21 November 2008

My Kalipay Trip

My First Kalipay Trip
By Gary G Idulza

In the wee hours of the morning on November 14th 2008, a group of Christians traveled to the slopes of one of the mountains of Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental, Philippines to build a project; a catchments’ basin in one of the numerous springs that jot the mountain side. And I was one of them that journeyed to that awesome place.

Barangay Kalipay is one of the barangays of Gingoog City which translates as “joy” or “happiness” in English and what joy that did awaited us at that wonderful place, a home to a lot of our Higaonon brethren. We traveled for 5 hours from Cagayan de Oro City where I lived and to Kalipay, Gingoog City. But Poruk 6 of Kalipay was only our pit stop for our final trek to the place were we gonna build a catchments’ basin.

We stayed for a while at our brethren Boy Sin-ingans’ house; it was a simple wooden house that was full of warm people that greeted us.
It was a joy that we felt it was like just coming home from a long travel. It was decided that we have to go to the site even though there was already a heavy downpour, after we gathered the provisions for the final leg up to the mountains we huddled around to pray to our Lord that all will be well and successful. Of we go with instant raincoats just to fend most of the falling rain. I carried a sack full of plates and utensils while others carried gallons of mineral water, cement, hollow blocks, and to some sacks of sand, steel rods, PVC pipes, biscuits and even eggs for breakfast. The trek was hard but amazing; it tested my endurance and some of our brethren but as I found out later that our Higaonon brethren highly favored walking while there was rain. The path to the site was on an old logging trail, it was muddy, lot of loose stones, torrential rains carved out little streams of water in the trail, and at some points we crossed short waterfalls and cascades. A huge boulder along the trail greeted us and it was a sort of an entrance to the site. At last we arrived at the site after 2 hours of walking the “Extra Challenge” trail, the site was near the mountains’ summit, a majestic view of the lowlands and from our vantage point we where looking down from afar the island of Camiguin with it towering volcanoes.

As we settled in the site area we where greeted by the mountain air with a gentle breeze as if we were welcomed by the mountain itself. We thanked and praised God that all was safe despite the heavy downpour. We had afternoon snacks then we inspect the exact site for the catchments’ basin and of we go, we started that afternoon the foundations for the catchments’ basin we dug through the mud and found out that the mud was not too deep and the added bonus was that right below the mud were we will put the catchments’ basin was a compact soil good for establishing our project. God was indeed with us, He provided everything for the success of our project including the exact place on where we are going to put the projects’ foundations. We stopped our work for the moment so that the foundations of the project would harden. We then bathe in the spring and after a while we had early dinner. We were miles away from the nearest electricity pole. As we had early dinner we also slept early at around 6:30 in the evening we were already going to bed contented that everything was going as planned. We thanked and praised the Lord Almighty that though the trek was somewhat arduous and exhausting for a city folk as me, we were not a bit tired. First day of our journey ends.

To be continued.....


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