Summer 2013: The Rundown

As summers go, this is the best one I had, so far (I mean, of all the summers that I remember).

I know this will not match anyone’s dream summer vacay-cay but so what. It was fun!

I’m not able to do any swimming sessions this summer (because I used up all of my swimming cards before the academic year ended) but I’ve done serious travelling this year. I went to Pampanga (as always), Manila, and Batangas! I mean, real far Batangas, real real Batangas! It was a enjoyable, but equally tiring.

Here’s the summary (because I can’t narrate all 3 months of summer in paragraphs that will not bore you).

All things Manila

–          We had to go to Pampanga at 6:30 AM (from Bataan) and go to Manila at 3 PM. We arrived there at 6 PM.

–          I saw for the first time Aunt Gie’s house. I went at the other one (the apartment they owned) when I was in high school.

–          I saw Ging and Ian (Aunt Gie’s children) and their dogs (Dindy and Ding). The dogs smelled. I’m not used to dogs because we don’t have any.

–          Was the first ones to see Ging’s braces. I was kind of jealous because her gomas were pink and we know how much I adore pink.

–          Because of boredom (I did not brought my laptop and I did not want to share the PC with the kids), I played Scrabble with an 8-year old (Ian). He loses every time but he was good and promising in words. Also, I played Sudoku and tried to teach Ian how.

–          I ate at least 5 times a day. At the least! I gained weight (which I am trying to do for the past 2 years) and my cheeks got puffier. My short was even uncomfortable to wear.

–          I also had Bagoong Alamang (Fish Sauce, not the Patis Fish Sauce) for the first time in like forever. Yum! I always pair it with Tomatoes when I eat chicken. Oh, I ate much chicken that I thought I’ll grow some wings.

–          I experienced looking at the Manila rooftops. It was nice and sort of peaceful.

–          And the highlight of my Manila experience is that I cooked Adobo for the family.

–          We did not go shopping though.

Oh so Batangas

–          Going to Batangas was tough, we woke up at 4 AM and were in Buendia at 6. There we waited for the van for 2 hours and in the end decided to transfer to another vehicle because they said we should wait for 7 more persons. At the bus, we were told that there’s another van that was almost full so we switched again, the bus will be slow anyway. At the second van, we had to wait for one person for half an hour and we’re good to go. It was a 3-hour dizzying and butt-numbing ride.

–          There we prepared for Ging’s float and all the things needed for the Sagala (parade) and the fiesta. It was difficult because her relatives were not that helpful and we were out for ourselves.

–          What I did there was sleep, eat, play PSP (Loco Roco, Sims, Grocery Mania. Tekken), watched TV, and eat some more. It was even my first time to watch Hannah Montana the movie.

–          Ate some Batangas food like Bihongke. It’s like Sotanghon but without the orangey color. There’s also this Sampayne that’s made from the goat’s organs. We have something like this in Pampanga called Papaitan and it was spicy yet bitter and was always present in fiestas and inuman (when men drinks beer in their own backyard). The only difference is that Sampayne is sweet (and for me tastes like spaghetti).

–          I had a hard time sleeping at night because there were rumors of aswang (creatures of the night) all around. I prayed a lot.

–          We did not go to the beach (even if we want to so bad) because of some attitude problems.

Retracing the steps

–          After a week in Batangas, we went back to Manila and then went to Pampanga.

–          It was doubly exhausting, the ride back from Batangas. Sure we had a service but it was not comfortable and they just dropped us somewhere far from Caloocan so we had to take a taxi. When we were back at the house, I tried to get some sleep (because we woke up at 2 AM) but Mom wanted to go to Pampanga already because we’ll go to Bataan in the afternoon. Talk about travelling.

–          It was a burden to have a period that day so when we got to Pampanga, I decided to just stay there and let Mom go to Bataan alone. I know it’s a cruel move but my dysmenorrhoea’s killing me.

Life in Pampanga

–          I embodied the life of a promdi (those kids who live a simple life in the farm) in Pampanga.

–          I woke up early to go to the farm and spend the day there. We harvested fruits (sinigwelas, cashew, guyabano, mangoes), cleaned the weeds (I got burned will burning the weeds), enjoyed the cool fresh mountain air.

–          I even got a sort-of summer job; I cut the dry branches that we collected to use as fire wood. It was tiring but worth it in the end because you see that the food you’re eating is from the woods you cut.

–          The best parts were going home riding a kariton or a carriage pulled by two carabao (it was my first time since 1st year high school) and climbing a tree to pick the fruits.

–          The bright side was the abundance in chocolates. Cadbury, Toblerone, Snickers, name it, I tasted it. I even ate some from Germany (I can’t remember the brand) because I met a German who was my cousin’s fiancé.

–          I learned how to drive a tricycle like I’m freaking out with glee! I got 2-meters away from my starting point.

–          And for the first time ever, I played as the bass guitarist in the Praise and Worship of our Sunday Service. So blessed.

Home Sweet Home

–          In Bataan, I did what I always do when I’m at home, nothing. I became an official member of the couch society (you know what I mean).

–          But I did accomplished some things, I got enrolled on the same section, finished some book reviews, tidied my 2nd year stuff that was cluttered in my room, cleaned my table, organized my clothes, and the like.

Last Pampanga Getaway Before School Starts

–          We went to Pampanga for the last time this summer for my Grandpa’s birthday. It was so fun I had to write about it.

–          Also, we went school supplies shopping (with some shoe-clothes-bag shopping on the side).

–          I attended a wedding of a past church-mate (in Lubao, Pampanga).

–          Got my braces adjusted (after two months which was eww).


All in all, it was a nice summer. Not fancy but definitely exciting and fun-filled. No swimming sessions but that was okay (because I’m trying to get whiter hihi). It was a new way to spend the summer vacay-cay. I must say it was more adventurous than going swimming. All the travelling will get your bodies worked up in a way that will not make your muscles ache in the morning.

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