The White Sand Beach at the Apo Island Community

Scuba Diving Cogon Point at Apo Island & Village Guitar Jam



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My old friend Kurt from my hometown in Winchester, Virginia was working in Manila for a few months in late 2004. Just before he was due to return home to the States, he got in a quick weekend visit to Dumaguete. Although we didn’t really hang around Dumaguete very much because I met him at the airport and went directly to Apo Island to stay at Liberty’s and do a dive with my friend Mario.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Ten minutes after I picked Kurt up from the Dumaguete airport, we crammed into a bus for a ride to the Malatapay boat landing to Apo. I think Kurt would have rather taken something with more legroom.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    The surf was too heavy at Malatapay to land the pump boat shuttle to Apo so we had to launch from this sheltered beach.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    As the boat pulled out of the little harbor, it was tough to miss the advancing white caps on the horizon.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Once we were clear of the shelter provided by the mainland, the waves began to break over the bow of the pump boat.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    At times it felt like we were white water rafting on the open sea.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Pretty much everything and everybody got doused, but the little white boat showed no signs of stopping.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Once we reached Apo Island more than an hour later, the winds had relented somewhat and the sunset behind us gave the island a warm glow.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    This happened to be a Friday afternoon, and all the kids who attend classes on the mainland during the week had just arrived back home on Apo and were playing on the beach. Something about this shot reminds me a little of Gilligan's Island.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Kurt carried Hanna, Liberty's daughter from the boat to the beach to join her friends.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    There was a nice sunset over the horizon in front of us.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    That night we had a spontaneous jam session in "downtown" Apo. Photo by Daniel Simon.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Kurt made some new friends with the friendly folks who live on the island.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    I can't remember what songs we played, but Ian really rocked the house on the Boluarte Rocks drum kit. Photo by Daniel Simon.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    The acoustic guitar was sometimes hard to hear over everyone singing and clapping along. Photo by Daniel Simon.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    We played until they turned off the generator on the island at ten o'clock. Photo by Daniel Simon.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Kurt was the first customer of the day for the Apo Island t-shirt vendors. I suspect they may have been waiting for him to finish breakfast and buy something from them.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    "We know you already have two t-shirts, but how about a few sarongs for lunch?"

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    After the lessons in Apo Island capitalism we went diving with Mario.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    We dove Apo's Cogon Point, and the large school of jacks was there right on schedule.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    I have lots of photos of these guys at this point.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Here's a shot of Kurt with the jacks.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Apo's wall of fish.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    We caught a quick glimpse of this turtle before it sped off into the blue.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Class of Sherando High School, 1995.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Back on the surface, the wind was kicking up some rough surf for the trip back to the island.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    Another white water rafting shot from Apo.

  • Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005

    Apo Island & Dive with Kurt - January 2005
    After the morning of diving, we were back in Dumaguete for dinner with Hanes.