy that day so I didn’t see any view from the airplane’s window except large clouds that looked like cotton candies. Adi was fascinated by the clouds; you should have seen how big his eyes were!

From the airport, we headed to the nearest mall and looked for a place to eat. The crews at Jollibee were very friendly, I forgot that I was tired.

From the mall, we headed to Talibon where Miel’s grandfather is staying. Ah, Bohol! The greeneries, the seas, the people—they were all captivating. No wonder a Boholano captured my heart.

Tagbilaran to Talibon took us two hours to travel by GT Van. Fare is 200 pesos per passenger. We stayed at his grandfather’s house and for the first time, I met the rest of his relatives.

His grandfather was sleeping when we arrived. Miel woke him up and I gave them the much needed privacy for them to bond after ten years of separation.

Their place was provincial. The lifestyle was simple yet pleasurable. Kids were inside our grandfather’s house. They were looking at Adi and Chang. I exchanged pleasantries with Miel’s aunts though I could not understand some of the Cebuano words that they said.

I went outside for a brief inspection of the surroundings. The air was very clean. It smelled of freshly cut grass.

Friday morning, we went to Sagbayan Peak for half an hour. It was similar to sight-seeing in Baguio. It didn’t excite me at all. But yes, the landscape was awesome. My kids enjoyed the picture-taking.

We decided to have lunch in Loboc River. Most of the tourists were foreigners. The fee per person is 400 pesos. We were six in the group. We brought along his two uncles and a driver. I learned that Visayan foods are simple to prepare than Tagalog foods. But I missed the salty flavor. They were not fond of fish sauce (patis) there. The only thing that impressed me were the native cakes, sweet watermelons and salad. The Loboc River is green and quiet. There were two groups of entertainers at the riverside. The waterfalls were not really tall but they were eyecatching. After the one-hour trip, we bought some souvenirs at the shop and headed to Carmen where the Chocolate Hills are located.

Yeah, it’s probably a hundred steps to reach the peak of the view deck. There were at least 500 hills around. They looked like giant turtles in my eyes. Hahaha.

Saturday afternoon, we went to Barracuda Resort in Talibon. Would you believe that the entrance fee was only 20 pesos? Wow! What a way to relax! I got scared and excited at the sight of the beach. I have never seen such a large body of water surrounding me! It was a different experience there. Fishes and crabs everywhere; the place was still unexploited.

What I like in Bohol is its less expensive lifestyle. The people were even honest. A kilo of shrimps that would cost me 380 pesos in Manila costed only 200 pesos in Bohol. I never experienced that food tripping in expensive Sabang (Puerto Galera).

We visited his maternal grandmother on Sunday. The reunion between grandson and grandma was heartbreaking.

Am I missing the simple yet pleasurable life in Bohol? Yes. Bataan will always be in my heart. Now I found another place that I consider HOME.