Sinulog Chronicles III – the Sundae Shutter family through the years

the people that I share my passion with. they have made my Photography career (as if i have one) blossom (so gay…)! its with the Sinulog festival that we gather as one in the streets to shoot. we only have one common goal and that is to SHOOT FOR HIM! im on my 3rd season now doing this w/ them. for the love of photography and for the love of the Holy Child.

im not quite sure when this group was formed and who contrived it (actually si burts man tingali but master aldo banaynal did all the officail virtual documents to legalize the group) but yeah when everybody agreed to be part of it, i was one of the everybody who agreed to be part of it lol.








Sinulog chronicles II – ‘Ang mga Nangilaba’

This i should say ‘phenomenon’ that is unique to Cebuanos (you cant have this in any other place) will forever give me goose flesh and even teary eyes.

the 2010 Sinulog was probably the most heartwarming for me because for the very first time i was able to complete the 9 day novena mass. 9 days of pious prayer. 9 days of surrendering everything to the Lord. 9 days of ‘pangilaba’. 9 days of Batobalani sa gugma.

the Batobalani sa Gugma which is being sung during the Gosos of the Novena Mass

Batobalani sa gugma,
Sa daan tawo palanga.


Dinhi sa siudad sa Sugbo
ang matahum larawan.
sa unang mga misionero,
sa usang balay hipalgan.
Kanila ikaw nagpakita
gikan da sa imong gugma.


Giludhan ikaw gisingba
niadtong mga kaparian
sa tanan nga katawhan
sa mga ponoan nila:
kay sa pagtan-aw kanimo
Kristianos sila nahimo.


Ang singbahan gipatindog
niadtong mga tawhana,
aron ang larawan nimo
dunay usang puluyanan.



Sinulog Chronicles I – the prelude

a 2007 photo - my very first Sinulog shot

a 2008 photo - i love this

A 2009 photo - Sinulog Queen

Sinulog Beat – Viet Music. <- click to listen

as i traverse myself on my way home from tuazi's bday celeb (hapi boitday tuazown!) i came to pass by this very familiar, and indeed very enchanting sound that caught my attention. it did awaken my tipsy brain cells and almost got myself grooving inside my ride…it was so familiar and it was the beat i have been waiting for the whole year–>that infamous SINULOG BEAT…

‘tsug tsug tsug tsug teeehhhht teeeehhhht thhheeeeerrrreeet tenteeehnteeen hah! thhheeeeererrreeet tenteeehnteeen hah tereehhht tehhhteeeet tsug tsug tsug tsug! ting ting ting tiringitng tingtingting pit senyor pit senyor tala magsaulog! sinulog syagit ug kusog pit senyor pit senyor tala magsaulog!’

to those who havent witnessed or heard about sinulog, then you might be thinking i dont make any sense…but w/ us true blue cebuanos or any bisaya all over the country, i bet 101% that you actually know how that beat above would sound, and u actually sang it, dats for sure!

i actually saw a group of dancers who were practicing a dance routine ala Sinulog style, im pretty sure thought that it wasnt for the sinulog yet but for the fiesta celebration of Lapu Lapu City w/c is like in 10 days time. I believe u already noticed that almost all festivals in Cebu have similar beat, and obviously they have pattern it w/ the Sinulog. it caught my attention and got me really excited. in 2 months time Cebu is going to be in a festive mood again…and i can already smell ‘PARTY’….if you havent been to Sinulog then you havent experience the best mardi gras and the best party scene in the country! its like 3 days of pagwawala and you still have the energy to witness the longest and biggest parade on the fourth day…its simply ecstatic!

but far above all those partying and stuff, it is also the time to see millions of Filipino catholics showing their devout faith and providence to the señor Sto. Niño. Its the time when all Cebuanos just unite and join together to pray and just celebrate the Holy Child’s feast. year after year, i just cant help but cry when i get to join and see 2 million devotees join the PEACEFUL procession and sing the ‘batobalani’ w/ hands in unison. its definitely a sight to behold! and yes, i love to witness the fluvial parade too!

maybe its that one thing im very proud about being a Cebuano. I already plotted my schedule for January so that I can join the procession and watch the mardi gras. hehe!

but i still have the Lapu Lapu fiesta and the cebuano Christmas season to be excited about before Sinulog (come on, it starts w/ Lapu Lapu’s fiesta, then Christmas, then Cebu just doesnt stop until Sinulog and eventually Valentine’s day! ganyan ka festive ang Cebu!!!! partaaay!!!!)

oh speaking of sinulog namiss ko na naman ang Sto. Niño Village where we also do our own Sinulog festival among the home owners. for two years i was part of the yellow tribe dancers…it was something unforgetable and something i would keep in my heart. I miss my neighbors and friends there…=( I wish one day i will find time and a way to dance with them again.

Viva Pit Senyor!

Travel essentials 101 – packing up can be challenging (but not all the time!)

I have this on the go traveling backpack w/c is ready 24/7 for any planned (but mostly unplanned) ‘lakwatsa’ and I took some photos of the stuff that are usually in it when I travel. I seem to find them necessary and would make my backpacker life a little easier even during on travels which require me to do the ‘kinowboy’ style.

So here’s basically whats inside it:

Malong – its an instant ‘kumot’ that i can use anytime from sleeping to protecting myself from the heat of the sun to etc.

Towel – hotels in our country do have towels, even those cheap inns or pension houses BUT not from other countries. I experienced it in Malaysia and in Hong Kong that I had to do w/ tissue paper after taking a bath because the backpacker’s hostel didn’t provide me w/ complimentary towels. Seesh.

Map – this is a must to bring especially if traveling abroad. Here in our country though, especially here in Manila, i don’t really recommend opening and analyzing maps in the streets as it might jeopardize one’s safety but during road trips where one can be safe in the confines of one’s car, then having a map is very handy.

First aid kit – safety first. I don’t really have to elaborate on this. It’s a must to have one (and update it from time to time so as not to take expired med)

Zipper Bags – I was inspired to bring this one from my fellow travel freak Rovisa when we went to mt. Pinatubo. I didn’t know that we were going to go on swimming. Good thing though she brought a couple of zipper bags so I get to ask one for my wet clothes.

Don’t neglect your hygiene even when on traveling. – Please. Deodorant, lotion and toothbrush will do. And yes, with the recent dengue outbreak in our country, an anti mosquito lotion should be in the list too.

Clothes – traveling in fashion is still possible without necessarily packing in the whole cabinet. A comfy t-shirt (probably light colored), jeans and a fashion worthy sneaks is just fine. (Well im basing this in Philippine climate. Its different if it’s in some other cold country)

Wired stuff – im talking about phone chargers, mp3 chargers and headsets. Self explanatory for the call and text freak and to the music buff in me.

Cellphones (and mp3 players) – even when not traveling we should have these.

Everything keys – house and car keys. It’s a no brainer why we bring them

Book – I always bring a book when I travel but I don’t really get to read them most of the time. Even if I’m on a relaxed traveling mode, I prefer to have my mp3 player instead of a book.

A small notebook – I do write notes during my travel. Really. As in.

Modem – so much for internet connection and facebook even when traveling. Good thing I work in a telecoms company that I get to have ALL kinds of internet providing machines (modem gud) such as tattoo, wimax etc.

Laptop – pls refer to the description above. But I don’t really feel like bringing one because when I travel as much as possible I want to detach from everything and just enjoy the moment. Having a laptop keeps you half hearted and torn in between. But ah, uh, read na lang the description above lol)

Tissue – my stomach always play tricks on me so I kind of need this all the time

So do we have similar essentials in our bags?

Bahay na Pula

Bahay na Pula Bulacan

If you have been lucky enough to be part of the generation ‘x’ where their Saturdays preceding Halloween are spent watching Noli de Castro and his ever infamous Magandang Gabi Bayan Halloween special, or you have become one of the pioneers of gen ‘y’ with which watching studio 23 horror specials and even Korina Sanchez’s Balitang K all souls day features have been a staple tradition; then this house is a no stranger to you at all. It is the infamous Ilusorio Mansion or much known as the Bahay na Pula. an epitome of an elegant yet haunted mansion very much attractive to the very ‘matatakutin’ (frightful) Pinoy.

situated in the boarders of San Ildefonso and San Miguel in the northern part of Bulacan province, its grandeur has become a permanent stature in the area beaming with elegance and a stylish ‘espanyol’ look that amazes everybody that pass by this house. yet with its elegant facade also equals the eerie feeling that haunts those who know its dark history.

this house according to history books was one of the houses in quested by the Japanese forces during World War II to be used as their garrison wherein reportedly Japanese soldiers massacred Filipino guerillas. with that this house also became the penitentiary of those unfortunate comfort women (women raped by Japanese), mostly Bulakenyas and Nueva Ecijanons. locals claim that at night they would hear screams of women crying for help. others would say that they would hear men talking at night in an unknown language (most probably japanese).

How to reach Bahay na Pula:

Just take any bus enroute to Nueva Ecija or San Miguel Bulacan and request the ‘kundoktor’ to drop you at the bahay na pula. this is just beside the highway and is very visible by the road.

bus companies plying the route
Baliwag Transit Cubao
ES Transport Cubao
Genesis Liner Cubao
5 Star Bus Cubao

and a whole lot more.


the author of was not able to provide photos for the interior of the house due to unavailability of his SLR and an eerie but quite funny experience with an old man who begged for coins. he got scared thats why he thought of taking more photos some other time and left the place immediately. LOL.

Naragsak nga Isasanbay Ilocos!

basic info on this trip courtesy of travel buddy Elmer Lagumbay

Paoay Church

Calle Crisologo, Vigan

the light house

Bangui windmills

Calle Crisologo, Vigan

Hotel VIGAN – 1750 per night two beds each for the couples.

Dinner VIGAN – 900PHP (bagnet, pinakbet, and longanisa)

VIGAN-PAGUDPUD – 100PHP man cguro plete sa bus

MANG ARNEL – 200 bus stop to hotel –trike ride

Half day North Side – 600 discounted 500

Half day South Side – 600 discounted 500

Hotel Pagudpud – 1800php

Pagudpud Lunch cost – 500 with 6 persons including driver at a famous carenderia

Laoag tour for a Trike 600 each man cguro.

280 kilo per longanissa.

my apologies for not being able to come up with at least a ‘proper’ blog for this entry because of some personal not-so-good experience with this trip. and i owe Ilocos and its people an apology for not giving justice with this entry.