Happy in Palawan

J at Filipination.com | General | Friday, August 28th, 2009

When we travel, we collect more than just photos or multicolored experiences. We are also blessed with fond memories of the places we visit. And we are doubly blessed when we reminisce and realize that some of our happiest moments happened during seemingly simple times shared in a new place.

This is a story of my happiest moment in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines.

Puerto Princesa is a neat and clean city in Palawan, which you can easily figure out by walking around and speaking with the people you see milling about you. While visions of Palawan usually focus on island-hopping, the Underground River, the balinsasayaw bird, the Crocodile Farm, the Iwahig penal colony, and lots of other tourist-y attractions, you will happily chance upon the simplest, yet profoundest joys on earth.

Yes, I’m talking about a tricycle ride in Palawan.

Tricycles in Puerto Princesa

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sliceof/ / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

In Puerto Princesa, the tricycles are spacious and have a larger protective covering compared with their Metro Manila counterparts. Trike fare is around P7.00 per passenger, which is much lower than what you will pay in the metropolis. The tricycle drivers are courteous, and the grid layout of Puerto Princesa makes each major destination just a stone’s throw away from your hotel.

How can a tricycle ride bring you peace, tranquility, and sheer bliss? In a word: FREEDOM.

You are free from the usual tourist guides who force you into a rigid schedule. You are free from your fears as you independently explore different parts of the city. You are free from any worries because you can easily see that there are lots of tricycles you can ride back to your hotel.

And most of all, you are free to be yourself. Free from what others might think. Free to go wherever you wish, whenever you want, and with the person you truly and deeply love.

You can ride. You can walk. You can slip into a resto-bar hours before it officially opens, and just sit back and order sisig, while effortlessly watching the stream of pedestrians and vehicles go by.

You can cross streets, hold each other’s hand, breathe in the Palawan air, and later hail another tricycle. Another ride. Another journey. In peace. In freedom.

I’ve never felt more independent and more free than in that tricycle in Palawan. I’m so much in love. And I am happy.

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