Vic Nierva, colleague and friend of my brother at the Ateneo de Naga University, and my classmate in the Creative Writing graduate class I took under Charlson Ong at the University of the Philippines Diliman, posted some photos he took on the last test run of the much-awaited return of the Bicol Express, Ltd. With his permission, I am posting the beautiful photos here on my blog as something to look forward to. The inaugural run of the Bicol Express, Ltd. shall be on June 29th, Naga-Manila.
These are the kinds of objects I would want to populate my home (or Wharf Galley) with. These are the kinds of objects I would like to do if only I had and could find the time and energy – but since I’m spread too thin as it is, it thrills me to find a gallery, or a group of people, who does the same thing – and the results are just fantastic!
Needless to say I have been very busy with everything that’s been going on with my life. Some of them I freely disclose, some of them I prefer to keep private. There are so many times that I wish I can just leave everything in Naga behind and go back to my friends, my work and my peaceful life in Manila. (I barely have time for my friends here though they always make it a point to come see me at the bar and even take me out to the movies).
Twice, my wallets were lost to the sneaky hands of the poor of the streets of Naga. I lost money, my cards, IDs and my trust in the people of Naga. The streets are not how I remember it to be. The people even. Or maybe I’m just older. I found myself dazed in front of a police officer filing a blotter report for the sake of all the affidavits of loss I have to file so I can have replacements for my cards and IDs.
Then I was in a car accident.
Renowned director and choreographer of the well received and applauded contemporary adaptation of Francisco Baltazarâ€™s â€œOrosman at Zafiraâ€ opens Dulaang Unibersidad ng Pilipinasâ€™ (DUP) 36th theater season with a new material that speaks of the life and works of one of the most important figures in Philippine history.
Dexter M. Santos spearheads a company of distinguished artists in a performance that merges text, dance, film, and visual arts to reintroduce the current generation to the life and works of Dr. Jose P. Rizal. Using mixed popular media, artists from different disciplines collaborate to produce different and new perspectives on the works and life of Rizal to underline the fact that his stories and his life are as ever relevant and pertinent to the understanding of our culture and ourselves as Filipinos.
This original production is scored with live music of emerging original Filipino band, â€œHappy Days Aheadâ€, led by William Elvin Manzano who pens the music and songs accompanying the audience in their journey to the world of Rizal. The material will include works of eminent and critically acclaimed poets, playwrights, choreographers, filmmakers and musicians. Some of the collaborating artists are Pinoy rock legend Dong Abay, notable commercial and film director Joaquin Pedro Valdez, Palanca multi – award winners Layeta Bucoy and Floy Quintos, published author Vlad Gonzales, new found TV sensation and Mula sa Puso star JM De Guzman, and leading figure in children’s literature in the Philippines, the loved Rene Villanueva. Also lending their talents to help in capturing the kaleidoscopic facets of Rizal are Manix Abrera, Chips Beltran, Winter David, Deo Dela Cruz, Jeffrey Garcia, Al Garcia, Gerson Abesamis, and Adi Lopez.
WE DO NOT SLEEP
a “play” for & about our generation of insomniac, manic,
mechanical, technological, dreamless (kids)
and the search for a fight and
WE DO NOT SLEEP is an experimental play which utilizes devised theatre. Through a highly collaborative process, the play gathers various texts, images, sound, movement – the body, in order to create a piece that speaks about that anxiety our generation feels at 3 am in the morning. Bothered by progress, change, disconnection, the mundane and extreme, the play voices out these panic attacks that render us sleepless.
Dance Forum – West Avenue, Quezon City
Running time: 1 hour 20 minutes
for mature audiences only
It’s midway till dawn, quiet, with only the hum of air-conditioners reverberating through the concrete walls and wooden floors, interrupted by the soft pattering of the rain on the roof of the back kitchen where I do one of the things in life I love most, laundry. Yes, laundry.
I have the house all to myself, or so it seems. There is no one sleeping on the living room floor, there is no one guarding the main door, there is no one walking around the house in this godforsaken time of the night except me, and I like it.
In the main bedroom, the little one and the big man sleep on the soft bed, cradled by pillows, stuffed toys with names like Happy (I think I’m happeeee!) and Doug.
I sit here, illuminated only by the light coming from the screen of my laptop, and close my eyes and think: All I wanna be is outside, laying on a hammock, with the breeze blowing strands of hair across my tired face, lined prematurely by nearly three years of… of I don’t know what.
Do I regret the things I did? Yes, of course. But all the things I did, I did only because I loved, and if that’s the case, is it true that love finds a way to flow back to me?
All the things I thought was dear then are now meaningless, lost in the cold winds, rain and snow. Snow!.
When I sleep, I’m always grateful, no matter where it is, because wherever that may be, it is still better than the bleachers I slept on for hours on stretch on busy airports in countries where I knew no one and no one knew me.
If you think you can make me feel alone, alienate me, ignore me, say all kinds of things about me, at me – you can’t, for the simple reason that I know exactly how it is to be truly alone.
If you think I’m cold, you don’t know cold. The kind that seeps through your bones, through five layers of sweaters, each one as useless as the next, the kind that seeps through your skin, to the core of your being, to your very soul.
Danger, courting danger. What if I had not been able to make it out of that city safe? There was absolutely no one there but me. Just me, cold yet resolute. Take me home, my tired, sore feet.
Death, courting death. I had looked at that man’s face smashed against the concrete, how many times in that night did I wish that that was me instead? Whose wail was that heard echoing through the night? Was that mine? Dazed and shaking to the core, yet alive – with fine shattered glass all over my head.
Pain, enduring pain. The pain of pretending that everything is alright, that things do not hurt. Smile, smile away. Come, let’s hold each other through the night. And forget me as you go. Did I ever really matter to you? The way you slipped in the night, quietly, with hardly a whisper, what did that mean? When its my turn to go, would I remember to pass by the people who wish I would or would I go straight into the warmth of the one I loved the most in this world? I wonder who that would be then.
It rains and rains and I imagine myself holding out the tip of my forefinger out into the rain to catch a drop. Longing for the sound of impact as a water drop collides against skin.
This is my 29th birthday post. And I had thought, and perhaps nearly wished, that the birthday blues would not get me this year, but it has, it always does.
I don’t want to sound nonchalant, after all, the Johnoy Danao event was rescheduled because of Typhoon Bebeng, but this party is pushing through this Saturday!
May 28, 2011 6pm
Dub Gone Crazy Goodleaf Dub Pilipinas Album Tour BICOL INVASION
Ticket Price Php99
Free cocktail drinks at the entrance!
Get a chance to win a Slicksurf Skimboard!
Get a chance to win a Sprout Magazine!
Get a chance to win a GC from Ramashinta Resort & Spa!
Get a chance to win a Kikayism item!
Get a chance to win a Goodleaf Dub Pilipinas CD!
Get a chance to win a Wharf Galley tshirt!
Get a chance to win friends!
Get a chance to have an awesome night!!!
Wharf Galley Rock Cafe
2/F Avenue Square, Magsaysay Avenue, Naga City
This event is sponsored by Nagaland Hotel, Tanduay, Colt45, Bob Marlin, Slick Surf Skimboard Pilipinas, Sprout Magazine, Ramashinta Resort and Spa and AET Ads. This event also supports the Run for Empowerment, Run for Life event of the Ateneo de Naga University HS Batch 98 and Universidad de Sta. Isabel Batch 98.
The Virgin Labfest 7 is scheduled to run from June 29 to July 10, opening with the Virgin Labfest 6 Revisited with the best of Labfest 6: Allan Lopez’s Higit Pa Dito, Remi Velasco’s Ondoy and Debbie Ann Tan’s Balunbalunan, Bingibingihan.
Regular shows are at 3pm and 8pm at the Tanghalang Huseng Batute, while staged readings are at 6pm at the Bulwagang Amado V. Hernandez.
Here is the schedule as announced by dramaturg/festival director Rody Vera.
June 29, Wednesday, 3 and 8 p.m.: Virgin Labfest 6 Revisited
â€¢ Ondoy, by Remi Velasco
â€¢ Balunbalunan, Bingibingihan, by Debbie Ann L. Tan
â€¢ Higit Pa Dito, by Allan B. Lopez
June 30, Thursday, 3 and 8 p.m.
â€¢ Isang Gabi Bago Magbukas ang Portrait of the Artist as Filipino ni Nick Joaquin, by Carlo Pacolor Garcia
This is where I will be tonight, after late lunch with Chef Summer, her boss chef and his family. I’ll be at B-Side with my friends Ver and Neil, hopefully. And since Goodleaf is playing, we will also have a little chat about their upcoming gig at Wharf Galley on May 28th. I will be going alone. Um, I’m not used to being without H or Lia….. *sigh*
Today is Doodle Day – when 7 local artists from Naga will doodle on Wharf Galley‘s wall while two bands from Naga: Tharapadi and Para kay Anna, and two bands from Legazpi: Perdition and Mind of Clay will play from 3 PM onwards.
This is Phase 1 of Wharf Galley’s Doodle Project with Pencionados. Phase 2 and 3 coming soon!
Pencionados has released a limited edition Wharf Galley Doodle Day tshirt. Get yours now!
Friday, May 20, 2011 5PM-9PM at Wharf Galley Rock Cafe, 2/F Avenue Square, Magsaysay Avenue, Naga City.
In November 2008, Jo was found to have cancer of the left breast.
The particular aggressiveness of her cancer necessitated mastectomy and chemotherapy thereafter, which she bravely endured the next month until April of 2009.
All seemed well until the cancer recurred in her chest wall barely a month after the last chemo cycle. This prompted her to have another surgery albeit a local one. September of the same year saw Jo undergoing a series of radiotherapy at the University of Santo Tomas. Despite the continuing treatment, bone and CT scans revealed that the cancer has spread to the bones of her chest and in her lungs.
Unable to fund the 160k + per 21-day cycle of chemotherapy, Jo and her family decided to participate in a drug trial in St. Lukeâ€™s Medical Center to gain access to chemotherapy drugs and other diagnostic procedures for free. She was subsequently disqualified when after 9 months in the trial her chest tumors stopped responding to the drug. It was at this point where FUDA Cancer Hospital in Guangzhou, China, was considered, as it was recommended by relatives and other patients in St. Lukes.
From January to March 2011, Jo spent her days at FUDA Cancer Hospital receiving treatment.
The cryosurgery and nano-chemotherapy done on her effected significant improvements much more than what her year of chemo achieved. She was supposed to come back last March for another round of nano-chemo but the expenses have caught up with her and her family.
Jo has not been receiving any form of treatment since.
Currently, she is suffering tremendous pains from the bone and skin metastases which leave her with open sores on the chest. The advanced treatments that FUDA hospital offers are her best and last recourse.
Jo — our dear colleague, friend, sister, mother — with greater reason needs our support in the fight for her very existence. And so all of us, friends and relatives, are called to lend assistance â€“ moral, material, financial, to keep Jo ALIVE and well enough for her to continue giving us the gift of her company, her writings, her music, her insights, her love, as she is and as we have always known her to be.
Various groups will be involved: Writers Gig, Kabulig-Bikol, Kaboronyogan, Parasurat-Bikolnon, and of course, Wharf Galley Rock Cafe.
Featured poet is Ms. Jo Bisuna with performances from Bikol poets, Kaboronyogan, and Fire and Ice (a theater and dance group).
There will also be a book sale and a live performance of Pantomina to raise additional funds.
Designated host is Mr. Buboy Aguay.
There will be an open-mic poetry and after the program, Tanikala Tribe will be the band for the night.
See you all there!!!
My little one has a lot of tricks up her hat… literally.
Though that is technically my hat. Uh, no, I take that back, it is H’s hat.. it has the Trend Micro logo sewn inside. A keepsake from one of the company’s Christmas parties I believe.
People get confused as to whom she takes after, and I say, the following photo, just might prove who it really is.
The camera was incidentally just lying around when Lia decided it was time for her daily piano practice and I was finally able take a video of her playing (or more like trying to play) the piano.
As usual, we were both not prepared for this event to be documented as we were both in our sleeping attires, me in my jammies and huge funky tshirt (both are my sisters’) and her in a knitted white little dress that’s one of her favorites, no jammies, and a full diaper to boot. (Uh-oh).
The piano, decrepit since I left for Manila and stopped playing it some fourteen years or so ago, needs a lot of work. Some keys don’t play, a lot of strings need replacement and a tune-up is direly required – nevertheless, Lia attempts to play it like she knows what it’s all about.