This week I went to the most beautiful ocean in the world for vacation. Well, one of the most. Boracay is a jeep, taxi, airplane, bus, and tricycle away, and I escaped here for 3 days and 2 nights to debrief and enjoy the splendor of this country’s breathtaking islands.
We (Jenn, Katie, an FHPH staffer Aileen, and I plus 3 guides and sailors) went exploring in a catamaran with snorkel gear, my camera, and tons of raw food for a fresh picnic lunch. The water is the bluest of blues and so clear that you could see the indents on the coral reefs from the moving boat. The sunrays stripped the underwater with light. I sat on the stern of the boat the whole day daydreaming of learning to sail my own boat and exploring all 7109 Philippine islands myself. The fish and shells were colorful and unique, and I thoroughly enjoyed diving to see both. I am also bringing back both; the fish in my stomach and the shells in my backpack. The views are just too beautiful to explain with my limited vocabulary, so hopefully these photos will help tell the story better:
We didn’t have to go far to see this marvelous ocean; our hotel was right on the sand. Actually, many hotels, restaurants and shops are. There is a nice path of buildings that line the coast and are filled with treasures… bracelets, and sun hats and flip flops, oh my! We spent time getting our fair share of awesome souvenirs. But more time was devoted to swimming in the crystal sea. It was so nice to be back by the water after more than 2 months of being separated from my dear love (thank goodness USC is near the beach!). The water was also so warm and refreshing, and to be surrounded by green palmas, white sand and cyan sky just made the swimming that much better. Oh and the sunsets! The mouth dropping, “Praise the Lord,” postcard-worthy sunsets! Again, words fail to describe the beauty, and again, here are pictures to try to:
The most profound part of the trip was the coming home. Yes, “home.” I was so excited to return “home,” and said it just so. On the plane looking at the lights from above, I thought of Phoenix and became quite sad. I am going to be very sad to leave this place. It really did feel so natural to jump in a taxi and arrive in San Pedro to my “family” and sleep in “my own bed.” It feels like I’ve been here long enough to consider life here as such, even though it’s only been 2 months. I miss my real family dearly and feel sad that I vacationed without them while they are vacationing with all my real family far, far away from the tropics (I wish I was also there by the way, Indiana (and Michigan) family! Actually you could also come here hehe). Walking into my house on New Years Eve and New Years Dr. from my vacation felt so natural, I cannot imagine leaving these special people forever. I cannot imagine living without my Philippines. We are discussing our feelings about leaving and how to leave well, which is and will be very helpful with dealing with these emotions. I will just be very sad to leave my new home.