life of a cuddlebit

my random ramblings

Leave a comment

A summer by the sea

Laiya, Batangas

I have always loved summer, simply because I love swimming. I have been swimming since I was a kid, but always on swimming pools and water parks. I have never been to the beach. Embarrassing I know.  But its true, for my 27 years on this planet I have never been to the beach, I have always wanted  to go see the waves and sand that I only see in pictures.

But this summer, Kei and I made a plan to go to the beach. after looking for nearby beaches/resorts online, we decided to go to  Laiya, Batangas.

Map of Batangas City

Map of Batangas City

From Manila to the city proper of Lipa, Batangas is around 2 1/2 hours to 3 hours away; depending on the time/season of visit.  From Lipa, we traveled for almost 2 hours  to arrive at Laiya, then another 30 or so minutes to the edge of the Laiya area where the beach strip is located. 

There are a lot of beach resorts in the Laiya beach strip, and as luck would have it, we picked out the last beach in the Laiya strip! (talk about being remote!)

We set out from Manila at around 8:00 am and arrived at around 1:30 pm in the beach. The travel was tedious and sweaty! I am guessing it was one of the hottest summer days in the Philippines, but then again maybe I could be over reacting since I am usually enclosed in an air conditioned room. After a lot of complaining and hands that hurt from fanning to cool myself, we have arrived at the La Luz Beach Resort!

la luz banner

la luz banner

It was as I thought it was. Clear blue waters, waves, wind and warm sand. Paradise!

I was extremely happy to be on the beach!

the beach

the beach

We immediately went to eat lunch and headed to the shower to get changed. Applied some sunblock and off to the waters!

off to the waters!

off to the waters!

The water was cool and the sand was grainy, the waves are very much active,  the sloshing sounds felt very relaxing to my ears.  All I can think of was finally, finally! I get to experience being in the beach! I alternated on submerging myself in the water and lying around/sitting in the shoreline waiting for the waves to lap at my back.  At that moment, all the sweltering summer heat seemed alright for me.

Then we took some random beach photos to capture the experience.

beach collage

beach collage

After a while, we decided to walk around the beach and look for shells and sea glass to take home as keepsakes. Ventured out till the rocky part of the beach.

the rocky part of the beach

the rocky part of the beach

There were shells, but most of them were cracked, or too tiny. In the end I settled for these.

beach finds

beach finds

(But sadly I did not get to take home the green sea glass and the piece of coral. Some one must have picked it up when I left them in our cabana.)

We then bummed a bit before we prepared to leave.

being beach bums

being beach bums

As the lull of the waves calmed down and the day comes to a close, I was sad to say bye to the beach.

parting shot

parting shot

With sea salt in my stringy, windblown hair, we hurried back home.

So long for now, till we meet again.


1 Comment

Slather on the sunblock

Tropical living. 

(photos taken from pinterest)

(photos taken from pinterest)

Tropical living: equates to sunny skies, beach, watery fruits, chilled drinks, a nice evenly tanned skin and basically everything that could consist of  paradise. That is the fantasy…

The reality is:  sweaty bodies, airconditioned everything, light clothing, shorts and sandals everywhere…

Since I live in hot and humid Philippines, particularly  in the busy city of Manila that not a day goes by that I am not exposed to the smoke of the city… I dislike using sunblock since I don’t like the sticky feeling  associated with it, that plus the hot weather equals sticky and sweaty me with the added sprinkling of the city dust.

To add that list of gross-ness I also have sensitive skin, that being said I am very cautious on what I place on my skin… lest I breakout with pimples and clog my pores.

What  killer combinations. wtf.

I also have a problem with skin pigmentation. since I am fair, I have freckles. I think it is sort of weird for an Asian to get freckles, but I have them, a lot of them.

and I don’t want them to multiply!!! (I would look like a dalmatian…. no,no, no.)

For this my dermatologist advised to wear sunblock and stay away from the sun… which I reluctantly did.

Till I got used to it.

I have spf 60 sunblock for my face and spf 30 for my body so I don’t burn my skin.

I cannot leave home without applying sunblock.

The lowdown on sunblocks:

1. EVERYONE needs  sunscreen. No matter what age and skin color.

2. Avoid direct sunlight from 11am -3pm. Stay indoors or if it cannot be avoided make sure you wear protective clothing like a hat, long sleeved shirts or bring an umbrella with you.

3. Wear sunscreen daily even if you’re not in the beach. –this will prevent premature skin aging, wrinkles and sunspots

  • -SPF measures the amount of time your skin burn when exposed to the sun (before your skin starts to darken). You also usually see UVA & UVB on the label of your sunblock. what are they? (Both are sun rays but they have a different level of wavelengths.  UVA are the longer wavelength from the sun and it penetrates deeper into the skin. This wavelength is the number one enemy of our skin and is the culprit behind aging. UVB  on the other hand are the shorter wavelength and is the cause of sun burn and skin cancer.)
  • No need for sunblock if its a cloudy day? -Wrong! Eighty percent of UV rays can still pass through even on a cloudy day. On the beach,  Sand and water increases the sun’s reflection by 25 percent.

4. Use sunscreen on all exposed areas of the body. The amount? 1 shot glass is the ideal amount to cover all the exposed parts of the body.  Using less will still puts you at risk for skin cancer.

5. Allow the sunscreen to dry (about 15 minutes before heading out.)

6. Re-apply sunscreen (on the beach/outdoors: every 2 hours, and sunscreen is NOT and will never be waterproof.)

7. Know what type of sunscreen works for you.

  • Creams for face and lotion type for skin.  Sprays are ideal and easier to apply on children, and hairy areas. (eg. men’s chest)

8. look at the expiration date. A sunsblock is only good for  3years.  



Got it all covered?

-There are still other hidden causes of UV radiation damage. (ie, cooking can cause melasma)

-Bright lights, even the ones used for reading, are enough to harm the skin.

-Some sunblocks tend to leave a white cast on the skin. this is normal and sort of okay. But stay away from camera flash! white cast plus the camera flash would make you look like a white lady! (I am a constant victim of this. but oh well, at least I will not get premature wrinkles. )
-Wear your sunblock to keep the wrinkles/skin discoloration away.

-Your skin will thank you once you start using sunblock.