|Basco (Naidi) Lighthouse from a distance|
Batanes, ah! In my three decades of existence, I have never dreamed about a place so much as I did about B. Ever since I was a child I would often yearn to go to Scotland to experience that European magic. But of course we all know that going to the far west is not exactly a walk in the park. So I have turned my gaze to my homeland, and found an even more mesmerizing place.
Just last year, I have seen the influx of excited travelers as they all stepped foot for the first time on the once-unreachable Kingdom of Batanes. And I, as a self-proclaimed Princess of Batanes, couldn’t help but smile. Did I get envious? Not really. For me, Batanes is a special place. It is where I see myself getting married. It is where I see myself walking around aimlessly for hours. It is where I see myself talking to inaminate objects like that lone lighthouse.
I felt no rush then to land on her shores. There will be a perfect time for that. I can hear things with my heartbeat. And B is quietly telling me that there will be the right time for our own love story.
On the last day of the 11th month of the year, I found myself rushing to the airport, a bag pack on my shoulder and the most precious ticket clasped in between my fingers. Yes, I was really going to my kingdom. Butterflies were doing cartwheels in my stomach. I was jittery. It was like seeing a potential partner on our first date.
As the clouds parted, I caught a glimpse of her rugged terrain. Our plane skirted above the coastline, it reminded me of a raptor slowly hovering over its prey, constantly aiming and adjusting. Our pilot was very good as the wheels of the plane landed with just a soft thud. Finally, in a few minutes, my feet landed and touched Batanes soil. I remember closing my eyes just for a bit. Freedom was what I felt. It helped discern the inscrutable feeling. Yes, I said to myself, I am finally in Batanes.