Monday, June 22, 2009

daughter of the islands

recently (this morning) i realized why i am so comfortable living on an island, and why islands and island lore fascinate me. it's because i am a descendant of the vikings. the northern craggy bits of rock at the top of the earth are deep in my ancestral memories, tucked away in the misty subconscious zone that each person reserves for places on the planet.

although i was born on the prairies of canada, and i do feel a connection and a security there, somehow i am drawn to islands. pitcairn island of "mutiny on the bounty" fame is one. iceland, another. haiti...jamaica...sri lanka...ireland, my soul's home...all of great britain, my ancestors' second home...they came in swift and terrible raids from the north...norway, sweden, denmark...although not islands, technically, all places i could call home.

now that i have lived for 22 years in the tropics on an volcanic island the size of ireland, just longer and narrow where ireland is basically a circle, (think spoon and saucer), it's even more fun to understand why i love my island: Luzon- the northernmost island of the Philippine archipelago.

you can get to anywhere on my island in a day or two. the part we live on (metro manila) is situated on a strip of land about 100 km wide. from the south china sea to the pacific...the sun rises eastward...storms roar in from the mighty pacific eastward... sunset and stormset over the south china sea in the west.

when we went to guam a couple of years ago, i fell in love. you can drive all around it on a tiny coastal road, in about 6 hours. every inch of that coastal road is pure tropical beauty. golden sand, blue ocean, palm trees, idyllic valleys, rugged mountains right beside them, and sunrise-sunset views from almost anywhere on that tiny bit of mountaintop poking up out of the pacific.

islands. the brave tips of mountains embraced in the tender arms of mother ocean. i love them.

No comments: