(Nov 7) There wasn’t supposed to be Day 3, we were supposed to be heading out of Filminera camp at half past three in the morning to make the first trip out on the Lady Jacqueline of Leighton. But Typhoon Quinta decided to hover about Masbate where Signal Number 1 was raised, effectively keeping all sea craft port bound. And rightly so, after all the sea mishaps that have occurred in our islands quite recently.
There was little rain over Masbate, however, and gusty winds with the sun trying its darnedest to come out from behind the clouds. I spent most of last night sitting just outside the door of Staff House 3 with Quinta in my hair. In the morning we managed to have breakfast at the Mess Hall, much to my delight, as meals at the Filminera mess hall were always something to look forward to. I had the tocino and the grilled tomatoes with my coffee, plus an extra helping of bread, some of which I took back with me. The bread at the Filminera mess hall is the best I have had in several years.
After breakfast Blair and I went on a tour of the facility. This is where my safety boots came to good use. What little rain there was turned most of the ground outside the housing compound into sticky mud. But the view from the top made it all worthwhile.
Ten o’clock found us back on the Lady Jacqueline to take us back where we came. This time I opted to sit outside in the open air area, instead of the rather cramped but air conditioned cabin. It was a good hour and a half back to Sorsogon and the waters were calm enough for me not to be too worried. We arrived in Pilar Port with no incident, I even managed to walk calmly on the same gangplanks I walked on two days ago. But this was because I now had two bags instead of three, and the tide was higher than it had been the other day.
I even got a glimpse of Mayon Volcano on the way to the airport, as well as the obverse view of Bayani Fernando’s tarpaulin poster more or less on the same spot where I saw it on our way in.
Even as I was leaving Masbate I was already thinking of my return in two weeks’ time, with the brand new Lenovo K300 systems and the two days I was to spend with each school to teach them how to use and care for the equipment. The mining industry is one of the highest income generating industries for this country, but at the price of the destruction of our mountains and sometimes even the surrounding seas. Nevertheless, Filminera is one of the companies known for responsible mining (although some people, perhaps including myself, may consider that an oxymoron), and this CSR project of theirs is something I believe in.
It’s time everyone gave something back.