It was an unknown destination for me. Though I’ve heard it a few times before, I really had no idea on what to see there. With no expectations at all, I packed my bag and joined my friends at Pampanga Bloggers’ Society on a weekend trip to Dasol in the Province of Pangasinan, not knowing it’ll be one of the significant trips I’ll have.
We left Pampanga at past midnight. And after few hours, we were already in Pangasinan. It was still dark so we really can’t see where we were passing by. But I was sure it was a long, winding road. A couple of times we thought we were lost but after few more kilometers, we finally reached our destination – Tambobong Beach.
After leaving our bags in our rooms at our host resort, Tambobong Beach Rains Resort, the group immediately went to the beach and waited for the sunrise. I was a bit doubtful about it at first since we were on the west side. But to my surprise, it was one of the best sunrises I’ve seen in recent years. By then, I knew, a beautiful day awaits me.
Right after the sunrise fishing boats started coming back to the shore with fresh catch from the sea, usually fish like “espada” which locals dry and squid with varied sizes. We even saw one that weighs more than a kilo.
Then we had our breakfast care of our generous host with the region’s gastronomic pride on the table, like longganisang Alaminos, dried espada fish, poqui-poqui and lato.
After being fueled up with our naimas breakfast, we took a 30 to 45-minute boat ride to reach Colibra Island, which is also called Culebra Island or Snake Island. According to locals, before the influx of tourists, sea snakes are often seen here.
I was in total awe the moment we set foot in the island. Pristine water, fine creamy white sand, native huts and rock balancing formations welcomed us. On the opposite side of the island is the rocky side where waves are stronger. After taking photos of the island, I just stood in one portion, felt the sea breeze against my face, and just appreciated the God-given beauty that is in front of me.
After few hours, we left Colibra. We passed by Crocodile Island which got its name from the island’s shape. Unfortunately due to time constraint, we were not able to further explore the island. Few of us snorkeled before we headed back to the mainland for our sumptuous lunch with the fresh sea food caught in the morning.
An unplanned trip to this unnamed cave just a few minute walk from Tambobong Beach stunned me. We passed by a residential area leading to a trail to the forest and then descended in a path leading to the blue water of the cave pool.
One of the best places to catch the sunset according to our host is at the view deck in Barangay Malacapas. Although we had a service van, I opted to hop on our tour guide’s motorcycle to enjoy the view and the province’s fresh air.
Along the road, there were trees, which I forgot to ask the name and seasonality, that resembles cherry blossom.
The guide and I reached Malacapas View Deck earlier than the rest of the team. While waiting for them to arrive, I started exploring the area. And then I found myself, alone, sitting on the edge of a cliff, appreciating the bird’s eye view of Dasol and Dasol Bay while contemplating on previous events in my life.
It took time, five months to be exact, to finally decide to let go, to give up on the hope that you and I will still be together. On that moment, I cleared my mind. It made me realized how blessed I still am despite of and in spite of what happened. I told myself that it’s about time to stand up and begin walking again, on a separate path, without you. No tears, no drama. And in that moment, I felt at peace.
And then everyone else came. We found our spots and took emo and creative shots. Few more minutes and the sun has finally set, it was getting dark so we went back to the resort for another seafood feast for dinner.
After dinner, the bonfire was lighted, we lay on the sand, gazed up at the stars and exchanged stories with these new-found awesome friends. And then there was a moment, that all I can hear are the gushing sound of waves towards the shore, the crackling sound of wood being eaten by the bonfire, my feet playing with the cold sand, with the sky full of stars as our roof. It was a long night. A long memorable night. A magical one.
And then day 2 came. I woke up at around 5:00 AM to once again witness the sunrise. Then I saw my friends who were already in the shore waiting. The second day’s sunrise was even more beautiful. The clouds are in a ripple pattern. The sun has its rays placed perfectly. The sea was calm. I can feel the cold February breeze against my skin. Dasol must’ve been doing an extra effort to impress me. And it did.
We had our breakfast, enjoyed the view of the crowdless beach in front of the resort with indie music playing in the background. We took more shots of the area, had our group photo taken and packed our stuff and prepared to leave. We took a side trip to the next town of Alaminos where we had our lunch and where we bought items for pasalubong and then finally headed home.
As they always say, time flies so fast when you are having fun. On my way home, I was reflecting on the trip and I was so thankful that I said yes to the invitation of joining that trip. Yes, someone may have left and chose to go on with life without me, but this trip made me gain new friends, friends who now plays a special role in my life.
And to you, I’d like to thank you for loving me unconditionally for the eight months that we were together. Thank you for always believing in me even during the times that I doubted myself. We may have petty quarrels during our out-of-town trips but I’d like you to know that those are some of the best trips of my life. Thank you for letting me in in your life and for letting me be part of your wonderful family. Thank you for the never-ending patience you had for me, even during the times when my mood just kicks in and I’ll throw tantrums for no reason at all. I’m very sorry for all the disappointments I caused you. Sorry for what happened. Sorry if I gave in.
It may be over. We may be over. But I’d like to remember all the happy moments when we were still together, and learn from our mistakes and shortcomings. I know, by now what we both need is time, time until we can finally forgive each other, time until we forgive ourselves, time until all the wounds will be healed.
I look forward to the day that our paths will cross again. And when that day comes, I promise to hold you, hug you tight and never let you go. You will always be in my heart. I love you. I always will.
The beauty of Dasol transcends what the eyes can see. It awakens the senses. It touches your core. It made me appreciate the people who matters in my life, it made me appreciate life. It helped me forget the pains of the past. But it also helped me remember the lessons these experiences taught me. And most importantly, it reminded me that whatever life may give you, just keep on walking, keep on moving.
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