Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Pathfinder | C-6 Last Part






The C-6 expedition was a test of skill: To prove that the once hardy explorer still resides within him. Living in an old house along a cranky alleyway as a kid, he learned to explore pathways leading to a sure exit. It doesn't matter what street he found himself in. Somehow, he would find again the narrow bend leading back to his home. What mattered was to briefly savor the open road after getting out of an almost suffocating passage. And then he would set course for another obscure alley until he finally charts the entire network of walkways.






There are no public transport routes that ply along the new road. Most vehicles still converge at the heavily congested Manuel L. Quezon, where slow-moving and insidious jeepneys hoard for passengers along the two-lane street. On the contrary, private vehicle owners who turn right at General Paulino Santos Avenue will find the highway all for themselves. C-6 remains a relatively unknown parkway whose hidden charms appeal only to the denizens of a lakeside city.

Built over land reclaimed from Laguna de Bay, the paved road may appear finished but its stretch spans only a handful of villages. Signs of civilization may have began to appear - like the street lamps installed by the government to illuminate the road. But online sources tell the electric bulbs don't work. A useless garnish perhaps. In a land where the very stones beneath the highway were unearthed from unnamed places, nobody questions why the light bulbs along the road never spark.






There were also nipa houses nearby. Built from light wood which floats when the lake swells after a heavy rain, these were the true settlers who learned to live alongside the waterlilies. The two-lane strip, whose sides remain surrounded by greens may appear pristine, but smoke rising from the burning piles of trash has already smudged the watery landscape.

Walking over the earth dike, the panoramic view unravels as the lakeshore begins to take shape. Across the Bai were the hills of Tanay, whose barren face hides behind the reclusive haze. Far beyond were the faint peaks of Sierra Madre. Diffused sunlight, whose rays gleam over the summit reminds everyone that a day has come to an end.

My journey is nearing completion. Alongside lovers, friends and families alighted in their motorcycles; joggers finishing a lap or two before heading home; locals living in their boats and water homes, whose rustic way of life has been forever tampered by the two-edged superhighway, we all gazed at the mother lake as darkness swallows the horizon. I may never know how much land I covered while my heavy bag, my digital camera and my iPod Mini clung over my body but it was worth every step.

Turning my head before crossing the road where the Hagonoy Floodgate controls the flow of a nearby creek, the rolling plains reveal the reward for undertaking such expedition.






The seemingly bleak void is suddenly filled with distant lights.

The next time I find myself there, I will most probably be inside a speeding car.





8 comments:

red the mod said...

A change of heart, perhaps? The roads always lead us to where our spirits want to be. Sometimes by a detour, others by a serendipitous short-cut. But always, to where we unknowingly needed to discover.

Choose your path, for your journey have already been written in the stars.

~Carrie~ said...

Joms the explorer. :)

Alterjon said...

just finished reading the last two parts - it's almost romantic, save perhaps that it reminds me I have always loathed travelling or wandering alone.:) for the lack of any other option, soon enough, i will have to learn walking alongside solitude.

i realized something because of these entries. thanks.

Mu[g]en said...

Alterjon:

I'm so used to walking alone, that sometimes I find it surreal when someone else walks beside me.

Many time, I get attached to the moment, knowing that seldom do I find people who enjoys very long walks.

Carrie:

Oo naman. Pati illegal drugs na-explore ko. Nyehehehe.

Red:

I cut my journey halfway because it was already getting dark. I chose not to know what lies ahead because of the path's uncertainty

Nimmy said...

tama si tita carrie. Explorer na explorer ang dating. hihi

Kiks said...

para akong nagbabasa ng lonely planet, except road trips ang moda.

miss u mugen. iba na ang trip mo?

Cio said...

Roads, perfect views, path, nature scent, exploring alone -- seem lonely to me.

BTW sarap takbuhan ang lugar na yan.

Mu[g]en said...

Cio:

Trust me its fun! Makikilala mo talaga kung sino ka tol. Hehehe.

Kiks:

Gusto ko yun, yung lonely planet sa discovery channel. Ganon ba ang kinalabasan ng entry? Hehehe.

Salamat naman at natagpuan mo ulit ako. Wala naman bago, ganon pa rin.

Nimmy:

Kasi may journey na nangyari kaya ako naging explore. Nyahahaha.