Salamat, Alabat!

Also known as: Quezon trip with book lovers

I realized when I got back from Europe that I did not hit the beach this year. I don’t really count the one in Pinatubo because…well, I didn’t get to swim then, and it wasn’t really the ocean, so no sea breeze. I was feeling kind of sad about that fact, so when one of our book club moderators invited me to join them for the (now) annual Alabat, Quezon trip, I said yes1. Who was I to say no to the beach?

Okay, so it wasn’t entirely a beach trip the entire time, but I think we got to spend most of it there. :)

It was my first overnight trip with my book club friends, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect, save for talking about books all day. But it turned out to be a weekend with more than books, and it was a very, very welcome getaway.

Alabat Year 2, at 3 in the morning!

I had no sleep the night before the trip, so I planned to sleep in the car. Obviously that was a futile event, but I managed to get a bit of sleep before our first stopover/picture taking moment:

Photo op by the bridge!

And for food, with this stray cat as guest:

Here kitty, kitty!

We got to the dock shortly almost on schedule, but we missed the first boat so we had to wait a bit. This was waiting for us:

Blue skies!

It was raining on and off then, but we were safely in the boat waiting for it to leave when it started doing so. Sleepiness hit me then, and I was just so tired that I took an (uncomfortable) nap at the boat. Some time later, we finally arrived at the island. :)

After we got to the house, changed and freshened up, we headed straight to the beach, of course. :)

Excited for the beach! :)

We spent the rest of the afternoon (and night) at the beach, swimming, eating and drinking. Also, some of us planned what we would do if we were castaways in Survivor. Alliances and plans were formed — but we were kind of obvious.

Hello water!
Cookie Monster approves
I fail at taking jump shots of other people.
But when other people take jump shots, it turns out okay. Hm.
Purple skies :)

We stayed there until dinner time just talking and drinking (and you can guess what kind of conversations happened while everyone was buzzed with beer and Tanduay Ice, you know?) and enjoying the calm darkness of the water and admiring the moon rise:

I guess I haven’t said it yet until now: I love my LX5. The night shot mode is awesome. :)

We got home around ten, and we showered and then went to bed, all too tired from the fun we had since we left that morning.

The next day we spent some time lounging around the house after a hearty breakfast, going on absolute vacation mode while we got ready for our day trip later on. Being book lovers, we settled for reading. :)

The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey – my book for the weekend. Not really a good thing to read when you’re in the rural area if you’re a scaredy-cat like me. :P (But this book is oh-so-awesome)
Even Cookie was reading :)

We took off around lunch time and traveled long and far to look for a resort at the other side of the island. But first, a stopover! More blueness and pretty water:

The resort we were looking for was actually gone. But we ended up in a private resort that I think belonged to the vice governor or vice mayor or something. We had to cross an open field and the place was deserted that it was kind of creepy. Like, serial killer creepy, and being imaginative people, we all tried to figure out who could be the serial killer in our group if there was indeed one. ;) Ah, fun times.

We had lunch, and then there were more photo ops by the beach with our books. And there was a gorgeous sunset that I could not get enough of. :)

I wasn’t really reading here — and if you ask me, this is an uncomfortable place to read :D
Of course I had to do this. :)
Yay :)

Yes, I was actually reading here. Haha.

We had to leave the place when the electricity went out, ad we saw some fireflies on the way. On the way (long, long) way back, we stopped a couple of times because the others went ghost hunting. The rest of the time in the jeep, we were talking about ghosts, even if it scared the heck out of me. When we got back to the house, we all showered, had an awesome Chami dinner and then went to the famous Balete tree in the island to do more ghost hunting. After a short time there, we went back, and while others went to sleep, some of us played card games to make the most out of the night.

1-2-3 pass! Or, wait, we were still playing Pekwa here. :)

Or, at least, up until midnight, anyway. We had to go to bed then because mass the next day was at 6, so those of us attending had to wake up and get ready early. We heard mass, had an awesome Chami breakfast again and said goodbye to the island when we got to the boat.

But the adventure didn’t stop there. We stopped by SM Lucena to have lunch and go book hunting at Book Sale. We’re book lovers — what do you expect? :)

Alabat Batch 2 at Buddy’s SM Lucena with our books :)

We stopped one more time to get some gifts for the people at home and then went our separate ways. Being good friends in the car, we all stayed awake so our driver won’t feel sleepy, causing some headaches and random discussions and games on songs and artist names. The group in our car formed the Power Rangers (haha!), and made up a “meet the love of your life at the expressway toll gate” story, and spent more time having dinner and hunting for more books in Galleria. We just can’t get enough. :)

Heading home.

I had lots of fun that weekend, and it was so nice spending it with people I can talk books (and other stuff) with all day. It was one of those vacations I’m so glad I took a leave for, even if I had to catch up with work after. This trip is definitely one of my highlights for 2011. More trips to come for my book club, I hope? :)

Sending tons of gratitude to our gracious host for the Alabat weekend, Kuya Doni! :)

 

  1. Even if this meant I had to offset my sudden leave for the trip []

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