I’ve been to Boracay a couple of times before, and each time I leave I always make a mental note to come back as soon as I can. Yet, for some weird reason I have never run out of excuses to delay (and eventually cancel) those travel plans.
As I was preparing for my third visit to this world-famous island, I began to realize — and finally admit to myself — that my reluctance is somehow predicated on the fact that I did not want to get too familiar with the place by coming here too often. I wanted to retain some of that sense of delight and discovery when I first beheld its white sandy beaches. If I had given in to my wishes and came as often as I wanted, I think Boracay would have quickly lost its appeal to me.
As we prepared to board the ferry boat to the island (from Caticlan), I started to feel better. Yes. I’m glad I came back. It was definitely high time I renewed acquaintance with Boracay. I was surprised to note that I actually missed the place — heck, even the sea air felt like a welcome nudge.
Another reason that made this trip a bit more special was that this time the whole family was coming. This was going to be a meaningful family get-together, a chance to reestablish and strengthen our bonds. We lost our father to cancer 4 years ago, and his absence has been sorely felt since then. Things have been so different without him. My mother, one of the most pragmatic people I know, has been uncharacteristically sentimental lately and is starting to show her age (lost weight and forgetfulness; we’re keeping our fingers crossed that she’ll stay with us for a long time). However, she is rather fond of this place because she has had many happy memories here with my father, siblings, and her grandkids.