If you’re looking for an adventure, our ultimate GRID summer guide has a few ideas, from running wild in the Cordilleras to freediving in Moalboal.
On the cover: Cordillera Conservation Trust founder JP Alipio photographed by Sonny Thakur
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Adventure is a word too often used these days. Every outing, every unknown is an adventure, whether it’s to go to a new restaurant or a new country. (It seems to have gotten an additional meaning, peculiar to Filipinos, too—when someone is inconvenienced, it’s an adventure. For example: “We blew a tire on the road, and had to take a bus, and two tricycle rides—adventure!”)
A quick look at the word’s history tells us that, a long time ago, “adventure” simply meant “something that is about to happen.” But somewhere along the way, it came to mean “risk; or “a dangerous undertaking,” or “a novel or exciting incident,” the meaning it still keeps to this day. There’s a little gem hidden in its etymology, though: a little side note that says that it also had an alternate meaning sometime in the 13th century or thereabouts; it used to mean “a wonder, a miracle; accounts of marvelous things.”
Sometimes I wonder if the word has lost its meaning, because if everything is an adventure, then nothing is. But we’d like to think that there are still adventurers of the old-fashioned kind, the kind who have legitimately earned the right to call themselves adventurers—the ones who really do venture out to court risk and peril, to find wonders and miracles in the world out there, and to bring back their amazing stories.
This issue is full of different kinds of adventure. We sent out our regular contributor (and GRID buddy) Agu Paiso to discover Moalboal underwater, and he found that there was a lot to discover about the sport, about the place, and about himself. This last one was perhaps the most striking adventure of them all for this seasoned sportsman.
We also fell in love with the Natola family’s piece on traveling with children (or, in their case, with one very kulit child that’s the equivalent of three others). They bring with them the honest revelation that travel does change when you have a child, but that those changes can also mean a whole new world of joy and imagination.
There’s also our story on the Cordillera Mountain Marathon, which kicks off on March 22. Running the marathon through the mountains and villages of the Cordillera is itself is an adventure, but what we found is that, more than being about the sport itself, the story is about the people who care deeply about the environment and about the communities in the mountains they run in. The real achievement here isn’t to earn a cheap finishers’ medal— the sport is a quiet but powerful way to get more people involved in the twin causes of environmental protection and of sustainable development.
In the middle of any adventure, there has got to be that moment when you stop and realize that, no matter the hardship or the fear that lies across your path, there is a story on the other side, and that it is about how you’ve transformed into a better person for it.
Editor at Large