La Union — where surfers and beach babes love to hang around.
It’s three hours past midnight and my friends and I, all in our glorious sleepless state, set out to drive North for 5 hours straight.
Upon arriving in La Union, our main agenda was to get breakfast then relax by the shore for an hour or two before channelling all our remaining energy to hike Tangadan Falls. Going there, we took the 20-minute tricycle ride to the trail from Flotsam & Jetsam Hostel. Despite our exhaustion from the travel, we were rejuvenated by the beauty of Mother Nature. In truth, it's one of the most breathtaking trails I've went to next to Mt. Daraitan and Tinipak River. Albeit, it wasn't only the allure of our surroundings that took our breath away, but the experience itself.
Walking through rivers, wading through the water's currents, cliff diving on a higher plain, and sitting behind a curtain of waterfall surrounded by my best group of friends; these were amongst the situations we found and lost ourselves in. Not only that, but one of the highlights that we all got to experience was the habal-habal on the way back to the outskirts of the city. It was a common form of transportation in provinces, wherein you ride by pairs on a motorcycle. We were at least six or seven on convoy, with our group. What made this an exhilarating, and I daresay truly frightening experience, was the fact that it was raining. And no... It wasn't just a drizzle. Coincidentally, the downpour started right after the trail ended. So naturally, the road was wet and muddy; we didn't have helmets on; the rain was pouring down on us and there were a lot of uphill and steep slopes. You can imagine the predicament we were in. Needless to say, I was cursing internally. At first I thought I couldn't do it, much less enjoy it. (I actually entertained the thought of hiking back despite the rain.) But as I found the courage to revel in the thrill and excitement of the unexpected trip back, my eyes became witnesses to the most beautiful sceneries and landscapes I have seen: rice terraces loomed to our left, clouds were hanging low and mountain views would appear every now and then. It was both magical and phenomenal; the epitome of the world's beauty.
It dawned on me then, that life is full of excitements and we need to be open to moments such as this. Fear and excitement go hand in hand, and sometimes we need to ride the thrill in order to experience the unexpectedly breathtaking moments (in this case it was both the literal and figurative sense).
Everything is a mere imagination in the fragments of our minds and I realized that, if we wanted to we could always find the courage to overcome the fear, anxiety and worry that shadows us in the moment. There are things that comes in rare moments and you'll never know when it will happen again. As they say, Carpe Diem. Seize the day, my friends.
With that, I leave you with this thought: Always be open to what the present hands to you. It is after all a gift. In that light, I understood how each and every moment is magical, enlightening and a gift from the Universe. The greatest moments will find us only if we are open to it.