Adams invited us to his province in Mindanao for his 21st birthday. Other friends weren’t able to come because (1) parents were afraid of their safety — wrong perception by the way (2) Mindanao was too far (3) The fare was a bit pricey. Only Dianne and I went. Despite that, it was still a fun vacation with really nice memories for keeps.
The original plan was to ride a ship en route to Ozamis City and then fly back to Manila. Unfortunately, travels to Ozamis from Manila were fully booked. Dai and I had no choice but to do it the other way around.
Our flight was delayed but we weren’t really surprised given the performance of our airlines in the country. Thank God for Dai’s laptop we were able to watch for the nth time episodes from Sherlock to kill time. I will forever adore you Benedict Cumberbatch!
I have come to realize that every place in the country has its own unique version of tricycles. Ours were quite spacious. In Batangas, the sidecars were too low they always hit humps. In Pagadian, the said vehicles have “second floors”. It was cool except obese people like me would have a hard time squeezing themselves inside. It was designed that way because the roads in the city go up and down, like in Baguio.
One night, Dai taught Lance a bad eating habit. The same thing she taught me a year ago, that is, dipping anything on Nestle cream. I swear almost everything tasted better with that fatty cream especially Cheetos. Om nom nom nom nom. Come to think of it, Mayonnaise and creams look harmless but they slowly kill you.
The vacation in Pagadian was a diet ruiner (even though “diet” did not exist in the first place). We made wicked oreos which Dams fried despite my protests that pancakes weren’t cooked like french fries.
Dams’ high school friend Lor encouraged us to try Marang, a fruit that is intended for young ladies because of the texture. Tita bought three. One was okay, another was still unripe and the third one was so overripe it was inedible. It was somewhat similar with Langka (Jackfruit) but better tasting.
One day, Dams was busy with preparations for his birthday celebration. He told us to stay at home and watch movies. Dai and I being curious citizens with “lakas ng loob” went out and rode a tricycle to Rotonda – a place where there was a tower overlooking the city – for the sunset. The spiral staircase going to the top was scary looking with pieces of wood making the pathway even smaller.
On another day, Dams tagged Dianne and I along to his high school friend’s thanksgiving lunch. I thought we would feel out of place since everyone except Dams were practically strangers. I was very glad to be wrong. They were all very kind and welcoming. Plus the food was great and the stories fun. Cheesy sounding but it felt like they were long time friends of mine. Naks. The meal reminded me of my childhood, simple handaans in a relative’s home.
Dams has always bragged that barbecue and isaw in Pagadian was just 1 php per stick. To see is to believe and it was true. Of course they were bite size but still, 1 peso? Not bad. Aside from pork barbecue and isaw, there’s hotdog and other internal organs of both pigs and chickens (not 1 php).
When the vendor asked our order, we said 2 pcs of barbecue and 2 pcs of isaw. She stared at us like we just talked in an alien tongue. She repeated our order and we said yes. Still, she was uncertain. When Dams arrived after parking his motorcycle, he said we sounded like fat misers to the girl because people usually buy 10 sticks at a time. Here is ate gamely posing for a picture.
I loved the barbecue and Dai loved the isaw. Whoever thought of starting the 1php trend was a genius because one stick was 50% meat and 50% fat compared to the regular 80-20 ratio. And as far as I know, fatty portions are cheaper. Combined with cold carbonated drinks, cool November air and anythingunderthesun conversations, it was a pretty good night.
We started with four sticks and ended up with 70 (or was it 80?). They were that good plus there’s something about biting the meat then throwing the stick in one mouthful. The promo by the way was 10 sticks plus 1 free.