The best is yet to come...

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Friday, April 04, 2008

The Bus and the Best.


The institution where we belong to, deviated from the usual tradition of company outing. For this year, it’ll be divisional instead of the usual institutional outing, our department, the library and media services belonging to Academic Affairs Division agreed to go on our own and our destination: Pagudpud Ilocos Norte! 

I have been to the Ilocos several times on several occasions. The last trip there that I took was in 1998, with my high school friend Ethelyn. Ilocos is their home town and the first time she invited me to go there was on November 1992. Since then I got hooked. It’s been 10 years since I’ve been there which makes me excited about this trip.

I cannot bring Anne along at this time, she is too young and her Tatay wouldn’t allow it, maybe soon but Dzune will be joining me on this trip.

Long before, even before I planned to get married it is my office mate, Albeth's ultimate dream that we be able to visit Pagudpud. And this is putting that dream into reality (finally!). Our reservation for 7 rooms at Jun and Carol’s Beach Resort has been paid for. Originally our plan is to stay at Polaris Beach House because in the course of my search for best places to stay in Pagudpud, I’ve been reading raves about Polaris Beach Resort. Too bad that when I called up the place is fully booked but he was kind enough to have referred me to JC instead. I’ve read positive reviews too about JC so no problem. And we are staying for a night only hoping we would be able to capture a good view of the sunrise and the sunset along the coastline of Saud Beach.

So part of the planning is to choose a bus line to take us there. Yesterday, 3 of us braved the hot sun and went along Espana to look at buses and inquire on their schedules and fees. 

There are four (4) transport corporations that I know of that travels  to the province of Ilocos Norte, but only three (3) of them go straight to Pagudpud. These are:

RCJ Transit
1558 España, Sampaloc, Manila

Telephone (632) 7412994
Fare: Php 550 for a regular air-conditioned bus
Schedule: Departure Time 9:00 PM

Florida Bus Line
Lacson St (Gov. Forbes) corner Espana (near UST) in Manila
Telephone (632)7314473
Fare: Php 650 for a de luxe air-conditioned bus
Schedule: Departure Time 9:30 PM

Maria de Leon Bus Line
Corner Gelinos and Dapitan Streets, Sampaloc, Manila
Telephone Numbers: (632) 731 4907
Fare: Php 500 for a regular air-conditioned bus
Schedule: Departure Time 7:00 pm

Though Farinas buses goes to Ilocos, their trips are up to Laoag City only and we prefer to go straight to Pagudpud so we could maximize the day.

So the final verdict is that we will take the Florida De Luxe bus. It is comfortable especially in our case where 2 of our companions, Davy and Albeth are 6 feet tall and super sized. It’ll be a pity to see them sitting in a regular sized seat for 12 hours. 

We will pay our reservation on Tuesday since according to the person who mans the booth, reservations are done a day before the scheduled trip but since we are a large group (21 persons) we will reserve a day before the day before of our trip and hopefully they will allow this since our reason is valid (we are a large group traveling). We tried to ask if the Super De Luxe bus could go all the way to Pagudpud since we are already 21 persons (the super de luxe bus sits 29 persons) but the dispatcher said that it would be more expensive (Php 950) so we content our selves with the de luxe bus instead.

By the way, on the course of our search we stumbled upon the authentic ilocos empanada! Right here in Manila! The booth is located right in front of Farinas Bus Line along Lacson Street. It costs Php35 for a special empanada! Imagine we don’t have to travel all the way to Ilocos at all to get a bite of this tasty Ilocos delicacy. And though it is sold at Taco Ilocano booths in Glorietta Food Court and Market2x. The one at the bus station tastes better. Nothing really beats the original! I remember years ago, when we want to eat empanada, we have to ask whomever is coming from Ilocos to bring us one, what they will do is buy the empanada before boarding the bus and put it inside a container, then Ethel and I will reheat it and savor each bite because we don’t know when we can taste it again. How glad am I that it is available in Manila now.

I got a lot of help in preparing for this trip. And I really pray that everything will pay off. Because as one of my office mates tells me, he will kill me if not. I have put a lot of time in this and though I still don’t know if the trip will be a success. I’d like to thank Rocks, she and her friends just had a recent trip to Pagudpud and her journal about this trip was my constant companion in my preparation and her photos too are the reason I convinced my office mates to come. And then I am really lucky to have stumbled upon the blog of the famous (I’ve seen him on TV several times but it is only recently that I got a glimpse of his blog) Anton Diaz, his Pagudpud Travel Blog which contains really informative information about Pagudpud was helpful and most of the information I know came from his site. I really haven’t left a note on his site because I wanted to do it after the trip hoping that I be able to share some tips to the readers.

The countdown, 6 days to go and Pagudpud, here we come!!!

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3 Comments:

At 9:33 PM, Blogger Akinogal said...

See Please Here

 
At 5:41 PM, Blogger Rocks said...

Hope you had fun at Pagudpud sis! I am excited to see your pictures!! :)

 
At 8:43 PM, Blogger Salar said...

Attention! See Please Here

 

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