Friday, April 26, 2013

Dead stuff in a cave

It's always a delight when my interests unexpectedly cross paths and we get a label crossover. If only they'd thrown some monkeys in there too, this might have been literally the best thing ever.

I've been enjoying surprises more since I stopped bothering to do even the most preliminary, misleading Wikitravel research before heading to a place, so when I walked around Sagada with vague notions of rice terraces and waterfalls I had no idea I was going to see a load of boxed dead guys piled up and left to fester in the mouths of caves or on perilous precipices.

But I did! Obviously. Otherwise, that introduction would have been superfluous.

Lumiang Burial Cave

This cave and others like it were treated as warehouses for dearly departed stiffs, until civilised Europeans arrived and told them that was ridiculous: corpses should be left to spoil underground if they've got any chance of getting into the correct afterlife, silly! Most of the coffins ended up somewhere in the dark depths of the cavern below, following landslides and other geological crises, but these ones still standing at the entrance are happy to be photographed by morbidly curious tourists every day. At least, let's assume so.

There was another burial cave nearby, which I almost got in shot.
I'm working without a viewfinder since my camera display busted

Sumaging Cave

No dead stuff here, but there was a Dave in a cave. Clearly not having learned anything from my visit to Niah Caves in Borneo, I failed to bring a torch and didn't get very far. That's okay, Jackie was a bit scared anyway.

Hanging Coffins

While some of the jaded travel accounts I've read from Sagada make even my blog look upbeat, they were right about the hanging coffins being disappointing. I took some photos of this attractive limestone rock face when we passed it on two consecutive days without knowing what I was looking at.

Rice Terraces

This sign made me very happy

Sadly, there's no sign asking people to stop burning shit

Yeah, think I might give it a miss

I don't know how long we walked for, but the seasons changed rapidly

No caption for this last one, just to annoy Enoemos. Like he's reading any more!


  1. Nope.... I am still present daily. Though I did take a brief break while traveling to China for two days (too long) and Japan for three weeks (too short).

    1. Brilliant! Thanks for taking the bait. I still have to wait a while before Japan thanks to overly suspicious and demanding immigration for Filipinos, but won't take no for an answer.

  2. Yep… hook, line, and sinker.
    It’s unfortunate that you missed the sakura blossoms, though it may be fortunate at the same time as it was permanently overcast, and also favorable for me, as is meant the absence of one more human in the masses (gently) pushing and shoving their way through temples.
    Actually only a single temple viewing day was swarming with cohorts, as the blossoms came a week earlier this year, as we had planned a week before the announced "best viewed by" date, our arrival time in Kyoto war a week prior to the crowds, and at the ideal viewing stage. The arrival of the larger masses cut our stay (in Kyoto) by only one day, and thus, as the rest of japan made their way to Kyoto, our stay in the rest of japan war also fairly uncrowded, regardless of school vacation.
    Flawless victory.
    P.S. It may also be positive that you missed the blossoms, as your writing style would have suffered and become all “soft and mushy” in the in the romantic environment.
    Good luck with the visa.