Trip to Bolinao 2011 ! ! !

It’s HD-GREEN‘s team building with Marvin! No, wait… It’s the HD basketball team‘s excursion with Sheree and me tagging along! Bah! Whatever! LoL!

May 16 – 4:00 PM. This trip was almost canceled since 3/4 of our teammates declined. My boss then asked us if we still wanted this to push through. It’s mostly the boys who confirmed they’re coming. My boyfriend will not allow me to go unless another girl comes along. Sheree was undecided since she has no money. I lent her money. We still lacked one person so I encouraged Marvin to come along. He said he would if someone can also lend him money. Jeff pitched in for him. ALL SET! Whew!

May 17 – 3:30 AM. Sheree and I met with the rest of the guys in SM North. We just stopped by a gas station then our journey to Pangasinan started.

Sunrise en route to Pangasinan

After about six hours, we stopped by the market place to have breakfast and buy some stuff. We also dropped by one of Pangasinan’s known churches, the St.James the Great Parish. It’s not much to look at but it’s decent enough. A lot of bats were resting on its ceiling — creepy and awesome at the same time!

St. James the Great Parish

Inside "St. James the Great Parish"

It was around 11:30 AM when we arrived in our rest house in Bolinao. We have a great view from where we are. The interesting things about this beach are the changes of the tides and the vast marine life it holds.

Bolinao Beach (High Tide)

Bolinao Beach (Low Tide)

During low tides, plenty of fishermen cross the open seas and bring out their nets. That was also a chance for me to take photographs of the sea creatures that inhabit the waters.

This is a garden of Long-spined Sea Urchins. They are quite small but bring a lot of pain to those who unwittingly step on them. It was a scary sight but the locals are used to them.

Double-spined Sea Urchin. I thought it was a starfish and I was glad that I didn't touch it. LoL!

Black Sea Cucumber. Slugs may be slow on land but they sure move quickly underwater. This slimy thing formed an "L" shape in a blink of an eye!

After we stashed our stuff, we headed to our next destination the Waterfalls. Our tour guide said that there are two waterfalls but they’re both far from where we are. It took us about 45 minutes before we reached the first one.

Bolinao Waterfalls (1). The picture and the view look great! Wait, there's more. The water is covered in moss. I didn't enjoy swimming in murky waters. Blergh.

Since the waterfall trip was a big frustration, we just went back to the rest house and dipped in the kiddie pool the entire afternoon.

Around 5PM, the sun was almost setting so I grabbed Epiphany once again and walked the sandy beaches. I had fun taking sunset and low-angle shots. LoL!

Sunset in Bolinao

We had dinner at about 7PM then the guys lit up the bonfire an hour or so later to start their drinking sessions.

Preparing the bonfire

I was the only one who didn’t get drunk nor tipsy (because I didn’t drink LoL). I just ate their pulutan. It was enjoyable (and somewhat creepy) watching them telling jokes, confessing to the wrong people, horsing around and plainly having fun. I have no idea where they’re getting their will power to stay awake but I already called it a night shortly after 12MN.

The following morning, we went to the Cape Bolinao Lighthouse and shortly took photos. There’s nothing much to look at apart from the flowers and the stray kittens.

Cape Bolinao Lighthouse

Since the beach where our rest house is isn’t really good for swimming, we headed to Patar Beach, which was about another 30 minutes ride away.

*sings* Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec☻

Happy Feet (Bolinao) ☺

Sheree was sunbathing (and was half-asleep) when we started clicking our cameras. LoL!

LEFT TO RIGHT: Marc (Mac-mac), Jeff, Meiko (me), Marvin, Sheree (She), Jenesse, Marlon (Tiny), Adam, Boss Voltz, Jake (Macho)

It’s been a while since I last swam in open waters. There were a few weeds and schools of fish and the sand isn’t as fine-grained as those in Bohol but the experience was still breathtaking (literally anf figuratively speaking, hehe~). We all had fun swimming, playing in the sand, and having a mini-photoshoot with Sheree.

While waiting for our clothes to dry, we roamed around the community near the beach and bought some souvenirs. I got me a couple of keychains since they’re only P20 a piece.

This is one of the many suovenir shops surrounding Patar Beach. Most of the products are made of seashells, starfishes and capiz.

Our last stop was the Enchanted Cave, which was about a 5-10 minute ride away from Patar Beach.

Enchanted Cave

We originally didn’t want to enter the water since our clothes were almost dry but when we saw how cool the ambiance was then all of us (except Mac-mac) jumped into the water.  I felt a bit claustrophobic since this is the first time I  entered a cave so I just stayed close to the group.

According to the locals, this is the most beautiful out of the three caves in Bolinao. This is artificially lit with fluorescent bulbs and the rocks were tied with nylon ropes which swimmers can hold on to.

The deepest part of this cave is about 8ft and the water is clean, clear, cold and refreshing. Although, it was still hard to swim considering most of the rocks can be as sharp as a knife. It was better walking while holding on to the ropes then just find a good shallow spot to stand on. There were no fishes, snakes or any other marine life in there — just people having fun. LoL!

After an hour, we left the cave then went back to the rest house.

It was about 3:30 PM when we traveled back to Manila. It was raining cats and dogs most of the time so I just went to sleep. It was already 11:30PM when I got back home.

I reminisced all those memories and the “first firsts” moments.

  • First time in Bolinao (given)
  • First time in a cave
  • First time I ate a Parrot Fish
  • First time I saw sea urchins and slugs
  • First time I saw a light house up-close
  • First time I used Epiphany out-of-town
  • First time going on an out-of-town trip that’s numerically dominated by men
  • First time I slept alongside men other than my boyfriend

Whew!

more photos: [here]

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