One spectacular sunrise in 2010 © Jojie Alcantara
[Tweet “Of golden sunrise and statues in the Baywalk by Jojie Alcantara”]
I grew up playing and swimming in the black sandy shore of Times Beach in Matina decades ago. It is Davao’s public beach.
Back then, it was a lot cleaner. Many families I know used to spend wonderful picnics there. As the population grew, my family stopped making it our weekend outing in the mid-90s. The shore became congested with people, trash and pollution (including bathing dogs and horses). A growing community of houses were built. A few years back, the resort and homeowners made a move to clean up and revive the old popularity of Times Beach, trying to restore its old glory.
A portion called Baywalk was constructed by the family who owns Queensland, a popular motel by the sea. There used to be this infamous seawall where a young crowd would hang out in parked cars and blared music, leaving bottles of beer littered around (that once “young crowd” must now be parents with beer bellies).
The Baywalk is now transformed into a clean park with manicured gardens, a mini zoo and a shark pool (am not sure if there are any left now). At dawn, there used to be an aerobics class going on. Here joggers, pregnant women, families spend time around the place to walk, run, fish, exercise, eat and drink and just watch the sunset without swimming. I haven’t been here for quite some time. I was told that some of the massage therapists from San Pedro and Rizal Park now hang out there.
Two famous replicas of statues were built: the Little Mermaid of Copenhagen looking forlornly out at sea; and the other more controversial nude Statue of David. When it was first erected (pardon the pun), conservative folks reacted to the owner having the “balls” to build the structure (more pun coming ahead), deeming it an affront to the senses. There was a huge protest over a dong.
[Tweet “Behold… the great balls of fire! “]
Sorry, that was a momentary glitch. Where was I?
The hoopla has died down by now, and the initial shock went “limp” (I can’t help it!). Today, David’s still hanging by his balls soaked in the golden
shower splendor of the sun. I think the fountains by the pool are still working. While it has initially been met with resistance, it is now a popular tourist attraction with lots of selfie done below the belt… so much ado over David’s Goliath.
I used to frequent this place whenever I have the urge to get some beautiful daybreak. Sunrise never disappoints me here. They were almost always beautiful. Other times, they were spectacular.
More images of sunrise in Baywalk (October 2011) :
There is more in my other photo gallery, if you are interested.