Thursday, September 26, 2013

Good Evening Baybay

We arrived at this city on the western shores of Leyte via the twisting mountain road from the eastern side. Nighttime. Nothing much to see or do. So we thought of heading straight towards food as we were already hungry, even if we munched many of those delicacies we bought from Burauen. The talk was now on what to eat while driver made his way towards the city center. While most of us are not first timers in Baybay, we were unsure if there was anything “really or rarely Baybay” that we should not miss for dinner. None surfaced and we were already at city center. The DTI representative with us said, we can try a restaurant he has eaten at by the water’s edge near the pier. So we went.

Haruuuy mano! It is after all, just an Andok’s Restaurant hahaha. It's new alright, but I don’t know what opened my mouth to literally say “wala bang iba”? Although I was busy with the others looking 360 degrees around. Why? Because, the place we were standing at seem to be something excitingly new in Baybay. We were at some kind of a “boulevard” by the waterfront – like it is in many other cities. Being near the pier (which is generally still the same), I realized this area was a community of informal settlers the few years back I was in Baybay. And when I got my bearings looking at the pier, I thought this was the turo-turo/videoke area but it was preferably a "no-go" place for visitors then.

I asked some of the young ‘lovers’ strolling by the breezy walk as to what this place was called. Hmm, one said “boulevard”, another said “plaza”, another said “pier”, one said "park" and yet another said “pantalan”. Ah whatever, I decided to just the same call this place "boulevard", since that’s how most of these kinds of street-cum-park by the sea are called.

Oh, we had to eat. And not wanting to spend a “special" night” in a fastfood with urban origins, guess what… we instead settled for the barbecues (pork, chicken, pusit and fish) plus puso at one of the little shacks by the side of the boulevard a few steps from Andoks. The Manang store-owner/manager even sent her son to literally run and pick 2 big pieces of fish from the nearby market so we can have sinugba! Would Andok’s crews do that? Never! And the Manang even went to the next shack (her competitor) to get us 1 more bottle of Coke as she had run out of them. Ah, now that was what we called ‘dinner in Baybay’. Buuurp!

Oh hey, I noticed the “puso” that we ate did not come in the usual diamond shape we see in Cebu and elsewhere! They look kind of flatter than usual. When I started ogling at those two pieces, the Manang educated me that there are at least 2 ways/styles of making the puso wrapper and she named them for me. But, oh my aging brain… I forgot what those styles are called hahaha!

As dinner winded (most of us did not use our utensils), the talk on where to stay overnight continued - even as some of us lined up at the makeshift lababo without running water hehe. Comparing what everyone had previously stayed at, the most ‘probable’ candidates were GV Hotel, Palermo and Novotel that we can see from where we were. Until the curious in me (since I haven’t seen it yet) said, “di ba meron din hotel inside ViSCA? Make the long story short… after dinner, we drove off the city going to Visayas State University with my fingers crossed hoping their hotel would be comparable if not better to Novotel’s hehe.

That’s next. Promise!

For a chronology of stories on this trip, please click the following:
01  02  03  04  05  06  07  08  09  10  11  12
13  14  15  16  17  18  19  20  21  22  23  24

ISSN: 2516340.25-0107


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