from the botanical gardens, A and i took about 15 minutes to reach Wright Park. a sure sign you’re headed in the Wright direction (nudge, nudge) are the people on horseback. well that and the green stuff on the ground (pasintabi sa kumakain).
this part of Baguio is tourist-famous because you could rent a horse or pony and go around this area for fairly reasonable prices. i wanted to experience riding one but two things stopped me: my weight (i’m obese, actually *sad face*), and it was getting dark. hindi sulit kung mamamasyal lang ako sa dilim. so we skipped that and went on
walking climbing tour of Wright Par. it was a stupid thing to do but we were adventurers! we accepted the challenge of climbing the long staircase to somewhere we didn’t know!
after a lot of grumbling and almost cursing under our gasps for air, we reached a relatively wooded area and some food stalls around. no park yet! a couple of minutes strolling through an unknown area that just got darker and darker as night came, we finally saw this pool of water and lighted boulevard. it is apparently called Pool of Pines. and i realized how americans loved this kind of landscaping. Washington monument has a reflecting pool. UP Diliman, designed by Americans, have a pool/fountain in front of Oble (which is now a garden). and then this one. costly perhaps, but really nice to be around. and it’s very dramatic, IMHO. because at the end of this boulevard is the official summer residence of the philippine president: the Mansion House.
it was quite dark when we finally arrived here, huffing from the climb, so i didn’t have the obligatory picture posing at the gates. what i took was the picture *of* the gate, supposedly inspired by the ones on Buckingham Palace. it was the best we could do to cover most of Baguio that day so we went back to Session Road to cap off the night with dinner and then get some shut-eye for tomorrow.
We went to Volante that evening on Session Road. the red-orange paint and dim lighting made for a cozy ambiance from the ground floor. it seemed very inviting. they even had artworks displayed on the walls and what i really liked were the astronomy photos which were taken from the Stardust Observatory of John Nassr in Baguio. really cool photos.
it had 2 other levels up a staircase and had smoking and non-smoking areas. the 2nd level should be the smoking area and the 3rd was non-smoking but i could really smell the cigarette smoke in our area. i have poor eyesight which probably heightened my nose’s sensitivity to these things so it was really annoying and unpleasant.
since we were tired, we didn’t argue much about what to order. we simply chose best-sellers and a strawberry milkshake. hey, we’re in baguio! strawberries should be a staple. 😀 we had spaghetti with meatballs and the pizza marengo. for dessert, the choco vanilla affair was it.
the food in Volante needed a little tweaking with some salt. good thing there were salt and pepper shakers on the table. the pizza had a sweet taste to it but was bland. it was filling but not as satisfying as i had hoped. the description on the menu was accurate but deceptively so. whole tomatoes on their own don’t make for flavorful spaghetti. specially when they don’t match the quantity of pasta! i felt a bit cheated with this dish. if there was enough tomatoes on the spaghetti, my tastebuds would definitely “do backflips in delight.” but they only teased me and didn’t give me enough kick for my pasta. such a sad, sad thing. and, as with the pizza, it needed a salt shower. in all fairness, the meatballs were good and meaty and not dry.
it would seem, now, that their forte is still the pinoy’s favorite: sweetness. what they lacked in the pizza in pasta, they have right on target with their strawberry milkshake and our dessert: the choco vanilla affair. one would think this is a no-brainer and it would taste like most of your choco lava and vanilla desserts. what i liked about this is the crusty cake. the textures of soft ice cream and the crunchy-gooey cake together was absolutely wonderful.
as we finished and paid the bill, it was a love-hate relationship that i’m still not sure of. will i go back to Volante? yes? maybe? i might never know until i return to Baguio.