Home Away From Home


Do you ever get that feeling that when you take your long vacation then suddenly you miss home? That happens habitually when you stay in your vacation spot for too long.
You begin to miss stuff at home like your Wifi speed, the Malls, your favorite Restaurants, and the sense that you’re being updated on all things.

Your vacation spot or Province of your selection, though blessed with natural resources and beautiful surroundings, probably doesn’t have the things that big cities like Manila have.
So these Metropolitan people are most of the time forced to go back to Manila, afraid of being left out if they stay longer in Rural places.

Well, that’s not the case in San Pablo, Laguna. It’s a 1st class city in the south of Luzon. With a population of less than 300,000 locals, the place is popularly known as the “City of Seven Lakes”! San Pablo has a cool climate owing to its location.
It is nestled in the foothills of 3 mountains: Mount Banahaw, Mount Makiling and the Sierra Madre Mountains. These mountains do not only provide attractions for the tourism industry (such as waterfalls) and sources of many forest-based products, but also serve as stewards for the clean air.

Whenever I have the chance, I drive for 2 hours to San Pablo, then rush to Laguna’s beatified nature consists of lakes, waterfalls, and lagoons.
Last time we were in San Pablo we went swimming in Pandin Lake, visited Nagcarlan’s Underground Cemetery, bought a few slippers in Liliw then took the heat off in Majajay’s Falls.

This year (exactly a week ago), we went back to San Pablo but decided to stay put in the house of my uncle and aunt (Tito and Tita), who happened to be a local in the city.
My Tito Norman is a Doctor and Tita Josie works basically at home. They have 2 daughters (1 working in Manila and 1 about to study in UPLB).
They lived in a property roughly around 700 square meters (outside of the norm in Manila).

In their home, the lovely couple have 3 adult dogs, 6 puppies, 4 male cats, 1 senior citizen chicken, and 1 parakeet. Plus they got fruit bearing trees like Rambutan, Kamias, Calamansi, Sili and lots and lots of herbs.
So this family have some farm & pet animals, generous trees & plants, and the lakes & waterfalls.

But inside of their house, they have a steady PLDT Wifi, Cable TV, and all of the food that you can buy in Manila. Their place in San Pablo also has a mall (SM San Pablo), trendy restaurants, reliable hospitals and respectable education institutions.

In short, my Tito and Tita have the best of both worlds. They are enjoying the simplicity of their province and the produce that their province gives them and also they have all the technology, mechanics, and knowledge like Metro Manila provides.

Their Weekday Rush hour is like a Easy Sunday driving in Manila. Their tap water is cold and it is safe to drink. They are abundant with Coconuts, Buko Pies and all of its by-products.
But most important of all, the people there are less stress than in Manila. A prerequisite for a Healthy and Happy Living!

We never really miss home when we were in San Pablo! So for all the vacationers out there. Try San Pablo. Relax and reconnect yourself, Get a deeper understanding of the locals, and experience activities that takes more time.

I can see from the faces of my Tito Norman & Tita Josie that they picked the perfect place and are living in probably one of the most happiest place in our country.
A place where you can call it… “Home”!

Written on June 1, 2018