Why we rode on a jeepney to see the Bangui Windmills
continued from here.
My fascination with the Bangui windmills actually started with this flickr photo. The black and blue silhouette mesmerized me so much at that time probably because the blades seemed to move the longer I stared at the picture. It is definitely one of those images that you would not want to un-see in your mind for a very long time. That’s why I placed Bangui in my overdue bucket list without even knowing how to go to Ilocos region from Cebu City.
We were extremely lucky then to get ridiculously priced airplane tickets to Laoag last year. We had at least 8 months to come up with an itinerary that would maximize our stay in the region, at a reasonable budget too. But our travel spreadsheet materialized only two weeks before our flight schedule. Nonetheless we were able to polish all the important details (such as where to stay for the night, where to eat and which tourist spots to forgo) despite our busy work schedules.
I also thought that aside from marveling at the windmills, we would also do a memorable jumpshot, which has become a tradition in our annual summer outings. The one we did at Apo Island in Negros Oriental is in my opinion, the hardest to beat. Thanks to a Pixar movie inspiration, we finally have a fighting chance.
So to answer the question: we rode a jeepney from Laoag to Bangui because we brought balloons in this trip. Most backpackers would usually take the trike in getting around Burgos, Bangui and Pagudpud. But we thought that it would already be uncomfortable for the four of us if we pushed through with our original plan. If you have four oversized teenagers with heavy bags (that got heavier due to the shopping we have done in Vigan) then you would definitely go beyond the intended capacity of a trike.
After weighing our options, we politely declined the trike driver we contacted in advance and went for the jeepney instead.
I must admit that the change of transportation mode was not welcomed without any opposition. Even Mother Nature seemed to taunt us during our long trip to Bangui. We got 14 balloons at the onset. But 2 burst just before we left the outskirts of Laoag, 3 flew out of the windows when we were in Kapurpurawan and 1 escaped when we were already in Bangui. After almost 2 hours of travel, we only had 8 weary balloons for our photoshoot.
But of course, the balloons were only secondary. The jumpshots (and our color-coordinated shirts too) were just icing on the cake. It was the Bangui windmills that provided a stunning backdrop from the very start.
Although it took me 4 years to finally strike off one more item in my bucket list, I could say that the experience of finally seeing the gentle giants was worth every hassle and worth every wait.