Jun 19, 2011
On the Road to Lubuagan, Kalinga
Off for Lubuagan
Not wanting to be left by the jeep, I up and about early for my breakfast and was on top of the jeep bound for Lubuagan. I left Francis, my guide, at Tinglayan and I was back being on my own. Paying him P2k for the 2 days was a big dent on the budget, but there was no other way around it.
At this point, you would think the scenery, being the same thing would be old. But not really. It still engaged me as I took pictures to my heart's delight with every excuse I could get for pressing the shutter. I also had my GPS with me where I took coordinates of the different barangays we passed through.
The road was a mix of rough and narrow, to wide and paved. But the entire time, we were following the meandering contour of the Chico River heading north. After an hour fifteen minutes, we finally arrived at Lubuagan. Like Tinglayan, Lubuagan is another municipality of Kalinga that serves as hub to all the surrounding villages. It's more developed than Tinglayan with a well defined plaza and central poblacion.
It was mostly drizzling. I checked-in at the only lodging place, Pines Inn and Restaurant for a modest room with its own washroom, for only P250/night. The owner/manager was pleasant and accommodating.
New Face on the Block
Not having anything to do, I roamed around the poblacion area, curious about things I could discover. The streets were mostly empty so there wasn't much chance for conversation with the locals. The ones that were out were curious about the new face walking up their streets.
In the afternoon, I asked around for the house of Mr. Bawer. Since my guide spoke of him highly, I thought I'd check him out. I was taken to a quaint and artistic house. He cordially greeted me, a little curious about what my business in Lubuagan could possibly be. I thought I'd just stay for a few minutes, but our conversation deepened into the underlying issues that Kalinga is now facing - the pressure of change from the outside and how the region should accommodate that change. Mr. Bawer didn't exactly tell me who he was in the community, but by the way he carried the weight of responsibility for the region, and his vision for the future of Kalinga, I speculated he is one of the influential community leaders deferred to by the locals. He is a serious and intelligent man who didn't seem to have the time for non-pressing matters. I left Lubuagan early the following day still lingering about the long and introspective conversation I had with Mr. Bawer.
Off to Balbalan
I took the early jeep the following day to catch another jeep in Tomiangan going to my next destination, Balbalan.
- At the Tinglayan Poblacion, board the 8:00 am jeep bound for Lubuagan. P40, 1 hour 15 mins.
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