Sunday, 31 August 2014

Gettin' Down and Dirty at Phillip's Sanctuary

How is everyone?

After months of planning, our team building has finally commenced! Yay!

Our team decided to go to Phillip’s Sanctuary which is situated at Pestaño Farm in Antipolo, Rizal. The sanctuary covers several hectares of land and different kinds of trees dot the tranquil scenery. It took us about an hour and a half to reach the place. The first thing I noticed is that cell reception in the area is not good. I had no bars by the time we arrived at the sanctuary so if you’re planning to go there, it’s best to give a heads up to those may be trying to reach you.

Entering Phillip’s, we were greeted by fruit-bearing trees and the scent of dried leaves (very rustic). The trees were labeled with their local name, English name, and their scientific name. Time in was 11:30 in the morning and settled in our cabana. It was spacious and clean. The main area serves as the dining room, two large bedrooms that have four big bunk beds. There’s also a veranda that overlooks the pool and the mudslide pitch. But our cabana only has one bathroom to accommodate all eleven of us. 

Welcome to the Narra Cabana!
Sooo hungry! LOL
Foooooood! ^_^
We had a visitor.
I named him Jon Snow. Haha!
We rested for a bout thirty minutes before we started the activities. First, we were given the brief history of Phillip's Sanctuary. Then were asked to divide ourselves into two teams and create a cheer before the activities start. There were eleven of us which means one team gets six members. Luckily, Miss France (aka Jolly Princess) stepped in and volunteered to be the photographer of the day. Down to ten, we created two teams by a good old-fashioned "rock, paper, scissors."

Meet Miss France
Let's get it on!

The first team was named TEAMBa (Filipinos will get the joke) and the second team was named Team Panes! (due to the popularity of Boom! Panes!). To get ourselves warmed before the activities start, we did our little cheer (which pretty much were the same save for the team name. hahaha!) Team Panes won the cheer-off. After that, we played "Picture me This." Our facilitator will give an event, and we have to depict the scene as accurate as possible. We asked to depict scenes from a christening, a wedding, a movie house, a funeral, and riding the MRT. Team Panes won that round too.

Cheering Competition
Top: Team Panes!
Bottom: TEAMBa

Picture Me This
The next activities were called "Centipede Walk" and "Unity Walk". With the Centipede Walk, the team is required to hold hands from under their legs and walked around the designated station. The goal is to finish the race without letting go or without the line breaking. Team Panes won again. (ugh. lol) The Unity Walk, required each team to place their feet on a pair of planks. The goal is to walk the plank around the station. Our team woooon! Haha!

Centipede Walk
Unity Walk
Our next activities were called "Hole in the Net." As the name implies, there's a wide net with holes that each members needs to pass through WITHOUT touching the net. But there's a catch, once the hole has been passed, the next team member needs to use another one. I had to be carried by teammates to pass through the middle hole (I couldn't reach without touching the net. my legs are too short. lol). No matter, we won that round as well! Whoop! The other activity was the "Rope Race." It's like an obstacle course but using only ropes. Team Panes won the race (boo!LOL).

Hole in the Net

Rope Race
The next activities required balance and agility. The first one was called the Rope walk. Two thin ropes are suspended in the air. The goal is to cross the man-made creek using only the ropes. One of my flip-flops went suicidal and fell into the water so had to kick off the other one. Walking on that tightrope was my least favorite activity. And again, our team lost to Team Panes! Afterwards, we headed to the "Log Balance" challenge. Two logs are laid side by side above the creek. The goal is to cross to the other side without falling to the water. Each  member only gets one chance, once they fall into the water, game over! There's no time limit so there's less pressure when crossing. Our team beat Team Panes! with a score of 4-2 (booyeah!)

Rope Walk

Log Balance
Unfortunately, we were not able to do the "Acid Water" and the "10ft Wall" challenge because those activities require more team members (awwww. >_<) That leaves us with two more activities: "The Raft Race" and the "Obstacle Course". The Raft Challenge requires two team members to maneuver the raft using two bamboo poles. The goal is to touch the line in the middle and then turn back. Since we only had five members per team, one member will have to do the challenge a second time. Time and synchronization are the essence on this challenge. TEAMBa wins this challenge!

Raft Race
And for the finale? The obstacle course was divided into three challenges. First is to scale the net wall over to the other side. Second is to balance and walk the elevated pipe. And the last bit? Mud craaaaaaaaawl! (The mud did smell a bit gross though.) It was a close fight but TEAMBa takes the belt on this challenge!

Mud Craaaaaawl!
Tired at the end, we had fun nevertheless. And I think the low cell reception helped. It allowed us to focus more on teamwork rather glued to our smartphones. And the overall winner? *drum roll please* Team Panes! *Clap clap*

A muddy hooray from all of us! ♥
I particularly enjoyed this team building because it was different. Normally, we'll hit the beach or the nearest resort, or go barhopping and sing karaoke, or splurge on eating out in a fancy restaurant. Those are nice but can be done any day. And since I'm a bit of a tomboy, I enjoyed all the running and climbing and the getting dirty. Hahaha! I could tell that we are really getting along as a team. I had a blast and will definitely be doing this with them again.

For inquiries, check their website:

Til the next post,

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