It is everyone's dream to be in a place which is considerably one of the world's wonders. Among those who have visibly wished of being in a reality and fantasy-filled part of Planet Earth are the language faculty members of the High School Department as well as the High School principal. At first, this writer who is the only masculine in a group composed of mostly Eve's apparent descendants, thought that the plan we set for once-in-a-blue moon trip to Boracay's globally known atmosphere would remain in prolonged uncertainty, but what he thought was proven wrong because on May 17, 2007, the group headed by the High School Department's three undisputed beauty queen wannabes (Mrs. Barrete, Mrs. Cardino and Mrs. Floreta) braced themselves for another much-coveted title to hold, the New Breed of Boracay Hotbabes. They were joined in by the similarly bigtime starlets namely: Mrs. Agbayani, Miss Calope, Mrs. Capili, Mrs. Orcullo and Miss Tamarra.
Our group decided to board the vessel which usually ply the Tagbilaran-Cebu-Iloilo-Caticlan-Boracay route. With the necessary preparations made ready, we boarded the SuperCat bound for Cebu in the afternoon of May 17, and arrived at the "Queen City of the South" at around 4:00 p.m.
Right away, we headed for the Iloilo-bound vessel (Asia Phil). Due to the security guard's prodding that the Iloilo-bound passengers were already given the "go signal" to come aboard Asia Phil., we hurriedly directed our steps to the waiting vessel only to be barred by the other port authorities because it was not yet boarding time; thus, an instant debate between us and them ensued.
Mrs. Cardino, Mrs. Floreta, Mrs. Barrete and Mrs. Capili on the affirmative side versus the port authorities on the negative side. Gifted with devastating beautiful figures combined with brilliant logic and argument, the "Unbeatable Four" delivered a barrage of 1-2-3-4 combination of punchlines to their opponents making them dumbfounded. Obviously, the port authorities lost in the word war but they still upheld the TRO (Temporary Restraining Order) against us. Still fuming, we planned to confront the erring guard but we changed our minds upon learning that he had with him a large and heavy baton. We might not be able to reach Boracay because of some broken bones.
It was passed 5:00, when at last, we were finally given the green light to board Asia Phil., and at around 7:00, the said ship started to- sail to Iloilo. By some unknown phenomenon, we couldn't sleep. Was it because of the abundance of food we brought along? Was it because of our three colleagues, Mrs. Cajilog, Mrs. Llido, and Mrs. Viñalon who failed to join us due to some reasons beyond their human control? Was it because of our special someones left behind who kept on thinking that we might end up being involved with some Boracay controversies? You know how tempting and seducing the place is. Whatever the reason was, it still remained a mystery as of this writing, and this writer wouldn't care much for he got the whole group's attention considering that he was the only hunk among the blooming beauties. Though deprived of a goodnight sleep, we were able to reach Iloilo safely in the morning of May 18. Thanks to Mrs. Floreta's leadership in praying the Holy Rosary!
As soon as we set foot in Iloilo, it seemed that things started to change. The HNU hotbabes' attention was visibly caught by the tour guide who met us. The guy must be captivating because he looked like the matinee idol in the early 80's, William Martinez.
Even then, this writer was unfazed because the tour guide's aura has long been gone. The new generation of whom my lady companions have been a part of embraces Orlando Bloom's appeal anyway.
With our matinee idol-look-alike tour guide, as what my companions claimed, we started our long trip to Caticlan. Along the way, the group was entertained by the tricycle driver's acrobatic style in driving with more or less eleven passengers on board. Their feat was worth an entry to Rippley's Believe It or Not or to the Guiness Book of World Records.
By noon time, our tour guide made a stop over at Sampaguita Gardens for lunch. After which, we decided to have a short-time tour at the place, and it was worth it. We discovered familiar corners like Timmy's Comfort Room and Sammy's Circus and Free Rides to Mrs. Floreta's delight. We also got into a chateau owned by a certain foreigner which accepts lodgers. Each room costs P 11,000 a night. We were informed that the place has been frequented by Hollywood big names of whom Antonio Banderas was one.
We continued our land travel to Caticlan and we arrived there past 3:00 p.m. We embarked immediately on the motorized banca that would ferry us to our dream island - Boracay. While navigating, Mrs. Floreta's scream everytime the boat jerked kept other passengers awake. After the 15-minute boat ride, we could hardly believe that we finally reached Boracay - the island of our fantasy. We then proceeded to La Carmela Hotel.
Worn out due to the long trip, we agreed to be in our respective rooms after clarificatory matters were settled between the group's leader Mrs. Barrete and the La Carmela receptionist. With wobbled legs, we decided to go to the third floor, wherein our respective rooms are located, the easiest way - through the elevator. We were cramped in the enclosure which raised us to our room destination when suddenly, the power went off. The group started to panic and each member sweated profusely. The words in the dictionary are not enough to describe Mrs. Floreta's facial expression as if she was thinking that the sudden halt might be the end of the world.
When the power supply resumed, Mrs. Floreta immediately ordered this writer to move out first knowing that I stayed near the elevator's door, but upon saying so, she pushed her way out leaving me and Mrs. Agbayani being caught off-balance.
Still trembling and sweating, we preferred to reach our respective quarter through the staircase. With the bulk of our baggages, it was indeed, a great late afternoon summer workout.
After a short rest and a great shower, our next mission was to look for a dining place. We went through options and menus; eventually, we ended up eating an "exotic" meal in an "exotic" ambiance.
Getting a little bit recharged from our only-in-Boracay fare, the seven local yet big time tourists namely Mrs. Barrete, Mrs. Floreta, Mrs. Orcullo, Mrs. Capili, Mrs. Agbayani, Miss Calope and Miss Tamarra went sight-seeing and a little shopping. Mrs. Cardino did not join them because the business (sight-seeing and shopping) could wait for another day, but missing a single scene of John Llyod and Bea's teleserye is like resigning from her office.Likewise, this writer knowing that Boracay's night life is so enticing, opted to stay in his room.
The group continued exploring Boracay's hidden secrets and other souvenir items on the 19th of May.
Mrs. Floreta acted as our chief negotiator as far as asking for discounts was concerned. Her charm captivated most of the vendors. As lunch time got closer, she bragged of another incident in which she came across with a certain Boracay native who convinced her of an action and suspense-filled banana boat ride. This time, Bohol and Bora's brains clashed. In the end, it was Mrs. Floreta's wit which dominated. From the original price of a whooping P300.00 per 15 minute ride, she was able to reduce it to a stunning P120.00.
Curious, everybody agreed to take the ride but before that we must fill our stomach first.
After lunch, we unanimously agreed that we would take the said ride at 3:30 p.m. In that case, the heat of the sun would no longer be much cruel on our extra sensitive skin. Since it was still 1:00 p.m. Mrs. Cardino, Mrs. Floreta, Mrs. Barrete, Mrs. Agbayani, Miss Calope, Miss Tamarra and this writer squatted by the seashore. Mrs. Orcullo and Mrs. Capili kept on strolling, displaying their bodies of evidence.
While this writer's eyes were feasting on the mouth-watering Boracay scenery, Mrs. Floreta lost control of her passion for the Boracay waters and decided to make an emergency dip. However there must be another reason more than sea-water passion, and this mystery remains one of the top secrets of the Language Department.
It was about 3.00 p.m. when we made ourselves ready for the banana boat ride adventure. From Station 2, we hiked for almost one km. to Station 1 where the starting point was. When we arrived, we were given waivers to fill-up. What we were about to experience must be risky! After filling-up the form, we were instructed to put on a life vest and then mount ourselves on the rubber boat which must be towed by another speedboat. Before speeding off, Mrs. Floreta made one last plea to the speed boat operators by saying, "Huwag malakas ha! I mean huwag mabilis pala." Whichever was the right grammatical request pattern, the bottom line is everybody was tense.
The 15-minute suspense-filled adventure began. Mrs. Floreta's actions spoke of excitement at first but later on, as our speed went to several horsepower, she became terrified and ordered the boatmen to bring us back to shore using the words, "Iuwi n'yo na kami! Please!" She repeated this order many times in which this writer lost count, but her charm was ignored. Her loud shout was of no use, for it only alarmed the whalesharks and other endangered species.
After the 15 rattling minutes, we were brought ashore. This writer got confused why the trip we had was called a banana boat ride when what we rode on looked like a spaceship rather than a banana. Was it because the ride was only intended for the banana-loving primates? Whatever the answer is, only the boatmen know.
The late afternoon of May 19 was again an eye-popping experience when this writer's female companions (in their respective swimsuits of course!) started to frolic in the pristine waters of the globally-known island.
After the late afternoon swim, we went back to St. Vincent Hotel, our new quarter, for a shower but alas! The water which came out from the shower was not St. Vincent - sent for it had a very strongly foul odor. It seemed that we were in Planet Undiscovered; however, we could do nothing but go with the flow and try to ignore the nose-busting smell.
Dinner time came. The food was okay except for the pineapple which lost its normal taste. Even then, we still had the time to laugh as each one recalled the different new and hilarious experiences we went through in our two-day vacation.
We spent the last night at St. Vincent where we occupied two rooms. In the first room were this writer, Mrs. Orcullo, Mrs. Capili, Mrs. Agbayani and Miss Tamarra. The other room was occupied by Mrs. Cardino, Mrs. Barrete, Mrs. Floreta and Miss Calope. Since this writer was the only accidental hunk in the group, it was decided that I should have the special beddings (for security reasons), and special indeed it was because the said beddings could serve as a matching donation for a certain museum. The blanket was visibly overused, but despite all the discomfort we slept soundly all night long. That's how flexible we are.
Boracay itself is not so spectacular and impressive after all compared with Panglao's beaches. But the camaraderie that this writer experienced with Mrs. Remedios Cardino, Mrs. Mary Faith Barrete, Mrs. Gladys Flora Floreta, Mrs. Fretziel Orcullo, Mrs. Cirila Capili, Mrs. Bernardita Agbayani, Miss Karen Calope and Miss Roxanne Tamarra helped us understand each other more deeply.
The tour gives us something very precious more than what Boracay could offer. It leads us towards "the emergence of mutual interpersonal perspective. I see my companions as they see me; I see them seeing me seeing them. What we've been through creates more personal relationship with the unifying power of bonding."