“Ringggg!!!” that was the first thing I heard today. I blindly scrambled through the plastic bag right beside my bed, reaching for the thing that made that noise until Yun-chen exclaimed “I found it!” She found the telephone under the bed. I then, slept again.
I remembered hearing Yun-chen telling me that she and Minh will be taking pictures. I finally decided to wake up fully. I found myself alone in the room, my room mates were Yen, Minh and Yun-chen. I thought they all went scuba diving without me :( but I later found that only Daniel and Angela went because they are the only licensed divers in the group. I also found that even though they didn’t see sharks, they did find Nemo with barracudas. I brushed my teeth and went out to see this:
I found Minh and Yun-chen by the shore, taking pictures:
Then, an awesome idea came up: Climb the cliff! Thus, a bunch of awesome pictures were produced…
Too bad my 100 peso slippers broke twice, I couldn’t get to the most fun part of the cliff: the cave..
but that’s okay I get to interact with the rock (coral) formations around the cave…
notice the broken slippers…
And to conclude the photodump, here is Yun-chen being a master climber…
After an awesome and a bit scary photo shoot, we had breakfast with the view of the sea: bangus, egg, langgonisa and chocolate! This is the right way to get fat. No, not with subway or chocolate or burritos while doing psets at MIT.
Then I went kayaking for the first time! There was a river near the shore, the end of the river is a cave. Too bad I don’t have pictures of this :( but I’ll try to be as descriptive as possible.
The river have some shallow and deep parts (I know duh.) The shallow parts are pebbly, I even got off the kayak to the pebbly shallow water, there are also murky deep parts which seemed to house baby crocodiles and snakes but I have no plan on testing that hypothesis.
Wait, before I continue talking about the river I should probably follow some form of chronology. First, there were 5 kayaks available to us. Leo is partnered with Francis (haha! wait, I laughed a little, you’ll know later) Allison and Yun-chen went together, Minh and I shared the same boat, and Carmela and Kelly shared theirs. Yen stayed by the shore but she told me she did kayak some and took some pictures (I’ll find her later for the pics). Allison, our master kayaker, briefed us the basics of kayaking: to move forward you paddle left and right alternately, to turn you either hold your paddle in the water or paddle on one side. Usually the front person is in charge of the turning and the back person will be the power paddler but we didn’t really take note of that.
And so I paddled for the first time. It’s too wet and fun and scenic. Too relaxing and rythmic. Too leafy, too crashy, too branchy. After some time I felt like the master of turning left. Minh and I counted one and two. Master kayaker Allison and Yun-chen are of course, ahead of us. I looked back and saw Carmela and Kelly doing “the matrix” to avoid the vines, I saw Francis and Leo mingle and tangle with the water lilies. Needless to say, this experience is too fun.
We decided to paddle our way back to the river cave end because we promised to meet the students at 2:30 pm and the travel time to the school is about 3 to 4 hours although Francis would dispute that claim because he lives in Sogod (see Daniel’s tale of “It only takes two hours” below). So yeah, we don’t want to be unprofessional and arrive 1 hour late to the designated meeting time so we turned back but not without a gimmick.
We raced back: team Italy with olympians Francis and Leo vs team USA with Allison and Yun-chen vs team Vietnam with Minh and I. Unfortunately, Kelly and Carmela paddled back early for the fear of unwanted creatures jumping into their boat (they had extensive interaction with vines) Allison had a gecko jump to her leg, she freaked out until the gecko jumped back into the river. Needless to say, Allison and Yun-chen is leading, we followed and saw Yun-chen go up the tree and Allison chilled. Francis and Leo crashed into the lilies again. There were people cheering for us, or perhaps just laughing at our wackiness but I saw them as fans nonetheless. We are star kayakers.
Francis and Leo’s boat were sinking due to extensive crashing and “water weight” inside their boat. LOL.
So we hastily got ready to leave, we are definitely going to be late for the office hours. We left the beautiful Kuting Reef, and traveled for more than three hours. That was one of the worst ride I’ve had, I was too sick. Turned out Daniel, with his intention to get back on time and to meet Francis’s 2-hour expectations (see Daniel’s tale of “It only takes two hours” below), drove for about 100 km/hr on the rural two-way unsidewalked, unshouldered, unconcreted streets of southern Leyte.
We arrived at PSHS, I woked up. We are an hour late. We went to Cai, have the students research about water. I am the mentor of the water group aka Project Clarity, together with Allison, Leo and Minh. They were preparing for project defense. I don’t think details would be necessary for this, but I heard the other groups had a productive office hours as well. We left hoping that they will be ready for Project Defense tomorrow.
It Only Takes Two Hours by Daniel Greer
The story starts with two guys in a vehicle, the guy insisted to the driver, “It only takes two hours!” But it didn’t.