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Traveling

Sunrise Festival at Gen San Nov 27 - Dec 7, 2012

Sunrise Festival at Gen San

Booking to Gen San
It was uncanny that when Cebu yoga teacher and friend, Jeanne, invited me to join her in Gen San for the Sunrise Festival, that's also the time I got an email from Cebu Pacific for a seat sale to Gen San. As a Flow practitioner, I simply couldn't ignore that sign. I booked a flight to Gen San from Iloilo thinking that Iloilo would be the closes place where I'd be for that time frame. Since then, my itinerary was somehow governed by that booking date.

The Opportunity Cost of Gen San
When I got an invite in Romblon to join this UK guy on his sailboat to Puerto Galera and then off to Subic, I gracefully declined thinking there's something for me in Gen San. I could have stayed longer in Romblon, but again, the Gen San booking forced me to leave Romblon prematurely (but in McArthur's famous words, "I shall return" to Romblon!).

Roof over my Head
Finally, after boarding my plane from Iloilo, I was in Gen San. Like always, when I first arrive in a new place, I frantically look for a cheap roof over my head. When I settle down, that's when I do my hotel rounds talking to big hotel owners about the wonderful things I can do for them on the internet through my proprietary vertically integrated online marketing campaign using search-engine-optimization and redirected site traffic. And as usual, if they are forward-thinking enough, they are impressed and happily accept my offer to stay in their hotel in exchange for my service. I've even become perhaps arrogant in saying to them that very few people in the country can do what I do or have the machinery in place to effectively do what I do - therefore, they should take advantage of me while my service is still available on those terms. With Google Analytics backing my claim, it's not just hot air, but a substantiated claim.

The Sunrise that Never Took Place
So here I am in Gen San attending the Sunrise Festival only to find out there is none, and in its place is the annual town fiesta of Sarangani, the Munato. The bands were there but so was a beauty pageant and the town fair. I was disappointed to say the least. I wanted to be with like-minded people who do yoga, who meditate, who take ownership of their spiritual evolution - the spiritual version of Woodstock in my parlance. Even my friend, Jeanne, who invited me to the Sunrise Festival, was not able to make it.

The Seer
I also wanted to meet the Ananda Marga Dada who did a palm reading on me at the Sunrise Festival in 2009 in Quezon City. He said many things, but I can't forget the 2 things he said that blew my mind off. I was thinking, since he won't recognize me this time anyway, that I would ask him to read my palm again. And if he says the same thing, then he probably saw something on those lines. But no, I didn't see people in orange clothing during the festival. Oh well....

Easter Egg
Given my predilection to positively philosophize on unexpected disappointments, I had to think that my being in Gen San was not for the Sunrise Festival, but for something else that will eventually become known to me. Usually, in time, the pieces on the mosaic start forming a picture.

Three LoneRiders
On the upside, I am amused at the way I spent time with Laiza, a fellow lone traveler who I only met on the internet. She's from Gen San and was patient in taking me around town. We's spend time and chat over eats and drinks. She was my tour guide, explaining Gen San stuff for my understanding and appreciation. I also met her friend Kathleen, another lone traveler. In my head, we were the 3 loneriders hanging out together. Amazing that they're not just travelers. Like me, they're also I.T. peeps and well versed on the internet and the social networks. Individually, with our avatars, we were TheLoneRider, Batang Gala and Da Social Climber. And like loneriders, we simply crossed paths in the here-and-now, only to move on and go our own separate ways.

Whistling While I Work
With my comfortable hotel in Gen San, the Italian-inpired Hotel San Marco, I was quite comfortable just cocooning inside my room with my laptop catching up on the pile of virtual work I had to finish. In fairness, I did accomplish a lot, including the enhancement, launch and marketing of my 2 additional sites for a global market. I'm curious what comes out of that.

Gen San Impression
Gen San is a moderately progressive city, perhaps about half the size of Cebu. It's not bursting at the seams like Coron or Dumaguete, but growth seems steady. Carinderia food, my staple, is cheap and delicious. Tricycle is P8 and the drivers don't take advantage of you unlike most places in the Philippines. People are friendly despite the proliferation of M16 wielding military people. They are a constant reminder for me that despite the normalcy, I'm still in Mindanao. Everybody in Gen San will say it's safe here. I agree. But the word "safe" is relative in Mindanao, I found out. Safe might mean there hasn't been a bomb explosion in the last 6 months. Fortunately, in Gen San's case, the last explosion was still back in 2006 - that makes it safe.

Durian Glorious Durian!
Mindanao's saving grace, as far as my palate goes, is this overwhelming one thing - durian! Given the season, I get one for P40/kilo, or P50 for a Puyat. Unable to restrain my cravng, I indulge in one 2-kilo fruit a day - enough dosage to send a high-blood person to the hospital. Yes, I hear from many sources that this fruit can kill because your blood pressure shoots up when taken in excess. The funny thing is, when I ask this to durian vendors, they say that the guy died simply because he already had high blood pressure to begin with. In most cases, the condition was aggravated not just by durian, but by indulging in lechon washed down by beer...and then topped by durian. Think about it - death by durian! It gives me the same romantic notion as death while having sex - what better way to leave this existence! Another vendor suggests taking cold Coke with durian to make the most out of the experience. It seems everyone has a thing or two to say about this exotic hate-it-or-love-it fruit. To me, it's the one litmus test there could really be a God. Such perfection can only be created by divinity.

--- TheLoneRider

Gen San Blogs by TheLoneRider

How to Get to Gen San from Manila

  1. all major airlines have a flight to Gen San - Cebu Pacific, Philippine Airlines, Air Phil, etc.
  2. unlike some airports where you just cross the street and flag down a jeep, it's more expensive from Gen San Airport - you can take a multicab or taxi (P~350) - jeeps or tricycles are not allowed inside the airport, and won't be waiting outside.
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Hotel San Marco, Gen San
Location:Laurel East Avenue, General Santos City, Philippines
GPS Waypoint:N06 06.994 E125 10.521
Land Line:+63(083)301.1818
Mobile:+(63)922.821.7332
Email:hotel_sanmarco@yahoo.com
Coconut Insider Website: Hotel San Marco
book now    coupon alert

Other Hotels in GenSan City

  • Dolores Hotel - P550 - P900, (083)558.4139, (083)302.7128, doloreshotel@yahoo.com, contact: Gerry
  • Sarangani Highlands - P1800 - P2250, (083)554.3336, 0922.859.0043, saranganihighlands@gmail.com, saranganihighlands.com
  • East Asia Royale Hotel - P2600 - P4400, (083)553.4110 to 28, 0917.715.5747, eastasiaroyalehotel.com, eastasiaroyale@yahoo.com, contact: Mr. Bartolome
  • Sun City Suites - P2500 - P4000, (083)303.3333, suncitysuites@gmail.com, contact: Phillip Pabelic
  • Road Haus - P2800 - P3000, (083)553.8888, reserve@roadhaushotel.com, roadhaushotel.com
  • GenSan Suites - P980 - P1550, (083)554.0410, 0919.793.6227, gensansuites@gmail.com, contact: MonaLisa
  • Sydney Hotel - P1340 - P1995, (083)552.5479, sydneyhotelgsc@yahoo.com.ph, contact: Charlemagne or Delfino Tan
  • Phela Grande Residences - P2562 - P2806, (083)552.9988, reservation@phelagrandehotel.com, phelagrandehotel.com, contact: Monet Odango
  • Family Country Hotel - P950 - P2500, (083)552.8895, 0932.887.8896, fchcc@bayandsl.com, familycountryhotel.com.ph
  • Hotel Filipino - P700 - P1200, (083)554.7089, contact: Wilfred
  • Tierra Montana - National Highway, (083)554.7733, contact: Laline, www.tierramontanahotel.com, tierramontana_hotel@yahoo.com.ph
  • T'boli - (083)302.6652, contact: Atty. Orlando, www.tbolihotelgensan.com, hoteltboli@yahoo.com
  • Florotel - North Laurel Avenue,(083)554.0880, florotelgensan@gmail.com
  • M Loft Hotel - Salvani St., infodesk@mlofthotel.com, (083)554.3833, contact: Carolyn dela Cruz
  • Amigotel Hotel and Suites - Santiago Blvd., (083)552.4574 / (083)552.4660, amigotel_sheryl@yahoo.com, www.amigotelgensan.com
  • Le Grand Suites - Mabuhay Road, City Heights, +63(83)301.2288, +63(929)317.8368, +63(917)331.3800, legrandsuites@yahoo.com
  • Antonio’s Apartelle - inquiry@antoniosingensan.com, http://www.antoniosingensan.com
  • Cambridge Farm Hotel - http://www.cambridgefarm.com

The following people like this:

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Reader Comments:

Laiza LimpinLaiza Limpin
(Dec 7, 2012) Hey, I'm reading your blog. I say your experience in GenSan is different. he-he. Parang taga GenSan ka lang talaga, enjoying the food and malls...ha-ha

Gigit SulitGigit Sulit
"I am personally inviting you to join the 10th Sunrise Festival on November that will be held here in Cebu" -- Cecile Savitri Villarente
(Dec 7, 2012) I love Cebu! Crossing my fingers to be there next year!

Cecile Savitri VillarenteCecile Savitri Villarente
(Dec 7, 2012) We were there Git, me and my group from Davao and some AM Wellness Center staff. We had 2 mornings of sunrise meditation, we had a visual art exhibit, my group facilitated a cultural dance and music workshop at the gym. We stayed in the staff house. This early, I am personally inviting you to join the 10th Sunrise Festival on November that will be held here in Cebu... all your expectations is on our activity list... collective meditation, yoga and even meals :))) I can assure you that... since I accepted the task to be the main in-charge.

120712

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