Under the spell of Bohol charm

The van was zigzagging through the wide, sexy highway covered by umbrella of tall trees. I was sitting alone at the farthest backseat. My face was glued in the slightly tinted mirror at the back. There was something about the trees in this place that is so enchanting. I am amazed that a place so magical could exist in real life. It was only around 4pm but the trees isolated us with its majestic beauty that even the afternoon sunlight could not dare compete. It was green everywhere and even if the van didn’t stop, my world did, in this forest that formed a little universe of magic and fantasy of its own. I was waiting for fairies to show up.

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The Mahogany ‘Manmade’ Forest was just one of the beautiful things I saw in my first and recent visit to Bohol Province. The trip was splendid. The sun didn’t fail to impress and just like the weather being cutely bipolar it also rained when it is necessary.

The entire island was being cradled by the cosmic spread of blue and reflective ocean mirroring the sea of clouds above it. The ray of sun ballet perfectly on top of the water and just like that, my day is complete.

Of course we went to see the famous Chocolate hills, a geological formation composed of at least 1,260 hills scattered perfectly over a large part of municipality of Carmen in Bohol. The formation was unbelievable. How could these hills sprouted like giant mushrooms in this part of the province? And what makes it more special is that the hills are covered in green grass that turns chocolate brown during the dry season, hence the name.

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Then we went to see Tarsiers, which are a kind of a very peculiar small animal. The Philippine tarsier, according to my online robot friend Wikipedia, measures only about 85 to 160 millimetres (3.35 to 6.30 inches) in height making it one of the smallest primates in the world. Its small size makes it difficult to spot.

The morning we went to that certain Tarsier sanctuary was crucial because for me to be able to join that trip, I needed to finish a heavy technical banking industry article first. Since I was too desperate, I woke up 4am still quite cautious if I allotted enough time for myself to be able to write that story. I was too sleepy and dead tired but you know what, it was all worth it. If there was one word to describe the feeling, it is peaceful. These tiny creatures are oozing with tranquility. There was something about them that looked so serenely fragile that every time they move, it makes my heart skip a bit but in a happy way.

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During the trip, we also went to different restaurants. As usual, my appetite for good food won the battle against my fitness goal. For the straight three days, I pigged out.

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This was my first out of town trip for the year. A remarkable one indeed. I was able to explore not only places but also a different field of knowledge. Here I covered a banking event together with banking beat reporters of different newspapers.

I’d like to believe I have gained new friends too, those that I have shared stories with one drunken night, they who never judged me for who I am, and they who didn’t hesitate to break the strange walls between us. The endless conversations were fun although I wish they were really endless.

So, yes, it was fun. The trip was definitely one for the books!

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