Rowjie and I were fetched at our humble abode by a big van with cameras and all the glitz. We didn’t know where we were headed. All I knew was we have a very long day ahead of us. And so I closed my eyes and played sleep. Then I heard this whisper, “Palalabs, papunta tayo ng Terminal 3.” And that kicked off our epic vacation, the one I will surely remember until my last breathe.

We attended the first ever Kidlat Climb last 2007 in Zambales. There were 30-something climbers from different clubs and organization who participated the event and Brian Aballe was one of them. He’s a member of the Pinoy Travel Bloggers, the biggest community of Filipino travelogue writers in and out of the country. We saw this guy on GMA News TV Channel 11’s (formerly QTV) Weekend Getaway Ilocos episode enjoying his free vacation with a friend. And then I wondered, how did that happen? I even thought that he knows someone from GMA.

MissBackpacker | Where Have You Been Lately?
Brian on Gray with friend Johari (Photo by Weekend Getaway)

TRIVIA: Balikbayan was Weekend Getaway’s old title. When QTV network changed format and became GMA News TV, the name and format of the show also changed.

I don’t get to watch TV that much as I work full time for a BPO company and still do part-time virtual assistance. In dire need of money, eh? So it was just lately that I found out how the magic of Weekend Getaway works.

When I learned that we needed to submit an audition video convincing the WG crew why we deserve to have a free vacation, I immediately pestered Rowjie and didn’t stop until get him to agree on submitting something. But little did he know, I was already starting the video. If you get to watch the audition video, you’d even see how sneaky I was in completing the mini-clip I created. hihi

As good luck would have it, our canceled and supposed September 16 Batad trip didn’t just go down the drain as I got this call from Marvin of WG last September 13 saying they were eyeing us to be their September 16 Weekend Warriors (their term for the chosen couple). After returning the pre-interview form they had us filled-out, I got another call from him now asking me to pack our stuff for three days because we just earned our passes to a free vacay!

During my last convo with Marvin, one of the show’s Program Researchers, I dared ask where they were taking us to no avail. I was just told not to forget our hike and swim clothes and to even bring stuff for cold and heat protection. I was like, what the eff! Rowjie and I had debates on possibilities of climbing a mountain or doing water activities. Hmm.

Then it was Friday, September 16, the dreaded day. We’re all packed not knowing where our clueless souls will be brought. We rode the van off to our ultimate weekend getaway!

MissBackpacker | Where Have You Been Lately?
Watch Weekend Getaway every Friday 10PM on GMA News TV 11.

Join us this October 7 at 10 PM on GMA News TV Channel 11 and find out where our restless feet wandered as Weekend Getaway takes you to another must-visit destination in the Philippines.


  1. Excited!!! Can’t wait to see the episode!

    Kaya pala parang hindi ako familiar sa Weekend Getaway. Balikbayan yung alam ko sa QTV nun! Hahaha.

    1. Di ko rin alam yan. Di ko nga rin alam na nag-change format na ang QTV. hihihi. Waaaaaah! Baka di na ako makatulog. Excited ako makita sarili ko sa TV. *vain lang*

  2. galing kakainggit naman kayo,.libre ang fun adventure hehehe! congrats..!

    1. Thank you, Melyn! Submit na rin kayo para masaya ang weekend niyo! ☺

  3. I saw the trip last night and I searched for your site and kudos to both of you for completing all the challenges and seems like you really enjoyed the journey 🙂

    1. Hello! Thank you for making efforts on searching my site. Yes, we did have fun! Submit your audition video too, who knows I might see you on TV next. Cheers! ☺

    1. Hello Hippie Mum! <3

      Yipee! I can be creative in the name of plane tickets! 😀

  4. Aha! Nakasabay namin kayo sa T3 at sa Dipolog Airport. 🙂 Sabi na nga at Weekend Gateaway un eh! Kakainggit!

    1. Hello! Salamat sa pagbisita. Ang saya-saya, dumadami ang travel bloggers na nakikilala ko. ☺

    2. wow… pa-autograph ha! Hihi.. 🙂

      1. Waaaaah!!! Padala ko na lang, Mamu. hahahaha! Joke!

  5. wah…sabi ko na nga kilala ko kayo….hehehe..aside sa sinumpa kong bundok anf Mt. Balingkilat, nasundan pa ng Nagsasa and Borawan Adventure…and eto ngaun nagkachance din kayo sa WGA show…congratz…astig pinanuod ko un episode nyo…hehehehe…sarap noh..sana meron talaga special gawin ang WGA show sa ating mga Weekend Warriors sa 1st Anniversary nila…..^_^..btw thanks sa pic ha…namiss ko yan tigre na yn, pero meron talaga naging memorable sa pic na yan…bwahahahahaha.

    1. Hello Brian! Salamat sa pagbisita. Sana magkasama ulit tayo sa climb. ☺

    1. Hay naku. Isang linggo kaya ako di makakilos ng husto sa sakit ng mga braso ko. Pero enjoy! At least na-try ko siya kahit once lang at baka di na maulit. ☺

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