January 22, 2015

Tickled Pink at the Pink Beach

Posted in Traveling Minstrel Journals at 22:31 by Miracle

© Miracle Romano

© Miracle Romano

Pink was my “favorite” color as a little girl, but only because society influenced me that it was what little girls were supposed to like.  But even then, I would feel like deviating by opting for fuchsia instead of the usual sweet pink.  To the chagrin of my five-year-old self, it was more difficult to spell; but I actually had fuchsia shoes, and – wait for it! – a matching dress.  Fortunately, I grew up as a painter’s daughter and I was made to realize that colors were, in truth, genderless.  The journey of knowing myself also turned out to be a journey through the color spectrum, and my taste gradually drifted to lavender, to various shades of blue and violet, and finally to purple where I feel most at home.  And yet no matter what your favorite color is, you would probably want to see a pink beach in this lifetime!

For many years, the Great Sta. Cruz Island of Zamboanga City boasted of the only pink sand beach in the Philippines, but not many dare to go because of the volatile peace and order situation in Zamboanga City and nearby Basilan.  It is for this reason that foreigners are nowhere to be seen and police or military escorts are assigned to accompany local island visitors.

It is ironic because I felt so safe and at peace when I floated and snorkeled by the pink beach as the smiling Bajaus, the inhabitants of the island, plied the silky waters on their small, distinctly shaped fishing boats every now and then.

© Miracle Romano

© Miracle Romano

It is true that even though I live in the Zamboanga Peninsula, it is easier for me to travel to Manila in Luzon or Cebu in Visayas than to Zamboanga in my very own Mindanao. There are no direct flights from Dipolog to Zamboanga and travelers from my city have to brave a very long drive. But what an extremely scenic drive!

There is good news, however, for those who are wary about traveling to Zamboanga City.  Two other pink beaches in Samar and Sorsogon have recently appeared in travel maps! With thousands of extraordinary beaches in the Philippines, there is so much more left to explore, and I wouldn’t be surprised if people came across another color!

I have not been to the ones in Samar and Sorsogon but my experience in Sta. Cruz Island’s pink beach made me wish I could share it with the world – but only if the world allows it to flourish and recover from the damage done by illegal coral reef mining.

© Miracle Romano

© Miracle Romano

“But is it really pink?!” People ask.

The particles from the red organ pipe coral (tubipora musica) uniquely bespeckle the sand, thus suffusing the shoreline with a roseate tint. I personally think that the sands away from the water appear more like a light ecru than pink, but they are pinkest where the ocean kisses the blushing shore.

And yes, all the pink talk brought me back to when I was a little girl; happy, carefree, and tickled pink by nature’s pleasures!

© Miracle Romano

© Miracle Romano

What we get from this adventure is just sheer joy. And joy is, after all, the end of life. We do not live to eat and make money. We eat and make money to be able to live. – George Mallory

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Related Entry: Zamboanga Hermosa

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