2013 | No Holding Back

Dear Reader,

I’m starting 2013 with thoughts of the fisherman’s wife I met months back. And because it could not start any better if not with her. It was an early weekend of June. I took a shower, and shoved my stuff in my pack hoping one of my ZaNorte travel companions might have changed their minds for this early side trip. The hallway was empty with only light creeping in from the glass doors  greeted by the hotel night staff wiping sleep from their eyes. I thought I heard snoring from the end of the hall but I wasn’t sticking long enough to distinguish whose snoring  it was. I do not even know if I could but I can bet on it that it must be that of C. Just kidding.

And as I headed out — I mentally kicked myself, I’m heading off without a plan, again. I was not surprised. I had a wallet and a pack to get me by, and everyone knows charm is always an essential.  Travel full of it in your pockets. You will need it when you bank on people’s soft spots, and charm them into thinking you’re harmless. Which you are, I hope. It’s both a gift, and skill, and never just the other.

The bus halted at a bustling morning market scene. Dapitan City. I decided, beyond the makeshift stalls of fresh farm produced was an unmistakable blue horizon, — it would be my stop.  I was instantly surrounded with men in sleeveless shirts, if not  shirtless guys. I wished I accidentally walked in on an all-male-model photo shoot. But no, I was brought back to reality when, they, in deep masculine voices pestered asked me to take their outrigger boats for an island trip before my feet even hit the concrete road. For the locals the obvious visitor is always a target, and potential customer. But I can hear the waves despite the loud bargain of prices from these men. Unfamiliar faces has become so familiar. You get them of different sorts, and it is always best to look at them in the eyes, and smile when you refuse an offer.

Walking down the beach length, I saw an old lady was sitting on an irregularly shaped bench worn out from use, working on some fish net of some sort. She looked up, and smiled at me, and I took it as an open invite. Yes, I know. I am, probably, that kid that can be lured by anyone with adorable hamster-looking eyes.  Old folks are nice to talk to, and yes, you start off a conversation like you would with someone you were just introduced to. You state the obvious, like how lazy the Sunday was, hoping they would agree. And start from there.

Absently, “I wonder if I would regret not going to Aliguay Island”, thought escaped from me. Writers makes lousy anythings. At some point you’re incapable of shutting your thoughts up, if you are not quick  enough to pen them down.  She looked down at me, and asked who was I with. “I’m here alone”. It slipped before I could bite my tongue, and regretted the moment I said that because she then ask the dreaded 1 word, 1 syllable follow-up question solo travelers dance their way out to answer. “Why?” I wanted to answer, “why not?” and wish that the word why would suddenly vanished from the dictionaries, our brains, and she would have asked something else instead. I hate it when I have to mentally construct decent answers, the kind to make the old feel comforted. But before I could answer, she said, “Dili angayan mag-inusara ang babae magbyahe. Balik dinhi, kanang naa na ka’y kuyog.” placing a warm wrinkled hand on my arm like a grandma telling a girl should not be traveling by herself, and to come back with someone traveling with her. I needed no probing at that.

We talked more about her life, her hands that knew which nylon cord to pull out, and tie without even looking at it, and fishing that brought her to meet her husband. The latter soon she explained that it was never about fishing, it was about the man. Never about what one does, but who he is. Never about how your life would be, but how your life would be should you decide something else. Her smile was gentle, like she wanted to tell me something I already know of but, maybe, forgot.

So what about for 2013?

to say NO more often, so I can have time for myself

— because I know I need rest more often than I let myself. Also, so I could stop going away solo for a break from routine, because I’m too stubborn to wait on anyone to join me.
— and also because we get so wrapped up on what we do, what we want to achieve that we forget to check how we are. Read as: Take care of yourself more, until someone else does. And,

to try to not hold back too much” 

— other than getting my adventurous spirits up, I do not know if it means anything more.
— but for some reason I think my heart does.

2013, for sure, is a year to work, travel, live, and love more. What, how, when, and with whom is yet to be known of. After all, what’s a good life’s story without something to leave us wondering, and to excitedly look forward to. *gulps* Kidding. *grins*

*Points cursor to the Publish button. Closes eyes. Hits Enter key*

Your trying-not-to-hold-back,
_______________________________________________________________________

“I’m not shy. I’m just holding back my awesomeness. Do not intimidate me.
– Anonymous
_______________________________________________________________________


Pinay Travelista shared her new travel mindset for the
 Pinoy Travel Bloggers’ Blog Carnival.

An entry to PTB January 2013 Blog Carnival 
hosted by Roj Braga | The Adventures of AdventuRoj!
on the topic “New Beginnings”.

  • Greetings Pinay Travelista! Have you ever been to Taal, Batangas Heritage Town in the Philippines? I recommend adding it to your 2013 bucket list of adventures! Find out why @ taal.ph

  • "Take care of yourself more, until someone else does. And,
    "to try to not hold back too much" –> I love this, and I definitely agree!

    I agree that solo travel is an adventure and I will definitely do that again, but it's great also to travel with good friends, and of course, the one you love. 😉

  • Hi Dan,

    No I haven't been there but I've seen photos of the Heritage Town that got me interested. I just might get to visit it this year.. =)

  • Hi Claire.. Thanks! Oo.. Agree ako that it's also great traveling with a company..Excited na rin ako nyan for this year.. =)

  • Very refreshing. An actual story. Best of luck on your 2013, Lai 🙂

  • Aherm! Interesting.

  • Hi, I am sure you'll be loved by many on world's 1st eyewear styling community —— plus.firmoo.com, could we have the honor to see you there?

  • Drew!!!!

    Thanks! Didnt know you've already went by Johnny.. Nice hearing from you, and hope you will have a blast this 2013 too.. =)

  • Ahem. Ahem. Ahem. It is!!! =P

  • I really love your writing style lai! Dulot sa bukog and all! Cheers to more travels!!! See you here in Bukidnon 🙂

  • *blushes* Thanks Shugah.. =)

    Definitely see you at Bukidnon! and hopefully, go around other places din.. =)

  • You'll do great this 2013 Lisa! 😀

  • Definitely I will Dylan.. Thanks! =D

    Have a great 2013 to you as well! =)

  • Hi Lai! Love that quote at the end of your blog. 🙂 I plan to do some traveling myself this year. Cheers to traveling! 😀

  • This is the first post I've read from you. I love it, how come I haven't discovered Pinay Travelista until now? I really should go online more often XD

  • Thanks ate Tischa! I love that quote too — secret superhuman threat to bad vibes.. =P great to hear you're hitting road for adventures! Cheers to that..

    And oh! Envious of wakeboarding!!!! Keep it up! *hugs*

  • Oh! First comment here, and you're making me blush already.. =P

    and yes, you should, if time allows, go online more often.. =) to the best for your travels Bal!

  • Oh! First comment here, and you're making me blush already.. =P

    and yes, you should, if time allows, go online more often.. =) to the best for your travels Bal!

  • Thanks ate Tischa! I love that quote too — secret superhuman threat to bad vibes.. =P great to hear you're hitting road for adventures! Cheers to that..

    And oh! Envious of wakeboarding!!!! Keep it up! *hugs*

  • Definitely I will Dylan.. Thanks! =D

    Have a great 2013 to you as well! =)

  • *blushes* Thanks Shugah.. =)

    Definitely see you at Bukidnon! and hopefully, go around other places din.. =)

  • Ahem. Ahem. Ahem. It is!!! =P

  • Drew!!!!

    Thanks! Didnt know you've already went by Johnny.. Nice hearing from you, and hope you will have a blast this 2013 too.. =)

  • Hi Claire.. Thanks! Oo.. Agree ako that it's also great traveling with a company..Excited na rin ako nyan for this year.. =)

  • Hi Dan,

    No I haven't been there but I've seen photos of the Heritage Town that got me interested. I just might get to visit it this year.. =)