Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Not the usual for Bonifacio Day

I made something for Bonifacio Day. What if there was Facebook already in the late 1800's? Find out for yourself!

Here's a bigger image of the photo: Andres Bonifacio FB

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Philippine Sword Hunting in Aklan

I have always been fascinated by swords. Since I was a kid, I have played imaginary sword fights with sticks and have longed to own a real one. These tools of warfare are the most revered and respected of all ancient weaponry. A true man will be left in awe at the presence of a beautiful sword, feeling the power and the danger emanating from the weapon.

Very few nowadays knows about swords in the Philippines. The weapon may have outlived its purpose as we are in an era needing more sophistication. Presently, if not being used for cutting and chopping, swords become ornaments. Thus the makers of Philippine blades faced with a vanishing trade had taken up other means of livelihood, but a few others stayed behind. I have heard of stories of blacksmiths in the island of Panay and an unplanned trip to Aklan made me grab the opportunity to track down and find the makers of Visayan swords.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Surviving Christmas in the Philippines 2

From Pinoy Lifestyle
On my previous article, my last words were "Surviving a Filipino Christmas at home is just a fraction of what else goes on outside." Damn right that is! When its Christmas time in the Philippines, it is an adventure to go out. In the center of cities when its night rush hour, you get the hustle of people and the bright lights all around. Go sub-urban, the peaceful flickering of Christmas lights and parols mesmerize anyone passing by. Welcome to a guide to surviving Christmas in the Philippines as a Filipino would do.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Surviving Christmas in the Philippines 1

You think Christmas in the Philippines is all celebration? Think again. Its a lot more than what you really think. The Holidays is a tough season. May not look so for everyone, and many wouldn't really mind. Perhaps because its a time when everyone thinks of happy thoughts, feeling good about everything around and when everybody is "nicer." All I could think of is the word "magical" in this context. Why people feel good? Maybe that's really the miracle. 

But no matter how magical things may be, you may need to read on for some challenges that lay ahead. Here's a guide how to survive a Filipino Christmas...at home.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Jeepney Riding 101

The fight for survival goes on and on daily. In the streets all over the Philippines, every move you make is an act of survival. Our country is tough and to a certain extent dangerously charming. Even public transportation is risky business. The roads are still dominated by one vehicle, the jeepneys and their drivers. To ride a jeepney, you have to learn a few things to pull through.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Kesong Puti Syndrome

We Pinoys know how to make cheese too, and in fact, we have been making them for a long time already. It goes by the name kesong puti

This soft cheese is made from carabao's milk, salt and rennet (traditionally), usually coming from some Tagalog provinces. For those who don't know rennet, it is a stomach enzyme of a carabao, cattle or goat that plays an important part in production of kesong puti. I wouldn't tell of how to get rennet because its out of topic already, and its gross. Besides, one can buy ready rennet than bothering how to make it. Anyway, the cheese easy to make and very easy to enjoy. All you need is some hot pandesal and a noisy stomach in the morning.

Monday, November 7, 2011

A Taste of Philippine Cigars

My trip to Tarlac to find old-style Filipino brown cigarettes has been delayed again and again and again. Now a north Luzon road trip seems a long way off. To appease the nagging desire to find something truly Pinoy related to tobacco I bought something available "locally."

 The Philippines has a long history with tobacco. Even today, many still in the northern parts of Luzon make a living out of growing and harvesting these plants. My curiosity pushes me to find out how good our products really are.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Beware of Bangungot

Sleep should be a zone of comfort. When you sleep, everything is different. It is a daily getaway from the daily hassles of life, and a reclusion where all great things can happen. This is also where the not so great things happen, but hey, its just a dream.

Sounds great right? But what if one doesn't wake up? The old folks had always warned us. Sometimes sleep can kill. In the Filipino Culture, sleep at times is feared.