May 4-6, 2012
I grabbed my lightweight bag, left my home, and I don’t know what I’ll be doing in Maitum, Sarangani.
That was certainly lightweight (extra shirt, cell phone, charger, toothbrush, etc.) for I didn’t expect the trip to be one of the unforgettable summers I’ve had. A week has passed, and I want to go back there. I must have left my heart there.
Before I spoil the moment and describe how idyllic and too nice to be real the place is, let me first start it with HOW WE GET TO CONQUER MAITUM. And so we arrived at the Ablog terminal past four, and it’s too late to hail a bus. The team is predominantly composed of ladies, so what do you expect? Too sloooooow that we fear we might postpone the escapade. Luckily, my friend Ana has this charm to lure her relative who is a driver. So worry not, the story will develop.
It took us a couple of hours until we arrive, and in between the road trip, we became different creatures. At the back are sleepyheads, on my side is a window that paves way to dim but scenic sights of Sarangani, at the front are girls whose loud mouth transforms into a silent one, and on my other side is a guy whose playlist is lame that it made us argue who is a better singer: Sarah G. or Angeline Quinto (rofl)?
People (count me in) often has misconception about Maitum. The name itself contradicts the bright smiles, radiant panoramas, and inviting façade… But if I’m in the authority to change its name, I wouldn’t, for the sake of its historical background. Maybe it wants to portray what they call VERBAL IRONY—a statement in which the meaning that a speaker employs is sharply different from the meaning that is ostensibly expressed (thanks, Wikipedia).
And we’re finally at the subject of this post. This is the place where my Kuya’s are very proud of. They would recite lines regarding the tourism sector of Maitum. Those high-sounding speeches seem to beckon us, “Come here.”
We stayed at Old Poblacion. The setting is similar to Gensan’s Brgy. Bula. You know, sandy beach with crispy breeze resonating around the place. My friends caught a small sea creature (I might say “shore creature” for I suppose they don’t live underwater). It is an entity in a shell with the size as small as the fingernail in my pinky. I took care of it, and named him Sebastian, but I lost it somewhere. The night is over, and I took a slumber inside the tent at the seashore. Imagine how relaxing it is and how desirable to sleep in it.
The people chanting at the sea were my alarm clock. SUDDENLY, MY SATURDAY IS GOLDEN. It let me experience the things I haven’t experienced yet. We rode in a pump boat, but I was thinking, can we have breakfast before expediting in the solemn water. Unbeknownst to me, they brought the meal with them, and you know what happens next. I won’t be elaborating this event for it deserves a single, in-depth post.
We landed safely, and took a rest. Shortly, our feet took us to mangrove planting. I got my feet muddy and wounded as I stepped on a pointed root-like entity. Again, I won’t be elaborating this event for it deserves a single, in-depth post. We cleaned our filthy hands and feet and took a glance at baby pawikans innocently swimming inside a container. They don’t know they are looked upon. Again, I won’t be elaborating this event for it deserves a single, in-depth post. I was very overwhelmed by the surprises along my trip, that I thought, I-ba-blog ko to.
We started the morning ecstatic; there ain’t any reason for us to end the day ecstatically. We rode on a tricycle, and after the subsequent rocky, dusty, and hostile paths, we arrived at Kuya Making’s house. We went there to eat lunch, and traverse the town. Food? Check (in fact there are evidences that he slaughtered a chicken). Cable TV? Check. Shenanigan chit-chats that turned out to be funny? Check.
After a rest from exhausting activities of the day, we woke up just to be informed that we will be toured by our Kuya. We walked down, and he pointed certain landmarks. Some of the places I can’t forget are: Corazon, ang Unang Pawnshop, Octagon Market (don’t ask why it is called per se), Ray’s Mart, where you can find everything in one roof, the ancient acacia, and so on.
We stopped at their municipality hall. I was amazed by the glass walls, and I wonder, how would they react if I throw a stone at it? But I would never do that; they’re too kind to deserve it. Their hall is stuffed with numerous photo galleries, museum, and many others that it us beyond municipality hall. Another thing that makes the tour bizarre is when we were treated like foreigners (take it literally); we had pictures of the officials.
Frankly, it seems like we stayed there for a week have we been taken to other places, thanks to the tricycle of kuya Making.
The sun got tired of putting shade on us so when night came, we are prepping for Miss Maitum. We would sit in VIP seats. We had to freshen up, but wait. Where are we going to eat? Luckily, it seems Maitumians know each other, so we walked to Malong’s resto. Malong’s parents were still preparing for our dinner, so to kill the time, we played Word Factory. The standing is 3-1 (we were defeated), but that is not the issue. With tired neurons, we finally took our sumptuous BBQ, but bad news, Miss Maitum is starting in a few minutes. We ate swiftly, as if an atomic bomb will explode in a few seconds. That was a LOL moment. Blame it on the Word Factory which literally killed our time.
At the moment I am pressing the keyboards to write this experience, my playlist is constantly airing slow songs that make me sigh. I remembered the faces of the people I met, and I guarantee that if you’re in Maitum, you will gain friends. Choose an age gap, and they’ll give you peers you can rely on. Jeez. Should’ve stayed there longer.
This travel had taught me many lessons. Appreciate the wonders of nature. Spend time with friends. Smile to everyone. Learn to dive. Bring at least 3 shirts.
Another event to look forward to is Sarangani Bay Festival, which will hit the white sand beaches of Gumasa on May 18 and 19. Join their facebook account here and don’t forget to hit the LIKE button. Save the date!
the breathtaking photographs were taken by Alhsmar Sayago. (a round of applause)