How my 4 day vacation in Batad became my life’s reset button

May 1, 2017 11:56 pm

I was looking out onto Banaue Rice Terraces, appreciating how calming the newly planted green seedlings looked in the bright full sun of April 28, 2017. A talented photographer friend took this photo, teasing me after that I’m the “Queen of ‘Emote’ photos.” Unwittingly, he might not be wrong. He took one of me in 2015, that time looking morosely out onto the flowing stream from Tappiya Falls at Batad. As Filipinos would say, “Emote pa more!”

I used to write a lot.

When you are young and naive, one tends to think your writing is the best in the world and what you write about matters. Then life changes your perspective in ways that you can’t imagine, and somehow, that girl who used to crop up with literary pieces at a blink of an eye suddenly clammed up. All subsequent attempts to becoming a writer were half-hearted endeavors that did not do much for me or the world. I felt what I’m writing about is not worth anyone’s time. Sure, I read all the encouraging pieces written by amazing writers I found here at Medium, like Shaunta Grimes and Chris Connors. So now, I’m finally making a case for myself and “forcing” myself to write, just so I can live out of my head sometimes. It might not be worth anyone’s time but it certainly is worth mine — as I am willing to lose sleep for this, like, right now.

As I write this, it’s May 1, 2017 — Labor Day in the Philippines and I don’t have work. I also just arrived in Manila from Banaue, Ifugao Province at around 5 am in the morning, so every memory and experience just feels so fresh right now. Also, the sore state of my muscles and joints is a physical reminder that I just hurdled almost 5 days of trekking in some remote province in the Philippines — and I love it!

But honestly, I didn't want to write about my Batad trip this year, not because I didn't enjoy it. On the contrary, it was the most fun I had in months and I would love to spend five amazing days of semi-disconnect from the virtual world with these people again if I could. I didn’t want to write about it because I didn’t want to fall short of writing about how amazing this entire experience was for me.

Now, I feel a bit of yearning for their company. It can’t be helped, right? Good company really is remarkable. I genuinely cherish the experience and I miss my friends terribly so. It doesn't help that we all had the most awesome time being workmates until a few months ago, and still do talk almost everyday via Facebook, so this vacation was an extension of all our shenanigans for around one year and a half.And this is the reason I’m writing about this. I didn't want to forget that I had enjoyed as much as I could. My faulty memory may betray me, but hopefully, Medium won’t.

The first few paragraphs seem to not address the title of this blog post. Truthfully, it’s just something I came up with at the moment of writing. I didn't know it then, but I realized now that spending time with a handful of my favorite people just makes me want to leap out of the rut I’m in. Suddenly, I’m remembering things I used to dream of when I started working. They triggered things that only I know of, and it makes me happy and terrified to know that people who make me laugh and have fun with are people that inspire positive thoughts in me.

I am not good with expressing affection to friends — no offense meant — and I act no different towards family. But I really just want to write how they all make want to do better with this thing called life. And because I would feel too embarrassed about saying this to any of them. I might as well put it out here (where they might stumble on it by accident in the very distant future, lol).

Thank you and I really miss you all.