I secretly spend a huge amount of time reading and writing about watercraft of all types. I enthusiastically ride them every chance I get—from the rakit (pontoon barge) of many Abra River crossings in my childhood and youth, to the modern inter-island passenger ships that ply the southern islands from the Port of Manila, which I’d usually choose over airplane rides.
This obsession always generates two persistent streams of thought: On one hand, my artistic (okay, melodramatic) side is hypnotized by the rippling, churning, foaming, almost magical flow of the sea or river in the wake of the boat. It’s a hypnotic feeling that rarely bores me.
I was just telling my neighbor here, Kabsat Kandu, about a chance encounter I had with a Badjao beggar family who were stranded in flooded urban streets, minus their boat.
I was recently in Manila, gulping down my second cup of coffee in a rush to catch an appointment, when someone banged on the steel gate of the old family home (which now housed a printing press) where I was staying. She was waving a letter and shouting in an unfamiliar language. The noisy machine drowned her out, and no one else in the house seemed to want to indulge a visibly desperate beggar.
Let me get straight to the point by sharing what I learned during a short stay at Nagsasa Cove in San Antonio, Zambales.
I won’t bore you with the usual mundane matters that you can Google from travelogues, such as how to get there, what’s so great about it, how to best enjoy your stay, what not to expect, and so on. Instead, I’ll tell you some interesting stories about Nagsasa, presented in Top-Ten style.