There are great summers and then there are summers that are just simply great, they’re unmatched. Summer of 2015 was that for me. Spent 2 solid weeks with my son Ethan. Went to middle America to interview and film icons of the cockfighting world for my up and coming documentary film The Sport of Kings and finally saw the great American countryside. Went back and did a dream film project entitled Flotsam.
It all started April 3 as I fly to LA. Was back in Manila May 5. Shooting Flotsam by May 17-28th. On the last day of May, I come home and it feels great to be back in my own bed. I haven’t really been home in 2 months and for good reason. Been moving around so much and to places I’ve always wanted to go to and with people that I find special.
And then a few days of post-production meetings for Flotsam and off I go with old friends up and climbed Mt Pulag. This trip was planned way before summer and had moved 3 times already. And finally, we all came together and it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.
We drove up to Baguio around 11:30pm of June 3, got to Baguio early morning, took a jeep to the jump-off point and trekked to the 2nd highest peak in the Philippines.
At the DENR station where everyone goes thru an orientation process, they sell t-shirts that says “I survived Mt. Pulag”. I didn’t get the t-shirt but I sure as hell understand what it means.
My friend Jason Moss organized this whole trip and he described the trek as “banayad” which means that it was fairly easy. It was fairly easy, for anyone who packed light. I was part-Strayed, part-Wild and packed a monster backpack wieghing a probable 50lbs and lugging that onto a 4-hr trek without any prior training is a painful experience. Lesson learned. But no regrets. The views were worth it, the place is magical.
A lot of laughter and a lot of hard work too. And everything great in the middle. Mark this…summer of 2015. What a ride!