Monday, November 24, 2014

THE TINIO BRIGADE (with apologies to Orlino Ochosa)

Of the 25 municipalities and 5 cities of Nueva Ecija, 15 were named after persons of which 6 are saints of the Catholic church.

Of the remaining 9, three bear the name of revolutionary generals, one is a Spanish Governor General while another is a Spanish engineer, and one is a former Philippine president while another is a national hero.

Only one was named after a woman: Laur in honor of Dona LAUReana Tino, first wife of Gen. Manuel Tinio who was the youngest general of the Philippine Revolutionary Army, a former governor of Nueva Ecija, the country's first Director of Labor, and its first Filipino Director of Lands.

Some 18 kilometers separate Laur from Gabaldon --- named after Don Isauro GABALDON whose term as governor was inherited by General Tinio after then Governor Gabaldon, he who would become a senator and an ambassador to the United States, ran for the National Assembly.

By the way, General Tinio eventually married Dona LAUReana's younger sister and Laur's patron saint is a Hungarian king who was born a pagan.


Ambassador Gabaldon was married to Dona Bernarda Tinio who is the oldest daughter of Don Casimiro "Kapitan Berong" Tinio --- the older brother of General Tinio --- and Gabaldon's patron saint is among the first missionaries of Christianity who was beheaded and martyred.


The things is those who take cycling as a serious hobby should try the undulating stretch of the Laur-Gabaldon Road at least once in their lifetime to get a taste of what mountain biking is all about, then climb non-stop half of the 15.5 kilometer pass into Dingalan until its highest point at Padi Land Seafood Restaurant.


From there, it's a freewheel into the azure coastal waters of the Philippine Sea and a welcome brunch of sinigang na hipon, adobong pusit, and inihaw na tuna at liempo at the Coastal Cove Resort where we also caught the last three rounds of Manny Pacquiao mauling Chris Algieri in Macau, all of which properly deserve a serving of pansit although the pasta served at the Luxent Hotel 5 days earlier don't deserve even a centimeter of all that. 


Minus the tasteless pansit, Bulan and me did all that...

Monday, November 17, 2014

ANG ALAMAT NI MINGGAN

Kay Tolits Circa at Oyet P. ko nalaman ang kuwento ni Minggan na isang higanteng na-in love sa isang dalagang nagtatampisaw sa isang batis na ang pangalan ay Maria. Ganito ang dialogue nila:

MINGGAN: "I lab you [puntong Pantabangan]."

MARIA: "I lab you din kung kakayanin mong sarhan ang daloy ng tubig sa batis bago tumilaok ang manok ng kapitbahay ninyo bukas ng madaling araw [puntong Kapampangan dahil Sinukuan ang apelyido niya]."

MINGGAN: "Call!"

Kakayanin nga ni Minggan, kinabahan si Maria dahil higante nga si Minggan at napakalaki [isipin na lang kung papaano magtsutsuktsakan ang isang higante at normal na tao], kaya sinundot niya sa puwet ang manok ng kapitbahay ni Minggan na napatilaok ng wala sa oras.

Basted si Minggan at ang bunga ng kayang unrequited love ay ang kasalukuyang Pantabangan Reservoir na inakyat ni Ariel Guieb Tangilig sa unang pagkakataon.

Pagkatapos siyempre ay ang photo ops sa Simbahan ni San Andres.


REWIND [bago si Minggan]

Nakakasanayan ko nang almusal ang Jolly Spaghetti dahil [1] madalas na mamantikang sinangag at samu't-saring timpladong karne ang almusal sa amin [2] at wala na akong kasalong kumain dahil pumasok na sila lahat pagkagaling ko sa pagbibisikleta ng week days kasi [a] napasubo ako sa inuman kagabi o [b] may utang akong isang araw ng weekend sa pagba-bike.

Hindi masyadong lumutang si Bob Marley sa aking arm warmer sa pityur ng pinakahuli konng inalmusal na Jolly Spaghetti matapos ang dakilang pagkakatuklas na ang irigasyon sa Villa Isla ay lulusot sa Cabiangan malapit sa kabayanan ng Talugtug.


FAST FORWARD [pagkatapos ni Minggan]

Si Kuya Jojo at si Bulan lamang ang rumesponde sa aking paanyayang magbisikleta dahil dadalo daw ang marami sa mga bikers sa SMILE Olympics ng Amaranth kaya nagpahatid kaming tatlo sa Rizal kung saan namin inumpisahang namnamin ang napakaseksing kurbada ng Sierra Madre na sumabay sa amin hanggang sa Simbahan ni San Francisco ng Asisi sa Bongabon...


...hanggang sa pakiwalkiwal na lansangan ng Palayan City at ang kasalukuyang ginagawang Simbahan ni Sta. Cecilia...


...bago ito tuluyang kumawala nang lamunin kami ng mga walang modong tricycle driver at karumaldumal na trapik ng Cabanatuan City --- impiyerno na aming ininda hanggang sa Katedral ni San Nicolas ng Tolentine...


...bago ang almusal na aroskaldo sa Hil-Ton at ang huling padyak patungo sa gym ng Wesleyan University of the Philippines para sumali sa SMILE Olympics ng Amaranth.

PRESENT TENSE [pinaghalong Jolly Spaghetti at Minggan]

Marunong kayang magluto si Minggan?

May pansit na kaya noon?

Siguro napasagot niya si Maria kung inalayan niya ito ng seafood pasta at pritong kamote kaysa patulan ang hamon na harangan ang batis.


Kasi mabisang pampautot ang kumbinasyon na ito at kapag nautot si Maria ay mawawala ang kabag niya at kapag nawala ang kabag ay mapagtatanto niya na bagamat higante si Minggan ay sa normal na tao lamang ang xxxx niya and therefore ay...

Ganyang mag-isip ang nasosobrahan ng Jolly Spaghetti.

Monday, November 10, 2014

ONCE-IN-A-WHILE MOMENTS

Once in a while, there's just too much beer, grilled mahi-mahi and pork ribs, relyenong bangus, and ginataang suso.

And more beer, grilled squid and tuna belly, deep fried tawilis, sizzling bulalo, and pork barbecue.




There are churches too that are common enough to be forgotten but must be part of a routine.



Once in a while, an excellent plate of pansit is served with the perfect side.


For Ariel Guieb Tangilig, those once-in-a-while moments are worth honoring with a ride or two or three.



Once in a while, there's just too much beer, kaldereta, pinapaitan, and lechon tupa.

So the calories burned and the new trails discovered are necessary afterthoughts too.


FOOTNOTE: The featured church is CLSU's Church of Christ the Worker where I was kumpil-ed and married and my two boys baptized, while the pansit of the week and the bibingka that came with it are from Tess' wonderful kitchen. The new trails in the last two photos are [1] the Guimba-Munoz route via Cavite-Macapabellag-Sta. Ana-Faigal-Labney and [2] a daang kalabaw that connected Villa Santos with Villa Isla.