27 June 2010

A Quick Trip to Tagaytay

After a week of exasperating work, a deflated morale and a sinking feeling caused by my quarter life crisis, I couldn't be happier when Leo invited me to join a group of friends to have dinner at Tagaytay. I needed something to break the quickly developing monotony of my daily routines - I needed a breather that could at least, briefly, sweep me away from the heaviness of Manila life. The idea of a Tagaytay dinner sounded completely refreshing, that I grabbed the opportunity as swiftly as it came.

According to plan, Leo was supposed to pick me up from work at 6 yesterday (June 26), but due to the rainfall, the rendezvous time was delayed. He came over past 7 with Liza, and we drove to Makati to pick up Berns. We were only four. We then proceeded to South Super Highway - getting out at Sta. Rosa exit and going straight until, after an hour later, we arrived at Tagaytay.

We were choosing between two restaurants - either Leslie's or Josephine's; eventually we settled for Leslie's. Dad told me that food there is good, and I was curious to try it out. He had informed me that Tagaytay is known for its sweet, fresh vegetables and beef products. At Leslie's, a must try would have to be their Bulalo.

So here we were, the girls, Liza, myself and Berns posing for Leo at the bridge entrance of Leslie's

Tagaytay is famous for its breath-taking view of the Taal volcano. Although it was night time, we still had a good view of the said volcano under the clear navy gray sky. Sitting there with the cool atmosphere enveloping me, I can only wish I could be there with someone special and watch the twinkling dots of electrical lights play at the bottom of the cliff, watch the blurry silhouette of the Taal volcano at a distance as the moon quietly floats above bringing a shy, mystical illumination of everything it's light touches.

Oddly, the photo below made me think of B.o.B's song, Airplanes.

"Can we pretend that airplanes
In the night sky
Are like shooting stars
I could really use a wish right now"

I could really use a wish right now. But that curve wasn't a shooting star nor was it an airplane. It was a moth.

The moths were crazy that night. As the photo below illustrates, the moths crowded together where there is light (usually happens after a rain, they say). And although in the picture, they may appear like snow falling in the background, I honestly don't think they added anything positive to the eating ambiance. I'll explain this later.
Leslie's closed the lights inside the mess hall, the only ones left open were those outside. I grabbed the chance and borrowed Leo's DSLR to take photos of the insects. I haven't used a DSLR in quite a while and I'm sure my camera know hows have already rusted - but I'm glad to have taken the photos below, they're quite interesting. With a slow shutter speed, the motion blur dance of the moths registered nicely resembling light feathers floating against a dark blue backdrop.

Beautiful as they may seem in the photos above, they are quite disgusting to look at against an unromantic backdrop, as can be seen in the photo below. There was a yellow bucket filled with water, apparently to lure the moths and drown them.
Flowers? Look again. It's like a heap of drowned moth corpses and dismembered wings floating around. Disgusting.

Disregarding the moths, the food at Leslie's were Pinoy favorites ranging from sisig, barbecues, crispy pata and many others. Our group decided to go unhealthy and got Leslie's Bulalo, an order of Lechon Kawali, Tuna Sisig and Pinakbet. Apparently, I was the most unhealthy of all, relishing on the beef and pork fats of our orders - and not touching any of the vegetables. The luxury of being young. Below are our photos enjoying our food.

What I loved most was that we can keep having our soup refilled, and we did that a couple of times - even had it changed because a few departed moths have crashed into our soup, swimming aimlessly like meat fat on the warm yummy soup. Death by bulalo. A few moths have also drowned in our drinking waters, or have landed briefly on our plates - to our great dismay.

The highlight of our evening was seeing ex-actor and newly elected Quezon City mayor, Herbert Bautista across the table. It took a while for us to gather our thoughts if a photo with him would be worth it, and with a good flip of a coin whether we should go through it, I took the initiative of asking him for a photograph - and kindly, he obliged us.

We all look the same, he said. I'm not really sure what he meant by that.

After dinner, we headed to Starbucks for a good warm drink before heading back to Manila. Of course, if you've been to a Starbucks store, you've generally seen them all - so there is nothing very unusual with their branch here. It always has been about the company you're with that matters anyway.
Heading back to the parking lot, a glorious white moon hung above us and we found it absolutely imperative to have a quick photo session with the backdrop. You don't get to see that in Manila often.
We arrived in Manila at 2.30 in the morning, everyone a bit tired from the outing. I felt fulfilled though. A long pending Tagaytay trip in my to-do list can now be canceled off. Looking forward to the next adventure.

Photos were taken using Leo's SLR camera, and grabbed from his Tagaytay trip album.


Leo said...

Wow, very well narrated... We should try this tagaytay food trip again without those moths lolz =)

Kwagoo said...

Thanks Leo. I hope I didn't leave anything out.

Haha.. We shall see if we can have a take 2 :) Hopefully with more participants LOL