The Lady Bangca Rider of Bohol

Fancy a boat for an everyday ride?


While other people nowadays invest in bikes, motorcycles, and sidecars, former Transform participant Merabel from Bohol chose a boat as her go-to everyday transportation. Thanks to her husband, the 27-year-old housewife learned how to pilot a boat in just two days. 

Merabel and her husband sell sea cucumbers and seashells for a living. They deliver these goods every day to the market on the main island of Getafe, about a 45-minute boat ride from their home. “I learned how to pilot this boat so that I can help him out. And whenever he isn’t available or felt sick, we can still deliver our products to the market,” she shared.

Another reason why she learned how to drive a boat is that her kids go to school on the neighboring island. While riding the boat is not the safest way to transport her kids to a school, she does not have much choice. “The only good thing about this is that I get to drop them off and fetch them personally. With me driving our boat, I am assured that they’re safe, and they also feel safe.”

But piloting her boat is not always a walk in the park, no matter how experienced she already is. Merabel’s scariest experience was when she once encountered a waterspout in the middle of the sea. All alone, she was so afraid she couldn’t get home safely. “I knew I had to get home to my family, so I called upon the Lord for help and protection. Thank God I got home safe!”

Instead of renting a boat and spending Php 1,000 for a round-trip fare to the main island, Merabel gets to save a lot of money by riding her boat. It might not be the most eye-pleasing ride most people would like to have. Still, she considers the boat as a significant investment. – reporting by Jovani Canda (Bohol Communications Officer)

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