We are at the closing end of the heat days of May yet I myself cannot deny that the heat is still at its peak. And so instead of doing the ‘usual’, my mother thought it better to put us to a semi-secluded place and escape a day of heat and sweat.
I don’t even know if the river we went to has a name. Found literally at border of our city, it snakes its way at the foot a mountain that separates our city from Lipa City, Batangas. I cannot say that it was as pristine as the waters we found a few years back in Pagsanjan, Laguna, where we actually got our drinking water. But for a number of reasons maybe, for economic ones or sheer practicality, the river, when got there, was a scene of laundry, bathing in the river, and utensil washing.
Local kids found it a convenient place to play on to, and indeed, they covered a portion of the river with their almost reckless plays. Afternoon was especially delightful as the shades and shadows of the trees covered the river. I was eventually persuaded to dip myself into the river, and spent the hours until before dusk talking to my mother and sister. My sister collected stones which is another add-up to my collection.
In a period when things get commercialized – education, amusement, recreation, and leisure, among other – such a river visit is one good reminder that we all are connected to nature, no matter how hard we try to distance ourselves from it. We have seen nature bring down its wrath, but just like in human nature, it is characterized at the same time by serenity, one that I experienced when I immersed myself into those river waters.