Friday, September 9, 2011


After we had our lunch by a road side cafeteria called TRES HERMANAS (three madams) -- the highlight of which was a forgettable kilawing kalabaw which loosely translated, is... raw carabao meat cured in vinegar (like cheviche)....yes, i know, you are having swirling images of this dish in your head. But it didn't actually LOOK raw... the taste itself  was not bad but not good either.. I tell you something,  faced with no options, -- you eat was is presented. (the rice was undercooked too...). It was my kids' SURVIVOR MOMENT.... hahahaha.

Not deterred, we headed down to the much awaited tarsier reserve.

The reserve itself was very well maintained and you can roam around the grounds freely searching for the tarsier. Most of them are located in the trees and you can search by looking for ones with COVERS on them. (like houses) or in our case, we would go where there was a huge crowd.

Actually, when you get an idea what the "houses" look like, it's very easy to spot and the whole area housed about 10-15 of these houses so you don't need to crowd in one place.

Tarsiers are native to bohol and are the smallest primates. The most notable feature is their HUGE eyes which are the same size as their brain.

my preciiiooouuuuusss..... hehehe.... kindda gollum like eh?
huge eyes (above photos by my friend, Lilibeth Lam)

They so small you can fit one in your hand...

These little buggers are so cute you want to touch one (which is a NO NO)... they actually remind me of koalas... the way they crouch and cling to the branch. Both of them are nocturnal too...

Rules of the reserve : DO NOT TOUCH the tarsiers. NO FLASH photography (since they are nocturnal,  they have sensitive eyes)
The reserve do not charge a fee and just have a "donation" box. (I dropped 200 pesos( $5-) for our group)

Next stop was the hanging bridge.

The only thing you get is the excitement of crossing the bamboo bridge over the height of the river and having it swing. There are two bridges. One is for crossing to the other side and the other is for coming back.

It was pretty hard to take pictures while crossing because of the swinging. I was scared I might lose a grip and my camera would go BYE BYE to the river. It was a good 20 feet high and my sandals kept on getting stuck in between the slats of the bamboo. The boys had a lot of fun jiggling the bridge though. (yeah, ok, they had a lot of fun scaring the heck out of their 7 yr old sister)

Once you get to the other side, there is not much to see. There are few merchants selling local peanut cookies and some coconut sugar. 

Since my friend already had come before, she knew this man who can UNHUSK a coconut with his bare teeth lived there. I think he was featured in several TV programs in several countries already. (do something ODD and you're sure to get on TV). If you have ever seen a coconut, you would know how hard it is to open (most people open it with a machete) and unimaginable to even try doing it with your teeth. 

Looking at him reminded me of the henchmen you see on TV... one of the "bad" guys -- one of those who is always the kidnapper/hold upper or henchmen of some corrupt person. hahahaha

We haggled with him for his "fee"- from 200 pesos to 100 pesos ($5 to $2.5) for him to "perform"

See him do his jawdropping stuff (hear me shout in amazement in the background) in less than 20 seconds.!!!!!

Maybe I should try too...
he actually gripped the coconut with his TEETH

There was more to see in Bohol and we weren't finished yet...

But I have to tell that in the next blog. (LOL)

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