By Maria Eleanor E. Valeros (The Freeman) Updated April 10, 2011 12:00 AM

CEBU, Philippines – There is no education quite like the lessons of travel.

This Albert Barnard wisdom espoused in his 1932 work entitled “The Lessons of Travel” proved to have transcended our excessive readings and acquired information overload.

After traveling from Ormoc City heading north to Calubian via Capoocan and Leyte, Leyte passing by the Biliran Bridge and the Nasunogan Causeway to take a 15-minute motorboat ride to the St. Therese of the Child Jesus Shrine in Barangay Obispo, one becomes “more broadminded, until at least, a stage of mental flexibility is reached where one realizes how much he has learned about the world but how little he has exactly known.”

In my case, for example, I have been to quite a number of places in the Philippines and have embarked on extensive reading of travel materials to support my written works. But when the St. Therese Diocesan Shrine Association invited me to Calubian, I harbored tons of questions as to why we had to cross over to Biliran Island first when Calubian is at the northern tip of the western side of Leyte.

“Wait till we get there, and you will be so surprised you still have much to learn,” this note gnawed at the back of my mind.

M/V Wonderful Stars departed Cebu City at 10 p.m. of March 4 and anchored at Ormoc port at 4 a.m. the following day. The troop hurriedly disembarked to catch the 7 a.m. breakfast scheduled at the house of Antero “Tanting” Junia, Jr. (son of a revered Boy Scout active during WWII in Tolosa, Leyte). Mano Tanting is the association’s treasurer.

We negotiated sharp bends and curves on our three-hour trip to Biliran. I refrained from dozing off so as to take mental notes of the places we’ve been passing by in that particular journey. Then, the soft shafts of the early morning sun burst beyond the languid shoulders of mostly grass-covered hills and mountains. And lo! There it was: Biliran Bridge a.k.a. Bridge of the River Kwai!

My companions, alternately, explained our position on the map. They pointed out we were taking the tip-most of northern Leyte which is connected to Biliran by the said bridge and causeway. “Alternative route ni namo kay the road to Calubian is a ‘free-massage road’, otherwise known as the ‘abortion road’,” this explanation was underscored by roaring laughter.

CEBU, Philippines – There is no education quite like the lessons of travel.

This Albert Barnard wisdom espoused in his 1932 work entitled “The Lessons of Travel” proved to have transcended our excessive readings and acquired information overload.

After traveling from Ormoc City heading north to Calubian via Capoocan and Leyte, Leyte passing by the Biliran Bridge and the Nasunogan Causeway to take a 15-minute motorboat ride to the St. Therese of the Child Jesus Shrine in Barangay Obispo, one becomes “more broadminded, until at least, a stage of mental flexibility is reached where one realizes how much he has learned about the world but how little he has exactly known.”

In my case, for example, I have been to quite a number of places in the Philippines and have embarked on extensive reading of travel materials to support my written works. But when the St. Therese Diocesan Shrine Association invited me to Calubian, I harbored tons of questions as to why we had to cross over to Biliran Island first when Calubian is at the northern tip of the western side of Leyte.

“Wait till we get there, and you will be so surprised you still have much to learn,” this note gnawed at the back of my mind.

M/V Wonderful Stars departed Cebu City at 10 p.m. of March 4 and anchored at Ormoc port at 4 a.m. the following day. The troop hurriedly disembarked to catch the 7 a.m. breakfast scheduled at the house of Antero “Tanting” Junia, Jr. (son of a revered Boy Scout active during WWII in Tolosa, Leyte). Mano Tanting is the association’s treasurer.

We negotiated sharp bends and curves on our three-hour trip to Biliran. I refrained from dozing off so as to take mental notes of the places we’ve been passing by in that particular journey. Then, the soft shafts of the early morning sun burst beyond the languid shoulders of mostly grass-covered hills and mountains. And lo! There it was: Biliran Bridge a.k.a. Bridge of the River Kwai!

My companions, alternately, explained our position on the map. They pointed out we were taking the tip-most of northern Leyte which is connected to Biliran by the said bridge and causeway. “Alternative route ni namo kay the road to Calubian is a ‘free-massage road’, otherwise known as the ‘abortion road’,” this explanation was underscored by roaring laughter.

3 COMMENTS

  1. ‘free massage road’ is not exclusive to calubian expressway. culaba has its own version of it pero not that ‘abortion road’ kind. anyway, here’s finger-crossing ma-completo an biliran coastal road concreting!

  2. dear ms. Maria elanor valeros,

    thank u for visting my beloved province.

    We, biliranons are proud of our place. No matter how diverse our political affiliation og nuances.

    No matter what every traveller will say, be it informative or critical mental construction.

    It is our beloved province.

    And, there is no place like Home.

    It is on this Biliran Island,

    where our heart is.

  3. Salamat sa pag-post sa akong article diri ha? I tot jud nga waray namo diri dapita. Bisan ang mga naglalis nga comments/posts, nindot basahon kay bisan nagdinaotay, basta Sinugbuanong Binisaya malipay jud ko nga dili ikaulaw gamiton.

    I love Biliran! So laidback, I wish to retire here. Mahadlok lang jud ko before sa mga negative reports nga NPA-infested gihapon. I do climb mountains, so medjo caution sa ako ang NPA reports. Kay madamay nya tas mga encounter bah, if ever naa. But im quite captivated by Tres Marias, mobalik jud ko to pursue that long-overdue climb.

    Ang dalan ok ra jud unta if all-terrain vehicle among dala. Or kanang ford ranger wildtrak. Kay if dili bitaw kaau shock-proof ang sakyanan, morag nataktak jud akong cerebellum, if u know wot i mean hee hee…

    Kaninyo matinahuron,
    Maria Eleanor E. Valeros

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