Tuesday, 17 May 2011

When I've got kiteboard uder my feet

Kiting classes were going well, when I’ve started them again until wind died. It died yesterday morning when I even got up at 6 a.m. to go for classes at 7. By the time when I got to the school it was gone and never risen up again.
Other problem was that the day before I’ve stepped over sea urchin which made me unable to walk. I’m limping or walking funny trying not to step over the spot on the sole of my foot where the needle got in. And it is not easy to take it out; they’d have to cut my foot to take it out. The thing is that they are very fragile and break, so you cannot pull it. That’s why it remained it my foot and aches like hell when I walk.

The only options remaining were either swimming or cycling. With the polish friend with whom I hang around here we’ve rented bicycles and cycled the whole island, which is not big but is hilly. I was cursing him when I had to go up the hill to the view point situated on the Mt. Luho, and this is one of the things which I really don’t like, but in the end we got there and view was not bad although I’m not sure if worth those 50 P which they charge. We could see almost whole island, with White Beach, Bulabong – Kitesurfers’ Beach (where this time were no kites at all) and we were able to point Puka Shell Beach where we went just before. On the other hand it was so much fun to go down from the top of the hill that I might do that again only if I had better bicycle.
Other option was swimming which we did as well. Swimming goggles to prevent salty water getting into our eyes and here we go! We swam from the White Beach to the yacht that Kazik spotted anchored nearby and what’s more one day we’ve met guys working there and one of them was the guy he knew from some years earlier for the different yacht so they agreed that one day we’ll get there.

Swimming itself was not that challenging as challenging was watching out on the other boats which were passing by. But we managed to get there safely, got water there (so much salty water that you drink when you swim in the sea, that probably for the next year I should not be eating any salt at all), chatted to the guy and swam back.
That is everything cool but I want the wind. I want to start kiting for real, with a board. So far I’m able to set up the kite, start it from water, steer it, body drag myself, do self rescue. It’s high time to do some progress but there are no conditions for that. There are only two days left now…

Freestyle Academy

I'm learing hot to steer a kite

Introduction to body draging

Ready, set...

... Go

9 sqm kite

Puka Shell Beach

Japanese tourists that we saw on the Puka Beach. I guess it must be kinda fashionable in Japan for a couple to wear the same clothes or at least the same pattern on theit clothes. Most of the couples htere that we saw were like that. The same pullovers, girls' bikinis had the same pattern as boys's shorts and so one. Weird. And of course have a look at the shoes. Aren't high heels the best beach shoes?

It looks kitsch and like from a cheap postcard, but it's genuine sun set on Boracay

…. And they were not enough too. As first one I’ve spent throwing up and stayed in bed, as I was not able to get up at all, when I wanted to do some walking I’ve almost blacked out and the other day there was no wind at all. But at least I’ve went the Bulabong Beach and got in touch with Ken – the owner of Free Style Academy where I was having my classes and went to the party with him and some of his local lads, which was cool, as in fact it was the only party that I had here.

Kazik and I. Ready to swin to the yacht.

On the anchor

Palm in a Jungle Bar

Welcome to Island called Boracay. It wasn't me who did that though.

At the party with Ken

Bom Bom Bar with local Filipinos
On the way home. Plane form Caticlan to Manila

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Island called Boracay

Boracay is famous for its white beaches. I was not aware of that but it’s first tourist destination in Philippines. What’s more not only for foreigners but also for local people. Actually it’s full of Filipinos, what’s really nice. I must admit that I enjoy it so much more this way than the other like in Thailand and Vietnam where beaches were full of farangs.

Filipinos are the most friendly people that I’ve met. They always smile, speak decent English, help you. This is how I got place where I’m staying right now. We were in Caticlan, arrived there quite late, when there were no more boats to Boracay and we met those local girls who were trying to arrange transportation to Boracay and did all the good job to get it. One of them was renting rooms and as her place was full showed us house next door where a family is renting rooms, so we got one.

Traditionally during holidays I’m sick. Sore throat, fever, runny nose, so most of the time I spend either walking along the beach or sitting and reading. I must admit that I even go into the water as it’s so warm that it can’t make me any harm. I was told that it’s 28 degrees (sic!).

When I thought I’m already better I went to kite surfing classes and in fact got worse again. Damn it! I’ve even spent all weekend evenings in bed, not going out to party and it did not help. Maybe I should have gone yesterday, as when we went for a dinner to very local place there was that bunch of Filipinos and when we got up to pay they’ve asked us if we wanna give it a try. But a try to what? I’ve found out only when two guys took me by the hand and lead me to the long table.

Apparently they were a crew of a Dragonboat (there was dragonboat competition taking place last two days) celebrating their victory (3rd place if I got it right) and drinking. But how where they drinking! There were three tables connected together. There was a line of 15 different bottles with booze and there was a shot glass with each bottle, sometimes there was also a bottle of coke in between. And what you were supposed to do was to get one shot after another.

I was the first one to try, but I knew I’m not gonna make it till the end as I was taking medicines to get me going and mixing it with booze was not a good idea, so after four shots I gave up. But John feeling the pressure made it till the end. That event made us forget to pay our dinner. So we had to go back there in the night to pay.

I was not planning it but in the end I’ve decided to stay here till the end. Especially that I don’t feel like traveling when I’m sick and bearing in mind that way home will be tough. Four flights in a row, transferring between terminals in Manila and Dubai, 17 hours of flights plus some additional waiting times. One needs to be fit for that.

Boracay sun set

Dragonboat warrior

Dragonboats ready to take off

Dragonboats with their crews

Filipino party people

John is taking shots

Very romantic, ain't it?

Coconut tree climber

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