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Biyahe na Maii-VIGAN at Walang Kapagod-PAGUDPOD PDF Print E-mail
Written by Engr. Genevieve G. Estrañero   
Wednesday, 03 April 2013 02:16

Every summer, since 2005, Colegio San Agustin –Biñan never missed to celebrate this season by treating its personnel to summer outing. Boracay, Coron, Cebu, Bohol, and Puerto Princesa were among the places we have explored. This summer 2013 is another hit and sure heat trip. The sun of Ilocos fell on Biñan and it felt so good!

The CSA-Bñ personnel embarked on a 4-day tour held last March 23-26, 2013. It was packed with 189 faculty and staff as well as priests administrators thus accommodating four buses. The school’s institutional summer outing was not just for fun as explained by Fr. Arnel Antonio S. Dizon, OSA, Director of Human Resource Development Office who spearheaded the activity, but also fulfilling its three-fold goal of camaraderie, relaxation, and exposure. However, more than the fun dimension is the essence of the journey which was captured by the theme: “Go forth, go within: Augustinians journey for Truth.”


The group left CSA-Bñ in the evening of March 23 and greeted the morning sun at Vigan City. The first itinerary was spent touring the city and lingering at the beautiful Heritage Village where each one had either tasted the local delicacies such as bagnet or bought local products. Of course the picture taking along the heritage roads was unending until all tour participants were called suggesting the need to move on to their next destination.

Lunch was served at the nature-inspired Hidden Garden Restaurant. Braving the afternoon heat, the group proceeded to Marcos Mausoleum and Paoay Church. Just before the sun set, the group was billeted at Plaza del Norte Hotel where the Eucharistic celebration of the Palm Sunday was held. The warm water of the hotel’s swimming pool invited some personnel to swim until midnight. Others opted to spend the night at the cozy hall of the bar and felt the heat of wine while listening to music beats. Some crowds seemed like having a meeting while seated in circles but because of their laughters, bantering, and drinking this justified that they were in fun mode. To top it all, the zzz group renewed their powers as they rest in their respective lodges.

The second day of the tour started with a Holy Mass. The group was back on the road again headed towards the haunting Sand Dunes experience. Almost everyone tried the 4 x 4 ride of a lifetime where the ups-downs and sway-bumps of the “desert” made the ride breath-taking. Perhaps, this explains why life is an exciting journey of bumps and irregularities. The sun was up then but so were our screaming!

The energy cooled down but definitely not the spirit as what followed was the visit to the Malacañang of the North. Next was the most “heat-but-not-mind” part of the tour – the amazing Bangui windmill. The scorching heat did not stop everyone to pose between huge windmill posts not to mention the strong humid air blowing from the sea. Perhaps, the thought of admiring how this project would have brought energy to the local was overwhelming. The second day wrapped up with another blast experience as the group carefully went down and up the Bantay Abot Cave.

At last, the journey has reached its “end” - Pagudpod! The group settled at Hannah Beach Resort where the contour of the place made the landscape so attractive. After dinner, a program was prepared where an inspiring speech of Rev. Fr. Andrew T. Batayola , OSA, the school President marked the essence of the journey. Fr. Batayola, OSA elaborated about the theme and emphasized that this journey was both inside and out. According to him, while Truth could be revealed through the physical creation of God, deeper Truth is discovered inside of us. He then invited everyone to search within as the going forth continued.

The showdown of videoke talents capped the last night. Rather than the usual videoke contest, that of CSA-Bñ was more creative but nervous breaking. Names were drawn in random as well as songs were chosen by chance. So that whether you’ve got the talent or not you have to grab the microphone and read/sing the lines. One would not be humiliated if he or she did not have the voice nor known the song. The audience sang along. What the contestants need, according to the judges, were right attitude and a bit of projection. Cash prizes were given to the winners.

The final day has come and the peak of the experience has yet to be revealed –  capturing the longest zipline in Asia! Personnel queued as they conquer their fears to seize the one minute and ten seconds zipline ride from one mountain to another crossing the sea waters in between. It was the moment of Truth. While zipping the line using kinetic energy alone, one gets to fly and marvel the creation from the bird’s eye view. It was then that one could say: the journey was complete.

While on our way back home on the fourth day, the fun mode just kept on going. We made several stops to some interesting tourist spots such as Patapat Viaduct, Kapurpuran Rock Formation and Pasuquin Refined Salt Factory. Of course, we did not fail to donate our money to the locals by patronizing their products. The bus loads may have doubled but the spirit kept them light. Yes! Indeed, we have journeyed inside and out.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 April 2013 03:55