Monday, December 22, 2014

You can see the heart of a nation through the eyes of their children

This will be framed in my house someday
Day 2 of Secret Lang Honeymoon Part 2 trip is what we are going to call: Filipino Children Day. 

We started the day on our surf boards and after lunch we loaded up our van and headed to our next destination: 100 Islands. 

Halfway through the drive we pulled off at a gas station for a bathroom break and a bunch of kids were playing in the neighborhood. As we were getting back in the car we were high fiving them and being our usual outgoing selves when it comes to kids. They're just so cute and those eyes and smiles when they look up at you are just irresistible. 

As we were piling back in the van we were passing around hand sanitizer and I had a group of kids immediately run up to me for high fives. The hand sanitizer had not quite set in yet and rubbed off on their hands, something they had never really felt before I'm sure. 

Their reaction was priceless, their faces lit up and they just kept saying, "It's coooool, it's coooool" over and over. I thought this was adorably cute and decided to add hand motions and a dance to it which they repeated with glee.

For the duration of the rest of the trip, everything that was 'cool', was now associated with a dance and a hand motion sing song voice. 

Children have the tendency to do that, turn the simplest of matters, give them life and put a song to it. Life is much happier when you're dancing and singing. Filipino children may not have a lot, all the children we became best friends with are running around either barefoot or in flip flops with oversized t-shirts. But they do have the gift of optimism and fun. 

One look in their genuine eyes and one shared smile is all you need to start building a friendship.

A four hour car ride later we pulled into the town of where we would be staying. By this time the sun had set and it was night time. As we were passing through the town we noticed a local basketball game was taking place under the lights.
Basketball under the christmas lights
 Being that it was Christmas time the entire surrounding of the court was decorated with beautiful colorful lights, calling to us. On a whim we decided to stop and check out what a typical Tuesday night held for the locals of this small Filipino town. 

Throughout the next few hours we went from becoming spectators of a basketball game, to being time out entertainment, to making new friends with little Filipinos and starting spontaneous dance parties. 
Who's happier? It's a draw

Deciding if we want to warm up to each other

Making new friends

We're not very good at staying on the side lines, put us in coach! 
We carry a jam box around with us, and in this little box, once the play button is pressed, a party can be started anywhere. And we all know how much Filipinos love music; any excuse to dance is a good one. 

Shortly the basketball game, why we originally stopped, was no longer the center of entertainment. We had made new friends and I'm not sure who was having more fun. 

I had brought my big Canon camera out and had a blast capturing all of the fun that we were having. And the kids absolutely loved having their picture taken and then running over to see the play back on the camera. It became a fun game.
The Filipino "Isa pa"

"show me show me!"

Da boys


After we warmed up to each other and had successfully attracted all of the children at the basketball game to our crew, the real fun began. 

Everyone picked a dance partner

The dance circles began

And then the lessons began

We tried to match it, but these boys had skills

Look at those moves

The dance parties then turned into group singing and we came across an idea that we knew everyone would love; it didn't matter which language you spoke. 
Think Disney...
Everyone was in to it...

The excitement was real

The movie 'Frozen' is a personal favorite and it just warmed my heart that it was for the Filipinos too, I think they knew more words than I did and they belted out each one from the bottom of their little Filipino hearts. 

After saying goodbye to our new found friends we continued on to find our hotel for the night where the dancing and singing didn't die down. The little kids had passed their lively spirit into our hearts.

Who knows what Day 3 would hold for us all, each day so far was already full of unplanned spontaneous events. 

What was behind door number 3.. only greatness I can tell you. Anything that starts with exploring 100 islands has to be fun. You have 100 chances to find fun, and we were pretty good at that. 

Hammock swinging and hanging out with our idol po's.

1 comment:

  1. My heart is overflowing w/emotions as I am reading your blog. Your story & your pictures made me realize how much I miss and love my people, my Philippines! I am trembling as I type & tears are flowing down my face in shame that it took a tourist to remind me of who I am & where I came from. Thank you, Sarah! I owe you!