November 21, 2010 – It is just fitting that my very first post would be all about my 23rd birthday, as it did marked a lot of ‘first’ in my life.
It was my first time to celebrate a birthday as a young adult, since the last time I did it was when I was 14; first time to celebrate it in classy resorts (Thanks to Islandia Hotel and Island Tropic Restaurant for the accommodation and food in Alaminos, and to Puerto del Sol for the accommodation, food and tours in Bolinao, especially to Sir Alfred who sang ‘happy birthday’ during dinner by the beach!); this was also my first time to experience ‘kayaking’ and jumping off in the middle of the sea to go snorkeling and swim inside a cave (Thanks to the Tourism Office of Alaminos, c/o Sir Rey Livara for setting that up); and the best part of it all is that this birthday was the first time I got to celebrate with complete and utter strangers, strangers who later on became acquaintances, then finally – my Friends.
From left: Anton, Gael, Estan, Darwin, Cai, Robbie, Ada, Mica, me, The Tour Guide, and Marky (credits to pusangkalye.net for the image)
It was never about the plush accommodation or the wonderful food or even the fun activities I did that thrilled me, it was all about them, spending my day with a group of great people is what made number 23 so damn special and unforgettable!
It all started with Mica (micamyx.com), multi-talented, charming, and persuasive, she was the one who persuaded me to go on an Alaminos-Bolinao escapade with other bloggers, which for some reason, even with my shy nature, I surprisingly agreed; note the ‘charming’ and ‘persuasive’. The trip fell on my birthday, and since birthdays were never a big deal for me (is this normal?) I still went with them without even saying a word about it. But leave it to Facebook though to give all your secrets away, what followed soon were 17 birthday songs rendered throughout the day, dinner by the beach with a candle lit leche flan for dessert while everyone was singing and taking photos of me, and capped off the night dipped in a relaxing Jacuzzi while excahnging personal experiences… ahhhhh… what more can you ask for.
The gang posing with Col. Sanders of KFC at Alaminos
For the short span of time I’ve spent with them (just 2 days), they’ve already grown on me that I just can’t wait for the next time we meet. Mica (micamyx.com), I already said charming and persuasive, did I mention multi-talented?;
Gael (thepinaysolobackpacker.com), adorable, endearing, and playful??? with all her ‘langis’ stuff :D besides Mica, she was one of the people I easily felt comfortable with and along her is;
Darwin (tracking treasure.net), comically dramatic, I like people who can easily make me laugh, and he’s one of them, and his life experience kind of reminds me of my close bud back at home; then there’s
SIR Estan (langyaw.com, simbahan.net) he's as professional as they come and he gladly shares his expertise, you learn a lot about photography just being around him.
Robbie (thecreativedork.com) was asleep most of the time, but I got to talk to him just before he went home and found out that he’s a graphic artist (a real one!) I just saw some of his works in the web, my jaw dropped, and the next time we meet there’s a good chance that I’ll kneel before him and call him master! :D ;
Marky (nomadicexperiences.blogspot.com) simple, down-to earth, and he doesn’t say much, but try reading his blog and you won’t believe it’s the same person :D ;
Ada (adaphobic.com) she’s cool, cute, and curly, ano pa hanap nyo?? Just fun to be with, full of energy, and has an array of unorthodox poses for the camera;
Cai (pinkurinal.com) drop-dead gorgeous! She loves to pose, I love to shoot, period! :) and last but not least,
Anton (pusangkalye.net) funny siya… yun lang… hahahaha of course the tour would never be the same without Kuya Anton, being with him it’s always a laugh trip and that's all I ever wanted to do, just laugh and be happy (para bang baliw), ‘olweys meni meni pani moments with him!’ plus he was the one who organized this trip alongside Mica, so I owe him a very big thanks!
Like I said, Cai loves to pose, I love to shoot :)
Finally, I found people who are as passionate as I am in what I want to do with my life; there were photographers, bloggers/writers, graphic designers, and even a film maker, just being around them conversing, learning, made my goal in life a little bit clearer, my desire renewed, and my passion deeper. Now, it’s all just up to me to make it happen, where should I go, where should I be now that I’m 23.