There are at least 7,001 islands in the Philippines during low tide. The number might go down during high tide. That’s the on going joke. I was born in Davao far away from the mainland, Manila. The cheapest way to transport a family of 13 is by ship. Being on the ship is my first recollection of travelling. It took a week by sea voyage to get to Manila. My mother must have moved us two or three times. Was it fun? For a child, it was for me.
My grandfather was a captain of a ship and he owned one of the islands, Stanlake. It’s a good place to live off grid with no electricity and running water. It now belongs to the Santa Cruz family but my mother made a wise decision to forfeit her rights. My cousin started a blog about it here.
Airplane was my next memory of major travelling moving to Canada. There were eight of us. My mother and seven siblings still dependent to her. A move running away from a country under martial law and dictatorship of Marcos. We never looked back.
Recently, we finally celebrated my sister’s husband’s life, Jim, after two years of lockdown. He was a flight attendant for Canadian Airlines. Sometimes, I get a good deal in travelling as a standby tapping into his privileges. The only stipulation is that I have to “dress up” since I represent my brother-in-law and just in case I will be placed in first class.
When I was leaving Switzerland for DC, the flight was fully booked and there was no room in economy. I was placed in first class. Imagine being served champagne. Such a luxury. What a thrill that lasted briefly for another passenger was willing to pay for my free seat. I have to vacate the seat. Heh!
When I grow up, the next wheels I want to own is a red bike similar to this. My first car was a red four-door Ford eight cylinder sedan. It was heavyweight and powerful. I was the first one to own a car in the family. Needless to say, I became the chauffeur. This car was so solid that it protected me from a hit and run driver. The driver was caught and his car was more of a wreck. My car’s engine is still in good condition but the insurance company won’t pay for repair. Hence, I bought a used car this time, my sister’s Honda. That was my second and last car.
It was during Expo 86 when the Skytrain was introduced in Vancouver. I must say, the train changed my means of transportation. By year 2000, I no longer need the Honda to go to work. It was a major undertaking for the City to build a better mode of people mover from Skytrain (Canada, Expo and Millennium Lines) SeaBus, AquaBus, B-Lines, and West Coast Express. Many have utilized these means, became popular and now travelling within the city is packed!
I love train travelling and just watch the scenery as it zooms away. European and British trains provided me with the luxury to sit back and relax. In India, train ride was an experience that one has to have mettle.
“Man is only a pilgrim on earth.”