Surfing and Music. Two of my interests in life. And combining them both in one looooong weekend in La Union was definitely a good idea.
The festival celebration started for me and Kash when we saw my good fried JP at Prive last Oct 31st. I informed him that we wanted to head to La Union for the festival but did not have any plans on how to get there. He invited us to ride with him on Nov 1st for he was leaving at 4pm in order to get to the festival just in time. Without any reservations for a place to stay in for the festival, Kash and I packed our bags and went to Jp’s house and the 3 of us headed to La Union saying adieu to the majestic sunset of Manila visible on the horizon.
heading to JP’s house with Berto
Day 1: A flat tire, High-end Petron, Meeting Bogart D Explorer and Dancing the Night Away.
Around 8:30 pm, when we were in Urdaneta, Pangasinan, we hit a bump on the road. This did not however dampen our mood. It even pumped up our energy because we can see that the moon was bright and heard that the surf was good and people were starting to party. After hitting the High-end Petron to grab a few bites to eat for me and an imported beer for JP, we finally got to La Union at 12 midnight.
As soon as we got to the Surfer’s Inn (where JP was staying), we were introduced to the people in the apartment. He then introduced us to this guy with a straw fedora and he said “that’s Bogart D Explorer.” We then headed to the beach where JP introduced us to a few of his friends (including the owner of the Bamboo bikes that you see at the Fort) then Kash and I became “part of the band.” The bands that we were able to watch was 6 Cycle Mind but everyone started to party when Sandwich went on stage. The ones that we met who came from Legazpi, Albay dance the night away. Tanduay Ice and Manila Beer became the booze of choice inside the concert grounds. A beachball was thrown around in the crowd. Every one was wild until the DJ finished playing his set. At 3am, my last dose of energy slipped away and we crashed on the sofa of JP’s apartment for the night. Crashed to recharge after a long drive and a very loooong weekend.
Day 2: Welcome to the Circle Hostel. Kash’s Surf lesson on Berto, Reggae night, The Captain and Endless Tanduay.
Day 2 started when we transferred to The Circle Hostel, a lodge which is a 5 minute walk from the beach front. After settling down at the Circle and having a hearty breakfast at San Juan Surf Resort, Kash and I decided to just stare at the ocean with a few couple bottles of beer and buko juice for her. I saw a few friends who just arrived that morning and invited them for a few drinks. When the sun stopped beating down on our necks, Kash decided to change into her surf gear, I got my surfboard at JP’s, rented a leash from Lemon (one of the Local surfers in La Union) and hired a surf instructor for Kash.
I met up with my friend Maita, whom I agreed to meet up with during the festival while Kash was out learning how to surf. After a few wipeouts, photographs of the sunset and introducing ourselves to some of the locals in La Union, we headed back to the Hostel to change for the music fest.
trying to take a siesta at the hostel
After dinner and a quick siesta, we texted one of our new found friends from the US, Jay Bird, to meet up with us outside the concert grounds. We weren’t allowed to enter since we didn’t want to purchase a ticket anymore so we decided to stay outside, finished the bottle of Captain Morgan and bought a bottle of Tanduay, Red Horse, Coke and eat at the ihaw-ihaw stand located near the entrance. Feasting on grilled dried squid, isaw, hotdog, kilawin and bbq and drinking the mixed Tanduay and Coke in liter bottles, we listened and danced to the music of Indio-I, Taken by Cars and Tropical Depression with our new found friends: Francis, Rafu, Erik, Leo, Jay Bird, Mitch, Megan and Kaylee.
Day 3: Beginner’s Longboard Surfing Competition, Body surfing and the Project X House party.
watching the Beginner’s Longboard Competition
Kiddo and his family being interviewed by GMA
Kash and I woke up at around 7 am because I overheard that the Beginner’s Longboard Competition was about to start at the beach. Even though hung over from the partying the night before, Kash and I headed to the beach front to watch the first round of the competition. We cheered for the one’s who were competing. At lunch time, we headed to the Sea Nymph Cafe to have lunch because we hear the service time would take up to an hour. JP met with us for lunch and we talked about what happened the night before. After lunch, we headed back to the hostel so that I can take a nap before surfing and for JP to chat with the people there.
At 3 pm, Kash and I decided to go back to the beach to surf. Again, I had to borrow a leash for my board from one of the locals that we met from the night before. I saw Megan who was heading up to The Point and she invited me to surf with them, but I was too intimidated by the waves and just decided to just stay at the beach front.
Because we decided to stay at the beach, Kash expressed her interest to try surfing without an instructor. So I took off the leash and acted out as a coach for her, telling her when to paddle and when to stand up. How to hold the board properly against the crash of the white water and how to start paddling out. While watching her (and deciding that she can fend for herself) I saw Vic and we decided to just body surf in an area where there were no surfers (but still keeping Kash in our sight, just in case she needed help) While we were out in the open, we can hear Franco and Wolfgang sound checking for the night’s concert. Their voices were a good backdrop to the waves crashing and to the sun setting in the horizon. Time to bid good bye to the day and hello to one hell of a crazy night.
Around 9pm, I left Kash sleeping at the hostel and I headed back to the beach to watch the concert. I met Jay to get my tickets from him and I was just there in time to hear Wolfgang perform. I was so pumped up to hear them perform again and I was looking forward to hearing Franco and Urbandub as well. With beer in hand, I swayed to their music and rocked out through out the concert.
After the concert, I met up with Kash at Kahuna to have the most amazing time during the festival. All of the people that we met were there. When I mean everyone, I mean EVERYONE. (yes, I even shook the hand of Franco) The house party was fun for it became the place of the after party for the end of the festival. Everyone talked to everyone, pushing people in the pool.. Everyone were just having fun.
at Kahuna, with everyone ( I was thrown in the pool twice, I think)
That night at Kahuna was definitely the icing on cake.
Day 4: Last Day at La Union
After partying for 4 straight days, we decided to be mellow during our last day at the beach. We woke up at 8 am and headed to drop off some of JP’s stuff and to look for my cellphone (which was with Jay) and the hat that I was wearing the night before (which luckily was still in Kahuna)
We decided to mellow out at Sea Nymph to nurse my major hangover with hot noodles (whoever invented noodles should be given an award) and to chat with a few friends we made at the hostel. Before the afternoon ended, we again bumped into Vic and he decided to join us. We talked about their music and other things under the sun.
By 6 pm, I was dreading to pack my bags and to go back to Manila. I was hesitant to leave the sound of the crashing waves behind and to go back to the crazy stir of things in the city. But the fantasy had to end. We bid good bye to La Union at 8pm, full of memories with new found friends.
True enough, the sun, the sea and the surf bring people closer together. Imagine, the trip started with just Kash and I formulating an idea to head to La Union for the festival and then we met JP in Prive and we ended up in La Union and meeting a lot of new people. That 4 day trip was a refresher from the hustle and bustle of the city and it sent positive vibrations to every bone in my body that until now, I am still having a major withdrawal from this event.
Who would’ve think to mix Surf and Music together? Kudos to the people of Aloha Boardsports and Manila Surfer’s Association for pulling this massive event and brought people together. Surfer or not, it gave everyone a vacation/halloween party to remember. 🙂
with our new found friend, Megan
**Again, Kash, thank you for letting me grab most of your photos for this blog. hope you enjoyed the trip. Let’s do Zambapalooza this December. And thanks to JP, Jay Bird, Mitch, Megan, Kaylee, Francis, Leo, Erik, Rafu, Vic, Paw, Kat, Peds, Jay, JM, Kiddo, Ziggie, Raf, Stef, Christian… and to anyone I forgot to mention, for letting us hang out with you and enjoy this vacation* 🙂