Posts Tagged ‘puerto princesa city’


Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in Coron with Governor Joel T. Reyes during the inauguration of the Busuanga Airport. Tourism business is pouring in the Calamianes Group of Islands.

SO MANY things are happening in Puerto Princesa and Palawan these days. I don’t exactly call Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s visit to Coron “a good thing,” considering so many broken promises made to us in the past, but she was there to inaugurate a SONA commitment made in 2006 — the improvement and rehabilitation of Busuanga Airport.

Governor Joel T. Reyes was happy, and so were other local government officials who went there to join the Calamianes Group of Islands’ recent feat in tourism. That picture above shows our governor showing Arroyo something on the map. Behind was 1st Palawan District Rep. Antonio C. Alvarez.

Alex of PNA, who has been covering Coron lately, said the President’s visit was seen as “something good” for the group of island municipalities that’s currently experiencing really bombastic booms. William Gatchalian, the plastics magnate, is reportedly eying an investment on an exotic property there called “Dinaran Island.”

There’s also a large islands tour vessel that has placed the Calamianes in its cruise map — 7,100 Islands Cruise Ship — and it’s ready to bring in visitors to see the beauty of the place. New in the sky Zestair is set to fly the route soon, after it opens here this month.

I miss Coron. I miss Darayonan, where I would stay whenever I’m there. And when there’s nothing to do at night, since I don’t like staying in ex-pat bars (coz they’re the only ones open late at night), I’d coop myself in the lodging place and just read magazines. It’s a fashion and home living magazines paradise. Although the issues were several months late, they’re still informative to read.

There’s also no forgetting that first time I went to Kayangan Lake. Our boat cruised on the bluest sea and the sky was amazingly lighter in the same shade, it was definitely the day to enjoy the outdoors. Though it was a steep climb before one can see the inland lake, it was all worth it. The view was just fantastic, and water was clear with little shrimps (I don’t know how they got there) promenading under, on the sand.


Photo borrowed from http://malvado.net/coron2.htm

There’s a hot spring in Coron that’s just so lovely on a moonlit night, and its near the sea that cradles Coron Bay. Makinit Hot Spring is warm as it’s heated geothermally, and many say it can bring good therapeutic results to someone who’s tired and will take a dip. I did that. In fact, a friend who was with me then, took a picture, but I forgot where I’ve stashed it all these years.

Makinit can be better enjoyed at nightfall. With the melodic warbling of crickets and the stars for company, it’s definitely the place for a tired mind and body. Entrance fee is very affordable, and it only takes a tricycle to get there — trip is only a few minutes.


Photo borrowed from http://www.panoramio.com/photo/9621688

If you’re up for a little Safari adventure, not too far in Busuanga is the Calauit Wildlife Game Preserve and Wildlife Sanctuary.

The Calauit Game Preserve and Wildlife Sanctuary (CGPWS) is located within Calauit Island in the northwestern part of Busuanga, the main island of the Calamianes, Northern Palawan. It is separated from Busuanga by extensive mangroves and the Ditapic Channel, where the waters of Illultuk Bay and the Ditapic River of Busuanga flow eastward. The CGPWS has a land cover area of approximately 3,760 hectares, wherein about 40% is open rangeland, 20% moderately undulating, and 40% hill areas. Average elevation is 50 meters above sea level (50 masl) with the highest point in Namultan Range with 237 masl. It has four major creeks that have sections that are usually dry during summer, except the Abanaban Creek that retains water even during the driest month due to an intact watershed. It has a pronounced wet season from May to November and a dry season from December to April. Average monthly rainfall is 39.4 inches, while annual precipitation is at 139.4 inches. Mean temperature is recorded at 27.6 centigrade. The marine zone area is approximated at 252 square kilometers, which is delineated seven kilometers from the mean sea level.

You won’t think a place like it exists in Palawan. Tales said it used to be Marcos’ hunting ground. He would bring his son Bong-Bong there to hunt animals, and also with his friends. Am not sure if this is true. Today, Calauit is already a tourist spot in the Calamianes with giraffes, Calamian deer, zebras and other animals, endemic or otherwise to Palawan.


Photo borrowed from www.pcsd.ph/protected_areas/calauit.htm

These days, I dream a lot about going back to Coron. About that wonderful sunset I witnessed on my way to Culion. Calamianes’ personal contribution to me was it set me up to appreciate and love sunrises and sunsets.

Sunrise offered a very beautiful spectacle; the water was quite unruffled, but the motion communicated by the tides was so great that, although there was not a breath of air stirring, the sea heaved slowly with a grand and majestic motion. — George Grey

And I ride with the wind… on a color-filled sky, with the sweetest sunset’s warm kiss.

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I’M NOT sure if my mother’s sad that she didn’t make it anymore as councilor here in Barangay Princesa where we live. She’s No. 8 in today’s Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan election result, but the councilors needed are only seven.

After dinner at Neva‘s with Malou, we went to Puerto Princesa Pilot Elementary School (my elementary school) to check how her votes were doing. We haven’t reached the door of any precinct yet when Michelle, a relative of my aunt who’s running for barangay chairman, came and told me the news about mommy. Aunt Neneng made it, but mommy didn’t.

I honestly didn’t see my reaction, it was dark (hahaha!). Actually, it was even funny because it was Malou who went inside to check the tally sheets. I just stayed outside to talk to my cousin Limbo (candidate for councilor also, and yes, it’s a family affair!) and to congratulate him on his victory. Apparently, he’s No. 1 in the list of winners.

From pilot, I went home with only one tremendously large thing in mind — cheer up my mom in case she’s unhappy. To my surprise, she’s smiling and talking to my father, telling him that it’s okay and that finally, she can concentrate at home. I had to laugh at that. It turned out my father’s more upset. Weird!

We joked that it was him who should have ran since he’s the one pretty keen that mommy should win.

I felt a bit guilty too because I didn’t help my mother campaign so much. Five years ago, when she informed us that she had been convinced to join Manang Estring’s (God bless her soul) ticket, I was the one very opposed to her candidacy. I wish I can count how many times I’ve argued with her not to join, discouraging her that politics (even at the barangay level) isn’t where she would want to be because it’s often an eccentric realm.

Mommy’s never a politician; not even at home. In the house, she says what she wants to say; speaks her mind frankly believing there’s goodness in expressing true feelings and opinions. I agree, but maybe not when you’re a politician. There’s that unwritten rule that even if you can, people get hurt easily — are sensitive when what you honestly tell them is for their own good.

Even if it’s killing you, you have to be all nice and accommodating. If you don’t, they’ll take it out on you the next time they get the chance. This is probably one of the reasons why “vote buying” has been conceived — so that when certain politicians embarrass you, when election comes and you’ve decided you don’t want to vote for them anymore, you still would because they have Ninoy in all his “pangalumbaba” glory to hand you to change your mind.

But am not saying that the reason why my mother lost in today’s election is because she’s that “frank.” It’s my justification why I was opposed to her running for councilor five years ago.

Talks (or should I say gossips?) circulating after this early evening’s counting informed her that she didn’t win anymore because some of our ehem relatives (I can only cough) withdrew support from her at the last minute because they’re mad at my aunt. In political parlance, that means they “laglag” her.

Some of our relatives supported Manong Edwin, my Aunt Neneng’s rival. So maybe they did “laglag” my mother, but she’s not affected — we’re not affected. Di ba nga, politics can divide even the strongest of families? If she’ll allow gossips to rule over her good judgment, then she’ll feel bad and she’d take it out on them. Better not be affected.

My aunt won by a small margin. Nonetheless, she won, and that’s what’s important. Not why she lost. What’s notable too is that the election went well without major glitches.

Despite the fact that I had to bite my tongue really hard this afternoon inside precinct #122A in order not to get annoyed because ballots and voter’s list were insanely delayed, and election inspectors were terribly slow, I’m pleased that we won’t have awful front page stories about the election next issue.

I’m opposed to my mom being a barangay councilor, yes. However, I still want to raise my coffee mug to her for I know she did a good job. It’s not winning or losing that matters, it’s what she’ll leave behind that would. Cheers, mom!

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