“There’s a sunrise and a sunset every single day, and they’re absolutely free. Don’t miss so many of them.” –Jo Walton
The sun best accentuates the places we see. For a few minutes, the sun allows us time to meditate on what has been and what will be. Be it the daily work grind, weekend vacation, or an ordinary day, a sunrise or a sunset never fails to evoke beauty and optimism.
Here are some of the place I have been in the Philippines and the sun as my constant companion.
“Never waste any amount of time doing anything important when there is a sunset outside that you should be sitting under.” – C. JoyBell C.
There was never a night or a problem that could defeat sunrise or hope. –Bernard Williams
Nestled in Siaton, Negros Oriental, Lake Balanan is a recommended retreat for those visiting Dumaguete City.
The lush greens and cool waters of Lake Balanan natural reserve give a perfect setting for adventure activities such as trekking, swimming (at the pools only), kayaking, boating, ziplining, and meditation. I would love for Cebu City to have this kind sanctuary for weekend trips. Would be my go-to itinerary, if ever.
With a scenery perfect for picture-taking, make sure you have a fully-charged camera and/or a spare battery.
A quaint city which impresses guests with laid back environs and a buffet of food places, Dumaguete City in Negros Oriental is a treat for those wanting a quiet yet still sight-filled and gastronomic vacation.
The plan was to take a break from the usual seafood and grilled meat, so, we sampled the snack parlors of this university city. After a long bus ride from Cebu, the first stop was supposedly Sans Rival, however, several visitors were in queue so we decided against it and walked a few meters along the boulevard to find some food. Then, we tried Hoy Lugaw choosing it for its unique use of kitchen utensils as seats and lamps. But, the food wasn’t impressive.
Reading through some blogs, we were led to Neva’s Pizza, Pasta, Atbp. located a little more than a kilometer from Silliman along Hibbard Avenue. The main magnet of Neva’s is its really cheap yet delicious menu. Bargain price! Most of its food are priced at less than a hundred pesos. The place is small and cramped but you wouldn’t mind it as its menu is friendly to your tongue and wallet.
The next day, after a quick tour of Lake Balanan, the next target was Mel’s Cafe (complete name: From the Kitchen of Mel’s Cafe) near Rizal Boulevard. I have seen the cafe’s exterior a number of times when I visited Dumaguete City, however, the signage wasn’t that appealing to merit going in.
But, looks can be deceiving, its interiors, apparently, is quite the opposite of the facade. Artsy and lively, the cafe’s design more than compensates its outside. Their menu offers a lot of choices at reasonable prices. Tried their butter beer, pancakes, and sandwich.
My favorites is the chocolate-draped pancake.
Had a good serving of sandwich, too.
The butter beer magically disappeared from these cups.
Another strong earthquake (magnitude 6.3) has hit quite close to Cebu – this time in Hinoba-an town, Negros Occidental. In less than 5 years, three quakes struck near and even affected Cebu. The previous two caused much damage and panic:
1. October 15, 2013 quake with epicenter at Carmen, Bohol
2. February 6, 2012 quake with epicenter at Guihulngan, Negros Oriental (Remember Chona Mae?)
It is best that we Bisdak prepare for another tremblor even if we handily survived these earthquakes. Moreover, the quakes are becoming more frequent.
Become aware of fire evacuation and earthquake safety plans for all of the buildings you occupy regularly.
Pick safe places in each room of your home, workplace and/or school. A safe place could be under a piece of furniture or against an interior wall away from windows, bookcases or tall furniture that could fall on you.
Practice “drop, cover and hold on” in each safe place. If you do not have sturdy furniture to hold on to, sit on the floor next to an interior wall and cover your head and neck with your arms.
Keep a flashlight and sturdy shoes by each person’s bed in case the earthquake strikes in the middle of the night.
Make sure your home is securely anchored to its foundation.
Bolt and brace water heaters and gas appliances to wall studs.
Bolt bookcases, china cabinets and other tall furniture to wall studs.
Hang heavy items, such as pictures and mirrors, away from beds, couches and anywhere people sleep or sit.
Brace overhead light fixtures.
Install strong latches or bolts on cabinets. Large or heavy items should be closest to the floor.
Learn how to shut off the gas valves in your home and keep a wrench handy for that purpose.
Learn about your area’s seismic building standards and land use codes before you begin new construction.