Tag Archives: port barton

Sweet Madeleines

30 Apr

Z up palm treeIt’s a wonderful thing, being a child. Who would have thought a palm tree could have provided pretty much an entire day’s amusement? Scaling it. Monkey-climbing it. Swinging from it. Jumping from it. Building fires under it…

I had planned to leave Port Barton today, which, given we hadn’t planned on being here in the first place, is understandable. My pocket pyromaniac, however, had other plans. And one of the joys of extending our trip was that I was able to say yes.

It was, of course, the palm tree wot done it. Dead-centre on the flawless crescent of white beach framed by viridian hills, it offers just about the perfect gradient. The slant is sufficiently slight to clamber up with ease, yet sufficiently steep for said activity to provide a challenge, with soft, white sand below it to cushion any fall.

It offers a pirate’s lookout over the tranquil bay, a place to watch the sheet lightning which has been flashing and crashing over the hills for much of the afternoon.

And, after a slight bout of homesickness yesterday, prompted in the most Proustian of fashions by the least Proustian of items – a packet of orange-flavoured chewy sweets — Z has been as happy as, well, as happy as a small boy up a palm tree.

Homesickness, I think, goes with the territory of long-term travel, whether as an individual or as a family. Continue reading

Maritime Woes

29 Apr

Fishing bangka with extra outrigging, off Palawan, the Philippines

You can find the bloody fish, though, can't you, chaps?

There are many things unique and wonderful about the Philippines. But the boatmen here are phenomenal in many of the wrong ways.

Right now, sat in utter serenity on a perfect crescent of a beach (me) and scaling a coconut palm (Z), the various unpleasantnesses of the morning feel like serendipity in action.

All the same, Filipino mariners are quite the phenomenon. I’ve traveled in heading for forty countries. This is the only nation I have ever visited where boats routinely deposit one in the wrong bloody place. Continue reading