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From our previous Ottawa trip

Travelling is a personal interest I picked up from my sister and, possibly, from reading countless self-discovery articles back in college. Like reading, this makes me proud about myself because I’ve always believed that travellers are more knowledgeable, more experienced human beings. And I’m blessed to have a partner who tolerates my wandering soul and seemingly tireless legs.

Our first major trip together was our homeland: The Philippines. He was born in Manila but him and his family migrated to Canada when he was about a year old. Hence, for the whole trip, I acted more like a tour guide rather than a tourist. We went there mid-August so heavy rains were expected but thankfully, it didn’t happen as much as I thought it would.

Nothing has changed; The Philippines is still humid, polluted, and congested. But also, it’s still warm, cozy, and familiar. A place I terribly missed.

After meeting with my ever bubbly friends whom I missed so dearly and jumping from one shopping mall to another, me and my boyfriend went to his mom’s hometown to see his grandmother for the first time. We were only there for the weekend, but his mom managed to bring us to the famous Enchanted River that got me absolutely stunned. This wasn’t my favorite sight though. Nothing beats the picture perfect scene with my boyfriend and his Lola laughing and teasing in it.

Only two days after, we flew to Boracay. For me, this was the highlight of our trip. Everything was perfect. The weather, the room, the hotel staff, the beach, the food. Nami sits on top of a hill so breakfast was served with a majetic view. It’s an experience I’ll never forget.

We also went to my hometown up North, but unluckily, my boyfriend got sick so we were mellow for a couple of days. He met a lot of my relatives and high school friends. And I was proud to show him the heritage city of Vigan. That was probably the most annoyingly humid day for the whole time we were in the Philippines. It was scorchingly hot that we felt the need to change into souvenir shirts only a few hours later.

The finale of the whole trip was a lunch on a hilltop overlooking Taal Volcano. It was a hearty meal with a side of homesickness. I wished we had more time to explore all 7,107 islands. It was an unforgettable first major getaway. The Philippines will always have a special place in my heart.

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