Monday, October 20, 2014

Dagohoy country once again

Part of Bohol's Chocolate Hills, the picture taken from the steps leading to the view deck

These are two bloggers who I follow regularly: Lorianne DiSabato, who can be found at her hoardedordinaries.wordpress.com, and Vivienne Gucwa at her travelinglens.me. When I'm not reading a book for leisure or leisurely penning postal mail, I visit these neighbors on my playlist.
Morning sky over the municipality of Carmen

When I'm stuck and flailing like someone about to drown when my life raft of words drifts hundreds of meters away, I linger longer than usual at Lorianne's and Vivienne's sites (even the end syllables of their names have a nice rhyming ring to them). I listen to their voices, look at their images, and I'm reminded to pick up where I was interrupted--a plain narrative, even if it's just my own or someone else's story.

Sunday being rest day and the need to recover from the past weeks is so strong that sometimes I succumb to the lure of a nap not during siesta hour but at mid-morn, I shook off the lethargy by doing the kaoshiki dance that I learned two years ago from yogi Ajita Reyes. I relearned it from her when she joined us during that long weekend in the south.

By the sea getting ready to salute the sun

Yesterday I minimized the pixels of some pictures that I took of some September days spent with people who poet Marj Evasco invited to experience "wide-awake dreaming". The "retreat" from the familiar world made room for slowing-down rituals: yoga, sunrise or sunset meditation, healthy semi-vegetarian or fully vegetarian meals, listening to fellow poet Jose Victor PeƱaranda's speak on emptiness and awareness. There was time as well to see how Bohol province is rising or has risen from last year's 7.2 magnitude earthquake.

We had what the bees of Bohol Bee Farm also had: flowers!

The small Busay falls nevertheless emits a roar as water forcefully meets water.

About as large as a woman's fist and most of the times receding, this tarsier peeks from under his cover of a dry, brittle leaf


This forest, called a man-made or "artificial" one, covers land in Bilar that once was made barren by slash-and-burn agriculture. However, it's an eerily silent cathedral of green, save for the sound of vehicles rushing by. It's a lesson for those in the reforestation movement: plant a diverse number of trees to make possible the visitation of birds and other fauna.

The light that lit Bohol during several weeks of no power after the earthquake is sheer Pinoy ingenuity: small stones lined the bowls like this one, cotton balls were rolled, placed inside and floated on used cooking oil, then lit with a match. The practice continues to heighten the mood when dining under the stars.

So whether it's an inward-turned tremblor shaking one's being or surviving a big one out there, the hardy, unsinkable Boholanons have set the example of moving forward, of rising above the rubble. Daghang salamat. Padayon indeed.

Photos by Babeth Lolarga
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