Tuesday, March 20, 2007


I came to my place of birth and cried,
“The friends of my youth, where are they?”
And echo answered,
“Where are they?”.

My family lived a simple life in Daet, Camarines Norte.
The term Daet was coined when a certain Spanish colonizer asked a native settler of what place it was, not having understood the question which was asked in Spanish language, the native settler said “dae” which means NO. Daet is the capital town of Camarines Norte. The province of Camarines is considered as the Gateway to the Bicol Region (R-V). It is the province next to Quezon province if traveling towards southeast from Manila.

Camarines Norte derives its name from the Spanish word Camarin meaning rice granary or warehouse. Camarines Norte’s pride are its places of interest and historical landmarks such as: Rizal Monument in Daet, the first Rizal Monument erected in the Philippines in 1898, Wenceslao Q. Vinzon Sr. Historical Shrine with public library and museum, St. Peter Church in Vinzons which is one of the oldest churches in the Philippines, Jose Ma. Panganiban Monument, and Laniton park, site of the first guerilla encounter against the Japanese Imperial Army.

The province offers clear waters, white sand and beaches, and underground cave ideal for surfing, scuba diving, surfing, picnic, and hiking. Among these are the: Bagasbas Beach, four kilometers away from the town of Daet, its sea waves is ideal for surfing. Apuao Grande Island is famous for its white sand unsullied water best for water sports like scuba diving and is 45 minutes ride by boat from Mercedes; Pulang Daga Beach Resort situated in Paracale is two hours ride by bus and an ideal place for picnic and swimming. It commands a good panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean. Mercedes group of islands cater to tourists in search of secluded resort destinations and outstanding natural landscapes. The islands have white sand beaches, clear waters and calm waves. Canton Cave is another exhilarating wonder for brave adventurers, and Itok Falls about 75 km. Southwest of Daet and four kilometers West of Capalonga. It is surrounded by lush foliage.

I‘ve always remembered my mother being a workaholic. She worked during the day as a boss at the Provincial Capitol, at night still doing her paper works while assisting me with my homework. She was the Provincial State Auditor for several years and was recently promoted as the Regional State Auditor. My father couldn’t hold a job for unknown reasons. He had had several jobs when I was younger but would quit after sometime. I guess there are people like him who like working only for themselves. But he’s been kind to all of us. His family owned our private beach resort, my childhood paradise.

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