The the whirlwind of chaos we had to go through to get to the beach over the long weekend was unbelievable. We had someone arrange for us to go to a beach at first and it turned out to be too expensive and not very nice. Canceling that trip left us one day to find out how to get to another beach. Somehow Ojaswee, using her Nepali connections, ended up talking to the head of AFSTRI and arranged for us to tagalong with another big group of foreigners to Puerto Galera. It was pretty incredible how fast it was arranged. We booked out hotel that night and by 6am the next day, we were on a bus to the island. After a 2 hour bus ride and an hour ferry ride, we were on the white sand beaches and swimming in warm turquoise waters. The view was magnificent with the mountains peaking out of the ocean. Waking up to it every morning was something else and something I already missed while on the bus ride back to Los Baños.
On one of the days in Puerto Galera, we also hiked up to an incredible waterfall. Someone told us it was a trail and I mistakenly believed them and chose to wear flip-flops. Terrible decision. It wasn’t a trail so much just a common path of large boulders that you climbed to get to the waterfalls. But, boy, was it worth it. The waterfalls were looked like the pictures you google when you’re having a bad case of wanderlust. And to top it off, no one else was there so we had the whole thing to ourselves. On a side note, we did get lost on the way down and had to scale a wall and slide down a side of a cliff a couple feet to get to a landing but it was all worth it!! All part of the adventure! I would still highly recommend, just be sure to stick to the path as much as you can.
Overall, an incredibly beautiful and fun weekend, especially for it being planned one day in advance. Going back to a cubicle was pretty hard the day after but with the research moving along its becoming more and more interesting. More about that to come!