Saturday, January 18, 2014

great ordinary day

Today is a great ordinary day. Ordinary but unique enlightening and learning day. I felt alive again with the gift of knowing. Let me start by saying that I've been sick the past week since tuesday I think. It was a spiral downward feeling since then. On and off fever at night mostly, I can barely get up in the mornings as I feel feverish all the time. I just fought it with the usual self medication of sorts ( which I advise against). I felt weak the whole time, my asthma I felt is just about to attack at any moment. Amazing that I can still drive myself back and forth to work...I was waiting for Saturday to arrive so I can savor just sleeping in but my nasal drip is unforgiving. Its family day at the little girls school. I said maybe I won't be able to make it. But then, I said to myself I made myself work at work then not spend time with family? No. So, despite the weak body allergc rhinitis and fever and all I went...but by mid morning. I felt like collapsing. Vulnerable and weak...I haven't felt this weak in a long time. The program still not done but said to Tatay we should go. In the car I closed my eyes and mutterred...I am dying.(hayy drama ko)...that's how bad I felt. So for the longest time since I can remember..Amats brought me to the lung center. Never been there as a patient. I talked to a good doctor this morning.She gave right meds ...laughing with me I hope not at me but all the triggers of my allergy. Good thing it's not asthma. This afternoon I am feeling a bit better. While recuperating...I watched the movie About Time from the makers of Love Actually. And got the healing of a good cry and knowing a bit of the secret of life as it should be lived. It is a great day. A wonderful ordinary day of our extra ordinary lives. You have to watch it til the end to know. Thank God I have you in my life :)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Come out and play

Happiness can be found in the simplest of things. Find your happiness. You deserve your place in the sun. Come out and play.

Firefly Watching

It has been more than ten years since I lived and worked in Puerto Princesa. A long time ago, I thought it would be difficult to come back as the place have to much memory ingrained in my system. But as time would heal all sorts of aches and what-not became blurry. What remains still is the beauty of the place and good friends through out the years. Ecstatic to know that now there is a community based firefly watching in Iwahig we can experience as a family. It was on top of our itinerary to discover the fireflies in their natural habitat. This would be my second time to paddle down a river along a mangrove ecosystem and observe the way of life of these species. First time I did this was at the river in Donsol, Sorsogon the night before we went to go interact with the whale sharks of Donsol. We were not able to book in advance but we hired Mang Jolly's tricycle to bring us early. We are the 2nd group to arrive before sunset at around 5PM more than an hour early before the registration and boarding opens at 6:30 PM. There were alot of people expected and walk-in can only be accommodated at 6:30 just after dark and the next available boat schedule for walk ins will be at 11 PM that is how booked they are but there are only ten paddle boats that make the rounds.
We slathered on Ilog Maria cintronella oil and put on mosquito patches to protect us from lamok and other insects. We were 3rd in line. I was giddy happy. The little girl and Amats went to buy some noodles to warm up before the paddle boat ride. Just before we boarded there were picture taking by the official photographer similar to the Disneyland photo-ops and you will see yourselves after the ride. (I think it is a great idea and environmental friendly way of a souvenir since you cannot take your own photo just before you embark. Also its our small way to help the community raise some funds) Flash photography not allowed during the tour and even so it would be risky to bring your gear if it is not housed properly. It was a bit windy and during these conditions we were warned that about 15 to 20% of the usual number can be observed.
Mang Rading was our guide and he has this red flash light which he uses to point to the specific mangrove trees to locate the fireflies. I learned a lot from the tour, Mang Rading provided the background of the community project and details about the fireflies that I did not know before. We learned about their life cycle (did you know that they hatch from the mud? Oha!), the limited days they live, even the enzymes that make up their bodies that makes them light up. It's the best place to learn science in the great outdoors. When the paddle hits the river the water lights up as well because of the bioluminescence of the lifeforms present in the clean river. At the end of the tour, a mini star gazing session to see Orion and other constellation in the sky. All around it was a great experience. When you remain quiet, your eyes will adjust to the darkness and you will see the sky filled with stars and the outline of the trees. When you see the fireflies they pulsate together as if to warn intruders. A natural Christmas tree is what they look like. There is a sense of awe and respect for these creatures when you see them up close. They are indicators that the environment is clean and can still sustain the trees where they live.