Finding Peace in Boracay

Initially, I didn’t want any of my belongings to be stolen while I left things unattended on the beach. That’s why I went out with nothing but a bit of cash, a towel, and my kindle. That was day 1. Today was day 2. I went out with nothing but the clothes on my body and a towel. It felt great going out with nothing on me. Usually, I would make sure I had my wallet, phone, bag etc. etc. etc. Today eliminated that kind of stress. I never knew what time it was; I just judged it by the sun (i.e. day and night). I was never constantly searching for wifi in case I had some notification that was unimportant. I wasn’t staring at my phone, flipping through things that weren’t about the present. It was just me and the island.

Yesterday was great. A guy working at the hotel suggested a short walk down the main strip to find a section of the beach that was quieter. The reason being was that the place used to be a resort but it was under construction to build a new resort. He didn’t seem too happy about the construction, commenting that the whole island is bankrupt but they’re still building new places. I found it, and stayed there just reading and jumping into the sea. Typical day at the beach.

I woke up today and saw that it was quite cloudy. This didn’t bother me too much as I had the whole day at the beach yesterday, sun blazing. I continued to write my book and bought some snacks from the local store to keep me going. The Special Mamon Strawberry cakes were particularly good. So was the chocolate milk – there seems to be plenty of it in The Philippines. On Facebook, I saw that someone I had done shows with in the past was in a major theatre show in London. As happy as I was to see that, I was also a little saddened. I did a lot of acting work back in England before moving to Japan, and wasn’t too shabby. I was accepted into NYT on my second try and essentially, if I had stayed in London, I might’ve pursued this route as a career option. That was almost 4 years ago. I never wanted to stop acting but it was just the route I picked – moving to Japan. I didn’t expect to stay so long but here I am. I was talking to a friend who lives in Japan about this – well, he messaged me first and we got to this topic because he met someone who I had worked with before in theatre. All of this seemed rather coincidental. Especially since at the time, I was writing about my main character going with his gut decision after a series of coincidences. Well, anyway… long story short: weird. After the long conversation, and I had my fill of typing for the day, I went to the beach around 4pm with nothing. I didn’t want any technology to get in the way. I went back to the spot from yesterday and perched myself on a rock. It wasn’t as hot as yesterday. In fact, the soft breeze was relaxing. There were a few people around but not many. I just sat and stared into the ocean. Just stared. And thought about whether I chose the wrong path in my life. There are a few key passions in my life: theatre, photography, and writing. I’m OK with photography and kind of suck at writing (I have rewritten my first chapter numerous times over the past year and have’t got past it). Theatre… well what happened to that? For the first time in a long time however, I eventually felt at peace. I just stared out as the sun slowly set. Someone walked past in front of me and left footprints in the sand. The waves quickly came in and washed the footprint away. I wondered how insignificant our existence was at this moment. That guy made his mark only for it to be washed away so suddenly, as if he never existed to step there in the first place. Was this a metaphor for life itself? Now, this may sound bizarre, but then the waves came crashing into my feet. My feet sank into the sand, burrowing footprints. They got deeper with each wave that crashed in.

With all of this from today, am I supposed to come out of it thinking that I can reroute my life? That there is such thing as faith and signs? Or am I just to think of them as coincidences like the protagonist in my book that I can never seem to write. Either way, I feel somewhat attached to Boracay after today, despite its heavy touristic features.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take any photos and I don’t plan to either. I brought along my camera but I decided to just live the moment instead of capture it this time round. Besides, I have enough beach photos from previous trips to different islands – I wasn’t sure if I could capture anything different. I just set my featured image to the boat that brought me here.

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