I’d like to share with you these photos of a very special beach that I discovered in Bohol, Philippines, when my family and I went there for a short holiday in June 2005.
This beach was a heart-thumping 20-minute tricycle ride from my paternal grandparent’s home, way before the construction of coastal highway from Tagbilaran City reached that part of the island. [NB: A tricycle is very similar to the Thai tuktuk, an improvised form of public transport made by attaching a ‘sidecar’ to a motorcycle.] The road to the beach was very bumpy and quite hilly in some places. I remember holding on for dear life to whatever portion of the tiny sidecar that my hands could grab, wishing I could be like my children and just enjoy the thrill of the ride.
When we finally reached our destination, I drew a sharp breath and rubbed my eyes, unable to believe what I saw — the beach had no sand whatsoever! There were only stones and pebbles and sea shells of varying shapes and sizes.
I breathed in the pure, fresh air and gazed at the skies so blue and so clear, trying to commit that moment in my memory forever.
MyEldest, OnlyGirl and RoundBoy eagerly frolicked in the cool water, completely oblivious to the lone fisherman paddling his banca in the distance. He came back to shore after some time, carrying with him a few pieces of glistening silvery fish, probably meant for his family’s consumption that day.
The water was so clear, you could see right to the bottom! See? No sand; just smooth stones and pebbles.
Sadly, I heard that the beach was damaged by the construction of the highway linking that town to Tagbilaran City. Now all that I have left of that magical place are these photos and that moment of time frozen in my memory.