Archive for January, 2012

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Coron, Palawan, Philippines
Part2
ITLog No. 14
(15-18 January, 2011)

The blue-green waters around this pristine paradise of sheer limestone cliffs, white sand beaches, and virgin forests of Coron, Palawan, have always been part of the ancestral domain of the indigenous Tagbanua people.
But it was only in June that the tribe obtained legal claim on the land and waters they had nurtured and lived on for generations in this island, located in Palawan province in central Philippines.
And while the Philippines’ environment department has awarded 132 Certificates of Ancestral Domain Claim (CADC) since 1994, the document given to the Tagbanua is so far the only one that includes ancestral waters. The ancestral domain certificate covers more than 22,000 hectares of land and sea.
For the Tagbanua, it is a means to protect their island and waters from the destructive methods of migrant fishermen and a government plan to make northern Palawan, more than hour by plane southwest from Manila, a prime tourist area.
But the Tagbanua’s victory is also being watched by other island tribes across the Philippine archipelago – and even the Australia’s aborigines – who are reclaiming the waters that have sustained generations.

The Tagbanua tribe, one of the oldest tribes in the Philippines, can be mainly found in the central and northern Palawan. Research has shown that the Tagbanua are possible descendants of the Tabon Man; thus, making them one of the original inhabitants of the Philippines. They are brown-skinned, slim and straight-haired ethnic group.
The tribe has two major classifications based on the geographical location where they can be found. Central Tagbanuas are found in the western and eastern coastal areas of central Palawan. They are concentrated in the municipalities of Aborlan, Quezon, and Puerto Princesa. Calamian Tagbanua, on the other hand, are found in Baras coast, Busuanga Island, Coron Island and in some parts of El Nido. These two Tagbanua sub-groups speak different languages and do not exactly have the same custom.

Waking up around 0700hrs and prepared for the days itinerary which was the island hopping around the nearby islands of Coron. With our lunch prepared, we headed out to where the boats are docked which was called “Gateway” by 0800hrs, and after looking for the boat we were going to ride and boarding it, we headed for our first destination which was Siete Pecados.

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Siete Pecados is composed of 7 small islands bunched together, with its clear water and one of the many marine reserves in Coron, this is the most famous snorkeling spot. When the tide is low, you could see the corals from above the water. Since cyanide fishing was wildly practiced before, now it is managed and protected by the local tribes, the corals were practically damaged, and since then, corals are growing back and so are the abundance of colorful fishes. Feeding the fishes with bread brings them near the boat and they even eat from your hands, its like being in a different world. The entrance fee or once you go in the water and snorkel here, is Php100 pesos.

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With a little conversation about all the boats in Siete Pecados, and was told that later in the day, lots of boats would be around and would hop from boat to boat if you would dock in Kayangan lake, so we decided, while it was still early, to head for Kayangan Lake.

Lake Kayangan, one of Coron’s primary attractions. The most photographed place in Coron, accessible by a steep 10-minute climb, reaching the top, you could see where the boats are docked, plus the picturesque view of the cliffs and water and a glimpse of Coron town, the crystal-clear waters of Lake Kayangan are nestled into the mountain walls; underwater is like a moonscape. Known as the cleanest lake in the Philippnes, is a mixture of 30% salt water and 70% fresh water. There’s a little wooden walkway and platform to stash your things if you go for a swim, you could spend the whole day lazing and swimming in the lake, but have other islands to see.

After paying the entrance fee, which is Php200/pax, we climbed our way up the cliff and upon reaching the top, took as much photos as I can of the lagoon (there were already lots of people here and had to wait my turn to take photos). Heading down the other side to the lake, we were greeted by its beautiful bluish-green waters, while our friends were swimming, this was my opportunity to take photos of the lake, but felt the heat coming from the reflection of the water and decided to head back up.

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Our next destination was Barracuda Lake, which is just a short climb over the rocks, is a haven for Barracudas, seen when one dives deep into its bluish-green brackish waters. But since we just came and see the place and would not swim in it, we decided to move on to our next destination, which was Twin Lagoon.

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Twin Lagoons, are two lagoons divided by a huge wall of limestone karst, the only way to get to the other lagoon was, to either to swim through the hole or climb a wooden stairs. Our friends then put on their life-vests and swam to the other side of the other lagoon, while we stayed in the boat and grew hungry that we ate our lunch . Here, the entrance fee was Php100/pax

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Banol Beach was our next stop, which was once ignored, but its white sands gave it an intimate appeal and since it was hot, I decided to take a dip in its cool waters. We wanted to stay longer, but we had one more stop to see and this was the Skeleton Wreck.

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Upon reaching the Skeleton Wreck, our boatman tied the boat to the buoy, and our friends started snorkeling around, while feeding the fish some bread, I’m not a water person so did not get a chance to see the wreck which I really love to see but in a different means.

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Heading back to Coron town, and buying food for our dinner at the market, I decided to take a nap and woke up around 1700hrs and helped prepare for dinner. With nothing to do after dinner we decided to have a bottle of beer and chat till we were all sleepy and decided to rest for the day.

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The next day, we decided to climb up Mt. Tapyas again, waking up around 0430hrs and preparing my gears, and by 0500hrs we took the tricycle and by 0515hrs started climbing the up Mt. Tapyas. Upon reaching the top, which was still dark, I took some photos of the cross plus the view of the town of Coron and waited for the sun to rise. The sun rose beside what they call sleeping giant (because its shapes looks like a man sleeping) and took photos of it till around 0640hrs, when we decided to head back down and prepare for lunch.

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Reaching the lodge, we packed our things and decided to head out back to town and walk around. Buying rice pearls for a gift, passing thru The Old House, which has a Drink-All-You-Can rum and cola for only Php100. Then saw Villa Hermosa, and remembered a website saying about her unique house built from sandbags, and decided to meet her. We met Susan de la Rosa, and showed up a video of how her she built her house for her mother, a three-level house made with mostly recycled materials and the unique way of coming up with ideas to make her house really unique, but since we were pressed with time we decided to visit her house on our return trip this February, instead she showed us the rooms of her guest house and the materials she used. For this, we thank her for accommodating us and how warm and pleasant she is.

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Heading back out we passed by a bakery where they were selling freshly baked bread and bought some, which was as soft as cotton candy when eaten. Heading to Kookie Lodge to eat our lunch but was told that they open at 1500hrs, so we decided to just eat our lunch again at Lolo Nonoy’s.

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At Lolo Nonoy’s, we ordered grilled fish which they called “sapatos” and sinigang na baka with fresh coconut juice and for dessert Leche Flan. Rested at the lodge till 1300hrs, and was picked up by a van to take us to the airport, after other stops and picking up other passengers form different lodges and hotels, we headed for Busuanga Airport where we checked in our bags and waited at the departure area, out plane landed and after a while was told that we could board it and took of at 1430hrs heading to Manila.

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With the pilot announcing some traffic the airport in Manila, we were to hold and circled around (which we did three times) and finally was told that we could land. Upon landing, we were told that there are lots of plane on hold, and waited and directed to where the plane would be told to park. Deplaning, we picked up our check in bags at the carousel. We then ate dinner at Ha Yuan and had dessert at a newly opened cupcake shop.

Like they say “God must have been in a good mood when he created Coron”, because everywhere you look, you would be awed by its beauty, everywhere you go, you would be greeted by a picturesque view and everywhere you stay, is like paradise. There are a lot more places to go where we did not had the chance to visit and we keep learning of more places we must visit, but we will get a chance again this coming February. I can’t wait for our return to Coron and see once again the wonderful place.

Till our next trip…

Thanks to:

GCL Lodging house
Leyelito and Gemma Corullo
Mang Jerry (Alamid)

– for accommodating us on this trip

Susan de la Rosa
Villa Hermosa Guest House
San Agustin St., Barangay Poblacion 2
Coron, Palawan

– for letting us in and explaining to us on how she made her house and showing us around her guest house and hopefully on our return, her house.

And to the warm people of Coron specially the Tagbanuans
– thank you for your hospitality and taking care of your beautiful paradise.

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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Coron, Palawan, Philippines
Part1
ITLog No. 14
(15-18 January, 2011)

I am a nature lover, being born and raised in the City of Pines (Baguio), I always liked being surrounded by nature, hearing the sounds of birds chirping, the cool breeze of the wind, the fresh smelling air and most specially the quiet and serene surroundings. That’s why my dream destinations would be Batanes and Palawan, namely Coron. And to celebrate our anniversary together with my travel buddy, we booked ourselves for a trip to Coron, searching the web for cool places to see and visit, and to try to experience all those things we have read and heard.

Coron Island Palawan is a wedge-shaped limestone island, with few of its coastal areas being covered by mangrove forests. It has seven lakes, famous of which is the nationally-acclaimed-cleanest-lake in the Philippines, the Kayangan Lake. It also has a number of islands with white beaches and clear blue waters perfect for snorkeling, deep-sea fishing and shipwreck diving.

Coron is a 2nd class municipality in the province of Palawan, Philippines. According to the 2000 census, it has a population of 32,243 people in 6,264 households. Municipality of Coron from the Mount Tapyas view deck to Coron PUV Terminal. The municipality covers part of Busuanga Island and all of the nearby Coron Island. Both islands are part of the Calamian Group of Islands in northern Palawan. The main industries of Coron are fishing and tourism, being a popular diving location. The aquatic views from the sunken Japanese warships off Coron Island are listed in Forbes Traveler Magazine’s top 10 best scuba diving sites in the world.

They say that the gods must have been in a good mood when he created Coron, with its calm waters, majestic lagoons, and breath-taking views.

We booked our flight months ago with Zest Airways and left Manila at around 1400hrs on a Sunday afternoon (being bump-off from our earlier flight, and waiting at the tarmac to for ages to be allowed to taxi off the runway), with the sound of the turboprop filling the cabin, and the excitement of seeing Coron for the first time, the stewardess announced at the intercom that we are approaching Busuanga and would be landing in a short while. Landing at Busuanga airport around 1530hrs, we claimed our check-in baggage and was led to a van which would take us to our lodge (we paid Php150/pax for the trip to Coron Town), passing thru fields where here were lots of cows and was told that this was a ranch owned by the government where they sell the cows coming from Australia.

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Arriving at GLC lodging house (near Rudy’s Place), where two of our friends were waiting (they took the earlier flight out of Manila to Coron), leaving our bags in our room and fixing up our schedule for our stay in Coron and resting a bit, then riding the tricycle we headed for Mount Tapyas.

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Attracting all kinds of tourists in Coron Palawan, the big metal cross sitting on top of the Mt. Tapyas is a popular landmark for the surrounding area of the island. Mt. Tapyas, which literally translates to “Mt. Slice” in Filipino, is the second-highest peak in the whole province of Palawan. Its summit measures up to 656 feet while the cross structure stands over 2,000 feet above the sea level. It is located about 10 minutes away on foot from the town proper or about 5 minutes from the pier, and the modernized trail starts just beside a public basketball court in Busuanga Island, part of the Coron municipality.

Mt. Tapyas is not your typical mountain with difficult trails up its rocky terrains. In fact, it’s unlikely that hardened mountaineers will ever have it on their list of must-climb-mountains in Palawan. Besides comfortable shoes and bottled water for refreshment, there’s not much you need to climb on top of this mountain. Part of the land surface of the mountain was structured into a flight of steps cemented and paved such that even small kids and frail adults can climb it.

The 700-plus (723 to be exact) steps up the peak of the mountain will take no more than an hour, even less if you are physically fit. There are also many shaded areas where you can rest or catch your breath. In addition, there are guardrails installed from the base up to the last step of the concrete stairs. At the top, some area have been flattened and surrounded with metal handrails. On the other side, there are gazebos and benches for climbers to rest and savor the moment of reaching and being at the top. It’s the perfect time to take pictures and exult at having scaled the mountain. Most have declared the (minor) hardship of going up the stairs is all worth it for the view at the top.

At the top of the mountain, a panoramic vista of the town and the surrounding islands offers a breathtaking sight to your eyes. In the evening, the light bulbs on the cross also provide a magical experience as you survey the land below. Light posts dot the stairs and the rails around the viewing deck, but it’s not only when night time approaches that visitors can enjoy the peak of the mountain, but also early morning when the sun rises. The local tourism department advertises the mountain as an ideal viewing place for the sunrise and sunset. And indeed, lovers of sunrise and sunset will appreciate and marvel at the sight from the top.

So, if you’re one of those who want to experience being on the top of a mountain but do not have the skill or the inclination to climb up a dangerous trail, Mt. Tapyas might just be the mountain for you. And if you want to watch the rising and setting of the sun from the highest peak of the land, catch the sunrise and the sunset atop this mountain. It might just be your easy slice of heaven on an otherwise rugged terrain.
With our gears ready including our water bottles, we started climbing up the steps around 1700hrs, with brief stops along the way, we reached the top with-in 30 minutes to see the breath-taking view of the whole Coron town and its surroundings. Making sure I take lots of pictures so as not to miss anything and even waited for the sun to set. Walking down by 1800hrs was easy and took us less than 15 minutes, with our tricycle waiting for us at the bottom, we then rode it and headed back to the lodge, but going down the road we almost had an accident because we were all seated in front and no weight was at the back and the brakes of the tricycle did not bite, so the driver had to jam his bike at the sides of the road. Picking-up our friends at the lodge (they tried going up Mt. Tapyas earlier in the day), we headed for Maquinit Hot Spring to rest our aching muscles from the fast climb up Mt. Tapyas and dip in the pool.

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Maquinit Salt Water Hot Spring is the only known saltwater hot spring in the Philippines, if not in the world. Located at the east side of the town, this Palawan wonder lies between a mountain and the blue sea whose shores are lined with mangrove trees. The place is accessible by sea or by land, thanks to the new road network initiated by Gov. Joel Reyes.

In Maquinit, your skin toning begins. With its 40 degree Celsius water temperature, a dip into a huge pool is considered therapeutic. Tension is eased from your nerves and muscles, while the mildly hot saltwater cleanses the skin. Skin pores are opened to rid them of trapped dirt.

Sanitization and cleansing make the skin more responsive. A longer soak helps remove muscle pains and discomfort in the joints.

Arriving at Maquinit Hot Spring at 1900hrs, with a Php150/pax entrance fee, we entered and looked for a spot to leave out things. After selecting a spot, the girls went to the pool and took a dip while I stayed and watched our things and took some photos, after about 20 minutes, they said they were hungry so we headed back and changed and then rode our tricycle and headed to Lolo Nonoy’s place for dinner, with our tricycle driver eating with us, we ordered grilled liempo, barbeque, bicol express and dinuguan. Heading back to the lodge and paying our ride for the day, we rested and I edited some photos taken during the day, with another exciting day ahead tomorrow.

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Waking up around 0500hrs and then headed to Coron market to buy some food to cook for breakfast and lunch. We went around Lualhati Park and taking picture of the boats and the scenery. There were no fish around to be bought because all of it was reserved for someone else, so we bought liempo and eggs plus eggplant and tomatoes, then headed for the bakery to buy bread, then headed back to cook breakfast. After breakfast we headed for Coron Harvest, where they sell cashew nuts, and we ordered Cashew nuts cooked in Molasses or Panucha called “Bandi”. We then headed to Coron Souvenir Shop to buy souvenirs after which we headed back to our lodge and waited for two other friends flying in from Manila. We were scheduled to go to Culion Island but since we missed half of the day waiting for our friends and would be paying the boat for the whole day, we decided to just go to Cabu Beach, which is located further down the road from Maquinit Hot Springs.

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After eating lunch, we were picked-up by the owner of the lodge and was toured first around town then headed to Cabu Beach where we stayed till 15300hrs, this beach was so quiet with only a few people around and you could see the Islands of Siete Picados plus other Islands. Paying the entrance fee of Php20/pax, we headed back to town and passed by Coron Harvest to get our orders of Cashew nuts, heading to the market we bought food to be cooked for our island hopping the next day, but came the downpour of rain and was stranded, we had to wait till the rain stopped and then took the tricycle back to the lodge and cooked dinner including the food for tomorrow.

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Continued…

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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CDO: Our Vacation Turned Relief Operation
Part3
ITLog No. 13
(26-30 December, 2011)

With the distribution of the loaves of bread done in the morning and then transferring to Morning Mist to bath, we then headed for a Pizza Joint named Calda (which started here in CDO) and ordered the second largest size with four flavors in them for our dinner, and it was a blast looking at how they make it and then trying to eat all of it.

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After lunch, we headed to SM CDO to just go around and buy some things. Returning back at the house, I was not feeling well when they decided to go around CDO so I was left behind to rest

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Waking up the next day, a little bit late in the day, eating some Jollibee brought home by my sister for breakfast, then headed back to Morning Mist to take our baths and clean up. Heading to the center of town, we had our lunch at Inilog Restaurant where we had chicken inasal, fish, sisig, adobong kangkong and grilled tuna belly, and they serve unlimited rice there kyle ate almost 4 servings of extra rice.

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After lunch, we had the chance to pass by Barangay Balulang and see the devastation there. Passing thru mud along the roads and children playing while others were cleaning their houses. With a brief rest at the house we then got our bags and headed to the airport for our trip back to Manila, our flight was delayed by aroung 30 minutes and around 1945hrs we were off the ground and headed for Manila. On the flight back, the kids were so excited to see the light of Manila and didn’t mind the little turbulence we had passed. Arriving at the Domestic Ariport and getting our bags, we were fetched by our ride and we had to bring home the kids at Pasay, after dropping them off, we headed back home and rested for the trip.

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Our CDO trip was a little different from our other trips because, on this trip we had a chance to help out other people devastated by the typhoon and give our relief goods in the process. I ask the kids I they wanted to go back to CDO, and their answers was all YES! So we will try to get again those promo flights back to CDO for another fun and adventure.

Till our next trip this January…

HAPPY TRAILS!!!

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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CDO: Our Vacation Turned Relief Operation
Part2
ITLog No. 13
(26-30 December, 2011)

Waking up the next morning and was told and confirmed by Zest Airways that the cargo of relief goods has arrived and we could pick them up at the cargo area of CDO airport, but arriving there and upon checking, it was not yet sent to Cagayan de Oro and was still in Manila, we decided then to buy sacks of rice and mosquito nets to be packed and to be distributed. After buying 5 sacks of rice we headed back to the house at Tibasak and with the kids packed into small bags. While they were packing we headed to cogon area and look for mosquito nets, we entered first Kabee store where we got around 23 family sized mosquito nets then transferred to Kaking store where we waited for a long time later to find out that all their stocks were at the warehouse and decided just to go there. Reaching the warehouse, which was blocked by plastic doors taken from another warehouse which was soaked in mud and they were drilling holes at the bottom to drain them and then washing them off to be sold again. Inside the warehouse was a strong odor, which was really bad and the workers has no protective masks to cover their noses. We then ordered around 80 pieces of mosquito nets then headed back to the house for lunch.

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The afternoon was spent just lazing around because the cargo of relief has not yet arrived. By 1700hrs the girls started to prepare our dinner which consisted of pasta and bread after the singing of praise for dinner by the brothers, we started eating our dinner like a line in a mess hall where we were given portions of pasta then the sauce then pieces of bread, dessert was a challenge because our dessert was durian. Since the brothers, tin and geloy will be leaving the next day, we took some group photos and then the brothers blessed some items including the altar. The rest of the evening was spent watching a movie in my laptop.

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After the brothers left at 0400am, tin and geloy brought to the airport to catch their plane ride back to Manila and the cargo of relief goods has not arrived from Manila, we decided to distribute the loaves of bread because it might spoil out if we wait for the other goods. We headed for Cala-cala area (the worst area hit by the flood) where we distributed the loaves of bread which all the people there, young and old was so happy to receive it for breakfast and were asking if we had also coffee but said sorry we had only bread. After Cala-cala, we headed for Biasong/Tambo area where I entered a compound where cars where stuck up their garages and cars piled in one side of the compound, could not go near because of the deep mud, there was also a chapel deep in mud. We then headed to the covered court at Macasandig and gave all our remaining loaves of bread, this is when we realized that we went to three different places and there were lots of people cuing up to receive the bread but we still had bread to give out, it was just like multiplication of bread. We were even giving out bread of the road to our next destinations.

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This is where I went south and felt ill, so i decided rest while they went out and see CDO for what it really is.

Thanks to the donors:
Melissa Villa and Project Pearls: Php10,00 plus 1 big box
Arpie Patriarca: 10 boxes of assorted good including toothbrushes and toothpaste
Mervin Manalo: 400 loaves of bread
Sol R Angeles: Php4000
Annabelle Maralit-Zaldarriaga: 9 boxes assorted goods
Miguel Lindog: Php5,000
Usapang KALYE: Php1,500
Adrian Lucas: Php3,000
Baguio: Php5,000
Tin Sweetcorn Lapid: Php3000 for rice
Geloy Conception: for the mosquito nets

Continued…

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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CDO: Our Vacation Turned Relief Operation
Part1
ITLog No. 13
(26-30 December, 2011)

We had planned this trip months in advance to as to let our kids experience the wonderful adventures Cagayan de Oro has to offer, specially the white water rafting which I had already done twice, once in 2007 with my brother, and again in 2009 with my travel partner, carol; plus the other activities The Adventure Capital of the Philippines has to offer.

But tragedy struck… Typhoon Sendong (international codename “Washi”) made landfall in Northern Mindanao and brought much destruction to Cagayan de Oro and Iligan.

The Manila Observatory cited historical evidence that storms rarely make landfall in Mindanao. That fact has been used to explain why local officials and the public didn’t show much of a response to warnings about Sendong’s pending arrival. The Manila Observatory noted that in the last 15 years, only six tropical cyclones crossed Mindanao, and only one in 10 years in December.

None of the previous Mindanao storms had this kind of impact.

The Manila Observatory also noted that Sendong ranked among the most destructive tropical cyclones in Philippine recorded history, including Uring (1991, Ormoc), Pepeng (2009, Northern Luzon), Juaning (2011, Bicol) and Ondoy (2009, Metro Manila).

Yet all of them were classified as “weak”, suggesting that PAGASA’s current storm warning system, which takes into account only a storm’s wind speed, is inadequate for indicating the potential danger of a coming storm.

Typhoon Sendong hit very late in the season, and it also hit to the south of the typical path for Philippine tropical systems. It is only once every twelve years, on average, that a tropical cyclone impacts Mindanao, so this was a shock indeed especially since it may be the worst in over 60 years. Adding to the element of surprise were the following conditions: the storm sped up just prior to landfall (making timely warning difficult); once over land, the storm slowed or stalled above the mountainous terrain, pouring down extraordinary volumes of rain in a short time; the flooding occurred in the very early morning time which was fraught with great darkness; and, finally, many local authorities did not carry out evacuation orders.

A week after Typhoon Sendong hit, we were scheduled to visit CDO and with the efforts of concerned groups and individuals we brought with us boxes of relief goods for CDO, including loaves of bread (which was a hit when we distributed them), toothbrushes and toothpastes, candies for the kids, packs of noodles, canned goods, blankets and pillows, and clothes. Since we could not carry all these items, we had to ship them thru Zest Airways but not the perishable goods which we had to pay for its cargo.

Our flight was scheduled to leave at 0330hrs, so we picked up the kids in Sucat, Parañaque then headed to the domestic airport where Tin and Geloy (who booked their flight in order to help in the relief) were waiting for us at the entrance when we arrived, so was Mervin together with 23 boxes which contains 400 loaves of bread was also there to try and ship the boxes for free but since it was not sure when Zest Air could ship it for free, and this has to be distributed before the expiry date, we decided to pay the cost of shipping, but since the terminal gates opens only at 0130hrs we had to wait in line at the gate of the terminal.

Finally allowed to enter the terminal, passing thru the customary checks, we headed for the check-in counter where we were assisted by Malu Gamboa and Arnel Pansoy, who made sure that the boxes we check in are safe. Then waited for our flight at the departure area.

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Boarded the plane and left Manila at around 0345hrs, with an hour and 15 minutes of flight time, we tried to get some shut eyes but since it was the first plane ride of kyle and Mikael they could not sleep because of the excitement. Arriving around 0500hrs in CDO airport, got our bags and boxes that we brought and was greeted by my sister and brother-in-law together with the Franciscan seminary brothers including my older brother who are in Davao, and were doing medical missions in CDO (which became sort of a family reunion for us) and then headed to the cargo area to claim the boxes of bread.

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Heading to the house of my sister, we passed by kala-kala (this was the part of CDO which was the worst hit by the flood) and saw all the destruction the flood had caused CDO. Upon reaching the house and given our room assignments (girls stayed at the girls room, and the boys in the boys room, while the brothers stayed in the guest room). After bringing all the boxes down, and the others started to rest, I decided to join the Brothers on their Medical Mission. After heading to Morning Mist Subdivision where they took a bath and changed, we headed for Barangay Consolacion and set-up in a school still covered in mud.

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After a long day and eating our lunch late in the afternoon, we had to end the Mission because of the impending rain, so we packed-up all the things and said our goodbyes then headed back to Morning Mist Subdivision to bath and change. After freshening up, we headed for SM CDO to buy some mosquito nets to distribute, but since they had just a limited stock, we decided to get it and then get others in cogon area the next day. Headed back to the house in Tibasak, where we ate our dinner then just to relax we had a jam session with the kids. Playing till we all felt sleepy and retired for the day.

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Continued…

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

2011 in review

Posted: January 1, 2012 in Blog, Events

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,300 times in 2011. If it were a cable car, it would take about 38 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.