Showing posts with label matalom. Show all posts
Showing posts with label matalom. Show all posts

Sunday, June 22, 2014


Take me to the place. Take me to the place where my body sweated off its childish yet full, bursting, relentless spirit, as I ran swiftly, slipperless over a dusty and uncemented track, and breathed off a steam of relief at the finish line. I claimed the first prize from our local captain, such a meagre amount, a pittance, but was fat lunch enough to feed my piggy bank. It was a most momentous day despite having to walk home with a limp thereafter, for I gloriously scraped my left knee and elbow at where the lowered, down-to-my-ankle, stiff line was. How could they? I don't remember their faces, but I can't forget what happened. Victory was ironic that it had to be painful, bittersweet, and I just stared blankly at the colorful banderitas over my head as blood was let out. It was our barangay fiesta, and it was high time for money-making for me and my sister by winning games. 

Take me to the place where my cranium and its innards plotted "The Strongest Fish," an underdog story that moves the good-hearted to stand up for himself and gives bullies a taste of their own medicine. For as long as my memory aids in my recount, the young, valiant protagonist knocks down the smirking, arrogant, Goliath-sized bully in the underwater boxing ring. I wish I still had a copy of our elementary school paper. 

Take me to the place where I buried the pages that I tore off from my notebook. It was a sunny afternoon. Using my trusty gardening tool, the sometimes rusty bolo knife, I dug a small hole in the ground where the trunk of my gmelina tree stood. The tree was a treasure find for someone with green thumb. The sapling jumped off our neighbor's truck, was left lying across the street, and good Lord, I safely brought it home at night. The nonsensical love notes met top soil and water, and were gone in a month's time, united with humus. 

Take me to the place where dreams, ghost stories, songs, riddles, and even gossip kept us awake until midnight. More so, squashing mosquitoes was part of the routine. We often had our not-so-secret meetings at the pergola of our ancestral house, which served as a walkway, the second gate. It was a shed made from bamboo amongst guava, lanzones, and santol (cottonfruit) trees, santan, roses, yellow poppies, and a variety of orchids. After we tired ourselves from playing on the street, all soiled and wet, under the pale, Friday moonlight, a stream of puerile, excited laughter still managed to seep through the walls of the pergola, while we beheld with wonder the hundreds of magical fireflies glowing in gold around the bent, old guava, and lent an indifferent ear to the buzzing crickets -- until our angry parents came looking for us to go home and hit the hay. Sticks proved to be more effective than just an endless nag. 

Take me to the place, and then tell me what it means to be back to where my mango, tambis (love apple), jackfruit, and mahogany trees grow. They must be full-fledged, bearing fruits by now, spreading their sturdy branches off the bamboo fences. Watching them grow is a deferred capacity, long overdue. 

Take me to the place. Take me home.

Photo source credit: Ecology Global Network

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Friday, October 30, 2009

Canigao Island: A Revisit

I have to post my 2009 summer experience in Canigao Island now before these photos become totally stale (I know, the long overdue is never forgivable!) . I already have 2 posts about the island, but I take the liberty to blog about it again, so you may know about it or to just keep you refreshed.

My early posts:
Canigao Island (Matalom, Leyte)

Lechon (roasted pig) should be enough for the day.

At the terminal. Where's Joemill? :)


Approaching. Views from afar.

Feeling the island!

So you wouldn't get lost, here's the map, but don't wander to the protected area. The lighthouse.

Everything that breathes the island life.

Way back home. Arrived safely. Soaking in the sun all day long was surely fun.

The sun set perfectly.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Up to the Boondocks

The playfulness of the world is an adult's jealous longing to journey back to the old times. As he kisses goodbye to the carefree joys of untapped and uncorrupted world, he is met with nothing but the absolute reality of the world -- complicated and never pure and simple anymore.

As we trekked to the mountains, packed with a purpose, a growing realization of the world came to being. To ascend, to rise against the sad reality, it is but fitting to look around to see what's so often go unnoticed. We're thinking macro, disregarding the other way around. Besides, living in the fastlane often interferes with comprehension of the world.

Everything has an important role to play and deserves recognition. The rocky road we traversed, the muddy brown clay sticking to the soles of my sneakers, the simplicity of the farmer folks' livelihood, the greenness of it all, and everything that breathes life compounded my appreciation of the world. Nothing can be so trivial after all. The naivety brought me back to the timeline untapped, uncorrupted, and so pure and simple.

"It is hard to stay mad, when there's so much beauty in the world," says Lester Burnham from the movie American Beauty. There is so much hope out there. We just have to learn to find it.

Images: Matalom, Leyte, Philippines

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Canigao Island

Though a paradise per se, Canigao Island places itself as relatively unknown. It is not short of innumerable surprises and has all the right reasons to boast about. From its pearly white sand, pristine waters, thriving species, to its friendly location, anything is possible. You can go from snorkeling, kayaking, overnight camping, to walking around this uninhabited, pint-sized island. It's simply your kind of virgin island adventure.

The island is under the control of the municipality of Matalom, a small town in the province of Leyte, Philippines. It is said to be developed by interested investors. But for the record, Matalom government shrugs off any parties' interest, as it fears its townspeople might be shut out to the island, because of a pricey price they would have to pay should things materialize, considering Matalom as a 4th class municipality. I am not too keen about their reason, which for me is unfair and downright childish. I suppose their decision is still on a swing, and that they might reconsider, as further developments will surely impact huge benefits to its people and their livelihood.

I am thrilled about the possibility, and a native is here talking.