Cebu

Pari-an of Cebu

Posted on April 15, 2008

When I was younger, I remember accompanying my mother to downtown Cebu to shop for cloth and other supplies for our small tailoring family business. At the heart of this locality is the pari-an, a term used to denote the old Chinese district in established Philippine cities. Pari-an and Colon Street–the oldest in the Philippines–used to be the center of cultural, business and social activity in the country’s first Spanish settlement. Named after Cristobal Colon or Christopher Columbus, Colon StreetRead More

Sinulog Festival

Posted on March 27, 2008

Ever since I was a kid, an occasion I look forward to every year, even more than I do Christmas or New Year, is the Sinulog Festival in Cebu City. The nine-day celebration, in honor of the Holy Child Jesus, culminates every third Sunday of January with a Grand Parade that meanders through the festooned city streets, with elaborately dressed dancers, magnificent floats and colorful ‘higantes’ (papiér-mache giants), all moving to the infectious rhythms of tribal dance and heralding “VivaRead More

Argao Capilla: Forsaken and Found

Posted on March 6, 2008

Argao, my mother’s hometown, is one of the most charming towns in southern Cebu. Known for its baroque-rococo Church of St. Michael the Archangel that boasts of detailed ceiling frescoes and a grand retablo, all within the well-preserved colonial town plaza, we’ve frequented this place for years for quick vacations and to visit relatives, both living and dead. The town, established in 1608, is one of the oldest in Cebu. Along the eastern coast of the island, it is approximatelyRead More