Category Archives: Cultural Beliefs

It’s My Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day was not a big moment in our lives then when we were on survival mode…besides, we were oceans apart–my parents and youngest brother in the island of Negros and the rest of my siblings with me in Manila. I did not even know there was Mother’s Day in the calendar.

The year 2011 is the year Mamang turned 80 last month–luckily, my youngest brother was able to get a one week vacation to make it a memorable celebration. His family went ahead to make it a worthwhile 3-week vacation. My other brother was able to overlap his 3-week vacation to complete the celebration. Despite Mamang’s complaints about her aching bones, she was ecstatic…enough to make her believe that the 81st will just be as grand as the 80th one. (Let me ask if my sister will still be available for such donation.)

Not everyone of us 9 children could make it home–but everyone’s presence was made possible by the younger generation’s generosity of their time despite their busy lives, not to mention the love and joy they shared. I’m so proud of all my siblings’ and their families’ contribution to the happy memories  our mother will always treasure. That 80th birthday bash was an unexpected event…a blessing for all her hard work, I could only wish our father could have witnessed it–but I know he was smiling on us from somewhere.

Here’s to my Mother who had always put us first…selflessly!

Our mother Rosela at 80...still beautiful!

 

Just one family who will always love our Mamang!

By now, I know…even in the Philippines, there’s such a thing as Mother’s Day celebration. I just didn’t have a chance to celebrate it…let me greet all the mothers–you deserve all the Love the world has to offer.

Originally posted @ https://zylla3.wordpress.com

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The Philippines Before Magellan

What was life like in the Philippines before its discovery on March 16, 1521, or is it March 17? Who discovered Pigafetta’s failure to register their fleet’s passage across the International Dateline before reaching Cebu? Was he the chronicler that committed this error of omission? Does it really matter?

When Ferdinand Magellan and his crew reached the shores of the place they named Islas de San Lazaro, did they even know there were 7,107 islands considered as one country? I’m sure the natives didn’t even realize they had an archipelago for a nation–they probably were just group of islands to them. They even spoke different dialects that did not help in unifying the different tribal groups. Should you wonder then that Magellan encountered warring tribes?  Remember then that the ancient time was so far way from the modern technology we have now.  Think hard and envision how travel and communication worked in a place as fragmented as what we now know as one nation of Filipinos…if this notion even existed then.

People that came to trade with them thought the one or two islands they have seen were already what comprised the entire country. Magellan’s ‘Las Islas Filipinas’ (or is it Felipinas or Felipenas?) may had only been the surrounding islands of Samar-Leyte-Cebu areas. The Panay Island may had been discovered by another group who had named Ilo-ilo from Ilong-Ilong as the island resembled a nose to them. How much of this is a legend or reality depends on the documentation you encountered and you perceived as reliable.

We have no solid written history before the Spaniards came. Despite some semblance of literacy present at in that era, it was enough for them to have the necessary communication as probably just means of day-to-day survival…akin to the jungle survival we have to let others know I’d-been-here kind of thing, or I have extra ‘kamote’ (sweet yam) from my garden and help yourself if you are a hungry traveler. They  had only bamboos and leaves for materials used…how long could they last?

Strategically speaking, Chinese may had landed in Mindoro and called it Ma’i, which simply means ‘south of China’ and at some point discovered the bigger island they called ‘Lui Sung’ and what is now known as Luzon. By the same token, some Europeans may have landed in some smaller islands that were not even documented.

In the course of your research you will come across information that would somehow satisfy the gaps in our history classes. Have fun with whatever could peak your curiosity, but let the fire of love keep burning in your heart…thus, read the easy: A Korean and the Philippines

http://myspamblog.wordpress.com/2008/05/13/a-korean-and-the-philippines/

If you walk down the streets of anywhere you are in the Philippines, remember what many scholars and historians wrote about our country, but be proud that among the ordinary Filipinos eking their own living–we still have the time to help each other for the love of our country…Philippines or otherwise: We are one!

Note: See my other post here: Different Names of the Philippines.

Originally posted @ https://zylla3.wordpress.com

Truly My Penance, or My Angel Must Be Working Overtime

“At first I was pleasantly surprised that somebody has my add, but when I tried to dig further my whole sight was hacked I suppose. The I googled ‘what is flyhotel.com and it took me to another web site: http://travel.propeller.com and I saw my blog articles under surwar11 and before I finally decided to print the page(s) I was able to print the remaining what-makes-this-week-holy and after I have checked the 27 pages I tried to back track from page 6-1 and I couldn’t track it anymore. Must be the name propeller.
 
It’s past 3am and I’m still awake! This must be my penance for the Holy Week. Take care everyone — Me” 

—————(Answers appear at the bottom)——————————————-

I’m am ssoooo ashamed of my email misspellings above! I sent it to my sister, her husband, and my nephew with the heading I am so mad! and I should have said I am so tired and soooooo sleepy but I just couldn’t stop. This is exactly why I couldn’t emphasize enough to my students, the importance of proofreading…now I plead guilty.

Could’ve, would’ve, should’ve…I could have corrected my errors for the world not see it, but I want it to be just another lesson. Maybe I would even include it here as another category: errors, corrections, what else? Just another lesson in English! For now I am consumed with getting back to this wonderful-piece-of-whatever…I know–sigh!–I have to remind myself it’s still Black Saturday and I must have some angels already working overtime, more than what I’m doing.

 Hmmm…Mixxy must be one of my angels. I just stumbled on her blog before all my discoveries and when I decided to do some email venting I found her comment too. If you scroll a few entries down to–What Will PhP5000 Buy You in the Philippines?–you must read her comment(s)! The first one warmed my heart, and I found it at the right moment. It made me sleep better when I finally hit the sack at 4am.

I can manage the sleeping at 1am and waking up at 5am on work days, but after 2am you might as well have given me a glass of wine. I never had the hang-over effect; I can only guess it’s very much like it–not fun. Waking up I can tell I will virtually experience the Black Saturday phenomenon. I’m looking forward to my spring break coming up.

Though today I must go through the day as best I can. Ohhh…I have my husband’s drum parts to mail (another post), but maybe the main post office might just observe Black Saturday. Move on to the next agenda; blog, blog, blog the B! Just  then Mixxy has an answer again, and another one…very important lesson learned! That’s why she’s my God-sent angel while Jesus is dead. Oh, boy…I know He died for me too, but does He have to include saving these riff-off artists?

It makes me feel better I’m not the only one (strength-in-number kind of feeling), and surely I’ll look into her suggestions. Not just now that I’ve already calm down, and starting to really feel that general heaviness in my body: my stiff fingers can hardly hit the right key, my drooping eyes ready to close, my spinning head almost banging the key board, and I still have to wash the bed sheets for my brother-in-law and his son as they’re staying here tonight. I must wait…I need a clear head to do all the plug-ins. (Last night reading about ALink in Bob Martin’s blog, I was about to install it…light bulb moment I’m not ready to sweat it out.) I guess my night was meant for a different purpose.

A quick break, please! Goodness Gracious…past 1 pm, and my 10-year-old neice is not hungry. Both her parents are working. Again, it’s Black Saturday. I also discovered the mail carrier came by, so the post office is open. Off to drop off the packages; post office is open until 3. A curse and a blessing–curse to work, blessing to get things done. The latter is what I’ll miss in the Philippines; the former is what makes me want to brave going back home.

Back to the scum of the earth (Mixxy enriched my vocabulary in her comment about Blog Scrapers). Just as that scammer who responded to my apartment ad (my first Craig’s List responder) gave me the idea to further talk about our apartment in this blog, I will do the same for that riff-off blog scraper. I’m not going to report him right away (not just yet), so he can scrape this blog a few more times until he/she/it realizes:

                * the world is learning his idiotic way of earning a living scraping blogs

                * others have the chance to find their sites at www.flyhotel.net  

                               (maybe more posts at (http://travel.propeller.com)

                                You will notice there that the comments are off,

                         and even in some,  it looks like you can leave

                                 a comment–click it but it won’t go through.

                 * he’s giving me topics to blog with all the joys of exposing him,

                                  or should I say ripping him apart

                 * his evil deeds are turning into positive acts — the other side

                                   of revengeeeeeeeee!

I’ll be following/stalking him too. I’m somewhat energized now–Happy Easter and to some I know you will be waking up to the Easter dawn soon.  I need my sleep before that. Blessings to all!

 —-(I didn’t forget the answer to your proofreading exercise.)—

“At first I was pleasantly surprised that somebody has my ad, but when I tried to dig further, my whole site was hacked I suppose. Then I googled ‘what is flyhotel.net and it took me to another web site: http://travel.propeller.com where I saw my blog articles under surwar11 and when I finally decided to print the page(s) I was only able to print the remaining what-makes-this-week-holy.  After I have checked the 27 pages, I tried to back track from page 6-1, but I couldn’t track it anymore. Must be the name propeller.
 
It’s past 3am and I’m still awake! This must be my penance for the Holy Week. Take care everyone — Me” ———————————————————–

UPDATE: 5/29/08

I used to check www.flyhotel.net every now and then as I was curious what would happen to it when I blog its blog scraping technique. Someone suggested that I should report it to google, but for some reason, I don’t think it was doing me any harm except that I was irritated to see my family picture on that website, and maybe because almost the complete blog was in his website. The comments were even turned off and no reference to the owner whatsoever…even submitting the blog to propeller.com as his own writing.

I’ve seen it having no more AdSense after a couple of weeks and I kept wondering why it continually runs the site. Today I couldn’t find it except for the previous google index that has warnings below the title– “This site may harm your computer.” I even went to my post here to get the link from within, and it gave me the same search result. Well, I guess it’s really gone after almost 3 months since my discovery. Maybe I will miss this routine of checking his site. I should probably be writing a separate blog for its demise.

It’s Finally Good Friday in California!

I’m waking up to a Good Friday…why it’s Good when Jesus is dead, I have no idea. Black Saturday, I can understand with Him being in that cave until Easter Sunday. I’m not trying to be funny…but I remember the days as Holy from Monday through Thursday. I’m glad though that I don’t work on Fridays. I guess part of my sacrifice is blogging–and learning the neat stuff that others are doing. Knowing me, I doubt if I would get to the technical side before the day is over. That would be a Good Friday miracle.

I’m sure the Philippines is now resting after the religious ritual there on this day. Without even reading any news, I have mental pictures of the flagellants on the streets and most likely somebody nailed on the cross…I mean really nailed! Maybe I should check if there was another brave soul that still did this perplexing act. Hhmmm…maybe this is why it’s called Good Friday–with  most trying to be good! These are intriguing pictures to most foreigners, and it probably will be to me had I not been a Pinay myself.

I think I have to end my fasting for a while…my stomach really needs that thing they call breakfast. I have lost that ability to really fast!

What Makes This Week Holy?

The Catholics…I guess! Or, should I say unHOLY? If I had not come across Bob Martin’s posting in his newly-launched electronic magazine ‘Live in the Philippines’, I wouldn’t remember the Holy Week. Indeed, it’s BIG celebration in my country. It may have taken different shades of meaning through the years, but one thing constant–it’s a holiweek (no business for a week) as opposed to a holiday.

Normally, I would feel a certain ounce of holinesss only when Good Friday comes. Maybe, here in the US, life goes on as usual. We have to go to work–no big deal–nobody mentions it. What makes Good Friday different then? Yes, I try to be extra careful since this is the day that I have to be on my own…God is dead!

Fifty years is a long way back to that Holy Week of a 7-year old kid in the remote farm of Cadiz, Negros Occidental. Good Friday was the start of a day that we couldn’t leave the house to play. Many had probably experienced, one way or the other, some of the things that constitute this day to us though my younger siblings may had been too young to remember.

             * No play–just listen to the radio for the ‘Siete Palabra’, The Seven Last Words’ of Jesus as he was crucified on the cross. Mind you, I could remember myself crying silently (as I clung to those words I can’t even recall now), not because I couldn’t play but I wasn’t sure though if I felt bad simply with His dying on the cross…or the dying for the sins of the world or just my sins (my mom said I was a good kid).

            * No taking a bath–you will develop black spots on your body.

            * No ‘sinugba’–maybe it is this grilling that can give you the black spots. I guess I may have to ask my mom again.

My mother is the one that has all the religious/superstitious beliefs, and I was glad that my father was there to balance everything with his humorous and witty dispositions. Still, I had carried all through those long years the respect for Good Friday and Black Saturday until God is risen again on Easter Sunday. Numerous things may have changed in the way I approach Holy Week, one thing I can never bring myself to do is celebrate or go on holiday travel on these days for the sake of enjoyment. There is that certain tug in my heart that prevents me from making plans…you can call it guilt, perhaps conscience. When any member of the family plans on whatever holiday outings or travels within my hearing distance, I could only pray that they would change their minds. I want to hold on to the sacredness of these days!