what the Banahaw trip made me realize

Last August 22, our Philippine Institutions 100: The Life and Works of Jose Rizal class went to Mt. Banahaw, Sta. Lucia, Quezon for a fieldtrip! Hurray!

ready for the 4 hour (?) bus ride!

After some hours of real nice sleep…


Our class visited some churches (mostly Rizalistas) and learned about other people’s beliefs. It’s not often that I go to these kinds of places, let alone go out of town. I go to school 5 days a week, sometimes even 6. I barely have time for travels, maybe even for breaks- from technology that is. After going to different churches, we had lunch then we went to the wilderness (ha ha) and started to trek.

Inside my bag of clothes and junk food were my camera and cellphone as well. It was unusual that there’s signal for my phone but unconsciously, I left both my camera and my phone inside my bag before getting off the bus.

We started to walk and trek and climb steep steps and enter caves and meet insects along the way. I was enjoying it so much that I hardly thought of what I needed to do for the next day (a Monday), I didn’t even realize that I was without my phone! I had so much fun being with nature (heehee) and my lovely OrCom busmates Claire, Diane, Earl, Eya, Justine, Lem, Patti, Sands & Tam!

The best part was…

Folklore has it that people who enter the "Husgado" can not easily go out of the cave if they are sinful! But the tourguide tells me otherwise. So much for thinking that I am kind...

It was only after the entire trek that I was reminded of my responsibilities for the next school day. When I checked my phone there were tons of messages, good thing my friends knew I was on a mountain so they understood my not being able to reply at once. Ah, the joy of having a break from technology! My eyes were able to rest and see other wonderful things than letters and fonts.

I could go on about how wonderful life is if we all went back to having that simple life- without technology, without the demands of living in an instant world but I suddenly remember the brownout which happened last July. I had tons of things to do, and undeniably I couldn’t do them without my lovely computer and my phone.

So I guess albeit the fact that all the technologies and the instant connection we have nowadays is very vital in today’s age, we must not forget that at times we need to take a break from screens and give our gadgets their well deserved breaks too. For absence makes the heart grow fonder (sometimes). :”>


photo credits: Claire San Pedro🙂

  1. indeed, nothing beats the beauty of life and nature; nothing beats the real thing. but the fact is, we just can’t do without technology and all the amazing things we can accomplish with it. so why not incorporate those lovely things in our daily routines with those screens and gadgets? if you miss them, why not make them fit into your lifestyle? that way you wouldn’t have to miss them.😉

    • Yes that’s true but the point is that in as much as we should not try to reject the technologies that are coming our way because we know for a fact that they really are necessary, we should take time to give ourselves a break from all of life’s instant processes.🙂 It pays to have some time away because it actually helps us appreciate what we have more.

  2. juolpindo said:

    “albeit the fact that all the technologies and the instant connection we have nowadays is very vital in today’s age, we must not forget that at times we need to take a break from screens and give our gadgets their well deserved breaks too.”

    I agree with you. Sometimes, we just need to get back to the basics because we are too preoccupied with the technologies around. As it is true that technology enables us to communication seamlessly and conveniently with other people, we must always remember that they are made to aid communication and not to be used as our primary channel of communication. Because of it, we forget to utilize and maximize the richest form of communication – face-to-face.

    • Ah yeah! That’s the key word, “AID.” It’s just that we become too engrossed with all these sparkly gadgets that we overlook their real purposes.

  3. I totally agree, Ellis. That trip to Banahaw also made me forget about everything. It’s like taking a break from reality, it felt nice and refreshing. I also left my phone inside my bag, not caring who might text me (especially the Aninag guys, good thing eic Larraine was with me. Hihi.). Though that trip was not exactly relaxing, and that’s an understatement, it’s still nice to have a date with nature once in a while, bringing nothing but yourself, forgetting that internet was ever invented and taking home an experience that is hard to forget. :))

  4. melem1 said:

    Looks like we’re ready for the “no-internet-connection-for-one-week” challenge. Haha I enjoyed that trip as well. Wait.. what does going out of the cave easily mean again? 0_0

    I guess its a good reminder for us not to revere the Internet as the new life support system for people all over the world. While it may have significantly impacted our lives in more ways than one, there’s still so much in the world we can see that can never be reached by your mouse pointer.

    As such, we must not “box” ourselves “outside-of-the-box” It really is a good lesson to look back and not dwell too deeply into the Internet.🙂

    • Getting out of the Husgado means you have less sins than you expect. Myth has it that people who really are cruel find it hard to go out and if they do, they a lot of wounds and bruises.😐

  5. Thank you for using my pictures🙂

    Anyway, I also believe that people need a break from all these things that technology gives us. Sometimes we become so immersed into the digital age’s universe that we forget about simple joys, and simple things.

    The Banahaw experience, though it gave me one heck of an experience (you know what I mean🙂 ) , still served as our detoxifying trip. Living for one day with a crappy cellphone signal felt like hell, yet we survived. Sometimes, the the real fun moment starts when what you see as important is out of reach, and you think of ways to live and go on without it🙂

    • Exactly. It’s just that we are really used to it that we tend to decide that we can not live with it but actually we can! It just takes control and discipline.;)

  6. I also went to the same trip the week before you guys did! And yes, this was a much needed break, away from the city life and all the technology that now makes it even more busy. This is a good reminder that while all this new technology “should” make life a bit easier for us, we can still find that joy in simplicity in the life outside the digital world. I think I need this break again!

  7. I was with Eric on that trip that he was talking about. I remember, that week was quite loaded with a lot of school stuff since it’s mid-semester. Fortunately, the Banahaw trip served as an escape from the busy life in the metro. While trekking, I heard my mobile phone rang for a couple of times. Suprisingly, Mt Banahaw is “connected.” In time, I believe technology will conquer even the most far-flung areas in our country.

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