The rain was lightly falling, flit-floating like a million miniscule shards of broken glasses before hitting surfaces and making dainty tap-tapping sounds, like the gentle yet consistent meeting of a tic-tac-toe.
We were lying in the heart-shaped Jacuzzi systematically located at the private balcony of our room in Nami Private Villas, atop a cliff overlooking Diniwid Beach, a walking distance away from the hustle-bustle of the White Beach. We were both facing a beauteous scenery, seemingly peppered by the raindrops, with my back against his chest, his legs wrapped around my waist as he toyed with my hair, whispering sweet nothings while pointing out places in the distance.
And there’s much to point. This is, after all, the famed Boracay Island in Malay, Aklan, a tropical paradise if ever there is one.
RE-DISCOVERING EACH OTHER
It started there, he said, pointing to a distant cliff, below of which is an ideal site for snorkeling.
I looked – and yes, so it did. Enjoying the water only with each other, playfully chasing each other like the hide and seek of the colorful tropical fish occasionally peeking through oddly shaped corals and rock formations under us – this was, indeed, how our visit started. Like children again, who only recently discovered each other’s company, and not wanting the meeting to end. In not so many words, a great way to start our life together, savoring the beauty surrounding us, like they are all new to us – and maybe they are, in the perspective of our togetherness.
The fun continued in Puka Beach, where we were filled with childish delight as we strung puka shell after puka shell for chokers and bracelets – gifts to each other despite their amateur appearances, though more appreciative of the time spent together, surrounded by silence as if we were the only two souls in the island.
It has never been this beautiful, he told me later, his hand pressed against mine, as we watched the sun disappear over the horizon. Seated on White Beach, everything seemed to appear fiery red, as if lapped by tongues of fire to change what could be called dull as the darkness of the night crept around us, into the color of burning coal.
But the real beauty, in truth, is seeing this with him. I squeezed his hand, filled by a beauty not only seen, but also felt.
ALONE IN THE CROWD
Lost in your eyes, he teased me one night, holding me close against him as we swayed, not caring a bit that we weren’t moving with the rhythm of the music filling the air. There was music only we could hear. That they never did play our song is inconsequential – our song was still playing for us to us. We were all alone in the crowd.
Only earlier, we were at the local talipapa (wet market), enjoying our first few days together while eating grilled freshly-caught pusit (squid), savoring its juicy flesh after dipping it in soy sauce, flavored with chopped tomato and onion, and some calamansi, before eating it with steamed rice, chased down the throat by fresh green mango shake. Laughing while getting lovey-dovey, trying to feed each other, I closed my eyes, engulfed by the goodness of the situation, everything else but a murmur around me.
Then, even when getting lost in the crowd, discovering little wonders such as a choker made of snake bone, the world continued to slow down, as if allowing us to completely enjoy each other. Looking around, so much remains to be discovered, I knew then, though the discovery starts with the very person with me. Mushy yet true.
The in the evening, after holding each other closely in the dance floor, we took a walk along the seashore, teased by kids who were making artworks on the sand. Two lovers in the night, lit but by the stars, without a care and lost with each other.
And this is how it ends? I asked, involuntarily giggling when his butterfly kisses ticklishly touched the nape of my neck. He always does this, the dainty touches and kisses – like when we were locked in each other’s arms inside Nami’s scenic elevator, which snaked through the rocky cliffs, giving us an unobstructed view of the vast seas before us, the waves lapping at the fine sand shining under the faint moonlight. With each other where we were, I couldn’t complain.
Now, as the fireflies started appearing, seemingly from nowhere, mimicking the twinkling of the stars overhead, everything seemed magical. But feeling him close to me, nothing can be more real.
This is just another beginning, actually, he said in between kisses.
And so it is.