samal island, davao

looking back, it wasn’t exactly the best weekend to go to samal island. the cloudy skies coupled with slight rain showers somehow spoiled what would have been a two-day family affair — a get-together that had to be cut short for various reasons not limited to the weather conditions alone.

samal island

their website seemed flawless but flawless websites, like privacy on the internet, is a myth. villa amparo resort, while looking oh-so-colorful and oh-so-perfect on their pictures wasn’t exactly what i imagined it to be.

don’t get me wrong. it was a nice resort and all. not only was the manager pretty but she was very helpful and very accommodating as well. holding her little walkie-talkie to communicate with her staff and walking around barefoot on the lawn probably because she was too busy to bother putting on her manager shoes, i could tell she did a great job running the business of ensuring the guests’ comfort, even at the risk of contracting tetanus.

however, on the downside, the resort was simply too far from the city center. they said it was a 20-minute ride but 20 minutes wasn’t even enough to figure out the little sign posts and inconspicuous arrows they had to guide visitors in the right direction. it didn’t help that we had to find our way amidst rows of coconut trees and total isolation at nightfall.

villa amparo resort. 100 meters ahead.

100 meters ahead later, another sign post read, villa amparo resort. 100 meters ahead.

if local folklore is to be believed, i would say we were definitely enchanted, perhaps by a kapre, a dirty giant with a bad hair day who likes to hang out on top of big trees sturdy enough to support his weight, smoking cigar and playing little pranks on normal people because that’s just how he rolls. he probably enjoys watching people break his spell when they take their shirts off, revealing toned abdominal muscles and six-packs, before wearing it inside out.

but kapre or not, things got a little crazy when in the middle of this darkened nowhere, the car engine suddenly stopped and for 3 seconds, everyone was still. no kidding, that moment was so shake, rattle, and roll!

when it became clear that we were not in a horror movie and i was not manilyn reynes and ram was definitely not richard gomez, we piled out and started the brave act of pushing the car. laughing.

samal island

sadly, the resort didn’t have a shoreline, which was a total bummer, considering that we had kids with us. sure, they had safety nets but what good are safety nets when the waves from the open sea were so strong you could basically surf on them?

their outdoor furniture made up for it, though. it really is a nice place for adults to chill and relax and feel the wind blowing on their hair and faces while sipping cold beer and holding great conversations about aliens and doomsday. i could picture myself with the schizos there. but kids? it’s not exactly the kind of place for kids.

samal island

although you can put them anywhere and they’d still end up having a fantastic time — while on maximum supervision.

samal island

but they had a sand box, though. we couldn’t get aeva out of the sand box unless we had something really interesting to offer that was worthy of the time she would spend out of it.

samal island

like i said, we had to cut our 2-day stay short. on the afternoon when we left, it was raining. (and you know how rains and beaches never go quite well together.)

samal island

but before that, a little family photo. =)

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