Taal EQ Test

Forget the marshmallow tests. Taal offers a much better EQ test. But first let me post this photo, and tell me there's something wrong. There were 11 of us who saw it and I was the only one who burst out laughing.

Anyway, back to the EQ test. To get to the Taal crater we had to cross the surrounding lake. Upon reaching the island, we had the option to trek the few kilometers to the summit or to go on horseback. Since no one was willing to shell out 500 bucks for the horse we decided to go on foot. Face it - even if you were willing to pay for the horse it would be so uncool if everyone else is on foot.

Now this is where it gets interesting. The path to the top is narrow and dusty and hot and steep. Plus, there are horses everywhere - there are horses going up, horses going down, and horse shit on the ground. And as you trudge along sweating, panting, and wanting to kill the trip organizer, you hear voices whispering "Ma'am, wala pa po kayo sa one-fourth, kuha na kayo ng kabayo, malayo pa po yan." And through gritted teeth, we say, no, thank you. And a few gallons of sweat later, it's that voice again: "Ma'am, malayo pa po, kuha na kayo ng kabayo." See? Better than a marshmallow test, and so effective it almost drove me berserk. Much as I would want to think that these 10 or so horses were just going up for some other reason other than to tempt us or drive us mad, whichever comes first, their motives were quite obvious. In the end, they were the ones who actually gave up, because we stopped so often to take pictures and they probably got bored, or figured we were really really stingy people.

Getting to the crater was anti-climactic - we stopped at some shed and we sort of figured we were halfway there, so we re-applied sunblock, took a couple of pictures, and basically tried to replenish our energy to make it all the way to the top. Which happened to be twenty steps away. Our tour guide must have been laughing his ass off.

On the way down there was this horse who suddenly made a dolphin dive to the ground, and in the process threw down this Japanese woman. Thankfully no one was hurt. This other rider approached them to help, and as he was doing so his own horse found himself free and promptly ran away. The rider tried to run after the horse, and realized after a few couple of steps that he can't possibly outrun the now happy (and free) animal.

After much pondering and insight, we have come to the conclusion that the dolphin-diving horse and the runaway horse have formed a conspiracy, in which dolphin-diver would execute said dolphin dive when soon-to-be-free horse is nearby, so that the latter's rider would be forced to help the former's passengers, in which case he would inadvertently let go of the reins, and the lucky horse can run off into the sunset. Freedom!!! Pretty smart, those horses.

Admittedly Taal was not as breathtaking as I would have wanted it to be, but the hours and hours of crazy idiotic laughter more than make up for it. More importantly I do realize that I should do this more often. Next weekend, perhaps?

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