By By Pablo A. Tariman
HEAVEN ON EARTH
posted 25-Mar-2019  ·  
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Scene at low tide: Pablo Tariman's granddaughter Tyra enjoying sand and water.

The hotel management warned me: there is no wi-fi, no signal and no TV in that private resort.

My daughter and son-in-law said fine and my granddaughters yelled in excitement. It’s been quite sometime since they have been to the island.

But to the youngest in the family, the trip was special: this is the first time my two-year old granddaughter Tyra would visit the island of my birth.

One emailed the island itinerary ahead of time with special request that we would like to go straight to the beach from the airport and then later transfer to the capital town inn a day before flying to Manila.

My daughter was not disappointed.

After checking in and later going to the veranda overlooking the beach, she marveled at how beautiful the private resort was. The sea was serene and preparing for low tide. The beach was clean and nearly pearly white.

It looked like we had the beach all to ourselves as we didn’t see anyone venturing into the wide expanse of white sand. But there were rows of fishing boats and a little far beyond, there were rock formations with a little tunnel that framed what looked like God’s little acre. My granddaughters loved the sight, they couldn’t have enough of the sand and they ogled the school of small fish swimming here and there. Tanya ran away when she noticed the small fishes were swimming in her direction.

Sleepless nights caused by deadlines saw me catching cold. But surrounded by hills and mountain range and the sea, one couldn’t care less. One woke up at two in the morning and ventured into the veranda overlooking the sea. When I looked up, there was a silent sky full of stars! It’s been a long time since one did one’s share of star-watching and in this early morning view of sky and sea, you realize you can be happy and serene and inwardly blissful by just looking at the stars and listening to the sound of waves all night.

Early morning after doing your coffee ritual, you venture into this hut jutting out of the seashore. You look around and see how peaceful the place is.

As one is wont to do, one actually did an imaginary set-up of a concert by the sea two years earlier the first time I saw the place.

My two award-winning classical guitarists played with an imaginary audience and indeed what an ideal place to make music.

As one watched one’s granddaughters play in the sand and watched the tide rise and fall and seabirds make circles around the shoreline, you realize this is heaven on earth and more.

Before leaving for the capital town to catch up with wi-fi and cellphone signal, one had a last look at the beach and its environs.

I find myself paraphrasing the Dutch sailor Laura Dekker thus: “At sea, I feel comfortable and I come to rest.”

(Catanduanes Midtown Resort in Batag, Virac, Catanduanes is managed by Catanduanes Midtown Inn. For inquiries, call  +63 947 563 8165 or 052 811 4165.)


The columnist and his granddaughters at Catanduanes Midtown Inn Resort in Batag
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