One year! How fast time flies! Wasn't it just yesterday when he asked me out for dinner after how many palipad-hangin-patay-malisya months? :D
"Time flies when you're having fun"
To mark the first of many years to come, we decided to spend a whole weekend on the land of Pines: Baguio City.
"Baguio City was established by Americans in 1900 at the site of an Ibaloi village known as Kafagway. The name of the city is derived from the word bagiw in Ibaloi, the indigenous language of the Benguet Region, meaning 'moss'. The city is at an altitude of approximately 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) in the Luzon tropical pine forests ecoregion condusive to the growth of mossy plants and orchids."- Wikipedia
I was a giddy kid as the Victory Liner Bus (1st time on Deluxe!) rode off to the north. (I tried the CR in the bus and I went out almost nauseated hahah.)
True enough, you knew you were already in Baguio when leaves of the trees changed from rounded corners to spiky thin greenies. It's been almost 10years since I last came to Baguio but I don’t think I was able to appreciate it the way I did last weekend. I really got to experience and get a feel of the place. Iba padin pag commuter ka! :p
The roads. Maygad. It's like a Rollercoaster City. Sharp curves everywhere, and their highways are more like high-WAVES. Pataas pailalim ang mga kalsada! And their jeepneys weave in and out of the streets without even breaking a sweat. I think they've got more powerful engines there than they do in Manila. Kung makapag-backing wagas!
So I guess this could justify why on the first night I was DEAD.TIRED. My feet almost died. We walked around SM Baguio and strolled along the Session Road. Downtown Baguio is very much like Manila except that it's cooler. Literally and figuratively :p
They've got affordable dining lined up at the Session Road. We ate at Steaks Toppings, where you had a hefty serving of steak and great ambiance for less than Php150 a meal.
"Seryoso ka paglalakadin mo ulit ako dyan???" Medyo tawa-busangot mode nako nung hinihila ako ni Papa Ray. Hahah! He practically succeeded in luring my attention somewhere else to forget my tantrums (he's getting better at this actually lol) and managed to drag me back, climbing to SM. We had coffee and just took in the chilly Baguio air. It was some silent time discussing random matters (including our budget lol!) and I think, this is the part of the trip where we just breathed and really realized that, "hey sweetie, we're actually in Baguio! " :p
The highlight of our trip is the fulfillment of my two year old dream of going to the Bencab Museum. :D It was way too awesome that it merits a whole new blogpost (to follow) heheh.
|The Bencab Museum Lobby (taken by my camphone heehee)|
My fondest memories of this trip? THE LAVISH BREAKFASTS. The lavish pansit-canton-toasted-sandwich-breakfasts. Hahah! Ang saya pala ng gan'to noh? Kakain ka ng agahan kasama mahal mo :D We were a little under time pressure but we still really enjoyed preparing our cute breakfasts and taking it in with much gusto.
Being able to share precious moments like these… this is the life! :D :D
Here are photos from the garden breakfast we had the next day. We were very lucky to have stayed in a place with very friendly people and a charming view of the city in its very own backyard. We had lomi, toasted bread with quickmelt cheese, and coffee, eaten in a wooden table surrounded with trees, while bathing in the loving arms of the 8am sun. Again, this is the life! :D
What I would give to have a garden as lovely as this! :D :D
I never thought I'd love sunlight the way I did over at Baguio. Ginawin kasi ako :p Every ray of sunlight meant welcome warmth for me. I also noticed that people at Baguio are just CHILL. Is it because of the weather? Maybe people don't get as easily agitated? Yung parang ang cool lang nila at pressured ka na maging cool din. Heheh!
We had our anniversary eve dinner at Forest House. This is touted as one of the best restaurants in the Philippines for 2011 and 2012. I know right ang sosyal. Hehe
What struck me when I first stepped into Forest House was the general "warmth" of the place, which is a welcome treat when you're in a cold place like Baguio. Its probably the effect of the wooden furniture. Actually almost everything was made of wood. May 'feel' na parang pumasok ka lang sa kusina ng mayaman mong kaibigan. Haha. It's cozy yet classy at the same time.
The food was, as expected, quite pricey. Around 300-500 for 1 person. BUUUUUUT it WAS WORTH IT. We ordered Baby Back Ribs and Prawn Thermidore, and it was was d-e-l-i-c-i-o-u-s. As in sulit at busog! And the Double Decker Chocolate ala mode we had for dessert was heaven :D :D (You can just check out the photos below to see how mouth-watering they are heheh).
We also liked how everything was served. Me and Ray both agreed that this was the kind of meal you'd gladly pay Php500 for, and not just the ambiance. :-D The crew was genuinely accommodating too and we loved that. :) Highly recommended to anyone who drops by Baguio :D
What I'm loving about this trip is that there was no pressure to hop from one site to another. We strolled wherever we wanted and lounged whenever we wanted. At our own pace. We didn't get to visit a lot of sites actually, but we've already done that with our separate trips before.
This trip meant walking along the sidewalks with hands held and dropping by tea houses or coffee shops just to rest and talk and laugh. I guess our 'time management' also had a lot to do with it, but I loved how we were able to really experience the place by simply taking everything slowly. It was enough for me that I was able to thoroughly enjoy the Bencab Museum, and everything else was just a treat.
Another cool thing was that Papa Ray had all the time he wanted to stop and take photos. I love seeing him dong things that he really like. :D :D
We left Baguio on the morning of our anniversary and got to Manila in the afternoon. We attended mass in UP and dropped by the place where this whole journey began: The Sunken Garden. We sealed the date with an exchange of gifts, of love, and of a quiet promise (na secret ko na muna *wink*) :-)
It was a BLAST of a weekend. I had an unforgettable time in Baguio and this anniversary celebration is totally one for the books. :p Most especially for me who hasn’t done a lot of travelling just yet. Late bloomer! :P But now I guess I have an idea of the kind of soul-fulfillment that you get when you visit a new place and really experience it. It’s very refreshing.
AND I super love having Papa Ray around. We've been rushing from one place to another and I think we're a nice duo when it comes to pressure hahaha. In fact, we're a great duo for everything else. As soon as our time and wallets permit (*prioritiespriorities* :p), I'll be definitely looking forward to the next trip!! Yebbah! :D
(more photos here.)