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Sarangani Provincial Capitol
Part 3 of a series.
After claiming my check-in baggage from the baggage carousel at the General Santos City Airport, I then proceeded to get a cab to bring me to Hotel Dolores where Eric and I would be staying for the night. The normal asking rate for a taxi from the airport to the city proper is between P200-P300. It is 30-45 minutes away from the airport, depending on the traffic situation.
Upon arrival at the hotel, Eric informed me that Marc, who’s supposedly joining us on our 4-day tour, failed to wake up on time and missed his flight from Iloilo. Awww, how sad, but oh well, we had to go on with our trip. So, I settled my things at our hotel room then we immediately went out for a quick lunch. From the hotel, we took a tricycle to KCC Mall. The mall is more or less 2 kilometers away, so we only paid P7 each. Where else could you eat fast but in a fast food outlet? So, we chose to eat at McDonald’s.
After lunch, we took another tricycle to the Lagao Public Transport Terminal, the jump-off point for our destination that afternoon, Glan, Sarangani. There were a lot of jeepneys and vans bound for Glan just waiting to be filled but there were motorcycles (locally known as “habal-habal”) waiting to be hired as well. I could have easily and quickly opted for either the jeepney or the van but Eric thought that taking a motorcycle to the countryside would be thrilling and exciting. I’ve never ridden a motorcycle, ever!, so it took me quite some time to decide but being someone who likes to try something new when no one’s watching, I thought, why not? But still, I had to rethink and rethink. On one side, hey, I’m not at home, I can do everything I want, but on the other hand, what if we meet an accident (God forbid) along the way? How will I explain it to my parents? Ultimately though, the adventurous me said yes to the habal-habal challenge and just put it as “Thy will be done”! So, we took the habal-habal and off we go to Sarangani but before we could go all the way, we had to stop by a gasoline station. We had to get off the motorcycle for it to be refilled and as I disembarked, I didn’t notice that my right leg was already touching the motorcycle’s exhaust pipe. OUCH! That was so hot! But I didn’t mind it (MISFORTUNE #1). Duh, you could call me “tanga” but yeah, I was really “tanga”, it was my first time to ride a motorcycle.
Sarangani Provincial Capitol
Before we went straight to Gumasa Beach, we decided to drop by Sarangani’s Provincial Capitol in the capital, Alabel. Sarangani is the 29th province I’ve visited! Another one down, much more to go!
As we approached the area, I was pleasantly surprised by the wideness of the area covered by the Capitol complex! It’s actually a very large area, with pine trees and landscaped gardens all over the place. To add to that, the whole complex is gated with security personnel at the entrances.
The Sarangani Provincial Capitol is a massive building and it is, in my opinion, one of the grandest Provincial Capitol buildings in the country. I’ve seen several photos of the Capitol in the past but it looks much, much better in person.
Anyway, Eric and I were just supposed to drop by for a few minutes to take some photos but unfortunately, our habal-habal was caught with a flat tire upon our entry to the Capitol grounds! Gaah! So our habal-habal driver had to scramble to the nearest place where he could have the tires vulcanized. It was already 12:30 in the afternoon when Manong Driver left and promised to be back the soonest possible time but 30 minutes later, there was still no sign of him. We just recalled that we already paid Manong in full, so he might have thought of leaving us stranded there as he already has his “talent fee”. But since the weather was quite cooperative with some clouds covering the scorching noontime sun, we decided to wait a few more minutes and while waiting, we took more shots and I applied lotion to my exhaust pipe burn as an initial remedy. Thankfully, Manong Driver indeed came back, about an hour later!
As soon as Manong Driver parked in front of us, we hurriedly rode the habal-habal so we could recoup some of our lost minutes! Our roadtrip to Glan, Sarangani resumes… EXCITING!
(…to be continued)