You know, over the past weekend, Feyma, myself and a group of friends journeyed up to Father Franco’s house in Buda for some fellowship and food (among other things like Father’s liqueur). John Grant and I were walking around, kind of roaming Father’s land and enjoying the countryside. It sure is peaceful up there! I noticed today that John wrote a column about the trip. Let me quote a piece of what John wrote:
He lives in a place that must as close to heaven as you can get, surrounded by mountains and a river and a cool breeze that makes you feel so relaxed and restful. No noise no traffic, just natures beauty.
It’s true. The place is so quiet, no honking horns, no traffic, no loud motorcycles without mufflers. It’s just peace and quiet there. As John said, the breeze comes through, and the temperature is not hot and oppressive, it’s actually comfortable! Indeed, it is heaven-like up there.
I can’t tell you how many times Feyma and I have gone up to Buda to visit Father Franco, and on the way home we seem to always start talking about buying a hectare of land and putting a house there. Sometimes we say that it would be a rest house where we would go for a week at a time a few times per year. Occasionally we think that it’s a place where we could live full time. Most often, though, the rest house idea is more in our minds.
The thing is, if you are realistic about such an idea, you have to be realistic. For example, Feyma loves cooking. Basically, to get to a proper grocery store you are talking about a drive of nearly 2 hours. Me, I can’t live without Internet (it’s my business after all), but the only way to get on the net would be via your cellular phone, and not reliably. I suppose that you could go to a higher expense and set up a satellite link, but that’s not too feasible, in my opinion. School for the kids? There are not any spectacular schools up there. If you were to live in an area like that, you would really have to commit yourself to living a very simple life. You’d have to make every effort to live off the land – planting the vegetables that you would use, etc. To some extent, this is what Father Franco does.
The key, in my mind, would be to finding a balance. Finding a place that is quieter than the City, more restful than the City, yet close enough so that you could still avail of the advantages that the City offers. Does such a place exist? I don’t know. Another option would be to locate in or near a smaller town. Up in the Buda area where Father lives, that could mean that you actually go into Bukidnon and locate in Valencia or Malaybalay. Or, in the Province, near to one of those Cities. For me, I would probably choose Valencia, it’s a little more to my liking than Malaybalay, although I like both places. Being up in the mountains you get the advantages of cooler weather up there, and in these places you can also enjoy the luxury of having a grocery store, and Internet (although from what I read it is not spectacular Internet service) in these areas.
These are just examples that I am giving. I don’t have plans to leave Davao City, I do love it here so much. But, when you take a little trip so close to Heaven, as John describes it, it’s hard not to have these thoughts cross your mind to some extent.
Does the balance exist? Or, is it all or nothing? What do you think?