It is only fitting that you find yourself in Sorsogon and what you imagined as a sojourn filled with days sinking your feet into squishy sand turns out to be an adventure that requires sweating and the maybe a bit of fear.
The double oars of Regatta is a reminder that relaxation does not come easy. If we are to go by the logo of the Filipino clothing company, leisure is rowing a boat. A vacation, whether on a coastal province known for wakeboarding and whale sharks or in and out of the concrete maze of a cosmopolitan city, requires a toll: huffing and puffing.
You are running to the counter to catch your flight. You are walking to everywhere because you want to save coin. Or you are suddenly faced with the task of swimming against a current so insistent on taking you to the opposite of where you need to be that you maybe have to ask help from God, because by the way, you are also inside a cave.
A man does not turn back. (Also, there is no choice.) When faced with a task that is not too impossible, you do it. You go ahead and grab that safety rope or grab the arm of the guide who will lead you to your respite, the little boat floating on the other side, where other victors of the cave swim are chilling. You bond over surviving.
Why go through all that huffing and puffing when not doing anything at all—locking yourself in an airconditioned room in the city—is now an acceptable version of a vacation? Well, where's the thrill in that? That's like saying, “I am closing the door and giving up” or “Screw you, sun!”
Besides, if you are feeling a little weary of vacationing (it's possible), you can opt out of riding the wave or touching the skin of a whale shark. The ocean is a fickle mistress. Its jewel-like waters that kiss the sky can wash away your worries. But it can also slam you into a water wall of pain or, dressed in the death black, strike fear into your heart.
Tell us, is it scarier to see how deep the water is or to not see what lies beneath? These are the things you think about while the others play and you lie on the squishy sand. The beer is nice and cold. Your phone is somewhere else, and you don't mind. Your group of adventurers are cracking jokes. Everything is alright, and it's okay if you don't conquer your fears right now.
And what of the clothes by Regatta? The T-shirts with washed stripes, the boardshorts and chinos that fall above the knee, the woven short-sleeve shirts that are lightweight, and the classic polo shirts in sorbet colors?
In the ocean and under the sun, they get worn and wet but remain intact. They provide comfort, allow for easy movement, and offer protection from the wildness of a vacation. That's what you ask of clothes of summer: that they do not encumber your journey.
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