Writing on Air

Writing on Air by Jim Paredes

Boracay Bliss!

Posted on August 29, 2005 by jimparedes

It was good to get away even for a while. I was tired physically and emotionally. We had just buried dad at the Christ the King crypt after a 4 day wake. The next day, I left for Boracay for a two nights and three days stint. I was to deliver a talk for CEMEX, a cement company. I flew in on Asian Spirit on Thursday, August 25 and landed in Caticlan early afternoon. Soon after, I was checked in at Waling-waling resort and was having a late lunch of chicken pork adobo while chatting with my sponsors about this and that. The change of pace and scenery was both healing and exhilarating.

Waling-Waling at night!

I’ve been to Boracay twice before, and each time it was during its quiet season. I don’t remember seeing hordes of people the way my children describe it each time they go there. It was this time around, quite the same. This is habagat season, supposedly not the best time to be there, but that didn’t matter. It was cool, windy, and pleasant, though unfortunately, it was also cloudy mostly and therefore not conducive to great sunsets. Nevertheless, I had brought my camera with me and was determined to explore and take a few shots in between catching up with eating and sleeping .

Sarap matulog!

Foreigners enjoying native hospitality

Friendly vendors

I went to D’Mall, which was an entirely new place to me. But I mostly just hung around the beach and walked towards Station 2 where I took pictures of people and places. It was such a pleasure to be aimlessly walking without any agenda except to relax and enjoy the beach!

Freida Dario of Mandala Spa

I was able to connect with some old friends, notably Freida Dario, who dropped everything and moved to Boracay a year and a half ago. She used to be my nephew’s girlfriend, and was a student in my TCU class. We went drinking with her friends in Hey Jude by D’Mall. We reconnected with stories of people we both knew and updated each other on the goings-on in our lives. It was good. She now does the marketing for the Mandala Spa, a high end spa resort which has won international awards in its brief existence of three years. Even before I left, she was already texting me to invite me to stay at the Mandala Spa and try their massage. I promised I would try to squeeze it in my schedule.

My talk was scheduled early friday evening, and it went quite well. Luckily, after that, I was free and rushed to Mandala on a tricycle, checked in and, allow me to dare say, had the best massage of my life. From the time I entered villa no. 9, it was peaceful gentleness and tender loving care all the way. My room was the lap of luxury with glass doors which opened to the outdoors everywhere, and had a really spacious and beautiful bathroom. Ida, my masseuse massaged my feet first and then proceeded to the rest of my tired, tense, aching body with the specially prepared peppermint oil, supposedly good for its ‘healing effects.’ It was total surrender as I let go of the last tense-filled two months, a span of time when I experienced a major operation, then Lydia’s operation and finally, Dad’s eventual passing. I felt everything releasing as she pressed her palms on my body. It was heavenly bliss. From the way she calibrated the pressure of her hands, from soft to medium and back while touching different body locations to her soft gentle voice, it was ecstasy all throughout. After the massage, I proceeded to the bathtub where I lay alone for around 20 minutes just floating gently in warm water filled with floral petals.

What a room!
What can I say, except thank you Freida! You were right about how good it was going to be. It was so good it went beyond wonderful. That night I slept restfully on a very comfortable and humongous bed. My only complain was that I had to wake up at 5AM to catch the 7:15 flight back to Manila and make it to APO’s show in Las Pinas that evening!

But I know I will be back someday, hopefully soon enough.

0 to “Boracay Bliss!”

  1. enigma says:

    glad your back in blogging Jim. im planning to go to Bohol next year, a lot of snorkeling sites. =)

  2. girlie says:

    after reading your entry, i wanted to book a flight to the phils (after being back here,for a week now, in ol’ berlin)& visit boracay to enjoy the beautiful sceneries & savor the services of that spa. next time i know where to go na. tx.
    glad to read some nuance of normalcy in your life after your tragic loss.

  3. Jim says:

    enigma, Bohol is a great place to visit with so much to offer.

    Girlie–sarap nung chocolates na binigay mo. Thanks again. Am OK and moving on. Things have a way of healing themselves. Thanks for your concern.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Happy birthday, my friend!

    take care,


  5. jey says:

    happy birthday, sir jim!

    may God continue to bless you and your family.

  6. trishaaaaaa says:

    i’ve never been to Boracay. such a shame. but i would love to go there sometime with my friends and have a great time. 🙂

  7. girlie says:

    about mandala spa:i read they offer lymph drainage massage-the right kind of massage which lydia & other breast cancer patients,whose lymph nodes were removed, need. you should bring her there.
    the pics were simply enticing!

    cheers to the birthday guy & enjoy your special day!!!

  8. N says:

    Happy birthday mr. jim p.!!
    Wishing you nothing but the very best life has to offer. 🙂

    i miss boracay! I wanted to try that spa but it was just too expensive for me. hehehe! maybe next time! buti po kau whenever u go there it aint crowded. ako rin po eh when i went there, daming tao!


  9. Hazel says:

    wow.. i’m dying. i want a vacation from work. from being a mom and a wife.. just 3 days.. *sinking.. sinking* it’s exhausting.. and your post AND pix just made me more and more desperate for a vacation.. !

    anyway.. hubby and i went to Mindoro last April.. this Oceana Resort is very nice… it’s away from the rest ..not white beach but it’s PEACEFUL.. CALM and BEAUTIFUL 🙂 http://www.oceanadive.com you might want to visit it.. i think it’s owned by divers or something 🙂

  10. Jajey says:

    nice place talaga boracay..

    hope you regained your energy and spirit..

  11. rose says:

    wow!! boracay!!! havent been there!

    i wanted to go!! wahhh!!

    yung sand dito white din, but iba pa rin sa atin!!

    friendly ang mga tao, tapos pampered ka pa !!


  12. ~C4Chaos says:

    great pictures! is that from your new Canon EOS 10D? Mandala Spa, i’ll remember that. sayang i wasn’t home in Las Pinas 🙂

  13. Anonymous says:

    Dear Jim, Here’s May East., from Brazil.
    Trying to get hold of you to invite to play at the Findhorn Ecovillage, Scotland, in Oct 8. We will be hosting the pioneers and leading edge sustainability designers and practitioners. Ten years ago Paul Winter sang for us. Are you free on those dates?

    Please let me know.


  14. Christine says:

    wow, i’d love to try mandala spa next time I visit the Philippines! I miss Boracay!

  15. ang says:

    what nice visuals! it’s a little crazy on campus here.. first week of school (more crazyiness to come, with the arrival of students from loyola new orleans to continue here at loyola chicago), so it was very much refreshing to see such beautiful pictures. i cannot wait to come to the philippines this summer! i’m getting very excited. =)

  16. Jet says:

    Wow… you’ve been through a lot!

    First, let me greet you a happpy, happy birthday. And I hope you and Lydia are recovering well from your surgeries.

    Finally, my sympathies to the loss of your father-in-law.

    Tonight, I will say a little prayer for you and your family.

    Keep safe.

  17. jio says:

    Sigh, one of my wishes talaga is to see more of the Philippines just before I migrate to another country. Sayang, no money for now (Ganda pa naman ng Boracay). Great pics!

  18. the best talaga ang beaches ng boracay, ayos na ayos ang whitesands at babes.:”~

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