So I needed some alone time. To be by myself. To get some peace and quiet. I wanted a quick getaway from all the hustle in the office, from all the blunders I have been through lately. Take just a breather and be far from the noisy city.
I took a day off from work on a Friday and went to Subic in Zambales, a province just outside of Metro Manila. The bus ride went for 4 hours, but could have been shorter if I had taken a private ride.
About 4 years ago, two of my friends and I spontaneously agreed to go for a swim in Subic right after our visit to the wake of our former colleague in the nearby province of Bataan. In my friend’s car while we were about to leave the wake, we all just decided that why not go for a quick getaway? Life is short. Be spontaneous. We had no plans, no reservations, no extra clothes or toiletries. We proceeded to SM Olongapo to buy stuff and then just drove off to Baloy Beach to find a resort. We were lucky to find a cheap vacant room at Johan’s Dive and Beach Resort and stayed there until the next day.
So when I thought of this much needed quick getaway, that quiet resort in Subic immediately popped in my head. This time, I had a reservation for 3 days.
La Dolce Far Niente.
I had no itinerary. Unlike my previous trips where there were places I had to visit and activities I wanted to experience, this time, I decided I wanted to be away and do nothing. I just wanted to sit my ass quietly at the beach, stare at the sea and maybe do something when I feel like doing something. I brought a book with me just in case I would feel like reading and I did, but just for short while. Three days in there and I didn’t even finish half of the book. Haha
Click photo to enlarge
Johan’s is a resort located in Baloy Beach, Subic, Zambales. Owned by a Belgian national and his Filipina wife, it is frequented by foreigners, mostly divers who flock to Subic to explore ship wrecks. Their accommodations start at P700 per night for two persons. One thing about Johan’s that stuck with me for years is that their food was magnificent.
And the food was good indeed!
“My alone time is for your safety.” lol
Work in the media is exhausting; time consuming with so much pressure and stress. It is fun and exciting, yes, but it can really be draining most of the time. You live and breathe to compete; every waking day is a competition. Your work should be better than that of the other team in your show, the other shows in your company and the shows of rival networks. You even compete with yourself; you must outdo yourself from your previous episode and aspire to always be better and better. Our work is validated by feedback from our bosses, show sponsors and audience. With the onset of social media, it is way too fast and easy to get feedback from the general public. They can be sweet, but mean most of the time. Everyone has a say in this job and the Internet made our work even more noisy and complicated.
I needed to get away from all of it for a while. I just had to shut it all down and reset so I can function well again.
To be by myself and be myself felt great actually.
My brain was clear and I felt so relaxed. I did not have to think deeply. There was no need to come up with witty stuff for a conversation with anyone or show anyone how updated I was with current events. All I had were a few quick conversations with the waitresses and receptionists.
There was no need to dress up or wear make up and be presentable, I just hung out at the beach with simple clothes, unruly hair and oily, sunblock drenched face. With not a care in the world if I looked homeless, I felt so free.
“Alone time is when I distance myself from the voices of the world so I can hear my own.” – Oprah
Baloy Beach early morning
I have no deep, philosophical realizations in this trip haha but I did find out though that
- Being alone doesn’t make you lonely and realized you can actually enjoy time without anyone’s company.
- Being by yourself allows you to come up with new insights and helps you see things from a new perspective.
- Sure you can enjoy your alone time at the comforts of your home, but being at the beach and close to nature felt wonderful for me. I find that there’s really something about the sea that seems to make everything okay. Also, the thought of being away from the city gave me the feeling that I’m leaving behind (for a while) all the chaos and pressures.
- Going on a trip, by yourself enables you to experience that journey through your own eyes. I enjoy travelling with friends of course, but you’d always end up doing what majority wants. Being alone gives you the freedom to decide what you want to do with your all of your time.
- Getting rid of all distractions and other people’s opinion for a given period clears your head
- Listening to your thoughts, no responsibilities, deadlines or a specific set of task you need to do at a given time – truly wonderful for me!
Johan’s Beach and Dive Resort