It seems like the most difficult thing in travelling is to not travel. Standing still is sometimes the best thing to do, and while I had all the intention of travelling show, I still relocated every couple of days and always felt like I needed to go out there and ‘explore’ every single day. But what I really wanted, is to stand still.
My original plan was a ‘travel slow’ plan. Ideally, I’d like to stay in bed at home with all my things (none of which exist anymore) or go to Anthropology, shopping for cups and bowls, and £30 candles. Apparently, I shouldn’t want that, because this experience is amazing, which is what other people tell me, but it’s not really. It’s the most stressful and anxiety inducing experience I have ever put myself through. I’ve been wanting to be on my own, but this is more alone than I’ve ever been in my life. At the same time, my worst nightmare is to only rely on other people and constantly socialise and ask for advice. And that’s all I’m doing. This travelling experience is everything I’m uncomfortable with in life, pushed to the foreground. And whether that is a good or a bad thing, I am sure to find out.
Yesterday marked my escape from Dumaguete. I got up early to have the lady from the guesthouse motorcycle me to the bottom of the hill, where I could take a jeepney into town. I walked to the pier to buy a ticket to Tagbilaran, Bohol, and then walked back into town to wait for the mall to open. I ate, filled up the biggest box of self service fruit (1 kilo!) and waited. I was in a sad mood, unhappy about my time in Dumaguete, not wanting to think about what else could go wrong. Luckily the trip to Bohol was otherwise uneventful, apart for the porter scamming me into paying him to put my bag in hold. I didn’t trust him, but there was no one else around to find out whether or not i was actually supposed to pay or not. Afterwards, when I really wanted to yell and scream at the bastard, I was scared he would lose my bag on purpose, which would’ve been worse, and I kept my mouth shut. So I had arrived on Bohol island, I’d been scammed for the first time, my guard was up, and I still had to find my way to my place of accommodation, Nuts Huts, which was located somewhere outside of the town of Loboc. I wasn’t looking forward to it. Outside the pier was the usual hassle of vans and tricycles trying to get customers. I never trust them, but I had already found out that walking to the bus station would take 45 minutes and I’d already walked hours and hours on end the past few days. I was tired and done with it. I shared my tricycle with a local woman who confirmed my travel plans. I took one bus and the conductor let the bus stop directly at the path leading to Nuts Huts. A rocky decline, pitch dark. A motor bike was ready to try and get me to hire him but I wasn’t interested. I could figure it out on my own. I found the torch in my bag and journeyed down myself. When I arrived I was beyond myself with relief to smell food, see water and just, see people, period.
After I checked in and waited for my food to arrive, I read through an information map and was delighted that I’d finally found a place that helps their lodgers with advice on trips in the nearby area. Then I realised Nuts Huts is in the Lonely Planet. Maybe that’s where I’ve gone wrong. I haven’t touched a travel guide in my life. Perhaps doing things spontaneously just makes everything more painful, and I’m reinventing the wheel, and maybe not even doing anything different at all. I vouch to buy a guide book for my next destination, but there’s no WiFi, so no chance of getting anything on my Kindle. Nevertheless, I am happy I am somewhere more liveable. My hut is cute (although honestly I am still disappointed, every time, that I haven’t unknowingly checked myself to a five star resort, and it’s always a bit more shabby than chic.)
The next morning I feel tired and lonely, though happy to be here. I feel like I need to go and do things, but I really want to stay put, read and catchup on my writing and my course. So this is what I’m doing. I enquired about a hike it I won’t let myself do it. I’m just going to stay put. Stay put, breathe and do the things I’ve been wanting to do. I have a balcony and a chair overlooking he Loboc river. Those tarsiers can wait another day.