Maupay! Just got back from an exhausting yet superb five day vacation from a far away old hometown, Borongan Eastern Samar. It’s been a very long long while since our last visit and my father calls it a sentimental journey, but for me it’s a reorientation. Mother’s a true blue Waray and somewhere in my veins runs the blood of an Estehanon. But because of the long period of absence in the place, I’m back as an Estranghero! Our (tatay, kuya, diko) mid-afternoon arrival at the old big house was filled with warm welcomes and kumustahan from relatives and family friends. But soon after a hearty lunch of exotic cuisines, we were snoring to wherever we lay our heads. That’s because of the early morning Cebu Pacific flight to Tacloban City plus the 4-hour
Van-Van ride from Tacloban to Borongan through the ungracious Borongan-Guian Road. A roadfull of Evardone smiles and potholes remedied with red mud. Jusmio, you can smell ms.governance right from the country lanes! What compensated the rough ride was the refreshing sceneries along the way and the thought of having seafoods for lunch! The devitalizing day ended with a few rounds of San Mig grande with families and long lost friends.
The next day kicked off with an early morning stroll around the town.The last time I’ve been to Rawis was about thirty years ago. We would cram our bodies to a cranky tricycle from the house in Taboc and on through the rocky road (what is actualy a walking distance) heading for the beach for a morning dip followed by a family picnic under coconut trees along the rocky shores. But now, it seemed like Rawis has totally vanished! The invasion of the concrete jungle featuring Boy Abunda’s beach house, Pirate’s Cove, and a few residential establishments practically shut the beach grounds from the public. No more beachwalking or anything. (I heard about this disgruntled folks kicking the guts out of the Pirate Cove’s owner,a resident alien,for being so strict around the place). We turned left to pantalan. (Unmistakably the pantalan from Google Earth) Nothing much there except some docked fishing boats and payloaders and a fisherman with his catch of the day. A luscious big red one!
The “Boulevard” along Baybay doesn’t boast of anything except for some cozy nightspots. It is poorly maintained and seemed like a breeding ground for unpleasant elements especially with all those perya stalls around. How unsightly these structures are. Behind the breakwater were sea garbage, human refuse, broken bottles and everything. Very much like the “sink” of Metro Manila: Manila Bay on Roxas Boulevard. But at least they have created something out of Baybay..BayBaywalk.
We got an occasion to try one of the bars in Boulevard courtesy of tatay’s old chum, Councilor Jessie Solidon’s dinner invitation, at PhenPoint. A simple place yet homey and relaxing and none of the loud musics. The huts are pleasantly adorned and the beers are arctic cold.
The food: simply appetizing! The only fuss that evening was the power outage. It seemed like some jerk’s toying with the town lightings. Just the same, it was one delightful dinner. And another delightful experience awaits us come the following day. A visit to a nearby paradise off Borongan, Divinubo Island. But I shall have that one out on a separate page where it deserve.
Borongan is a city, then it isn’t, then it is. I dont really know how politicians dance their curacha down there but I know that cityhood is not just a compound word. And personaly, I think Borongan never had that great leap forward say, in a span of about three decades. The place is pretty much the same except for some elemental facelift and the blooming of business establishments. The topography may have something to do in driving away investments. Maybe it’s the local governance, or perhaps the national government. But then I guess the estranghero of me doesn’t really know Borongan at all.
In terms of capturing every memorable moments of this vacation, I believe we came back here in Borongan with vengeance. Unlike then when shooting photos were limited or sometimes none at all, this time we were armed to the teeth, each with his own digicam. A shooting spree! The plain behaviour of a digitalize man today. The result, a gut-wrenching half a day of organizing, transferring, filing, saving images and video files(at the PAGASA weather station in ESSU).
Friday morning we were aboard a Duptors van bound for Tacloban again and to the Romualdez airport for a late afternoon flight back to Manila. With only a handful of pasalubong(pinyato, binagol, danggit, tableya rolls) to avoid excess baggage. Travel completed.