Sunday, March 4, 2012

Tara Na Sa Norte...

Hello Dear Readers

It's been quite sometime since my last entry. Let me apologize for such long delay. I just got back from a two-month vacation in my native Philippines. You see having spent Christmas Day, the New Year, Feast of the Ephiphany, Sweety's birthday, my Barangay's Fiesta Day, St. Valentines Day and the rest of the ordinary days; in my country and right at the comfort of my home is an ultimate high. It was a very memorable vacation with my loved ones; we shared the pleasure of our company, the pros and cons of our adventures, the seemingly endless roads of our journeys, the taste of delectable cuisine and an instance of an unexpected melancholy.

Overall, I will always savor every minute of my vacation and look forward to another ultimate high this year. Yup! you heard me right, "Looking forward this year...." This means as early as today, I'm drawing-out our itineraries. 

The journal I prepared will be presented in mini parts and series. It will narrate my family's memorable vacation in Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte, our tour to some of the most scenic and prominent tourist destinations and our delightful gastronomic encounters in the Ilocos Region.

So sit back and relax as we head North. "Tara Na Sa Norte."

Our Tara Na Sa Norte (Let's Head North) theme

The Jump-off

We started from home (Pasig City) at 4:30 p.m. of December 25, 2011. I wanted to start earlier than 4:00 p.m. but the little ones (Beatriz, Dominique and JD - my grandchildren) demanded they need to experience the relevance of  a child's Christmas day and that is visiting their ninongs (godfather) and ninangs (godmother), pay respect and after some immaculate and innocent lingerings; receive their anticipated aginaldos (gifts). For that reason, Lolo lost his dominion and left-out with no choice but to submit to the orders of his apos (grandchildren).

Christmas Day was similarly the birthday of my mother-in-law. We took lunch in Nanay's place with my sister-in-laws and pamangkins (siblings-in-law). The actual celebration of Nanay's party is dinner time but since our resort booking was set on December 26, we had to make a headway for our scheduled check-in time.

We took off from Pasig with our cargo of domestic stuff e.g. clothings and food provisions. Driving in Circumferential Road No. 5 or C5 Road from Pasig to Eastwood City, all the way to North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) was a breeze since not much volume of traffic is plying EDSA.

1st Pit Stop

We made our first pit stop for snacks and personal needs in Shell Station Balagtas, Bulacan. It was already 6:45 p.m. Dusk was slowly blanketing the day and the clouds seemed provoking hefty precipitation. We did series of inspection and audits to make sure we brought all essentials and think what might have been left behind and while doing so, we had snacks and snapshots.

Shell Station in Balagtas, Bulacan along NLEX

Our dependable AUV, the Mitsubishi Adventure
GLS Sport has logged a total 16455 KM mileage

My Sweety and the Tara Na
Sa Norte (Let's Head North) flyer

The Cast of Ilocos Region Tour

My son AJ and wife, Olga

My Co-pilot, Yves... "Moy the Grief" or "Moy the Good Boy"

My two lovely Pupungs.... Beatriz & Dominique

My Unico Hijo...Popoy - the Fastest "Sapak" in the West

2nd Pit Stop

Our second pit stop was in Tarlac City. It was 9:00 p.m. We stopped by a Shell Station for diesel and parked in to have dinner. We brought Beef Menudo and Pancit Bihon in case there is an urge to take an untimely munch while along the way. My family is not comfortable dining-out in fast foods and restaurants,  they always prefer home-cooked meals. We made it a habit to bring along our food chest and make sure it is always stuffed with goodies and home-cooked foods.

Dining -out with our baon, home-cooked foods in an instant

Enjoying the weather and dining treat

My next blog will narrate the continuing saga of our 18 hours "epic journey", so do stay tuned.

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