Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Row, row, row your boat...


Obviously, I wasn't exactly riding a boat in the picture above. This is the first time since my Subic adventure that I took up an oar and went into the water. This is also the first time I've been close to a body water (not counting swimming pools) in a long time... I can't believe that it's been more than a year since I've been to the beach!

Anyway, I was riding this bamboo raft on Labasin Lake in Villa Escudero, San Pablo City, Laguna. While the view from the middle of the lake was very nice, I didn't dare carry any electronic gadget with me on the raft because I might fall into the 30-m deep lake with them (oh no!). I left my gadgets on dry land and donned on a life vest. Then off I and my raft teammate, RK Singh's daughter, went. It took some time and muscle power to figure out how to propel and to direct the raft so that we wouldn't hit the other people in the rafts, the barge with the flags, and the banks of the lake. There were several instances when we hit dead ends and bumped onto other rafts but we finally figured out the easy way out of these situations: just turn around on one's seat. That provided instant direction change!

The view of Labasin Lake reminds me of the view of the Brisbane River from the CityCat University of Queensland quay. The banks are lush with vegetation and the shade under the trees are alive with the chorus of birds (and other animals, I'm sure).

The wildlife in Labasin Lake, however, is a lot tamer than that in the Brisbane River. When I was attending uni, some of the students warned me not to go too close to the water because there were bull sharks. Yes, there are sharks in the Brisbane River!