Cebu, Philippines has got to be one of the most chill places i’ve ever been. The pace of life is a lot more relaxed, ideal for unwinding from the stressful city life. While we were there, we met a local who offered to take us island hopping for a discounted rate. It turned out to be a worthwhile, once in a lifetime adventure. He took us to this small secluded island where we got a chance to play in the water and enjoy the warm tropical sun before the storm clouds came rolling in.
Below are a few clip: aboard the boat & on the island.
Life at the resort was not too shabby. Although we paid top dollar for everything, from mixed drinks to western food Tambuli Resort, we enjoyed our stay knowing that we are safe and well feed. Outside out resort was a whole ‘nother story. Lets say sketchy is how i would begin describing the location. So taxi was our only choice of transport. We haggled every driver to make sure we get a good meter rate. Most taxi drivers would disregard the meter and demand 3x the reg. amount. But there wasn’t much around the resort unless we travel 45mins into Cebu city. So we would go to the mall 15mins away.
The taxi ride was eye opening. Life outside the resort was a dramatic contrast. We saw seas of makeshift markets, miles of homes that resembled shacks along side huge mansions, witnessed children playing basketball on dirt with a single wood scrap hoop, and experienced the disparity of children begging for pesos.
There is no doubt that manicured beach resorts like ours are fantasy lands designed for foreigners and the rich, only to be admired from a distance by the poor. The tall compound walls conceal it from the outside and strong doors shuts out the masses. Heavily armed security guards at Tambuli resort, ensures no one seeps though the walls that divides the classes.
We exited the taxi and passed by a series of small shacks before entering the local shopping center. Passing by one of the shacks, a young girl asks me, “Sir, a few pesos please?” To me, She was one of the many young kids in Cebu City trying to cross the walls to a better life.
This encounter really made me think about myself. It was a moment to reflect upon my fortunate upbringing in a blue collar family and the simple pleasures I take for granted. I thought about life had I been born into poverty. It was the moment when I fully realized how lucky I am to be raised in a land with infinite opportunities, where no wall can stand in my way to living the good life.