Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Philippines

This holiday season, once the bell rang 7:25pm and we were free, free at last, Bryan and I took off for a tropical Christmasing in the Philippines. We stayed in Boracay, just off the main center (my main traveling tip) in a little private cove called Balinghai. Six bungalows built into the side of a cliff made for a romantic setting, with some beach markets, restaurants, and bars an ideal 15 minutes away.

I learned a lot in the Philippines. I learned that bat cave adventures should be handled with caution, if ventured upon at all. I learned to always, always mind the live wires. I learned that 3 on a moped driving through the roadless Filipino jungles should include careful thought and a finger-numbing grip. I learned that Zorbing should be immediately googled and then partaken in. And I learned that Bryan's bartering skills are that of a wet dishcloth.

I also learned that Swedish people can quickly become excellent friends. I learned that white russians on the beach with said Swedish friends can be a badass way to ring in the new year. And I also learned that when in Rome, eat the seafood. Definitely, definitely, definitely eat the seafood.

And although pictures never say it all, here is my attempt at bringing the Philippines to you, one digital snapshot at a time.

The Happiest of New Years to You

2011: A new year. Ever-so-exciting 2010 is now a thing of the past. But instead of being nostalgic of time gone by, I'm going to be thankful for the past year, and extremely hopeful for the year to come. I still can't quite believe the year I had, and although I in no way want to depreciate the other years of my life, I have to say 2010 has perhaps stolen the trophy.

And even though mine and Bryan's year was filled with some obvious good times (traveling, meeting great friends, and experiencing new culture), and although this is far too cliche coming from a teacher (and for this I apologize), what I enjoyed most this year were the countless little things learned along the way. Like, for example, in Asia, to never be the first nor last person to cross the street. Also, important Korean vocabulary, like 'mekju' and 'doogae'. And most importantly, when in doubt, shoot 'em a ten. Then flex.

This nomadic life we find ourselves in seems to be agreeing with us, and we're both equally stoked to keep on truckin' in the overseas teaching market. So athough we love home, we seem to be settling ourselves into a home away for home (for now, at least.)

And because Jack Kerouac says it better than me, I'll leave you with this:

"Our battered suitcases lay on the sidewalk again; we had longer ways to go. But no matter, the road is life."

A happy and healthy new years to you, from our home to yours.