My first day in Romblon started at five in the morning. Three hours of sleep wasn’t really enough to reenergize my body after the grueling fifteen-hour trip of the previous day, but I wasn’t about to pass the opportunity to shoot the sunrise off Banton Town’s boulder-rich boulevard.
Banton Town, or more properly known as Poblacion, is the center of trade in small island of Banton in Romblon. The first thing that I saw, alighting from our boat the night before, was its moonlit seaside boulevard.
Subatan Lane, as the locals named it, is sort of like a smaller version of Manila’s Baywalk, only cleaner (in fact, much, much cleaner). Starting from the Banton Port, it meanders along the east side of the island, passing the municipal hall, the Bangar Treehouse and ends at Point Matagar which comprises of towering rock formations that Bantoanons consider as their natural lighthouse. Some meters from the jagged rock formations is an actual white tower that overlooks the town.
The boulevard is lined with huge trees with concrete benches scattered along its length. A few steps below the avenue is the rocky shore of Poblacion. And this was where my interest held fast.
The area is a landscape photographer’s haven. It was littered with huge boulders topped by thick vivid green moss. It looked slippery, and is superlatively slippery. I was having a hard time moving from one place to the next, scouting for a place to set my tripod.
It would have all been perfect, except that the clouds have other things on their mind that day. It was a bit thick and the sun was having difficulty getting through. It was a muffled sunrise, but I made do with what light was given. I felt the first blast of full sunshine as I was walking along the Subatan Lane on the way to Point Matagar. Typical of a fishing village, I passed docked wooden boats, nets whisked on the gravelly shores, and a group of fisher folks lounging about.
The sun was in full blast as I started climbing the tower at the north end of the coast. Even with little sleep and no breakfast yet, I felt energized. This was going to be a one heck of a trip. I just know it.
PORT OF BANTON
Banton Island, Rombon