My teachers probably had inculcated a deep sense of nationalism in me or probably with those great Filipinos I read about and even met. I don't know why I love this country so much and I must say...the Philippines is indeed a beautiful country. The Pearl of the Orient they say and I couldn't agree more.
I must say that I am fortunate enough to travel some parts of the Philippines since high school. Most of my travels are co-sponsored so less expenditure in my side (besides I can't really afford to travel on my own expenses considering my family's financial status) and yet very rewarding and even more than that. God loves me so much because He gave me opportunities to enjoy His creations even here in our country.
Before, I would be so happy if I can talk to a foreigner. I would be so glad knowing that there are people from other parts of the globe who appreciate our country. I wonder why we Filipinos do not have that much interest in our own land where in fact the Philippines is such an awesome country to explore. It is because what we usually hear, read, and watch about our country are negative things. It has been twice that I was reprimanded by my European friends about why Filipinos prefer to put into the news negative (sometimes frustrating SHALLOW events) than exposing what is something good happening in our country. I was ashamed but I continue to love this country and hoping that someday things will get better.
Going back about exploring the Philippines, there's lot... lot... lot of places to discover in this archipelago which is composed not only hundreds of islands but thousands. From small and astonishing vanishing islands to majestic mountain ranges. Last month, my college friends and I visited the province of Surigao and you will be awed by the wonders of natures there. From crystal clear blue waters of Enchanted River (which is literally enchanted for me) to the magnificent Tinuy-an falls. Only God can create such marvelous nature formations. Today with my teacher friends, I am enjoying the cool waters and idyllic island of Siquijor. Every destination has really something to offer that suits your needs in a vacation...adventure, sight seeing, meeting strangers, meditating or simply unwind from stressful city life.
All we have to do is letting ourselves lost in some places and discover that after all, this country is worth living in.. :-)