Thursday, June 27, 2013

I'm in the mountains when I'm not at sea.

I haven't been posting any entry since June started. I have been really busy with school and and the weekend art things that temporarily take away the pains, the frustrations, and the sadness that dentistry school gives me. And I tell you, the weekend art things isn't enough to cancel out the ugly things. 

Anyway, before school started to ruin me again, I had a few days away up in the mountains in a little mountain town called Sagada, which is famous for their hanging coffins and other things. I didn't really care that much about the tourist stuff. I was there to escape everything even just for a while.

I can't seem to make coherent paragraphs so I'll just put things in a list.
  • The native's houses were made of galvanized irons and pine wood. Every household has a pet dog or two. What I find really interesting is that the dogs were really kind and they don't bark at people even if they're not familiar with them and they all look like mountain wolves. 
  • About the hanging coffins, the natives bury their dead in the ground and light a small flame by using pinewood instead of candles on top of their graves. The natives who died at age one hundred and older are buried in the cliffs. They coffins are made to hang, hence the hanging coffins.
  • Almost all native children are fluent in English which is a really big fuck you to the many people who think that those who live in the mountains and in small far away towns are uneducated. They are all dressed nicely in fact. There are no beggars and people in rags.
  • Another thing about the houses, they all have animal skulls or horns hanging by the balcony or the door. They believe these skulls keep them safe and keep the unwanted spirits at bay. A native that we became friends with even gave us a boar skull.
  • One of the things I want to do is be tattooed by Wang Od the traditional way. It comes with a ritual and the tattoo comes with a responsibility. But I was told that Wang Od was already too old and her hands are heavy it would be a lot more painful and the tattooing was a tedious process, it being a sacred ritual for their tribe requires preparations and other things. 
  • I almost forgot about the one thing, it is legal to smoke weed since it's part of the native customs and tribe rituals. But the use of cannabis is not only limited to smoking it. The elderly make cannabis tea and they also put it in food.
  • Most of the natives live longer than the average life expectancy. While having a walk, I passed by a house with a tarp hanging saying "Happy 105th Birthday" to some grandma. And one more thing I noticed, nobody wears eyeglasses, even the elderly. And asking around, I  was told that they still have good eyesight, that's why. Well I guess, most of the people there are living a healthy life.
  • Actually, there's many to write about. There are really amazing customs and traditions and stories and local gossips but they're all written in my notebook and it's kind of a bother to put everything I wrote here.

It was really good up there. It's nice to live among the natives. The weather too. It was always cold and nothing is as comforting as the cold. And the vegetables are all fresh and it was all quiet and motherly. And doing landscape sketches under trees has never been so good. I will always go back. Life is simple there and carefree. And now I really miss it.

P.S. I earned the money I used. Which made it even better.


  1. i missed you the last couple of weeks!

    this place seems to be the perfect escape. i am still looking for something like this in my region - have not found it yet.

    sad to hear that you didn't enjoy coming home, which is quite understandable. however i am glad that you're back.

    1. Hi love. It's always good to be back here when there's people like you. I hope you find a good place to escape to as well.