My friend Abby makes her birthday a time to share her blessings to children. I have been to a number of these events. Real, Quezon specifically Barangay Tignoan has a special place in Ate Abby’s heart. This is where she spent a summer to help out the community through UP Pahinungod. I volunteered to share my talent and muscle power for this outreach. It is really worth the time and effort.
The team agreed to meet at around 4AM in Raymond Bus Station in Legarda, Manila. Ate Abby and the team overslept so they arrived at around 6AM. By that time, the buses were already fully booked for morning trips. The next available ones will depart a little before lunch.
We roamed around the area and found a queue of vans that transport passengers to Quezon at around PhP250.00 per head. It’s still cheap based on my assessment for the comfort and convenience. We can still catch up with the scheduled activities for the kids.
The van left around 8AM from Legarda and make its way through the outskirts of Rizal and Laguna. It was a refreshing trip. My eyes feasted on the lush growth of trees and waterfalls on the side of the road.
We had a short stop somewhere in Laguna where we took an advantage to eat, freshen up and stretch a bit. After 4 hours we already reached the Laguna-Quezon boundary and Ate Abby said we are almost there.
Our first challenge is to haul our supplies across the river.
The barangay captain was given a heads up so we have some back up muscle power. The locals are very helpful and generous by nature. You can actually ask the fishing folks for fish and they will give them away for free. See that squid, that will be our dinner.
After a quick lunch, our group huddled to go through the activities prepared for the afternoon. We have also scattered some items for the kiddos’ scavenger hunt.
This is how we spent the rest of the day. . .
We danced, we sang.
Shared stories. My impromptu story telling skill was challenged here. My response: challenge accepted!
The kids also did some art activities.
We played games. We had “war games” – tug of war and water balloon war. 🙂 No, we did not teach the kids to be war freak.
It was an enjoyable time not only for the kids but also for us who facilitated the activities.
The day ended with a bonfire ceremony by the seashore where we sing more songs and heard more stories. Winners and outstanding participants were also recognized.
Seeing the smiles on the faces of these kids and hearing their laughter took away the stress.
Exploring a new place is indeed life changing. Life changing in a sense that you are able to gain a new perspective about life. We don’t need extravagant things to complete us. It’s in the simple things where we can find meaning. Life is good!