Before Legolas and Katniss Everdeen, there was Jun Yabuki or Yellow 4, one of the characters of Bioman, an old Japanese TV show. I was a fan of Yellow 4 because first of all, I loved yellow, second, I thought she had the most kick ass weapon; the bow and arrow. I never thought I’d get a chance to try archery until we saw this promo at Cash Cash Pinoy, a group buying site. Gandiva Cafe offered an hour worth of archery lesson for only PHP300 (original price is PHP600). What a perfect opportunity! So I, and three of my officemates got ourselves the voucher.
Last June 7, we went to Gandiva Cafe, located in Ortigas. Beside their coffee shop is an archery range equipped with archery equipment and manned by men who practice and teach the said sport. The training includes familiarizing ourselves with the equipment, learning the correct stance, safety, and finally how to shoot the arrow. What’s a bow without the arrows? We each had three arrows, put inside the black arrow holder, which we had to wear around the waist.
The archery tutors helped us wear the gear. First, the armguard, used to protect the arm against the bowstring. We also had to wear finger tab on the index, middle, and ring fingers. By the way, we each paid PHP25 for archery target papers. For some reason, it was excluded from our 300 payment.
Okay let’s have a little archery 101, shall we. First you need to learn is the stance. You have to stand straight-up, at right angles to your target. Your left foot across the shooting line, the other foot side-by-side. Your body should be straight but not stiff so you can handle the recoil. I gotta say I had a hard time remembering the correct stance given the fact that I have a poor posture. After nocking (placing) the arrow in the bowstring, you raise the bow, pull the string, take aim, then release.
Sounds easy right? Wrong. The first few attempts, our arrows hit anything but the target, except Rhoda because this has been her second time to shoot. I struggled to maintain the correct stance, my right arm strained from lifting the bow, my fingers grew numb from pulling the string, and I had to keep remembering the instruction of the tutors. The archers who were manning the range took turns in giving us pointers and thankfully they were all nice and patient.
To signal the time for retrieving the arrows from the target and the moment when it’s okay to shoot, one of the Gandiva staff blew a whistle.
It was tiring but I didn’t mind ’cause I was seriously having fun. I am even considering taking this as a sport (since I have none). I asked some of the staff how much is their training. They said it’s PHP6,000 for 10 sessions, each session goes for two hours. It’s up to you what time or which day you want to take your lessons. They said they have many students so classes are on an appointment basis.
If you want to have your own archery gear, it’s PHP12,000 and it’s already a complete set. Hmm…. I think I can save up for that.
My only frustration is that I wasn’t able to hit the yellow circle or the bull’s eye on the target. That will be my goal next time.
After our training, we were naturally hungry so we went to the cafe. By the way, they only offer vegan foods. First thing we ordered was the French Fries (PHP 165). It was crispy and tasted a bit like fish fillet. They probably fried it in the same oil they used for fish fillet, I don’t know. But it was good and I liked it that it was not too salty but not bland.
We ordered a Four-Cheese Pizza (PHP 225). It’s 12 inches of thin-crust pizza with parmesan, white cheese, cheddar, and mozzarella. It is sooo delicious! The crust may be thin but I swear to you a slice is enough to make you feel full. It had the right amount of saltiness and tastes way better with hot sauce.
I wanted coffee so I had Caramel Macchiato (PHP 85), which to my dismay was more like a shot of espresso. I am a fan of coffee but I never wanted it strong. This one was so bitter that no amount of sugar made a difference. So I just let Pao and Rhoda finished it for me.
Alchris had a better choice, the Lemon Grass Iced Tea (PHP 70). It was refreshing and a bit sweet.
Not only did we get to enjoy archery, we also enjoyed their food. I will let you know if ever I decide to continue taking archery classes. What about you, have you tried archery before?
7/F One Corporate Centre Bldg.,
Julia Vargas St., corner Meralco Ave.,
Ortigas, Pasig City
Telephone. no.: (02) 638-4549
Monday – Sunday – 9AM – 9PM