December 3, 2007

Travel Experience to Palawan

(03Dec2007 by: ifugao posts)
My dream of traveling to Palawan has just been realized. Mr. Stradivary Caro, the Dean - Institute of Computer Science in Ifugao State College of Agriculture and Forestry (ISCAF) and the project manager for the iSchools project in the area recommended me (in consultation with Dr. S. Ngohayon) to represent the College for the “Online Writing Techniques Training.” The training was sponsored by Western Philippines University (WPU), one of the State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) in the country chosen by the Commission on Information and Communications Technolgy (CICT) as implementers for the iSchools project. The primary aim of the training is to strengthen the capability of SUCs for faster and updated documentation of all the roll-outs (community mobilization, trainings, evaluation, and other workshops) concerning the project.
The training was actually first set on the second week of October; however, the very hectic schedule of all the project managers in completing other goals of the project postponed the activity. It was again rescheduled on the last week of the month but cancelled due to poor weather condition. Finally, a call to be set on November 14-17, 2007 opened chances for the participants to learn many techniques in online writing.
Prior to the training proper, I experienced difficulty in claiming my air ticket because of financial concerns. I also have to interview Mr. Caro because I lack knowledge for the project. In fact, the project started on August and I have no idea on what they were doing for the past months. Fortunately, he oriented me about the ins and outs of the endeavor to provide computer access to far flung schools, gave documents for me to read and pictures to view on. I also borrowed his laptop as one of the requirements for the training since all participants need to work for an online article, the so-called blogging. “All you need to do is to be active during the training because as you come back at ISCAF, you will be part of the succeeding activities for the project as a documenter until its culmination.” Mr. Caro said.
On November 12, I prepared my things for the trip. At 7 in the evening, I boarded the KMJ trans for Cubao, Quezon City, Metro Manila. I was in Cubao at three in the morning of Nov. 13. At 5am, I hired a taxi leading to the domestic airport and arrived at 6:30am. I arranged everything in the airport: showing my  ticket for verification purposes, removing my jacket and shoes, placing my baggage under electronic check machine and paying P200 as terminal fee. I boarded the Cebu Pacific airplane with flight number 5J637 at exactly 8:55 A.M.
After an hour and ten minutes, I arrived in Puerto Princesa Airport. In front of the terminal, I hired a tricycle for Hillside Resort, the venue of the training. Upon arrival at around 11:45, the resort personnel confirmed my participation and gave me my room assignment afterwards. I rest for 30 minutes then had my lunch. In the afternoon, the iSchools project manager of WPU, Mr. Nilo instructed all the participants to have an outside photo class tour around the city. Furthermore, “captured pictures for the city tour will be used for the photojournalism workshop,” Mr. Nilo said. Sincerely, the city of Puerto Princesa is really a place for the tourists, it’s superb (my perspective as a first timer).
On the next day, the training formally opened. The speakers are: Ms. Yvonne Chua of the University of the Philippines and Ms. Luz Rimban of Ateneo University. There were 26 participants from selected SUCs nationwide. Three came from the Cordillera Administrative Region: Apayao State College (ASC), Benguet State University (BSU), and Ifugao State College of Agriculture and Forestry (ISCAF). I can see in the face of my co-participants the eagerness to learn for the workshop, the same thing I felt prior to the opening of the training.
The first topic was on online environment discussed by Ms. Rimban. Online environment is all about the Internet or the world wide web (www). Then next by Ms. Chua who discussed about newswriting. A workshop on newswriting immediately followed. Each participant should select a fresh topic from their area of responsibility then write news about it. On the next day, the topics covered were: headline writing, photojournalism, and feature writing. As usual, workshop output followed each session. On the third day, the topics were opinion writing and creating a blog. The two speakers discussed each topic alternately. The training ended with the awarding of certificates and group pictures.
On Nov. 17, some of my co-participants were scheduled to go home. However, I remained to the venue because my scheduled trip was on Sunday. I made myself busy by improving my blog output. Blogging is just like a website but the scope is limited. It is free of charge and Internet users can easily access it.
On the early morning of Nov. 18, I prepared my baggage for the one and a half day trip for Manila via Superferry (OLAV-GO) from Puerto Princesa harbor. I hired a tricycle leading to the harbor of Puerto Princesa at 7 in the morning. At exactly 9:15, the long trip started. While I was on board the ship, I felt great happiness because at last, I experienced boarding a ship. I made myself busy by enjoying the scenic view of the bay passing through small islands and looking on huge waves. At 8 P.M., I started writing this article however, the laptop battery emptied. At 11P.M., we stopped at Coron harbor, still part of Palawan. At 12:30A.M., we resumed our voyage via Manila South harbor. I went to sleep but while lying on my couch, I felt dizziness due to the impact of strong waves and the aura inside the ship which looked like a confinement hospital with double deck beds. Fair enough, I recovered when I transferred to a more comfortable place upon claiming permission to a crew.
In the morning after breakfast, I continued writing this article. I was nearly done with my work when I heard an announcement that the we were about to reach our final destination, Manila South harbor.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

nice experience man!

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