Because of what’s happening in the world right now, I’m sure everyone wants to take a break and escape from reality for even just a short time.
In my case, whenever I feel so burned out with life, I always want to have a change of scenery. I want to go out and travel to places where I can experience nature. But we all know it’s not easy because of the new normal policies.
When the quarantine rules loosen a bit and more establishments, like resorts, hotels, and restaurants, open their businesses again, my brother, sister-in-law, nephew, and I took the chance to go out to the beach!
Our destination was Nasugbu, Batangas, one of the most favorite places for city peeps who want to have a quick getaway from the hustle and bustle of life in Metro Manila. It’s the nearest place where we can have a glimpse of the sea and breathe fresh air.
So a week before Christmas, we went to a beach resort in Nasugbu. We already visited it last February, together with my parents, when we didn’t have any idea yet that a pandemic would happen. During that time, the place was not crowded, probably because it’s not peak season yet, so we had a great time.
We decided to book again there since all the other resorts nearby were already full. The resort’s hotel accommodation is still close, so we opt to book directly to one of the unit owners in the resort’s apartment since it is also a residential place.
Everything was set, but on the day of our trip, the rain was falling hard because of a typhoon. It didn’t directly hit the area but somehow we were affected by the bad weather. We have no choice but to continue and hope that the rain will stop.
When we started to hit the road, up to the point when we were already on the expressway, the rain continued to pour. And it rained harder as we were driving along CALAX (Cavite-Laguna Expressway). It was zero visibility, and even if we were inside the car we can tell and feel how strong the winds were outside. It was dangerous to drive at that point, so my brother took extra care by slowing down a bit. Good thing there were very few cars at that time. Thank God, we were safe as we passed that road. I considered it an adventure for us. 🙂
The rain continued to fall harder when we were on Tagaytay. There was heavy traffic and the fog made it worse. It took us longer to drive, so our estimated arrival time, as per Waze, became later than what we expected.
Along Tagaytay Road. Heavy rain, traffic, and fog.
The sun finally appeared when we were on Nasugbu Road. And after almost four hours of drive (since aside from the heavy traffic, we also took a couple of stopovers to buy some stuff, food, and go to a comfort room), we safely arrived at the resort. It was almost four in the afternoon.
The unit caretaker was already waiting for us outside the apartment building. From the back of the building, you can already have a glimpse of the sea. I noticed there were only less than 10 people on the beach at that time. And I believe there were really a few guests since there is still lots of space in the parking area.
After the caretaker talked to us, we started to unpack our things and had a short rest in the apartment while also preparing our meal.
The place is quite big for the four of us. It was bigger than the previous one we booked at the hotel located on the other side of the resort. I like it more in the apartment since it has a balcony with an overlooking view of the sea and also nearer to the beach.
We decided to eat our meals first on the balcony while enjoying the view of the sea and the cool, fresh air. Gosh, we don’t have these in the city!
After eating and resting, my nephew and I went to the beach first. There were only a few people, and I liked it. I think we were only around 10 at the beach at that time, enjoying the sea breeze and the fine sand. My brother and sister-in-law came a bit later after they set up our dinner.
The weather stayed calm at least while we were on the beach, so we stayed for an hour there, taking photos and playing with my nephew.
Since it was colder, only my brother took the courage to swim. We decided to wait until tomorrow to see if there would be any difference in the weather. But even if there will be no changes, we have no choice but to swim regardless if it will rain just to enjoy our last minute on the beach.
As the sun was starting to set, some of the guests started to go back to their unit until we were the only people left. We stayed a little longer, but when we saw how my nephew was freezing from the cold wind, we returned to the apartment.
It was such a peaceful night wherein only the waves of the sea and the chirp of the crickets can be heard. There was no noise around the area, so it has this relaxing ambiance. My brother thought it’s a good idea to go out for a walk after we had our dinner. Unfortunately, it didn’t happen as we all felt too lazy to get up. So we just lay on our beds until we fell asleep.
I couldn’t believe I was already sleeping at nine in the evening. It was the earliest bedtime I had after so many years, haha! 🙂
The next day, the weather was finally good. The sun already appeared and the sky was clear again. At eight in the morning, my nephew and I were already on the beach to make the most of our time before we checked out by noon.
There were only five people, I think, on the beach at that time, swimming in the water and having their morning walk. After a few minutes, I noticed it was only me and my nephew on the beach. Finally!
It lasted for around half an hour until a family of three came to join us. But since they were far from us, it seems like we still have the beach all by ourselves. My brother then came to join us, then my sister-in-law. And more people also came to the beach. I estimated we were around 15 to 20 people. We also spent some time in the pool because it’s empty since most of the guests were on the beach.
After a couple of hours of enjoying our last stay at the resort, it’s finally time to go. As we finished packing our things, we made our last glimpse of the sea and the resort and took some photos.
Since it was still early, my brother suggested a side trip before going home to one of the nearest tourist spots there.
So off we go.
Our next stop was the Fantasy Land in Lemery, Batangas, an “abandoned” medieval-themed park. It was said that it was meant to be the “Disneyland of the Philippines”. Unfortunately, the owner didn’t manage to finance the place, so it was unfinished. But somehow, it continues to operate and is one of the go-to places among tourists in Batangas as well.
We were sure that the place was still close for business because of the pandemic, but we still decided to go to pass the time, enjoy the view, and take some photos.
After almost an hour of driving, we arrived at the place, and indeed, it was still close. We might not be able to enter the place, but we have a great view of it from the roadside.
And after a quick side trip, it’s finally time to go home, but we didn’t miss our chance to have some quick stopovers along the roadside to capture these views.
Yes, that’s Taal Volcano over there!
As we arrived home, I felt tired because of the long-hour drive, but I know I was ready again for new challenges ahead. The following day, I felt more inspired and motivated to go back to my everyday routine of working and writing. Indeed, taking a break and resting can help us stay positive from all the stress we are experiencing.
Though it was only an overnight trip, which was almost canceled because of the bad weather, it was memorable since it happened during the pandemic and the holiday season.
This new year, I hope to have more time to travel like this again and enjoy my time outside without having any fear of the virus. Let’s claim it!
Now you’ve got my feet on the life path, all radiant from the shining of your face. Ever since you took my hand, I’m on the right way.—Psalm 16:11 (MSG)