My parents put off their travel dreams to raise our family. Working overseas as nurses, they already had the means to go on a European tour – in fact, their friends and colleagues were already going and were inviting them. Instead, my parents used that money to put down roots in their home country, the Philippines, raise a family, and start a small business, which they spent significant decades of their lives on.
Occasionally we would have a family beach trip a few hours away, but never too far. And so when I mapped out the itinerary for our first family trip via plane – to Palawan, a bucket list destination for many and for us in the family, too – I was excited.
Traveling with them, especially as I saw my parents gamely trying snorkeling for the first time, was a happiness unlike any other. It’s one thing to finally set foot on a place you have dreamed about yourself; it is quite another to see it with loved ones, especially when you are experiencing it all together for the first time like wide-eyed children. And also when you know they deserve this trip after all the hard work and sacrifices they made all through the years. My father would get up at 3 am six days a week to buy fresh produce in the market for re-selling, and my mother would continue selling in the early afternoon until evening. This humble business was what put me and my brothers through school.
Batanes was another memorable experience, for this was where my parents met and fell in love as nurses on a six-month assignment decades ago. I had opportunities to travel to Batanes, but I waited for my parents to be ready. And how happy I was that I did! I was able to have two rich experiences of Batanes’ beauty – first, through my own eyes, and second, through my parents’ eyes as they explored places familiar and unfamiliar. It was a thrill watching their eyes light up at the old and new.
I was able to travel again to Batanes twice for work, and I thoroughly enjoyed those trips, but I am glad that my first time was with my parents.
I am also happy for my parents as they have started going off on trips on their own. First, I helped them with the planning, preparing itineraries, and booking flights and accommodations for them. Recently, they have started joining their friends in group tours. And they seemed to having immense fun!
They are already in fact talking about traveling again in the coming years! It is clearer all the more now where I got my spirit for adventure.
Now, with new additions to the family – a cute and adorable nephew! – we cannot go far as a family just yet, but we have had nice family dinners and a beach trip nearby. Lately, I have been appreciating family time, whether in adventures near or far. Family time is still family time, after all.
These travel memories came up for me as I watched this heartwarming video on a different kind of travel dream. A simple yet beautiful message. Check it out for yourself below.
You can book flights at AirAsia.com too and #daretodream. Here’s to happy and memorable family trips!