Last night I had a Travel Writing Talk entitled “SO YOU WANT TO BE A TRAVEL WRITER” at R.O.X. organized by Eagle Creek. At the end of the talk, I challenged the participants to write about their “most unforgettable experience while traveling” and the chosen piece would be awarded with an Eagle Creek backpack. Woot! woot!
I read all the twenty six (26) entries and chose the stories below based on this criteria:
Thrill of the adventure 30%
Makes me want to do it too 30%
Clarity of the story 30%
Following the instruction 10%
So here are two the runner-ups, they both won a special giftpack from Eagle Creek.
The Turning Point by Jill Melo
Three years ago, I wold spend all my free time reading. I wold pick up a book and I wouldn’t stop until I reach the end. I would get lost in all those wonderfrul world, and felt utterly contented just spending every weekend at home, on my couch.
And then one day, I cahnced upon an article about the whaleshark in Donsol, I wanted to go. Problem is, all my friends are couch potatoes and nobody wanted to go with me. So I went alone.
That was the wisest decision I ever did.
I hopped on a bus and a series of fortunate events happened. I found myself in a boat with a bunch of Koreans waiting for our BIO (Butanding Interaction Officer) to spot a whaleshark and gave us the signal to jump.
He spotted a whaleshark and shouted “JUMP!” I did. And landed just about in front of the whaleshark, its tiny thousan teet glistening back at me.
My eyes widened, I quickly swam on its side and followed the giant creature as it suavely sliced through the waters. I can’t get over how big it was and how small I am. I felt its eyes move toward me and for a brief moment, we were eye-to-eye, I gasped. Naturally, water came out gushing in and when I dove back in.
I went back to the boat and was speechless. SInce then, I couldn’t go back to how things were. So I went on another solo trip, and another, and then another. And every time I travel, I go back a different person.
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Late Bloomer but Still Climbing by Bea del Rosario
At my age right now, I consider myself a late bloomer in traveling. My introduction to hiking and mountain climbing last 2009 fueled a sleeping desire to discover more.
After having invited by PAL Mountaineering Group to climb Nagsasa Mountains. I too a great adventure of my life by climbing the highest mountain in our country- Mt. Apo.
It was a 3-day climb. We were welcomed by a truck ride, a bumpy one going to the jump-off. The trails in Kapatagan route were like sponges sucking knee-deep, in every step we took. Six hours of excruciating trek. We didn’t make it on the first base camp on schedule (Goody Camp), so we settled somewhere in the middle part of the trail.
All were tired, filthy and wet, we slept inside our tents– lulled by the orchestra by of the crickets and insects our sleepy heads and tired bodies found rest.
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And the Eagle Creek backpack goes to:
Pulled Out Abruptly by Lawrence Lately
Still the craziest, most life-changing trip I experienced was during my first week at Operation Blessing, an NGO I work for. It was August 2008, I was pulled out abruptly from an assignment in Bataan and I had to fly to Cotabato City the next day to cover a disaster relief mission. It was during the aftermath of armed conflict between rebels and soldiers.
The tension was still raw, the trauma among evacuees still fresh and all these I had to contend even with lack of sleep and the fact that I’m new on the job.That trip to evacuation centers in Pikit and Midsayap in Cotabato exposed me to the real condition of families and communities displaced by war.
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To all who came last night, my heartfelt thanks and I hope that I imparted something useful for you and your passion. I hope to be reading your published works soon.
To R.O. X. and Eagle Creek, thank you so much for organizing travel talks like this. I remember five year ago when I was just starting out I was looking for talks like this but there was none. Glad that companies like you aid travelers and adventurers. Hope you continue doing this.
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