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Surviving Sagada: I Was Never Alone

Surviving Sagada: I Was Never Alone

After looking for the best way to spend a weekend, I made a last minute registration with Travel Factor’s Conquer Sagada tour. I was a solo joiner. I boarded a bus with group of strangers, all with the same destination. I had minimal expectations during that moment and my primary goal was to, at least, enjoy the trip.

Without counting our guides, Tikoy and Ron, I first met Steph. I sat beside her while waiting for our departure. We only learned that we’re on the same junket when Tikoy started to roll out the attendees’ list and distribute the tees. Skeptical at first, Steph first approached me and then, the night just went longer for us exchanging chitchats. Honestly, if Steph did not initiate the talk, then we had remained stranger to each other for the rest of the evening.

Then I met Sonny in the bus, but it was only in the second stopover when he introduced himself. I was dubious at first- why this guy kept on talking in English while he looks Filipino. Finally, I realized that he was raised in the US so English was his first language. So guys, always remember that; “A mere observation is not enough to substantiate a fair judgement and a single fact is not enough to reveal the entire truth”.

We reached Baguio past 3:00 AM and then transferred to another bus bound for Sagada. With the same seating arrangement, where I sat beside Sonny, I never got a chance to socialize or should I say to be socialized with the other folks in the group.

The young Sir Ed, his even younger grandson, Albert, and the energetic Kuya John were the third, fourth, and fifth individuals I got formally introduced with during that tour. They were my roommates along with..oh!, Sonny again! <<ahaha! I have no idea how Sonny will react when he reads this.>>

Surviving Sagada Magazine Cover

I was clueless on what was ‘magnetic’ in me that I kept on colliding with individuals causing me nosebleed. I met Raisa on the top load of a jeepney, who happened to be Steph’s roommate and was also a solo traveler. I am no conversant in English and have hearing problems with slang so I was struggling that very moment. If I were singing, I got flat. I was relieved when I found out that Raisa can speak and understand Filipino. And just recently, I learned that this young lady has achieved so much for her age. Raisa is a radio host at Mellow 94.7 FM, a senior correspondent at When In Manila, and a Pro-Life enthusiast.

I was also able to establish a good connection with couples Carlo and Sheena; Ronee and Christian; mommies Ghie and Beng; sisters Aby and Liz; bestfriends Kath and Jing; and peers Matt, Lovely, Maan, and Arnel.

kiltepan viewpoint group pic

Kiltepan View Poin Groupie

Cave connections Sagada

Sagada Cave connections (photo taken at Sumaguing Cave)

sagada jumpshot

The Great Leap in Sagada

Though, I didn’t got a chance to have a formal introduction with DG, Hezron, Mico, Aimz, Arbee, Veb, Joann and company, I know, I once shared a laugh, a trail, and a photo with them.

It was nice to know you all guys and I thank you all for the memories, the free lunch from Sonny, and the free dinner from Sir Ed, Ronee, and Christian.

My Silhouette at Kiltepan Viewpoint, Sagada

My Silhouette at Kiltepan Viewpoint, Sagada

I traveled solo but because of you, I knew, I was never alone. And, oh!, I should not forget to mention this bawl; “Aby!, alas-OTSO na!”.

  • Hello Ian, I’m Glenn from Glennvon.com 🙂 Remember? I have a new blog: http://www.prettyitgirl.com/ … I’m using my girlfriend’s image and name to disguise as a girl blogger. haha! Anyway, I was just wonderin’ if you’re still using blogger platform?

    • Hi Glenn, of course, I do remember you. Musta? Tagal mo nang di nag-a-update ng blog. Yung bagong domain na PrettyItGirl, kala ko fashion blog, yung pala about IT stuff. I suggest you explore about gadgets and other tech too para medio mainstream ang niche mo.

      Nung nag-focus ako sa travel, umalis na rin ako sa Blogger.com. I am using a self-hosted WordPress now.

      • Cool. That wordpress.org? So nagccode ka din pala? No, I’m not into gadgets and stuff, I’m into tutorials in iOS App Development and blogging my experience in software development.

        I thought blogger ka pa din, I was going to ask sana how did you put that a-dsnse sa gitna ng isang post. 😀


        • Yup, WordPress.org. Konting coding lang alam ko. Research research lang pag may i-ko-customize.

          Madali lang naman mag-insert ng ad sa blog post. Maraming blogger tutorials na available online. Matagal na kxe akong umalis ng Blogger so limot ko na ang HTML structure.

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  • I like your honesty and humility! I’m going to Sagada with friends on the 6th of Feb. I hope I will enjoy the trip and the place as much as you did.

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  • I went to Sagada last month alone – on a DIY itinerary. That was my 3rd solo trip but that was the time that I have to admit to myself that Sagada trip will be better with a bunch of friends.
    Ang ganda ng Kiltepan shot. 🙂

    • iAn

      Tama, you will enjoy the trip more if you have someone to laugh with, dine with, and share the experience with. Ayos din kahit dun na sa destinations mo sila makilala.

  • Na miss ko bigla ang Sagada. 🙂 Kiltepan lang ang pinaka hindi good..dahil walang clearance. 🙁

    • iAn

      Ako din…ahaha, sobrang gusto kong bumalik.

      What do you mean by “walang clearance sa Kiltepan”?

  • shella

    What’s up, I check your blog on a regular basis. Your humoristic style is witty, keep doing what you’re doing!

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  • I can’t imagine how would it feels like if I’ll go there alone. Yung walang makatawa at masabihan ng opinions from time to time. Buti mababait nakasabay mo. And again, ang ganda ng shots.

    • iAn

      Junjun, I was in a group of weird guys (we’ll, I am little weird myself) and we have a lot of differences yet I enjoyed to be with them – maybe because of acceptance, broader mentality, and common interest.

      And yeah, you really need someone to talk to and share your opinions with, but its a lot more exiting if you meet that someone on the road. Of course, iba pa rin yung matagal mo nang kilala.

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  • Good write-up. I certainly love this website. Thanks!

  • Jeric

    di ka na naman nagsama

    • iAn

      ..last minute registration lang yan, di ka rin makapag-leave

  • JL

    Wow, nice photos…and you really made an extra work on designing that magazine cover..Good Work, Ian!

    • iAn

      thanks, JL!