Has a life outside the city ever felt natural to you? Or are provincial spaces something you thought to be great places to visit but not to live in? People share all sorts of thoughts on the topic and it has everything to do with perspective, preference and purpose. Out where there is less noise and less people there is also more of yourself to discover. I mean, there must be a reason so many writers in movies find themselves somewhere obscure or scenic in order to combat the enemy that is writer’s block.

If you’re not the type to express yourself through some form of writing or art, the thought of being kooked up in one place could seem like a prison. (Take note: Notable people in history have also written novels in actual prisons) Whatever your agenda, a vacation away from your usual, whatever usual is, is good for you and taking one with a view of nature will leave your heart and body (mysteriously) full.

I’ve only known this need to recharge in myself involved going somewhere where I could tune out all the noise. And when I’ve overwhelmed myself with work among other things (and I always do) I always look forward to a vacation. This time around it was a trip to Bacolod City. I went with Pat to visit his family there. About an hour or two away is their slice of heaven – a place called Pandanan. It’s a private residence by the shore with a majestic view of the ocean.

 

The House 

Living in the Philippines, I have many memories of vacations in houses on stilts – and they were all good ones. We parked the car in an open drive way surrounded by trees and gawked at the clearing that looked out towards the water. Of course it’s not an authentic provincial home without the chickens greeting you, so they did and with their noises fading into the serene backdrop our feet excitedly gravitated towards the house on the water.

 

The Seafood

A lovely spread was set at the table. There was seaweed, crab and all sorts of things we couldn’t name ourselves. They were all taken from nearby sources and home-cooked. Now that we had the setting and the breeze to cool us down, this feast was all too indulgent. There’s nothing that spells out a Filipino family gathering than the bounty of food at the table. Everyone got up for seconds – and thirds and fourths even.

 

The Parts to Explore

Down the house (during low tide) we could easily walk towards some rock formations. Bouncing left to right with stomachs full, everyone made their way to hop through the rocks and take a few pictures. From these parts you could look out into the ocean and feel like everything was infinite.

 

The Take Away

Everyone has their definition of paradise. That place is your own, and wherever you find it, that is where your heart can feel rested. If the places in this post have struck a chord with you then maybe it’s time that you explore the Philippine’s outdoor parts and immerse yourself in nature. Even better yet, maybe it’s time for you to consider living outside of the city – because if you’re like me, that’s where I find my paradise. That’s where my thoughts find their outer limits and my breath flows more free.

To see a little bit of our adventure through some amateur videography, see the video below made from our very first trip there back in 2014.

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