Backpacking with a Book
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Waiting at Puerto del Sur

Puerto del Sur Santander Cebu

Puerto del Sur Santander Cebu

Liloan, Santander: The port is waiting for her yet another daughter of restlessness.

Located at Liloan, Santander—the southernmost tip of Cebu—it is aptly called the Port of the South. A familiarity with the Spanish language taught me that puerto also means openingdoor, entrance.

Purtahan, the Cebuano for door, is derived from puerta. Oh, I remember, as a child, overhearing  stories laced with sexual innuendos about pwerta sa babay from my tatays and nanays. Yes, it refers to the very entrance of a woman’s body.  😉

Slept the waiting away

The port is the door to adventure, to wanderings, to solitude.

After our midnight shift, we directly headed to South Bus Terminal. Luckily, there was a bus bound south earlier than planned.  We grabbed our usual midnight dinner before boarding and reminded the conductor to call us before the bus leaves. It was a weekday and we didn’t expect it would be that crowded. The bus was packed and left us no other choice but to stand in the isle. It was the first in the entirety of my adulthood. I value my firsts regardless of their quality. Instead of embarrassment, I felt pride. I took it stride. Pie, my companion, grumbled about it.  To me,  it was the start of the adventure.

We were able to get a seat halfway through the ride. We tried to catch some winks but could not. The bus rushed into the emptiness of the night. We arrived in the port in no time. We had to wait for an hour or so for the earliest boat schedule bound for Sibulan Port.

The Port of the South

The port is the exit of a soul seeking answers from a place. It is the entrance of a soul who might not find the answers but find patience “toward all that is unsolved in [the] heart and try to love the questions themselves. ” Take Rilke’s advice. “Try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue.  Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them.  And the point is, to live everything.  Live the questions now.  Perhaps you will find them gradually, without noticing it, and live along some distant day into the answer.  ” Imaginary reader, you can trust Rilke for that.

Traveling teaches us patience. It teaches us values that we do not normally possess. It teaches us the sad beauty of waiting.


South Bus Terminal, Cebu City–Liloan, Santander                            3.5 hours
Bus Fare                                                                                                       P168 
Fast Craft Liloan, Santander–Sibulan Port, Dumaguete                  P65.00
Pump boat                                                                                                   P45.00

Liloan, Santander–Sibulan Port, Dumaguete                                     15-20 minutes

(as of January 2016)

Jona of Backpacking with a Book

Hi there, I’m Jona! I’m in my early 30s and is currently based in Ha Noi, Vietnam.I primarily write poetry and short stories in Cebuano and lengthy travel essays in English. Blogging has become an outlet to think out loud. I live the life I set for myself. I try to live an unapologetic life. For collaborations, projects, and other things, please email me at Find me somewhere else!

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