I read a blog about a mountaineer who jumped off Buruwisan Falls last April 1. The site even had pictures of the guy. Based on what the blog writer and the comments of others, here’s what happened: at around 12 midnight, a guy jumped off the high campground at Buruwisan, stood up and ran. Three other guys caught up with him on top of the falls. He then faced them and with his face all bloody, jumped off into the catch basin below. They were able to fish out his body the next day.
Unfortunately, at least, based on the blog, none of the people he was with has come forward to shed light on who he was and why he jumped. Was it because he was just drunk? Or was it a real suicide?
If he were drunk, as is most often the case when camping, then it would have been a stupid and irresponsible accident. It would be the kind where people would simply shake their head and mutter, “he probably deserved it for being unable to hold his drink in the first place.” If it were a suicide, then it would be truly tragic. I’d like to think it were a suicide. I think even the most insanely drunk person would come to his senses if he jumped off high ground and landed all bloodied. The fact that he gathered himself and ran to the top of the falls may indicate he knew what he was doing. But then again, he may have been just really drunk or may have been even in drugs to actually not feel pain or just think he was flying. But I still would like to think it was a suicide. Perhaps he had a problem he couldn’t take. Perhaps at socials, old wounds were opened up and with the help of alchohol, they were made more painful than ever. I know how that could happen. I’ve witnessed one drunk guy suddenly argue with someone, felt deeply offended, then walked out of his tent, and made his way down Gulugod Baboy in the dead of night. Or maybe he just thought to end his life right then and there at Buruwisan whose derivative “buwis” means “to give up.”
Whatever his reasons, I hope the poor guy finds his peace. Maybe his death, if due to his drunkness, will make us realize that mountaineering is all bout communing with nature and one’s self and less about socials and getting stupidly drunk. If his death were a suicide, then I hope it makes us realize that when we climb, first and foremost, we conquer ourselves—our fears, our sorrows, our helplessness and only then can we conquer the mountain IF it allows us to.
Famy is very dear to me because it was my first mountain. I had climbed with a group of guys I met online and invited me to join them. I plunged head on into the experience and never looked back since. Famy came at a time in my life when I was unhappy and ready to give-up on myself. But on that climb, people I met at the first time took care of me and nature showed me a path to find myself again.
As he faced the guys who tried to help him and slowly walked backwards to the edge, I wonder what he was thinking? What sorrow was enough to push him to the abyss into which his spirit was forever broken? May he rest in peace.