Monday, May 28, 2007


So the journey begins, first pit stop is Dumaguete, populary known as 'The city of Gentle People'. Along with two of my friends, Camsi and Tim, we were scheduled to leave manila at 2:10pm, but as always, Cebu Pacific has yet again announced that our flight will be delayed for an hour or so. From my previous travels via Cebu Pacific, flights were always delayed so this time I didn't get disappointed much, it pays not to expect too much from 'go fares or the budget airfares'. I thought to myself, getting a good bargain for airfares were too good to be true. But can't complain now, can I? haha! But, it's all good better than paying heaps!

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While at the domestic airport, I can't help but notice a great number of korean couples wearing matching clothes- as in complete attire from caps, tshirts, pants and yes, shoes! walang patawad! I didn't have the courage to ask any of them as to what's behind the concept but I swear next time I'll ask them upfront (of course not in a rude way). All I know is that when koreans get married, Philippines, specifically Boracay, would be on the top of their list as to places to go to for their honeymoon. And that it's been a tradition to wear matching clothes when you go on a honeymoon? (not sure, so feel free to correct me). Very interesting don't you think so? Now, I wonder what other nationalities think of us when they see us?

Here are some of the candid or should I say stolen shots I took of them (really apologetic for taking these but I just wanted to peace guys).

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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Then the flight to Dumaguete via Cebu Pacific was finally announced for boarding. The flight was a bit bumpy, there were too much turbulence, Camsi was getting a bit nauseous.

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Tim and Camsi on the Plane

Oh and there were no free food-waaaah! We were starving to death! Again, there goes our budget airfare! Travel time took longer than expected, it should've been just an hour and ten minutes flight but due to bad weather we had to travel 'safely' according to the pilot.

We finally arrived Dumaguete. And the weather was just right, not too hot and humid. It was drizzling, so it made the weather a bit cooler. We were welcomed by tricycle drivers, who have over-priced us by the way. We paid 150 pesos, but we should've just paid 30 pesos each. Lesson learnt! Should not say yes straightaway! haha! But, hey the driver gave us some bullshit about some crazy ass rules on getting a tricycle at the airport-we believed it for a while, but at the back of our mind we knew it was a scam! haha!

It's too early to tell something about the place as we only just arrived but one thing that I really noticed was the tricycles or multicabs, they were over-sized, taller and bigger than the usual that I've seen in other provinces and in manila. It was awkwardly comfortable!! Parang may shock absorber! haha!

Here's Dumaguete's version of the tricycle.

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The awkward comfy look hahaha!

We then met up with our friend, Kat, who's been waiting for us at the Hotel Palwa. She got to Dumaguete first since she took the boat to Dumaguete from Bohol. Kat got us a very nice hotel and most importantly cheap. We're only paying 1,300 (divided by 4) with free breakfast for 4. Itinerary for tomorrow, we're going to APO Island for 3 days, so I might not be able to connect to the Internet as electricity there is so precious, the whole Island is being powered by a generator. So I'll probably be able to upload my first video on friday.

I'll keep you guys posted! Til then,

The Lost Sputnik.

Monday, May 14, 2007

So the two sputniks

When tina asked me if she can come along, I didn't hesitate to say yes straightaway. Aside from my bestfriend Mayen (who's equally an awesome writer too), she's someone that I look up to as she's been working as a writer for about ten years now. I constantly ask advices from her when it comes to so many things about career or the so-called "rakets". She helps me put things in perspective during the times I needed it the most. I admire her for having the courage to decide to leave everything behind for a while (for a month), and join me in this life-altering trip. I know that she has a lot of responsibilities that she has to attend to, so I know how hard it was for her to come up with a decision. But thanks to her very understanding and supportive husband, Raymond, who made it easier for her to decide. Having her around in this sputnik adventure would surely be a blast as I know that I can learn so much from her as well.

What's ironic about this sputnik adventure is that we're both going to the same places together and share common experiences but seperately, behind all these, we find our own true substance-our own orbits.

So T, I can confidently tell you as early as now that you've made the right decision to join this trip. You'd be gone for a month, but what you'd learn from this will definitely last you for a lifetime.

So goodluck to us! Cheers mate!


P.S. (since pinauso mo na ang P.S. haha)

If in the middle of our trip, you decide to go for morethan 1 month, just let me know, I'd be morethan willing to tag you along til the end of this trip. T, you got 3 weeks to go!


I only got 2 weeks to go before I leave for my first destination. I wake up each morning having butterflies in my stomach. It's as if once I've opened my eyes, I hear the song "I'm so excited..but I just can't hide it..I'm about to lose control..and I think I like it." playing incessantly in my head then I break into a dance number..nah just kidding! hahaha!

Days are getting by so quick. Next time I post something here, I'd be on the way to... I'll tell you all soon! =)

til next time!

The Lost Sputnik.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

The Other Sputnik

I’m trying to remember how it was like to be Ron’s age. That was six years ago now, the year was 2001. I was working full time as a writer for an international Filipino channel, and part time as an episode producer for a well-known broadcaster in an award-winning nightly talkshow on current events. On top of these, I was also collaborating with an old friend for some PR work for two big restaurants and contributing articles for a leading newspaper and some magazines. I was on a roll, ika nga.

I was overwhelmed with all the opportunities that my writing was leading me to. And I grabbed every single one that came along. Until I didn’t know anymore in which direction to focus. I was just living each day trying to complete the requirements each job demanded from me. And there came a time when I could no longer deliver well in most of them. Sobrang kalat, ika nga ulit.

Since then I’ve been jumping from one orbit to another, not totally feeling a sense of fullfillment in any of them. I’ve tried dabbling in business, I’ve switched from being a kapamilya to being a kapuso and back again, I’ve handled events and even worked for seven months abroad, but I still feel like a sputnik that is helplessly lost in space. And I’m thirty.

Ron told me about his plans to travel at a time when I myself was getting wary about all this “feeling lost” bit. With my friends already climbing the ladders leading to their specific goals in their professional lives, I’ve been finding myself asked too often about what I truly wanted to do with mine. I only have two answers for that-- to travel and to write. Or more specifically, to write about my travels.

But in all these times that I’ve said that, I haven’t really done anything concrete in pursuit of it. Somehow in the past six years or so, I have lost the right amount of enthusiasm to truly pursue a dream. All I can afford to come up with is mediocre excitement about mediocre pursuits. There was a time I was so confident that I could do anything I’d set my heart to. And then I find that for the longest time, my heart wasn’t really into anything anymore.

I admire Ron’s humility to try to focus on knowing what he really wants and where he really wants to be, at a time when the world is still so generous with opportunities for a youngblood like him. He could take them all in but as he said he’d rather have nothing than have everything and yet still feel lost. At his age I think he is so much wiser than me and I actually envy this, as much as I envy his youth and his capability to brave it all. His enthusiasm struck me so much that it actually pushed me off my already iffy position as a lost orbiter.

At this stage in my life I feel like I want to go back to being 24 again and do what I should have done. To focus on knowing about what I really want to be and where I really want to be. To try to see if what I have been claiming to want for so long is truly the right path for me. At thirty, I do not intend to move up the career ladder and be boss of anything. I just want to be good at something my heart would be happy doing. And I could only hope that travel writing is indeed that.

So I am braving it all now at 30 as Ron is at 24, and tagging along for a ride in this monumental jouney of his. His enthusiasm and confidence have definitely infected me and I only wish it stays with me for the entire trip and all the years after. I am glad he is happy to do this with me because I am more than ecstatic to have someone like him go through this journey with me as well.

Thanks, R.

Love, T


We need you to be part of this journey too. Your prayers, your encouragement, your love, and your support will be gladly appreciated.

Friday, May 4, 2007

All about Sputnik

Most of you might be asking what in the world is a "sputnik"? Well, here's a bit of information about the "Sputnik" that I've humbly researched or must I say googled?!In a nutshell, a "Sputnik" is the first artificial satellite built and launched by the Russians during the late 1950s. It was designed to orbit the earth- the earth's travel companion. Thus, the word "Sputnik" which means 'Traveling companion' in the Russian language.

So why the lost sputnik?

I believe that we are all sputnik-like in one way or another, we travel through life following a certain orbit. Some of us choose to have a lucrative career, raise our own closely-knit family, or the-never-ending search for our own sputnik. We all have our own orbit, we choose the course of our lives. But not all sputniks are built the same way as some are almost perfect and others are faulty. Like the "Sputnik 1", when it was launched, it only lived for 6 months before falling back to earth. Sometimes, there comes a point in our lives that we lose our orbit, we get sidetracked, we fall- we get lost.

The Sputnik Adventure

In my search to finding my one true self, or should I say my own 'orbit', I realised that I'd have to go out of my comfort zone. Being a self-admitted travel addict and a passionate film-maker, I decided to combine both and use it for my conquest. I am immersing myself to a backpacking experience around the Philippines and everything will be documented through this blog. I will write about my realisations and upload photos/videos of my current whereabouts and happenings. I have no concrete itinerary, I'll let the road take me wherever.

I'm leaving with an open-mind as I believe that this expedition is a learning process to finding one's true substance. When I begin my journey, I aim to commune with different communities, rediscover my roots, showcase the beauty and culture of this country and maybe through all these (very hopeful) I find my way back to my real orbit.

The challenge is that I have a limited budget, so that would only mean that I'd have to travel cheap. I can only afford two plane rides (manila-first stop and last stop-manila), so I'd have to take the cheapest modes of transportation available in the area. So, hello to dirt roads and bonamine-induced boat rides. Another challenge is to find the cheapest accommodations, I can't afford luxury hotels. So, again, hello to sleeping bags, camping tents, transient homes, bed spaces or to the very kind people in the area that would let me stay in their homes for free =) Lastly, is to find a job in the area, because for sure my budget will reach rock-bottom, so I'd have to find any job available just to get me by.

To some this might sound crazy, but sometimes we just have to do drastic changes in our lives in order to realise what matters the most. I'm hopeful that the time away and being in the most unfamiliar places will give me the wisdom I've been looking for.

Come and join me as I begin this journey on the 28th of May. As to when I'll be back? Only time can tell.

Wish me luck.

Being lost somewhere is not what I fear the most, but the thought that I might not be able to find myself again.

The lost sputnik.