Sunday, May 27, 2012

Baler . . . A Little Bit of Paradise . . . .

April 21 & 22, 2012

We have been wanting to go to Baler, a town by the ocean, since we got to the mission.  The mission president told us we could go just to let him know when . . . So we decided that the weekend of April 21st would be best.  The president had interviews that weekend as well as another meeting. The APs offered to show us a couple of fun places.  And Sister Martino was available in the afternoon to go with us.   It was also nice to go and relax after the news of Charlie's wedding plans (See previous post,)

We drove the 5 hours to get there.  It was  a beautiful drive.  We had been told that you would see many homes like in the Three Little Pig story . . . house of straw, house of sticks and houses of brick.  We saw many different houses that fit this children story.  

We had lunch down by the beach and watched some people surfing.  Anyone that knows me well knows that you can give me the clear water, sand and a sunny day anytime! . . .  I was enjoying just being close to the ocean again!!

We spent the night and attended church the next morning before heading back home.  It was a long drive, but we are so glad we had the opportunity to visit this lovely beach community!   Enjoy the pictures below . . .
Bags of rice waiting to be spread on the road to dry
Rice drying on the road- I will never cook rice with out washing it first!!
Dumping the bags of rice on the road
Rice on the road as far back as you can see
Loved this little girl on a peddle trike
Catholic Church in Rizal
Arriving in the province of Aurora where Baler is located
Crossing the reservoir on a one lane road.  There is no place to pull out and you can't really see the entire distance of the road.  You just hope no one is coming the other way when you start across it.  On one side is the water . . . .
On the other side is the jungle!  It was breath taking!
This house is next to the road that they are working on.  I felt sorry for the occupants because of all of the dust!
The dirt portion of the road - I felt like I was at Joe's Valley Utah!  We had heard that the road is hard to get over in a car and there were some places that we agreed with that statement.
More road work . . . Is Baler really worth this??
Foliage along the road ~ so green and beautiful!
Green all around us!
In front of the Baler Chapel - We made it!!
This is one of the 'rakes' that they use to spread rice and then continue to move it around while it is drying in the sun on the pavement
Watching the waves while we had lunch in Baler!
This car belonged to Douglas MacArthur while he was here in the Philippines during WWII.  It is displayed in this glass enclosure at the baler Museum
Baler Museum
Wade admiring the bell in the museum . . .
Clothing worn by the early settlers of Baler
The new money being used in the Philippines.  Their money is so colorful!!

Wade took this picture of me peering through the hole in this tree in front of the museum. (Sorry for the blurry picture . . . he doesn't use my camera often enough!!)
This tree was so interesting with the knobs growing on it
Elder Jewkes and me with the odd tree behind us
On the way to the beaches, we passed this monument.  It represents the Tsunami that hit Baler many years ago and shows the people trying to get to higher ground before being washed away.  From what I understand, there were many people, including families, who lost their lives in that Tsunami.
Elder Ilayat, Elder Leedom and Sister Martino on 'higher ground'
This is across the street from the monument.  There are monkeys in those trees!
A closer look at the monkeys.  They are on chains so they can't get away
We passed this dock where this ship was anchored.  I'm not sure if it is in use.
Elder Jewkes in front of the ship.  Look to the left of the picture and you can see a ship that was washed ashore.

Elder Ilyat, me, Sister Martino and Elder Leedom.  They are the Assistants who gave a guided tour of this part of Baler.  (Ship wreck to the right in this picture.)
One of the waterfalls along the road.  The beach and ocean are on the other side of the road.
Some kids playing in the waterfall.
Elder Leedom watching as Sister Martino comes back down from the waterfall.  A bystander was helping as well.
Elder Ilayat offering assistance

This is where the water crosses the road - the water fall is to the left
We drove up the side of the mountain to this radio tower.  They let us go up on top and the view was beautiful!!!
This cove was another destination on this day.  This is the view from the radio tower.
Elder Ilayat, Sister Martino, Elder Jewkes and Elder Leedom
Sister and Elder Jewkes with the ocean behind us

Another view of the bay will visit
Sisters Martino and Jewkes on top of the radio tower
The road leading down to the bay and the white sand beach
Walking across a bridge to see this . . .
In the middle of the jungle is this Artist Village.  They are still in the process of building this.  What a modern piece of architecture in the jungle!
Information about the new Artists Village
Sister Martino coming back across the bridge with the water flowing behind her
We took our shoes off to walk in the sand and look for sea shells.  The sand felt so good!!!
Elder Jewkes getting ready to take a little nap on the beach
Not sure what kind of fruit this is, but it looked like an upside down pineapple growing from a tree
Sunset on the beach as we drove back to town
This sign was on the door of the restaurant we ate at.  Elder Jewkes like the 'college level' requirement.

 Pictures from day two on next posting . . . . .

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