Bangkong Kahoy

Once there was a tree, which had a strong bond with a boy.  The tree let the boy climbed its branches and picked its fruit.  The boy did and he was happy. When the boy became a man, the tree offered its trunk for him to make a boat so he could sail to other places and be happy.  The man did and was happy.  When he became old, the tree offered its stump for him to sit and reflect and be happy.  The old man did and was glad.

The latter is true with Bangkong Kahoy Valley, a place where one could sit (in wooden chairs and benches) and be still and glad. But the place is more than just sitting in their bangkong kahoy. It offers more for us to be glad.

Bangkong Kahoy Valley in Dolores, Quezon is a place literally with wooden chairs and benches creatively and beautifully cut, retaining its naturaliza and simplicity. Mr Dionisio “Dion” Pullan who prefers to call himself the caretaker rather than the owner, has enhanced the place, making it a sought-after agri-tourism destination.  An environmentalist by heart, he developed the place by enhancing what the nature has already put in place.  This means adopting the natural farming, pursuing to maintain the balance of the ecosystem while providing safe and healthy food, and vibrant livelihood to the community.

They produce pesticide- and chemical-free vegetables and rootcrops. They are also into mushroom production, a must-try-to-eat (I like their fried mushrooms) produce in the farm.  Their mushroom soup also tastes good. Another interesting produce is the wild raspberry.  It is native in the area, a weed actually to the locals but now is being taken cared of. It tastes good, the best as visitors claimed it. We had our share of picking and eating and indeed it was good. Try their raspberry shake.

Mr Dion made it a place worth going.  When you’re in the valley, sitting in one of those bangkong kahoy, you will be grateful for the few Dions who made things happen, trudging the path once less travelled to pave an easier way for the many to commune with nature, eat the fruit of the wilds and be glad.