I could not remember the first time I ever stepped a foot in Bicol. All I remember was when I was four, my mom woke me up early in the morning, put me in a yellow dress with frills, and she told me we were going to ride the train. On the long train ride, I could not remember the passing scenery. All I knew was that I was sleeping most of the time and that my view was limited to the metal partition in front of our seat.
Then my next earliest memory about Bicol was being in Albay with all my siblings and my mom. We were enjoying a meal in Legazpi City al fresco overlooking the cityscape. I could not remember the meal or remember anything fascinating about the city. During that meal, I remember we were planning to go to the peak of Mt. Mayon. After talking to my mom, she told me that we got onto a helicopter and saw the peak from the craft. The closest memory of Mt. Mayon for me was when we visited Nayong Pilipino (for the nth time) and I went up the model of Mt. Mayon and sat at the peak with my sisters while laughing the whole time.
Through the years, I never really had the opportunity to go to Bicol. Neither did I have the inclination until I decided that for my 25th birthday, I would visit Donsol and swim with the whalesharks. Then I met up with my good friend Mylce and Ninyah to go to Calaguas Island where we enjoyed the entire island in isolation. No cellphone reception, no internet, no electricity.
Then, I came back to Bicol after a few months and I came to explore Lake Buhi–another new experience. I wonder what will happen in my next visit to Bicol?