September last year, I made a decision to go back to my dragon boat team and along with that ate back all the words I said. We can all laugh about it now.

When I joined the mock race the same month, I remembered the feeling of victory and how it tasted so good. It was actually what led me to come back home to MP’s arms. The team was all revamped. No more negative vibes, less snotty people and it feels freer to move. Who said a competitive team can’t have fun?


The DIDBF or Davao International Dragon Boat Festival 2018 held last December 1, 2018 was already talked about in the group since I joined back. We have a lot of Davaoenos in the team and this plan was highly encouraged. Although a lot expressed intent to join we were only able to team up the Women’s Half Boat, which is not so bad after all the good credentials we built. Chos.


The women’s team prepared for the race for no less than 2 months. We got our A game. Most of us were from zero to hero like literally first-timers. And yet they performed really beyond anyone’s expectations. To be honest, I don’t want to talk about the race itself. The program flow needed a lot of improvement but the event being the pioneer, it explains why a lot has to be developed yet. I’d love to go back. In a heartbeat. The experience taught me a lot of things like how important it is to fight for what’s right. It’s been 2 months already and it’s time for me to let go of that certain unnecessary baggage.


In the end, what really mattered is that we put up a good fight, it was neck-to-neck and clearly, we didn’t disappoint. I know how much we worked hard for it, like I was there through it all to testify. Some things take time to heal. And! I love Davao. I love Luz Kinilaw, I love all the memories we shared together as a team. I love the fact that we’re in the same race as Philippine Army’s and Philippine Air Force’s teams. I love that this is the first international race I’ve ever completed from beginning to end ♥ It was an experience like no other and I don’t regret a second I spent to prepare for this race. Plus, all the isaw I binged-eat post-race was all worth it. Huhuhuhu, I love dragon boat and always will. Keeping away for months was worth it in the end because I got to mature and grow apart from them but with them, you know what I mean?

I’ve grown accustomed to these people, for all the Wednesdays we spent together. Watching videos from when we started down to the last before we flew to Davao, the changes and the improvements are worth every early wake up call and bruise everywhere. Some great achievements are not rewarded by medals or trophies, or ego boosts, sometimes it comes in different forms, like gaining true friendship, experiences or maybe late night drinking with your favorite people. It’s always humbling to train hard and fly to race. First timers in the Philippines with actual dragon boat paddlers 😉 It’s such a sight to see that everyone cheer for each other. We are competitors on the boat, in the water but friends as soon as we step out. But it sure is important too, to uphold values some people fail to do. Paddle with strength but also with integrity.


Thank you, DIDBF. I’ve waited for the right time to write about it.

If you’re in Doha and wanting to try paddling, just visit our page. You will not regret.




3 thoughts on “December in Davao

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