So I told my travel buddies of the side trip for Dapitan City that I was taking. None of them woke up early the next day to join me despite my probing the night before. Somehow, I found myself being the only early bird of the ZaNorte travel bunch. I was okay with that. I figured it would be one of those one-arm bandit move with a video slot machines. The ones that you just hope that the icons matches up for a win. For this though, it was holding a camera with one hand like a player would the pokies handle, and banking on the energy, and creativity out of me like it would the money in one’s pocket, and hope. Because even in games like these in life you hope for some jackpot — I was hoping to get a nice experience at this. So I told myself, this was a game of chance. Either I’ll enjoy the trip by myself, or regret having gone solo. 
My first stop was to visit Rizal’s Shrine. It was early at 6AM, too early that I was the first one in the compound. The caretakers had been very accommodating, and answered to my queries about anything that popped into my head. Seeing his clinics, house structures of which he used when he was residing there during his exile were a bit stage to comprehend. You know, that a national hero would have used them, and there you were going around, and about it.
I found the Mi Retiro Rock casting dark shadows on the pool it was at the center of. The light of day has  yet to come out, and there I was the first person who climb, and sat on it’s jagged surface for that day. It is also known as the Lovers Rock, the one that Jose Rizal sat on when he wrote the Mi Retiro poem.
Before I tracked down a recommended eat by the habal-habal driver I talked with, I stopped to check the historical landmark where Jose Rizal disembarked from the steamer “Cebu“. The Jose Rizal’s Disembarkation Site at Sta. Cruz beach was massive, and it stood fitting at on a blue skies backdrop.
I sat on the railings at the balcony facing the beach at this site. Which got me in into deep thoughts, as to why we ever go traveling solo. I do that sometimes, allow myself to get lost in thoughts when I’m on my own. I would try to challenge myself when I gamble my time on travels like these. The kind where I put the stakes up. I had my money on enjoying the exploration alone, and so far I was. If it had been this coming weekend, and not a few months ago, I would have gone out to watch Skyfall at the movie house with friends instead, and ogle  how slick James Bond would be. But it was not. And I was at Dapitan City looking pathetic alone in the large grounds that kept the memory of the country’s national hero alive. No pun intended. I should went there with someone that either had me laughing with humor sky-high, engaged in intellectual conversation, or bored me to death. Instead I was left to my thoughts that could sometimes be as dangerous as movie villains. So I sat there loosely wondered, and thought that Jose Rizal in his black trench coat must “enjoying death” as what James Bond in his  cool, calm, and collected self in black suit said in the movie! =)

You might like to read more of the Dapitan City series post coming up!
The Guy in Black Suit. No he’s not James Bond!

Q: I can do more damage on my laptop in my pyjamas than you can do in a year in the field.
James Bond: Then what do you need me for?
Q: Every now and then a trigger has to be pulled.
James Bond: Or not pulled. It’s hard to know which in your pyjamas. Skyfall (2012)