Friday, November 23, 2007
Thank You, Camiguin (by Sabina Vogt)
“Thank you Camiguin”
What is it that draws me to spots in the Mindanao Sea? Each time I venture deeper into this area, it’s where magic happens. It’s a mystical connect difficult to explain. It’s as if some higher power brings me to these places to allow a peace and reflection within myself and a connection with nature not present in the city.
I just recently returned from a trip to Camiguin, a place I’d wanted to see for awhile and that magic hit me. The anonymity of the bustling city folded away and there was trust and contentment. Though some habitants were poor, their gardens were tended and the infectious “hello, friend” echoed as my motorcycle hummed passed. It wasn’t a place swarming with tourists like the blasphemous Boracay. People were going about their lives without the hardness in their faces from dealing with rude and obnoxious tourists.
One morning the bruised cumulonimbus clouds were threatening. Rudy and I were on a mission, to find Tangub hot springs. We straddled our motorbike making our way trying to outride the impending rains. We didn’t care. There were no signs. The locals directed us to the Sun & Sea Ministry, a retreat center on the end of the shoreline. Was this right? Yes, the construction workers said down there. We wondered through a herd of goats. Rudy said that we could buy the goat pen and build our home there on the edge of the rocks. They were boulders that had obviously been spewed out of the once young and vigorous volcano. Gray pumice boulders and other rough brick-colored volcanic rock lined the shoreline. Some fishermen were cleaning their nets and told us the springs were among the rocks. What? No. But as we stepped onto them our bare feet felt the warmth of the heated rocks. So surreal. No one would know. Giggling, we dipped our toes into different pools of water to find our desired temperature. Ahhhh….that tingling feeling you get edging your body into a bath tub and your muscles sigh with relief.
We began building rock walls to keep out the waves so our cradles of warmth were protected. The Earth was breathing as bubbles rose from the depths. The unfortunate fate of a limp crab slowly cooked in the water floated upside down in one of the pools. Slippery slimy fish slithered across the barnacle-covered rocks. A cocky crab leaped from one rock to another arching its back.
Oh no! The drops began lazily and then reached a crescendo. We didn’t care. We were like the Japanese monkeys in Baraka serenely staring meditatively toward the expansive sea with raindrops pelting the surface of the water. We had nowhere to go, no reason to leave. It was the healing powers of the Earth’s comforting warmth that kept us there.
-By Sabina Vogt, November 2007
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