Late post: Break

by - Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Hello~ Since I'm super bored and I've got a lot of time in my hands I've decided to blog about our recent trip to our hometown, Balayan, Batangas. We had a four-day vacation during the Holy Week last April and my mother decided it was the perfect time to visit my grandparents. 

Plus they were in the process of tearing down our old house in place of a smaller, much more modern house for my grandparents to live in comfortably, and my mom wanted to see how things were going.

This post will probably be picture-heavy. Probably. Also incoherent. So brace yourselves. All pictures taken by my little sister, btw.

Just arrived. Tired as hell.
L-R: My cousin MJ, little sis April, and my mom.

The first thing we did when we got there was SLEEP! Honestly, last April I experienced one of the worst heat waves I could remember. Being stuck in a crowded car with no working AC in the middle of the day for four to five hours can really take everything out of you. It didn't help that the fucking car broke down TWICE in the middle of nowhere and with nobody to help you push the car because all the passengers were either teeny ladies or children below the age of twelve. Heh. But we survived. I was quite envious of my mom and April, who didn't ride on the car with us and instead commuted to Batangas. Lucky them~

The next day out aunt invited us to go visit a petting zoo located in a nearby beach. It was this cool, clean place that hosted a variety of small animals. 

Le kyot chicks. 

Turkeh. They got a bit startled when we came near then, lol.

So I was resting my hand on their cage when this little rascal tried to grab my hand and bite it! 
Then he went around and guarded the place like, "Go away bitches. Grr. Grr."
I think it's so aggressive because of the behavior of the last guests. The owner said they were frequently played tricks on.

Their main attraction are the rabbits which they breed but don't sell yet because the population is still too small. Oddly enough I can't find the pictures of the rabbits that I took. 

The next day we went to join the procession in the town church, done during the Holy Week. With the church as the starting point, the carved images of Mama Mary and Jesus would circle the town and then return to the church, which would roughly take about two to three hours. Some call it a form of  public penance where they'd ask for absolution by hurting themselves. Not making fun of it or anything, I just don't think it's necessary to hurt oneself in order to ask for forgiveness from the Big Man. When you're sorry, you're sorry. Anyway that's my opinion.

Although, the procession doesn't really give you anything more that sore feet from walking all evening. 

Part of the church, plus Mama Mary's statue. 
My parents got married here. ♥

Me and my Aunt holding our candles to be lit later.

The members of my family who joined the prusisyon.

The statue we were supposed to follow. We were at the back of the line.

Lookit how many people came! 
That's my aunt and uncle in the foreground, left side.

Later that evening.

When you're just watching the crowd walk past you on the street, it's a beautiful sight to marvel at - hundreds of candles brightly lit, walking in unison under the clear night sky. Just lovely. ♥

Plus the statues are all beautifully lit as well. 

When we got to the furthest part of the town there were a lot of twists and turns in the road. Since we were at the back of the line, shall we say, all we had to do was follow the crowd wherever they turned. That and we heavily relied on our grandmother who knew the route by heart so we just went ahead and walked.

Around the end of a certain narrow road my grandmother led us to a street where most of the other devotees proceeded to, while telling us that this is the last part of the journey and we'll be back in the church shortly thereafter.

But when we turned on the corner, this was what we saw: 

Street was jam-packed with little stores. The whole place transformed in to a small marketplace overnight!

So where was the crowd?? Apparently they took a detour precisely because of that market-thing. We got lost along the way and ended up here. Haha!

In the end we decided to wrap up the night by praying to the nearest chapel in the area. My mother says that if you've got something that you needed divine help with, that was the place to go to. Provided that you believe hard enough. 

Lit a few candles and said a few prayers.

We got home just in time for dinner~ What I love most about Balayan is their wet market, which offers a wide array of fresh seafood to choose from. I've had more than my fill of squid, fresh fish and my favorite seaweed! ♥ Food. :D

On our last free day we were invited once again by my aunt to spend the afternoon on the beach, something my siblings and I looked forward to. It was in Matabungkay, a known tourist spot in the area. The place is frequented by locals and tourists alike, and it's perfect for an afternoon picnic because you can rent a raft that comes with a grill and is built to resemble a hut so you can roast your lunch in the middle of the sea, or even take a nap while you're at it, lol.

Little sister and cousin exploring the raft.

Keisha and I, hiding in the shade. :))

Burying G3 in the sand, lol!

Me going, "Tangina so salty!" Obviously not used to the ocean. Or the sun.

Oh, and hey guys you better make sure to clean up after yourselves when you're in the beach. A little while after we dipped in the water we found a USED diaper floating happily along. YUCK! And we found some junk food wrappers, plastic bottles, and fruit peelings. Really, really not nice. Respect the ocean and its inhabitants, plz. How would you like it if other people threw trash in your house, eh??

Anyway, we spent the entire afternoon and much of the evening submerged in the water and eating like crazy :))))

Ending this post with pics of the glorious sunset at the beach ♥

So lovely~ 

That's it for my vacation. We went home first thing the next morning. And while I'm glad to be back to my wifi I'm very much thankful for the four-day retreat. Quite a relaxing experience, and I definitely can't wait to come back in June. Ja!

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