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Lemon Pie HouseAug 21-23, 2009

Sagada Deja Vu

Long Weekend
It's been nearly 6 months since I left Sagada. I didn't think I'd be visiting the place again this soon, but Charlene suggested we spend the long weekend there. We would be joined (somehow) by my Fine Arts friends, Babs and Kate. Besides, nearly all my stuff is still there - I need to bring them all down at some point. For now, bringing down the bike and more clothes was enough...the frying pan too - for morning crepes.

No Tickets
It was a mistake not to have pre-purchased the tickets. This resulted in a needless wait and a domino effect for the Sagada bus. Altogether, we lost about 5 hours - a huge chunk of time specially if you're only in Sagada for a long weekend.

Instead of waiting for hours at an exhaust-infused bus station for hours, we all whiled the time away at Mogwai for some beer and chilling out. It was a good thing Mogwai was alive and kicking. I just love Mogwai. At 1:15 am, we headed back to Victory station for our bus.

Wondering Mind
The trip took the usual gruelling 12 hours. An interesting thing is, enroute, the bus by-passed it's usual resto stop, Morning Star and instead, stopped to a newly opened resto, Grilling...something. I could just imagine the Morning Star manager explaining to his boss how he lost the Victory Lines' account. And I'm wondering, how did the Grilling resto wrestle the account? Offering 'extra rice' to the drivers? ha-ha. As my mind was wondering, I was also thinking...if I were the owner of Victory Lines, would I buy more buses to expand? or would I buy a resto stop since I can get an already captive market? Hmmm...the long bus trip just gives you too much time on your hands for such idle thoughts.

Free Lodging
We were lucky as a friend offered his spacious house for us in Sagada. Since he wasn't there, we had the entire house for ourselves...nice, really nice! It also cut down on our lodging cost.

Food Odyssey
Our stay in Sagada has been mostly about chilling out and food - not about hikes, mountain bike rides or caving. Unlike before when I would usually cook out, this time, we ate at Yoghurt House, Lemon Pie House, Bana's Coffee Shop, Log Cabin's dinner buffet and Ganduyan. Sagada's cool climate seem ideal for coffee, yoghurt and fresh produce. I couldn't entirely not cook - not Sagada of all places. So, I managed to squeeze in an etag-crepe breakfast with fresh tomotoes....yeah!

Sagada Denizens
Sagada's denizens, or what I fondly refer to as 'the usual suspects' were still there going about their usual business. Steve is a new dad and keeping busy with his kayak outfitting, Aklay still bakes bread, Janet is still teaching art lessons at St. Mary's. Les and Terri still were there fresh from backpacking Central America. Joey's now in Los Banos where his mountain training earned him the moniker Batang Bakal (Iron Kid).

Manang Christina Aben
It was likewise great to see Manang Christina whom I've developed a friendship with, during our Empath Yoga workshop. She's pre-occupied with her work-of-love, the Ganduyan Museum. The museum is an eclectic collection of Cordillera traditional tools, apparel, household utensils and handicraft - a Sagada must-visit.

Lingering Thoughts
Now that I see myself as a visitor who once lived in Sagada, my sentiment about the place has become one of perspective. Sagada has been around for nearly 400 years. Throughout its history, it has weathered landslides, tribal attacks, the Japanese occupation, government intrusion, earthquakes, etc. Now, in the 21st century, Sagada faces new challenges...emigration as overseas workers, construction, increased tourism, increased Manila access through road pavement, commercialization, technology vs tradition, etc. As always, Sagada's resilience in defying the odds will prevail as it has done so in the past. Perhaps it will be a slightly different Sagada, as it complies with inevitable changes, but still Sagada with its core values remaining deeply rooted.

--- TheLoneRider

    Lessons Learned:
  • pre-purchase the bus tickets!
P8210033 P8210034 P8210035 P8210040
P8210041 P8210044 P8210047 P8220048
P8220049 P8220051 P8220052 P8220053
P8220054 P8220056 P8220057 P8220059

Reader Comments:

(Aug 25, 2009) i miss sagada. i miss it everyday--to think that i've only been there once for a 4-day trip. :)

(Aug 25, 2009) ...cant wait to go back to sagada and tick off more things to eat see and do there. The more stuff I read on your site the more excited I get to go back!

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