A Night of Crossing the Islands: Cebu to Iloilo

Cebu-Iloilo Route Map (Image Courtesy of Google)

Cebu-Iloilo Route Map (Image Courtesy of Google)

This was my personal experience crossing the Visayas on that fateful night. It was daring, it was bold and some say it was stupid. But nevertheless, I earned great experience with this trip and will be doing this route over and over again. This article was posted on June 15, 2022 at Habagat.i.ph originally entitled “Bittersweet Escape: Two Queen Cites, One Night, One Sugar Island.”

I’m experiencing problems with my life in Cebu during these times. At times like these, I just wanted to get out of everything, therefore I went home, to Iloilo. The sudden decision that I made affected the schedule of my whole week for I wanted to escape the urban jungle the soonest time possible, under the cover of the night. Crossing the seas and the mountains in the cover of the night and the shade of morning dew. In less than 12 hours. For the faint-hearted and non-risk takers, this is not for you. For cash-strapped and the adventurous, this is one hell of a risking cutting trip to Iloilo from Cebu! Continue reading A Night of Crossing the Islands: Cebu to Iloilo

The Road Less Traveled: Passing by Maguindanao

Originally posted at Habagat.i.ph on 21 May 2022

Ampatuan Residence, Sharrif Aguak, Maguindanao

Ampatuan Residence, Sharrif Aguak, Maguindanao

Two years ago, I couldn’t believe that I crossed for what they say, one of the most treacherous highways in the country. Only a few years ago, during the Estrada Administration, the only thing that you see here are bombshells, mortars, evacuating people and guns, guns and more guns. Crossfire was everywhere, and media blows it all up in Manila.

That was several years ago. The waring factions agreed upon a ceasefire while two bodies of negotiators tried to resolve this centuries-old conflict. Me, I’m busy with my thesis, and will trace the path that most of my thesis respondents’ took to the Land of Promise, and it was through that path that they took the road, or maybe a way less traveled.

And now, on the headlines again, this side of this tropical state in the Philippines has a lot of potential when it comes to resources and tourism. A lot of things that are still untapped because of unreliable peace and order and poltical suitation in Maguindanao.

I believe that this highway is one of the most well-paved in the country. The shuttle van zoomed effortlessly through the fields and the hills of Sultan Kudarat, then to Maguindanao all the way to Cotabato City within just less than 2 hours.

One October morning, it was Ramadan for our Muslim brethen. I’ve been wanting to see the entrepot of my subjects in my thesis: Cotabato City, almost a hundred kilometers away from Tacurong City in Sultan Kudarat Province. And boy the van in Tacurong terminal was waiting to be filled up. I have to be there early, or else I’ll be stranded in Cotabato City without any idea where to sleep over. So, I went up to Isulan, the capital of the province, passing through palm oil plantations that are owned by Negrense hacienderos. Isulan is where most of Cotabato bound buses and vans pass by. One of the largest Christian settlements in Central Cotabato.

Continue reading The Road Less Traveled: Passing by Maguindanao

Terror Paranoia Over Camera in Metro Manila

“Sir bawal pong magpapiktyur dito. Bawal piktyuran ang Malacanang.” (Sir, picture taking is not allowed. Taking a picture of Malacanang is not allowed.) This is what the man in uniform told us when we were riding the Pasig River Ferry last month as we were attempting to take a picture of the palace by the river which symbolizes the country’s power. I just couldn’t get the logic of why people are not allowed to take the picture of this palace that has been displayed in the twenty peso bill? And guess what, Malacanang is just one of them here in Metro Manila.

After September 11 attacks in the United States and the Rizal Day Bombings, the Western world was shrouded with paranoia that a terrorist attack may occur any time and anywhere. Well, we are living in a “world of terror” as Dubya Bush said, so we need some protection. Security was beefed up in several places especially in public transport terminals, light rail train stations, shopping malls, airports and the likes. The power of security guards with their so-called “Magic Stick” upon entering an establishment became a norm and opening up your carry-on bag is a must. As what they say “refusal for inspection denies entry and subject for investigation.” Continue reading Terror Paranoia Over Camera in Metro Manila

How to Get in and Out of the New Bacolod-Silay Airport

New Bacolod-Silay Airport

Barely several months after the opening of the new Iloilo Airport in June 2007, the City of Smiles has also opened the newest gateway to Sugarlandia of the Philippines itself. In January 2008, the old Singcang Airport in Bacolod City has ceased operations and transfered to the new facility about 20 kilometers away from the Bacolod, located in Hacienda Bagtic in the City of Silay. In line with the upcoming Masskara celebrations this October, Taralets would give some tips on how to get in and out of the new airport.

Continue reading How to Get in and Out of the New Bacolod-Silay Airport

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