In the mornings, my nephews usually enjoyed playing basketball at the court next to the town hall, while we charge our batteries - because it's the only place with electricity in the morning.
The rest of the days were just spent exploring the town, meeting old friends and relatives. Since our place lies next to the town hall, we just can't help but notice the still unfinished legislative building. It has been like that three years ago when I was there the last time.
The town of Araceli is relatively small, with around 14,000 population and roughly 205 km² land area. It is pretty much laid back and quiet. Of course, we enjoyed the beautiful beaches all around us. I've only lived there for twelve years which was during my childhood, but everything still looks and feels familiar.
One evening we enjoyed a local delicacy for dinner: Sandworms (Wakwak).
The next day, we went east of town, visited the cemetery where my father, grandfather and aunt were laid to rest. Afterwards, we went to the beach which was just a few meters away. Luckily, it was low tide, and we could walk to the next island. Marakit Island is otherwise only reachable during high tide by boat.
It was indeed an experience in itself. We went to the other side of the beach over the hill, to get there. We saw lots of starfishes, crayfish and other sea creatures, and kinds of seafood that I used to collect when I was younger. Not only my nephews and niece enjoyed it, but I definitely cherish the moments I had with them. It was our bonding time. Living far away makes me yearn for those times when I get back to Europe. It was a great experience, surrounded by nature. It's already late with the moon rising when we decided to go back.
On our last day, we wanted to go to Langoy Island, the island in front of the town. But unfortunately, the ones who were supposed to take us there had some accident. We waited but later did we know what happened. So we decided to go to the best beach instead, Tinintinan Beach. This is the last chance to be together with my sister and her family, and it will take years again before we all meet again.
When you live surrounded by beautiful beaches, you just can't help but enjoy it.
Much too soon we had to leave Araceli, to return to Puerto Princesa. It was great to be back in Araceli, and we definitely had a grand time. I hope to be back soon!