Wednesday, June 20, 2007


Bulan (i.e. Juan Gabriel) was born 9 years ago at the Good Samaritan Hospital in Cabanatuan City. He’s got 2 names like his younger brother Balong (i.e. Juan Pablo). They share the first one which means “fight for right”. Bulan’s second name is in honor of my favorite Latin American novelist (Balong’s was after a poet who is also a Latin American).

Almost 108 years ago near the hospital where Bulan was born, the great military tactician Gen. Antonio Luna was summoned by Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo who was then president of the Philippine Revolutionary Government. But Mi Presidente was not around. His Kawit Company (predecessor of today’s PSG) whom General Luna previously ordered disarmed for disobedience was. This ignited the general’s famous temper and one thing led to another. End of the story is General Luna and his aide Col. Paco Roman were killed/ambushed/executed/assassinated by the troops of Mi Presidente allegedly on his orders. This act led to a rift between the Ilocano and Caviteno revolutionaries, and the birth of Pangasinan’s Guardia de Honor to avenge Luna’s death. General Luna’s nom de guerre is Bulan. It is a tribute to his Ilocano heritage that Bulan was (nick)named so.

It seems that Bulan was born with the wind in his feet. He too gets bored staying in one place. He too loves to travel.

Sama ako ‘tay. Magbe-behave ako. Pramis,” he would say whenever he senses another biyahe in the making. And I always take him if it is possible. He was a companion in some of my visita iglesias.

One time I took him to a trip around northern Luzon. We had a brief stop in Vigan where I told him about a miracle that happened there many years ago. He was introduced to the greatness of Vibora and Padre Aglipay in Batac (and the infamy of the Apo). And we walked the beach of Claveria together while shooting back the story of Lakay Burik and the legend of Almaguer.

In Apayao and Cagayan, we pretended to be archeologists sifting through the mysteries of ruined churches. He would like to be one someday (he will be a scientist before that then a CSI, a seismologist, and as of now a meteorologist after). In Isabela, I showed him the school where Abet of Almaguer spent 3 years of his tumultuous adolescence, and the hospital in Santiago where Lola Mommy once worked.

What makes me happy is he shoot good photos, keeps a diary and reads a lot. Someday, we will create his blog. I promised him that…

PHOTOS EXPLAINED (top to bottom):

(1) Gen. Antonio Luna (downloaded from

(2) Tatay and Bulan at the bust of the Ilocana poet Leona Florentino in Vigan.

(3) Batac’s monument to its son Gen. Artemio “Vibora” Ricarte. He never surrendered to the Americans.

(4) Bulan at the Patapat viaduct in Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte.

(5) Tatay and Bulan’s footprints in Claveria, Cagayan.

(6) PATA RUINS (Claveria, Cagayan): The ecclesiastical mission of Pata was established in 1596 by the Dominicans. Its people were the first to accept Christianity and the first to build a church in Cagayan Valley. The ruins were built during the administration of Fr. Miguel de San Jacinto (OP) and Fr. Gaspar Zarfate (OP). The community and the church of Pata declined in importance when Aparri was established as the main port of entry to Cagayan Valley. .

(7) PUDTOL RUINS (Pudtol, Apayao): The Dominicans established Futol in 1604 as their first mission in Apayao. The church was built during the administration of Fr. Pedro Jimenez (OP) in 1684 and was designed as a fortress to protect the mission. It was abandoned in 1815 due to the ferocity of Isneg attacks.

(8) CAMALANIUGAN RUINS (Camalaniugan, Cagayan): The ruins might have been the third church that was built before 1746. It first lost its convent during the later half of the 19th century to the overflowing waters of the Cagayan River. In 1898, the church was damaged during a typhoon and was never rebuilt.

(9) NASSIPING RUINS (Gattaran, Cagayan): Nassiping was established in 1596 and became a major town by serving as the rest and supply station of travelers going upstream and downstream the mighty Cagayan River. There are no records on who built the church. The town and the church declined in importance after the town of Fulay (i.e. the present Alcala) was established. Despite its deteriorated condition, the church is still being used as a chapel today.


MANDAYA MOORE: Ang bayot sa bukid said...

haaay. gusto ko ng magkaanak. di pa kasi ako anatomically ready e.

jun of zerogravity said...

Oks na yung iko-comment ko e, biglang nabasa ko itong kay Mandaya-Moore. Nyahaha.

Ano nga yung sasabihin ko?

Ayun, nyahahaha, kay Ami ko yata nabasa na ang mga anak raw natin ay improved genetic evolution nating mga magulang. Naalala ko yung mga kwento mo nung pinagboboksing kayo ni Sherwin na iyong apo. Mabuti naman di mo pinagboboksing sila ni Pablo.

Pero in fairness, mas inggit ako kay Elyas kasi yung isang yun kung saan-saan na napunta. Dapat gawan mo rin siya ng blog.

Kakulit talaga ni Mandaya.

janujennifer said...

i don't know you (at all), so forgive my stupidity for asking this: is bulan your son?

if so, it's nice seeing you spending quality time with your son, doing things you love to do. when i get married and be blessed with kids, i would also hoped for them to be included in things i am passionate at, too!

pinay2 said...

i'm from tuguegarao and i find that your pictures about cagayan is cool and very good blog,,,,