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Weekly Photo Challenge: Solitary

One Boracay Morning

One Boracay Morning

I instantly went to this photo when I read the topic for this week’s photo challenge. It’s because I distinctly remember taking this shot in one of our Boracay trips in 2009.

It was early morning and I rarely wake up at this hour while on vacation. I sat on a beach chair fairly similar to where this woman is sitting. I took a close shot of her with just a peek of the ocean. But when I noticed how wonderful the sky is at that time (I love sky shots!), I took this one.

I remember wondering what she is doing there at this time. She was playing with the sand at one point, writing or drawing something, then gazing into the horizon. She’s probably waiting for someone, too. A vendor or a friend. I think she’s local, but I can’t be sure. She’s probably waiting for her husband on that boat (just my imagination taking over, haha). I guess I’ll never know, because I was wracking my brains trying to remember what happened next and I seriously can’t remember. So I’m just guessing.

Let’s just say she was just taking a breather from her morning walk and soaking in the beauty of this place she happens to be living in. If she’s a local, then she would have to start working a few hours from this moment. I would love to think this is just a particularly nice day and we were both lucky to be in it. Because she gets to relax and I get to take this picture.

P.S. Boracay Island, Philippines is seriously one of the best beaches in the world. It can get crazy during peak seasons (summer, March-May), but the few times we went in October and January, it was really nice and peaceful. We’re going back in February 2013 and I’m still so excited!

New to The Daily Post? Whether you’re a beginner or a professional, you’re invited to get involved in our Weekly Photo Challenge to help you meet your blogging goals and give you another way to take part in Post a Day / Post a Week. Everyone is welcome to participate, even if your blog isn’t about photography. 

Here’s how it works:

1. Each week, we’ll provide a theme for creative inspiration. You take photographs based on your interpretation of the theme, and post them on your blog (a new post!) anytime before the following Friday when the next photo theme will be announced.

2. To make it easy for others to check out your photos, title your blog post “Weekly Photo Challenge: (theme of the week)” and be sure to use the “postaday″ tag.

3. Subscribe to The Daily Post so that you don’t miss out on weekly challenge announcements. Sign up via the email subscription link in the sidebar or RSS.

In the middle of the sea at Stilts Beach Resort Calatagan

The cottages at Stilts Calatagan

The cottages at Stilts Calatagan

I’ve read mixed reviews about Stilts Calatagan (former name is Rose Gold Beach Resort) at Tripadvisor but still looking forward to going because I haven’t gone out of town in a while. The weather strangely calmed down on Friday morning despite the bouts of rain here and there, but the almost 3-hour ride is fairly comfortable.

We had a pit stop at Bag of Beans Tagaytay for breakfast. From there it’s pretty straightforward. At about 2-3 kilometers mark from the resort at the main town, there’s a signage pointing you to Stilts followed by an anecdote that says “by invitation only”. This makes the resort sound exclusive and it kind of is!

We’ve encountered about 2-3 guards on the way to the vast property which is gated. We were the only people at the resort at around 11nn maybe because it’s a Friday and it’s rainy. Check-in was a breeze. We were helped by the staff with our bags and a representative showed us to our cottages.

cottages at Stilts Calatagan

Our cottages: the one on the right and the further one in the middle

Since we got 2 vouchers (from Deal Grocer), we were given 2 cottages. One cottage could’ve easily housed 10 (or 20!) but we were glad since 5 on each cottage is much more comfortable.

We were not able to enjoy the beach because on high tide the waves are quite aggressive because of the weather, and on low tide, the beach is rocky (extra careful on low tides because there are sea urchins, bring aqua shoes!) But some of us settled for the pool and it was quite good.

During our whole stay, the staff were very attentive and helpful. Most of the bad reviews I read are about their in-house restaurant But based on our experience, some of the very few mishaps are tolerable. The food is normal fare and ok for the price. You have an option to bring in food but you have to pay a corkage fee. We spent about 650pesos per person for lunch + dinner + a case of beer. And we all agreed that the price is not too bad.

Overall, based on this one experience, I will go back to Stilts Calatagan. The quirky feel of the resort, the surrounding and the laid-back vibe is enough for me to give it another shot. And oh waking up in the middle of the sea to this view is not bad at all.

Tagaytay cottage at Stilts Calatagan

The ocean, a hammock and fresh air, I could wake up to this everyday.

More photos of the resort: