Showing posts with label iloilo. Show all posts
Showing posts with label iloilo. Show all posts

Friday, November 27, 2015

Impressions of Iloilo's Hispanic Past

With a sense of pride deeply rooted in its glorious Spanish-colonial past, the city of Iloilo keeps up to this day its century-old moniker, "La Muy Leal y Noble Ciudad" (Most Loyal and Noble City), conferred by Queen Regent Maria Cristina on May 1898.

Affluent due to the sugar boom period, the city rightly curved itself into being one of the most elite in the country. But even now, it is still reckoned a wealthy land. Sugar haciendas or plantations in the city and around the province are its most pronounced status symbol.

Truly Hispanic by many measures, most telling is Iloilo's architectural landscape. From Catholic limestone-churches to mansions, Iloilo's surviving buildings are evidently a comfortable peep into a rich bygone era, Iloilo's cultural heritage.

And a taste of La Paz batchoy, a noodle soup with crushed chicharon (fried pork rinds), weaves itself into the fabric of the Ilonggo story.

San Joaquin Church, Iloilo
Miag-ao Church, Iloilo
San Joaquin Cemetery, Iloilo
Molo Church, Iloilo City
Museo Iloilo (Iloilo Museum), Iloilo City
Provincial Capitol of Iloilo, Iloilo City
Calle Ortiz, Iloilo City
Iloilo International Airport, Cabatuan, Iloilo

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Redeeming Thee

The smoke that smelled of mint, leaving a stubborn trail of white and grey, underscored the hell that that crammed house screamed of. The source, in my following, was from that little, dingy room with no window, and whose door manicured in dull red was its only escape, greeting my asthma so perfectly, whereupon I almost ran back outside. I thought the thickness of it clamping into my nostrils, clawing its way straight to my immaculately pink lungs would have me pass out anytime soon. Yet, I struggled, barely managed driving the near panic away. I continued with my feet pointing towards the door.

My vision, despite being blurred by the fog-like atmosphere rolling unceasingly in infinite directions and the lace curtains hanging in parallel with me, sorted three pairs of searing eyes that met mine. It was easy to see, anger nestled in their eyes, and it was maddeningly insane. I shuddered in fear I could hardly look at them for a second. I was so dumb I couldn't understand why. It was incomprehensible for a guest who expected nothing but a warm welcome. "Warm welcome your ass." I got it. And that echoed in the cavity of my head as I drew the curtains slowly.

My eyes searched for someone familiar, someone close to me, and then I saw you, finally. But I was stricken with horror. Your beautiful eyes were tinged with fright, and then tears came rushing to their floodgates down your cheeks. I wiped them while my heart cruised into thud after thud. I cried.

Saddened, disheartened, I closed my eyes, trying not to know anymore. I loved you. I knew it was you, because we had those strange affinities the first time I braved talking to you at the coffee shop. That fateful day that caused us spending a million wonderful moments together.

That sour reality pinched my core. I really wanted to save you, but you wouldn't let me. Just give me that hope, that chance. I am pleading.

Image: Iloilo City, Philippines