Friday, September 03, 2010

founders found

Founders Found: We Need To Cheer Up (day 1)

Someone: “I think you have to stay here in the office
for a while, Jordan.”
Jordan: “Bahala ka diyan! I’m going home!”

Yes, I had to. When the plane landed on the Dumaguete airport, I went straight to the Weekly Sillimanian office and met one of the few staffers I recognized (most of them are barely in their teens; I don’t know them!), Budjai, whose sole responsibility for the next five days was to adopt me in their humble abode.

What followed? For someone with a sweet tooth, of course, it was Sans Rival Cakes and Pastries with my batch mates (yeah, small group). And because I didn’t want to waste time, I took the rest of the hours roaming around the campus, the Hibalag booth area, before cheering up at Macias for the annual Silliman University Cheering Competition. Ah, that was some starter.

[ August 25, 2010 ]

Founders Found: Not Your Big Spender (day 2)

I have already anticipated that I won’t be spending as much as five grand in this “six-days, five-nights” sojourn in Dumaguete but this is just staggering: on the second day of my stay, I have only spent P72.00, save for the occasional P7.50 tricycle ride to arrive at different key spots of activities in the city. Unbelievable. That amount could only bring me half of my destination when trying to reach Makati from where I live!

This is one of the many things I love about the city: the wise one could live for a day with a hundred pesos in his hands. It is true.

[ August 26, 2010 ]

Founders Found: All Ye Silly Men Reunite! (day 3)

This is the day when most of the familiar faces have arrived in the city, trying the catch up with what’s left of Silliman’s Founders Week celebration. Though I have expected other faces to show up, the number of people that comes in Qyosko (a restaurant and café with the best arroz balao, crispy adobo servings, coffee concoctions and cakes in the city!) for a quick lunch just shows how many of us are desperate to reconnect, talk and scream at each other at the top of our lungs.

That’s no joke. If by any chance you’d see us group together, better prepare with thick mufflers on the ears. I assume this is always the case: The longer we haven’t seen each other, the stronger the decibels of our voices.

[ August 27, 2010 ]

Founders Found: My Parada Sillimaniana (day 3)

Yes, I know, we are like a balding spot on the head with the number of our contingent in this annual parade of student organizations of Silliman University. The pictures speak for themselves. But who cares! I think this is the way the Weekly Sillimanian will forever follow. I have seen the same thing before, what with the last three years of my college life working as a writer-to-editor of this 107-year old weekly student publication.

But it is not in the numbers actually, it is in the fervor of getting into the crowd of colors of the parade, of reliving what it is like the first time I have leisurely walked around the campus by the sea, of enjoying the countless smiles, cheers and, of course, instances of having myself taken by eager shooting cameras, DSLR or not, with fellow photo-whores. And with the latter, the blaring afternoon sunlight is my one and only friend.

Remember, in photography, natural light is best? Good.

[ August 27, 2010 ]

Founders Found: This Time, The Bistro Is Ours (day 3)

Like what I have said in the previous album, in a nutshell, it is the end of silence once we are grouped together. Light may travel faster than sound but the sounds of our chatter during dinner at Gabby’s Bistro, one the most charming restaurants down Rovira Road in Bantayan, is one damn speeding mercurial bullet. It is that fast. Sabi nga ni Sara Geronimo sa isang TV commercial, “Ang bilis!”

(Maybe we just have to regain our energies back after the long Parada Sillimaniana walk.)

With our loud and cheerful presence, it’s like the place is our home. Well, who wouldn’t feel at home when you are in the lively communion of a long-awaited gathering? To simply put it, this is what I have been looking for a long time, and I am so happy I’ve found it on this day.

[ August 27, 2010 ]

Founders Found: Free Wi-Fi Karma At Escanyo (day 3)

“Be careful with what you throw up above,
it might fall back on your head.”

As is the case of many people in the remaining hours of the day (or night… or dawn of the following day…), it truly happens. Karma has a strange way of putting things in order, and for me, there’s no escaping the fact. But actually, it is something for the good: to maintain balance, one must succumb to a little bit of: a) sudden realization and reasoning, b) momentary aching, and lastly, c) overhyped closure.

In the end, we just have to raise our glasses of beer and salute to the cold sea breeze of Escanyo while bottles of Red Horse Grande continue to crowd the table. It may not be the most picturesque of scenes for some tying of loose ends but it is decent than not happening at all. What has happened has happened; let the dust be carried away into the far distance.

[ August 27, 2010 ]

Founders Found: Apo Island and the Underwater Dora (day 4)

“Uy, daghan kaayong Dora diri dapit o!”
“Unsay Dora?! Dory siguro!”

Unfortunately, some people fail to remember the right names of certain characters, icons or even celebrities. Take for example, Mr. Dither “Diet” Ocampo. You know Dither? Yes, the older brother of Wither and Thither. That’s the one.

Anyway, the expedition to Apo is one memorable sea escapade, a literal washer after our 9PM to 5AM binging at Escanyo. (We had to leave the city at 5:30AM of which no one actually accomplished). The journey is all worth it, from Dumaguete to Malatapay to the island, what with the wealth of otherworldly corals and sea life we have seen.

If just one of us had an underwater camera, the whole trip would be tremendously memorable. Who knows, I might be wrong, the bilingual Dora must really be swimming among us.

[ August 28, 2010 ]

Founders Found: If The Night Is Dark, What Are We? (day 4)

There comes a point when even the highest point of eagerness is trumped by exhaustion. The body just can’t handle. This is how some have felt after our day tour in Apo Island, especially that we didn’t treat sleep much as a friend in the previous days.

And speaking of Apo, I got my long-awaited color. I looked so pale (in my personal context) I had to embrace the sun and sand. But a few thought it was an ungracious gift. Showing up in one of the final nights of our vacation almost as dark as, well, the night, we fixed our minds on the bright side and thought of our mates’ faces at work when they see our golden burn.

[ August 28, 2010 ]

Founders Found: One Plate Isn’t Enough (day 5)

Extra rice is never unfashionable when one is in Dumaguete. It is understandable; you just have to. Almost anything that is edible in the city, whatever suits your taste, is pure heaven. What more, it doesn’t hurt the wallet! It seems to me that food, aside from the vibrant arts and culture that are well-appreciated by the community, is the common denominator that links the Negros islands.

Due to time constraints, or maybe our unconscious incursions to feast in very accessible spots, we missed out on a lot of things: the cheese bread at the college cafeteria, the sizzling bulalo of Royale Suites Inn, the apple shake of Chantily, and everything in the Sunday breakfast buffet of Le Chalet! There are a lot of new places too!

Oh well, this only gives us the reasonable excuse to come back next time… Now I am really craving for Neva’s Pork Parmigiana and Qyosko’s Cashew Caramel Crunch!

[ August 29, 2010 ]

Founders Found: We Are Normal, Never Fear (day 5)

Sometimes, there’s plenty of time in our hands, especially in Dumaguete when one can juggle three tasks in a minute. While people are just stirring and moving slowly in response to the nearing end of the Founders week celebration, some are clustering in the office of a student publication, in communion with anyone’s suggestions of posing this way, projecting that way.

Yes, this is normal. Do not be afraid. I guess this is simply how we define and emulate “natural” in times of yearning each other’s presence after a long while, especially that we are in familiar territory. Though the pictures do not look like it, we don’t bite. Promise.

[ August 29, 2010 ]

Founders Found: The Last Night Among Other Things (day 5)

It was hard to embrace the thought, but then again, it was harder to grapple it, wrestling the fact that on the following day, we would all go back to the seemingly endless cycle of “working for a living.” Even a few rounds in Minimik, karaoke songs in Country Gents, and a few more rounds at Escanyo (our usual crime scenes) couldn’t dilute the gloom of cloud over our heads.

The last night in Dumaguete only bears witness that no matter how far one has reached to, whatever places they might be, one has to return and reconnect to a place that is forever stranded within our hearts.

[ August 30, 2010 ]

Founders Found: Founders Lost (day 6)

Even good times have to end. We know this is coming. Six days and five nights of merrymaking have to lie low for the meantime because we have to return to several weeks of hunching in our seats for nine hours in a day.

But as what I have said, these separations are necessary. One must detach from the city in order to relive what makes the place so fascinating, so recognizable yet fresh in every boulevard sunrise. When the time to return comes, one will learn that every second of waiting is worth it. Dumaguete goes nowhere. All we have to do is come back at the right moment and say the words again: “We deserve this.”

Until the next trip! See you soon.

[ August 30, 2010 ]

1 comment:

Vir Antonio said...

Good for you! I wasn't able to witness this year's event though...too bad!