We left the city around 7am, and rode a bus bound to Delfin Albano, Isabela. The driver said they would drop us off at Bangui, where the famous windmills could be found. Segue: my hometown is in Isabela, and a little voice at the back of my head told me that I could pay my family a visit. But my house is another 12-hour trip from Laoag. So we continued as planned– go to Bangui and hire a trike that would tour us around the area.
It took us another two hours before we reached the place. As soon as we got off the bus, we looked for trike drivers and asked how much it would cost if we take the tour around. The kuya driver informed us that if we intend to take the SouthTour (Windmills, view deck, Kapurpurawan Rock Formation, and Cape Bojeador Lighthouse), it would cost P800. Now, if we wanted to take the North Tour (Blue Lagoon, Patapat Viaduct, Kabigan Falls, Bantay Caves, etc.), it’d cost another P800. So that would be P1600, which is contrary to the information we got from the blog posts we reviewed back in Manila. The backpacker-bloggers indicated that it’s just P600 for each tour package. We mentioned this to the driver, but he shrugged off his shoulders.
And so in a span of five minutes, we discussed our options.
1. Ride another bus straight to Pagudpud where trike fares may really cost P600/package. (Setback: we didn’t know when the next bus would pass, and given that we arrive there and we find a cheaper deal, we will go back to the same spot where we left and that’s waste of precious time and energy.)
2. Just ride the trike until the Bangui windmills only, then get back to the highway where we could decide later on. (Setback: the fare to and from the windmills is P200.)
3. Accept the driver’s deal with closed eyes. (Setback: our radical iskolar ng bayan selves would get trampled upon yielding to an unfair arrangement.)
After a brief discussion, we resorted to agreeing with the driver about the P800 for South Tour. I guess we didn’t want to risk the travel time given the fact that we only had a day to visit certain locations. Also, we were still tired from the fifteen-hour drive.
Sure, it’s just money, it’s just a matter of additional P200 for convenience. But it was still hard to swallow this inequity that the circumstance was shoving in our throats. Of course we wanted to help the locals boost its already thriving tourism, but not in this set-up. Not in this case where we’re given the impression that we were being robbed of cash and a firm principle.
But tourists are ought to enjoy, and so we shook off the thought and enjoyed the giant windmills. It was not my first time to see them but they still took my breath away.
Afterwards, the driver took us to the viewdeck up the mountain where we could have a wider view of…the windmills. Hahaha! It was an awesome view, anyway, seeing the windmills and the whole Bangui community. It was so windy there! It made me wonder about stupid things: did they put windmills there because it was windy, or was it windy because there were huge fans? Hahaha. Not funny, I know. Boo.😀
After the viewdeck, we sped to see the Kapurpurawan Rock Formation. When we arrived at the junction, the driver said that we’ll be transferred to another trike, but it’s inclusive of the payment already. We paid the kuya driver and he left. With our money. Huhu haha! You, Danie, you.
Next stop: bell tower and the rock formations!