finally pushed through with or Batanes trip. we first scheduled last week of November last year via Asian Spirit/ Zest Air. unfortunately the Basco trip was indefinitely cancelled because of aircraft permit issues. we had it rescheduled to Jan. 19-24, airfare then was at barely 6k roundtrip. when i called them up a week before the trip i was told that their flights are suspended due to some accident in the caticlan runway a few days back, WTF! their flights will resume on the second week of February but of course we could no longer wait for that as we have deadline to meet.
i had to ask for a refund and book at Sea Air, the lone airline that flies there for now. and oops, the airfare is now at a hefty price of 12k roundtrip. haay buti na lang business trip ito haha!
i have to say it must be the roughest plane ride i've ever had. the dornier which took us must be some decades old and i could almost feel all the creaks and groans of it's body as the engine loudly hummed. and though the scenery was totally breathtaking as we approached the runway near the foot of Mt. Iraya, i could not help but wince in pain as air pressure wanted to pop my eardrums out.
we landed with quite a loud thud and i almost wanted to hug everyone else for having a safe and successful arrival.
it was cold, but it wasn't as cold as i expected. i was prepared for some more wintry weather but eek, the sun's rays still hurt my skin even if the breeze was pretty cold.
we were met by our sundo from Seaside Lodge who welcomed us with a beam. we checked in, had breakfast and slept. ang sarap sarap matulog, ang lamig, ang tahimik! it was so quiet i could here footsteps on the corridors and the breeze softly banging the windows outside. i must have slept the rest of the morning and even begged to delay our appointment to 130pm so i could snooze some more.
we met a few of our contacts that afternoon and scheduled our interview for the following day. and we had the rest of the afternoon to explore the nearby places of Basco. i walked around the town area and just took pictures. it's the usual set up of a square and around it are the mayor's office, the church and the school, wala pang jollibee eh. milling around the vicinity are children of different ages and locals and workers who never fail to give us a smile and a hello. i bet with this small town feel, they know almost everyone around.
their national road is littered with boats. it was getting colder as the night slowly crept in. everything was just so serene and peaceful.
amidst this rustic feel though, i managed to find this Italian spot for some pizza and beer. it kinda felt odd having to write again on paper and to top it all, there was brown out when i was on the midst of blogging something down.
okay, tomorrow is another day. i will have to finally jot down my itineraries with more pics and contact numbers. just that right now. i'm still so overwhelmed with everything. and i'm afraid bringing in too much tourists in the area might only destroy the beauty of everything in there. haha! ang damot ko daw ba!