Passing by Sta. Cruz, we shopped at the first grocery we saw and filled our little basket we think we will need: two bottles of 1.5 ml mineral water, chips, bread, instant noodles, canned goods etc. Excited about the prospect of cooking on my new portable stove, we bought one can of ma-ling to serve as viand for that evening and palaman for our bread for the next day.
We arrived at exactly 2 PM at the falls, we paid the P30 entrance fee, and headed on the for a 10-minute trek. Reaching the camping area, we noticed workers in full swing. By the end of the lake pool, a concrete wall is well under construction. It somehow saddened me because it will no longer look ‘natural’ with this man-made structure. But I guess they were doing it to make the place much more suitable and attractive to visitors. While pitching our tent and setting camp (with Chie shouting and jumping up and down beside me looking super giddy) I was negotiating with the local guide about putting up a bonfire for the evening, P60 for a set of firewood and P20 for a ¾ bottle of gas. We also paid P100 for our rented rubber mat and tent cover (for P50 each). We still had not had a decent meal since those two poor Mister Donuts we munched on earlier that morning so we hastily had our very first meal: steaming plain rice, two jumbo hotdogs and pork steak.
While having our quick chow, Chie was getting worried because Kuya Edgar (the one I was talking to earlier) has still not arrived and she thought we might have been fooled (Or knowing my friend, she really did not worry about that 100 bucks but on the lost chance of photo by the bonfire! hehe) because we handed him P 100. Telling Chie not to worry that he will soon be back, (She’s getting really excited on the prospect of having her picture taken by the bonfire by now) we cleaned up, changed our costumes I mean to our swim wear and waded in the freezing waters of Majayjay Falls, also referred to as Taytay Falls.
And I say freezing! It’s like someone poured a bucket full of ice water on you! A testament to the other blogs I have read, the water from this falls is crystal clear, if not the clearest and cleanest among all of Laguna’s waterfalls.
After a short photo-ops, dusk was fast approaching and so we washed ourselves up and prepared to sleep (at 5.30 in the afternoon?!) By 6 PM, we can’t see a thing, my headlamp can only reach a few feet of the surrounding area, beyond that it was pitch black. In addition to the quite moody weather, the canopy of the towering trees, plus the rushing of waters cascading from the mountains, the night created a calming but rather creepy effect.
There were other campers, but it seemed we were alone for miles and miles around. After enjoying our bonfire, at exactly 7 PM Chie and I were already watching the dancing fire fly trapped inside our tent. Blinking, mesmerizing us. It got colder as the night got deeper (I suggest thick articles of clothing here). I was really thankful to Chie because she ‘borrowed’ my blanket, leaving me alone and cold in that black world (lol!).
Staring at that fire fly is like star-gazing in an open, secluded beach. Its star light is not so bright which would make you look at it twice just to make sure that it was really there. I recalled the last time I have actually seen one. It was more than a decade ago in our village when vegetation was still abundant. Numerous fireflies would light up the young, peaceful night. While being hypnotized by it, and listening to the song A Thousand Years by Christina Perri from Chie’s I-pod, I can’t help but wonder if the darkness surrounding me can just take me and swallow me whole. Erasing all the heartaches and worries of the world. Wished that time stopped and just lay there and be with the one person you love the most. Holding hands, saying nothing, but just listening to the beating of each others’ hearts.
Waking up at the sound of birds chirping, from the forceful flow of water and the singing of morning insects, we had a cold breakfast since my stove decided to call it a day. I did not risk getting into the water that early at 6 in the morning but just took some pictures again before departing at 8 AM.
Majayjay falls is truly majestic. A secret haven very near the metropolis. It will inspire you to keep quiet and savor the nearness of heaven itself, content on being with the serene, quiet environment of the nearby forest. A day tour is doable but an overnight camp in total darkness in Majayjay falls is much more exciting.