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Pinoy docu “Routes” in Barcelona’s Casa Asia

18 Mar

Everyone is invited to the screening of three films which include a short documentary directed by our very own Ms. Kay Abaño.

Entitled “Routes”, the film features two young Filipino migrants and traces the path they have chosen to fulfill their dreams.

It will be shown along with two other films from China and Pakistan this Wednesday, March 21, 7 p.m. at Casa Asia, Tagore Auditorium, Avinguda Diagonal, 373  Barcelona.

For more info, please visit the following link: 3 countries, 3 short films, 3 perspectives: Philippines, Pakistan, China

Ang galing ng Pinoy…pagkatapos, ano na?

5 Mar

(Bukas po ang blog na ito sa lahat ng gustong magbahagi ng kanilang mga nasasaloob. Ipahatid natin sa buong mundo ang ating mga kuru-kuro, hinaing, papuri, pagpuna, drama o komedya ng buhay natin gamit ang ating mga panulat kagaya ng artikulo na ibinahagi sa atin ni Gng. Joy Rebanal-Laygo)

‘Di na bago sa akin ang mga balita na naglalaman ng papuri sa mga Pinoy sa ibang bansa. Magaling magtrabaho, masipag, malinis, matapat, magaling makisama, matalino, matiyaga, at marami pang iba. Nakakataba ng puso. Parang mas lalong nakakagana magtrabaho. Bayani nga…Pero teka, teka lang! Bago tayo malunod o malasing sa dami ng papuri at paghanga, ‘di ba kayo nakakaramdam ng konting kaba? Di ka ba pressured? Parang kasunod ng mga salitang naglalarawan sa isang manggawang Pinoy ay ang napakataas na “expectation”.

Parang katulad iyan ng isang beauty queen, parang si Miss Universe. Siya ang hinirang na pinakamagandang babae sa buong universo. So dapat, lagi siyang maganda, kaaya-aya, kaakit-akit. Hindi siya pwedeng tumaba, pumangit at mabungi kasi baka bawiin sa kanya ang korona niya. Kailangan mamuhay siya ayon sa “expectations” ng mga taong tumatangkilik sa kanya. Hanggang sa hawak niya ang titulo, hindi siya pwedeng mag-asawa o mabuntis kasi  kailangan niyang patunayan na karapat-dapat siya sa isang karangalan na ipinagkaloob sa kanya. Ang tawag dun, obligasyon at responsibilidad.

Ang Madrid at ang Barcelona ang dalawang ciudad sa España kung saan napakaraming Pilipino ang naninirahan. At pagdating sa larangan ng trabaho, lalo na sa “servicio domestico”, tayong mga Pilipino ang “in demand”. Ika nga, “most requested” ang mga Pinoy. Kasi masunurin (pag baguhan pa lang), malinis magtrabaho, may “hygiene”, marunong mag-Ingles, matatalino at mapagkakatiwalaan lalo na kung may alagang mga bata sa kanilang papasukan. Kung sa trabahong restaurant naman, ganun din, madali daw ang “pick-up” ng utak ni Juan dela Cruz, kahit di nag-aral ng culinary arts, bigyan lang ng pagkakataon, sa konting panahon, kaya na niyang gampanan at gawin ang halos lahat ng trabaho sa loob ng restaurante. At napakarami pang istorya ng kagalingan ang pwedeng ikuwento kung Pinoy rin lang ang pag-uusapan.

Pero dahil nga nakakalasing ang tagumpay o papuri, may mga kababayan tayo na nakakalimutan na obligasyon niyang alagaan ang kanyang imahe bilang mabuting manggagawa. Yumayabang. Napapariwara. Kasi magaling daw sya. May nalululong sa droga hanggang sa mapabayaan ang kanyang trabaho. Mayroong suki ng sugalan. Iyong iba nga, kasusuweldo pa lang, imbes na kay misis i-entrega ang sweldo, eh kay “Martinez” nag-eentrega ng buong kinita nya. May mga kumukupit sa mga amo (dahil malaki na ang tiwala sa kanya). Tabi-tabi na lang po sa maaring tamaan. Pero ito po ang katotohanan. Masakit pakinggan ngunit kailangang may magpapaalala. Ilang Pilipino na dito sa Barcelona ang nasangkot na sa droga? Gaano kalaking pera ang pinapatalo ng mga Pilipino sa sugal? Ilang pamilya na ang nawasak? Eh, ano na ang nangyari kay “Pinoy” na ang galing-galing?

Kahanga-hanga ba ang isang komunidad na hindi ginagampanan ang kanyang responsibilidad sa kanyang pamilya? Ang obligasyon mo bilang ano nga ba iyon? Bagong Bayani? Paano ka tatawaging magaling kung wasak ang pamilya mo? Paano ka hahangaan kung ikaw mismo ang sumisira sa sarili mo? Minsan, ang kagalingan, mas mabuting inilalagay sa puso kaysa sa isipan. Mas mabuting ang galing ay pinatutunayan at hindi ipinagyayabang.

Isang hamon ang inihahain ko ngayon sa aking mga kababayan. Tapos na tayong ipakita sa lahat kung gaano kagaling ang Pinoy, ngayon, patunayan naman natin, na ang lahat ng iyon ay katotohanan at hindi pakitang-tao lamang.

Viaje, Barcelona-Manila: A Conversation With F. Sionil Jose

3 Feb

I had forgotten all about it-Manila traffic. And I’d forgotten all about those 3 important Filipino traffic factors: that it was raining, that it was 3 days before Christmas, and that it was Wednesday, Baclaran day. If one wishes to arrive anywhere on time on this side of Metro Manila, these 3 things must be very well considered. I called to apologize and say that I would be late. ¡Que Vergüenza!

We were on Sucat Road in Parañaque on our way to Padre Faura Street in Manila, and traffic moved lethargically. So, I observed, just as I used to. Only this time I was observing with new eyes, ones that had been away for several years. There were street vendors selling peanuts to bored passengers, people getting on and off crowded jeepneys, others randomly crossing the street, zigzagging honking cars and totally ignoring the pedestrian overpasses built by their generous city councilor or mayor (prudently announced with big and bold letters painted on them.) There were also children playing games on the sidewalk, joyful and unmindful of the holiday rush and smoke of vehicles just a few meters away from them. Everything looked oddly familiar; nothing much seemed to have changed.

Traffic ebbed and flowed and suddenly we found ourselves just behind the CCP, in that cultural complex built by a woman with a once-famous edifice complex. I was getting more and more nervous as we neared Padre Faura Street. Ten minutes more and we were finally walking towards Solidaridad Bookshop, where I was to have an interview with a truly inspiring Filipino thinker-lover-critic, a prolific writer I deeply admired— Francisco Sionil Jose.

After profuse apologies, I was kindly taken up to the office of Mr. Jose- Manong Frankie to many. I was warmly welcomed by the publishing house staff, Manong Frankie’s wife, and later, Manong Frankie himself. He asked me to sit down, and with very little introductions, I began my interview. What ensued in the next hour was in fact more like a friendly conversation, given the ease with which Manong Frankie generously shared his thoughts and feelings to this ‘balikbayan’ in search of some answers.

The writer with Manong Frankie and a copy of his novel Viajero.

***

Of course, the very first thing I wanted to hear from the author of Viajero, a brilliant book about the physical and moral journey of the Filipino people throughout history, was his very thoughts on the Filipino Diaspora…

“It should never have happened!”

“It started when Marcos took over and he was faced with this problem of so many Filipinos educated and unemployed…all dressed up and nowhere to go…They saw to it that the Diaspora would be encouraged.”

“Kaya galit ako sa Ilocanong iyan, eh. (That’s why I’m angry at that Ilocano) He wasted two decades, which would’ve enabled us to progress like Korea, Taiwan, even more so than Singapore…What should’ve happened was, he should’ve hastened the development of this country, industrial development. Just like Park Chung Hee. And for sure, we would’ve absorbed all these Filipinos who went abroad in innovative export industries…because we’re a very talented people. As you can see, when they leave the country they are very industrious, very enterprising, because they get out of their old comfort zone…they know they have to. They work hard. You know, the immigrant culture.”

He spoke of this in his book— the immigrant culture, ours.  Also, in Viajero, he suggested that we’ve had this long history of leaving. I wondered, is it really in our blood?

“Traditionally, yes… well, because we’re an archipelago, we’re a seafaring people… And that’s another thing, we’re a maritime people but we didn’t build up a maritime industry. So we end up working as captains, stewardesses, sailors, but we are not building our own ships.”

Hay naku hija, I get very angry when I think of all the opportunities that we missed because of lousy leadership…Nagagalit ako, I get so angry and frustrated. Matanda na ‘ko…”

“One time I was talking to Nanding Roces, a contemporary of mine. He would’ve been 87 last July…We were talking 2 or 3 years ago, he told me— Frankie, isn’t it sad, we are living in a country in far worse shape than when we arrived. Which is true… very, very true. Ten years ago nobody was sleeping in front of our bookshop, now occasionally there’s a family there. Some people…many people now eat only once a day. There’s hunger in Manila, even in Manila there is hunger.”

“I grew up in a village. Now, when I was young, the poorest farmer there ate twice a day during what we call the Gawat. These are the months of June, July, and August, the planting season. It is in these months when there was still no harvest, because the first harvest comes in September. These 3 months were the most difficult for the farmers because they only ate twice a day— at 10 in the morning and at 4 in the afternoon. Now, many people, both in farms and cities, eat only once a day… do you know what it’s called? ALTANGHAP- Almusal, Tanghalian, Hapunan (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner). That word has been used for almost 10 years now…In other words, for the last 10 years people have been eating only once a day!”

“And then this Diaspora…you must’ve been told about the many social problems this Diaspora has created… dysfunctional families… it’s been worsening. Earlier I was given a report, results of a survey… It’s worsened, it’s worsened…”

“Yes, they keep the country afloat. But then what is happening? The money sent here is not spent wisely.  They want to come back… but how can they come back here if they don’t have money? They don’t have jobs here. Eventually, the solutions must be here not abroad.”

What will happen to all these uprooted Filipinos scattered all over the world? Will Filipinos just keep leaving the country?

“I think so…but you know, it’s not so much the Diaspora I’m worried about. I wrote about it the other Sunday…I’m worried about the specter of an implosion, hija… it will collapse, not explode…but it will implode. And one morning we will wake up to find that we no longer have a country, because it has imploded. All the institutions have been destroyed…anarchy, murder, rape, robberies… these will be commonplace, because we have become a failed state…like Somalia and these African countries that were first destroyed by corruption, then dictatorships. That’s the fate of so many of these countries in Africa…and the symptoms are here. The widespread anarchy, the absence of confidence in the police, the moral malaise…”

I remembered all the Occupy movements in the West, the beginnings of which were not very far away from my current home. Barcelona, Madrid- Los Indignados…then there’s the Arab Spring. People are fed up, people are tired and speaking up and will not let such darkness take over…What about us Filipinos?

“I wish there were more social unrest because that means people care…that they are fighting.”

“But it’s apathy… And when that’s what is happening, that’s it, it will collapse…and people will know how to adjust to it because they know that if you act morally or according to the rules, nothing will happen to you. So people act and adapt to the conditions…”

“Reading the letters of the exiles, particularly del Pilar’s, he recognized their anguish, the stringent pull of memory that Buddy himself felt for those fractured images of his early boyhood. How he wished that del Pilar had kept some journal…” ** MEMORY… is this unique to the Exile? Does one need to be away to remember?

“No, we all need memory- it’s memory that bonds a nation together. Racial memory. To keep this memory, to rejuvenate it, that’s the function of writers and teachers…”

“Memory is very important! It’s important for all Filipinos, whether you are here or abroad…because your nationality is where your heart is.

I’ve met Chinese who go to China thinking they are Chinese, and then they discover they are really Filipino after all…they get homesick for the Philippines, for wherever they come from. One time in the 60s I attended a conference, there was a Chinese writer, I kidded him saying that his loyalties were to the mainland and not to Malaysia. He corrected me, he told me- you know when I’m homesick I don’t think of China, I think of the palm trees of Penang, Sate Babe, the beaches where I swam as a boy… no, I don’t think about China… I speak Chinese, but you know…”

“This is a true story, ha… in Hong Kong when we were living there in 1960, there was a Chinese girl named April Velasco, who was staff artist of the magazine I edited. It turned out she grew up in Binondo…She was a Binondo Chinese. We talked in Tagalog. She told me, when the communist took over China, she returned to help in rebuilding the homeland…She thought she was Chinese. So she went. Then of course the communists were there, and she had to work in a commune. She said life was very difficult. She said—‘you know Frankie, I was so homesick for Binondo…So, I took a trip to Manila, then when I got to Manila, I climbed to the tallest part of the ship… up to the very top. And I looked over to Intramuros and Binondo. But I didn’t go down, because if I went down I’d be arrested as a communist. So after that I went back to Hong Kong. I just wanted to see Binondo…’ sabi niya. ‘I speak Chinese I look Chinese, pero hindi na ‘ko Intsik, Frankie, I’m Filipina!’ So, things like these…”

“…at least these are people who can still identify with this country, because many Filipinos cannot. And that’s why we’re like this. The Zobel-Ayalas, do you think they’re Filipinos? NO, they are Spaniards. Some of these Chinese who send their money to China, they are not Filipinos they are Chinese. And Marcos, he wasn’t Filipino, he sent his money abroad…They are here but they are like the old imperialists. What is the logic of imperialism? You exploit the country and send the loot to the mother country. That’s the logic of imperialism. So in a sense, that’s why we’re like this…We are colonized by our own people, by our own leaders. And the reason is first, we don’t recognize this form of colonialism, and second, we don’t have the patriotism to love this country as we should.”

Speaking of patriots, aren’t all OFWs the best of them all? The new heroes of our time? The BAGONG BAYANI?

“The overseas workers are not bayanis, they are just poor people trying to make a living, you know…That’s consuelo de bobo (a fool’s consolation). They are just ordinary Filipinos.”

“But this I tell them, ok— when Sun Yat Sen mounted the first revolution in China in 1911, the greatest help came from the overseas Chinese… they gave the money.”

“But what I would like to see is that the overseas Filipinos get ORGANIZED… really get organized, to pressure this government, to see to it that the money they remit home is used properly, for infrastructure, and not to buy the luxuries of the rich. And that can be done through proper organization… through political clout! Because the rich Filipinos, our leaders, will not move unless they are forced…that is the common attitude of people in power. People in power- they won’t move, they are enjoying it…unless they are criticized or pushed…So if overseas Filipinos are organized and they have a strong voice in government, they can make a difference…”

“But that’s the problem. Filipinos tend to divide. Too much ego…ego, hija, ego…in San Francisco there are about 300 Filipino organizations. I suppose you can say the same thing in Spain.”

“In San Francisco, out of these 300 Filipino organizations, from my hometown of Rosales there are 2 organizations. I told them- our town is so small why can’t you just work together…No answer. I told them they were too arrogant.”

“So, now, that illustrates the diversity in this country. That’s OK, but there should be issues wherein this diversification should be avoided.”

“Why are Filipinos united when Pacquiao fights?”

“So, maybe those who are in charge of organization should look for the commonalities that would bind people together rather than emphasize the diversities. Because those diversities will not disappear…They are ingrained in society… but it’s possible. EDSA 1 is an example of diversities uniting together…”

“It’s a difficult problem because it’s ingrained in Filipino culture. But like I said, these are issues that people like you should look carefully into. What are the issues that unite us rather than divide us?”

Questions, questions…all of Manong Frankie’s questions reminded me of his writing, the ideas found in his eloquent prose that had kept me company in my own share of loneliness abroad. “…the epic diaspora needed to be recorded if only to show how the Filipino had become the proletariat of the world.”**  What more did he have to say to Filipinos abroad?

“Huwag nilang kalilimutan ang malungkot na bayan nila. (Don’t forget your lonely country.)”

“But usually they don’t, eh. And many of them realize how Filipino they are when they are abroad than when they are here. So you feed on that, that hungering for identity, which grows among the loneliest of people. This is where a sense of community will help very much.”

Manong Frankie, the writer Kay Abaño, and her mother Barbara Abaño.

We said our goodbyes, and after buying some books from the bookshop – like rations for the next few years abroad – my patiently waiting mother and I made our way back to where we’d parked our car. Walking down Padre Faura Street and through Robinsons Galleria mall, I silently observed my fellow Filipinos. Manong Frankie’s words echoed in my thoughts.

Getting out of that part of Manila had always been quite a task. The streets were full of people and jeepneys, equal owners of the narrow road! But we slowly found our way out, crossing Taft Avenue and going up Leon Guinto Street, then making a turn at Vito Cruz which, after a few more narrow turns, finally led to the South Luzon Expressway. It all started coming back to me, this route I used to take.

I began to remember. I could remember it all.

***

F. Sionil José or in full Francisco Sionil José (born December 3, 1924) is one of the most widely-read Filipino writers in the English language. His novels and short stories depict the social underpinnings of class struggles and colonialism in Filipino society. José’s works – written in English – have been translated into 22 languages, including Korean, Indonesian, Russian, Latvian, Ukrainian and Dutch.

His many awards include the Pablo Neruda Centennial Award, Chile, 2004; (Kun Santo Zuiho Sho) The Order of Sacred Treasure, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon, Japan, 2001; and the National Artist for Literature, Philippines, 2001. (Lifted from Wikipedia)

F. Sionil Jose signing copies of Viajero for Ang Bagong Filipino

** Quoted text from Viajero, a Filipino Novel by F.Sionil Jose (link: http://www.fsioniljose.tk/)

** Interview was held last December 21, 2011 at the Solidaridad Bookshop in 531 Padre Faura Street, Ermita, Manila.

** Solidaridad Bookshop Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Solidaridad-Bookshop/245546608820458?sk=wall

Pinoys on Facebook Oppose Barcelona Consulate Closure

31 Jan

4000 members and counting.

This is the number of Filipinos that comprises a group in Facebook, which opposes the closure of the Philippine Consulate in Barcelona.

The group called “NO to Closure of Philippine Consulate General in Barcelona. YES to Pubic Service!” was created last Monday, 23 January, and within just a week  more than 3000 members have already joined.

The social media has been used by the Filipino community in Spain as a democratic platform where they can express their reactions towards the decision of the government to close down the four-year-old Consulate.

Aquí no (Translated literally in English: Not here). Courtesy of Barcelona Exposure Club.

Many members of the group unanimously express the need for a full time Consulate in Barcelona especially now that the population in the areas of Catalonia and Balearic Islands have been continuously increasing given the privilege the Philippines has over family reunification in Spain.  Barcelona and Tarragona also have important ports where most ships manned by Filipino seafarers dock. Ibiza in the Balearic Islands and the nearby principality of Andorra are also home to large Filipino communities. All in all, there are more than 20,000 Filipinos who will be affected by the closure of the Philippine Consulate.

Some members of the group cannot contain their disappointment and despair over the decision. One asked: “don’t abandon us in the middle of the (Spanish economic) crisis…we will be strayed like orphans.”

Another member claims this decision as “injustice since we fought to have it established and there no was no consultation whatsoever (with the Filipino community)”

“Why not cut cost, instead of closing it down?”, another member suggested and enumerated ways to cut costs such as doing away with the Mercedez Benz (used by the Consulate) and first class trips and cut on per diem expenses among others. One added that cost cutting should not start with services rendered by simple hardworking staff but it should start with public officials.

One member suggested that the Filipino community could invite public officials from the Philippines to come to Barcelona to see for themselves how the Filipino migrants live and how much workload of the consular staff have here.  “It’s so easy to give mandate without experiencing the real situation…”

More than 1000 signatures in one day

The big Filipino community in Barcelona has enthusiastically participated in the first day of the signature campaign against the closure of the Philippine Consulate in Barcelona. Photo by Karen Joy Salvador of Barcelona Exposure Club.

The group’s enthusiasm to let the Philippine government know their opposition has resulted to an overwhelming response to the first day of signature campaign held in the Parroquia de San Lorenzo Ruiz Church, a Roman Catholic Church especially dedicated to Filipino residents in Barcelona.

More than 1000 signatures in just one day have been gathered supporting the retention of the Consulate. In Ibiza, according to Parish Migration Desk of Ibiza, Filipinos have already started with the collection of signatures.

The message is clear. Photo by Albert Ian RP of Barcelona Exposure Club.

Four remittance centers and even Pinoy restaurants have also volunteered to be signature gathering centers.

More than 20 Filipino organizations say NO

In Barcelona, more than 20 Filipino organizations composed of various religious, civic and socio-cultural groups have expressed their dismay and disapproval over the government’s decision.  Organizations such as Barcelona Exposure Club, Northern Star, Samahang Kabagis, Timpuyog ti-Ilocano, and Unified Bicolanos in Barcelona have taken their signature campaigns and lobbying initiatives to express their support for the retention of the Consulate.

Meanwhile, Kapulungan ng mga Lider Pinoy sa Barcelona (KALIPI), a federation of Filipino associations in Barcelona together with the support of other organizations, has sent a letter of appeal to the Chairpersons of the House Committees on Overseas Workers Affairs and Foreign Affairs namely Congressman Walden Bello of Akbayan Party List and Congressman Al Francis DC Bichara of Albay.

In its petition letter, it pointed out that “an Honorary Consulate cannot effectively respond to the growing number of Filipinos in Barcelona, nor can a provisional consular service from Madrid, located 600 km away, attend to the urgencies of our Filipino seafarers.”

The letter also cited that the strong relationship between the Barcelona city government, the Philippine Consulate and the Filipino community has already produced significant political, economic and cultural achievements in just short span of time and these will all be put into waste and will incur larger social cost if the full Consulate will be closed.  One of major political parties in Barcelona, Partido de los Socialistas en Cataluña already expressed their support for the retention of the Philippine Consulate.

The Filipino community feels that this decision will send a wrong signal to the people that the government is abandoning them and that the migrants’ good reputation and patriotism are not important for them.

“How can we encourage political participation (Absentee Voting) now if the Consulate is to be closed? The government’s apathy will breed its people’s apathy… The first Absentee Voting held in Barcelona got one of the highest voter’s turnouts in Europe where the current (Philippine) president got the most number of votes,” the letter added.

Over the budgetary reason for closing the Consulate, the letter states that “we do not wish to be considered as simple figures and economic peons. We reject the title ‘Bagong Bayani’ if it is mere lip service. We are more than our remittances, and we are hoping that they…see us as hardworking people who merit their commitment and full service.” Daniel Infante Tuaño, Kay S. Abaño

The young migrants also oppose the government’s decision. Photo by Albert Ian R P of Barcelona Exposure Club.

Spanish Pinay pasok sa Gran Hermano

23 Jan

Ipinanganak at nakatira sa Valencia, Spain, si Mary Joy ang kauna-unahang Spanish na may dugong Pinay na nakapasok sa sikat na reality TV show na Big Brother sa Spain. Sa Spain, ang pangalan ng show ay Gran Hermano. Siya ay Biology student at nagpapart-time bilang waitress sa isang Thai restaurant. Siya raw ay masipag at matiyaga. Ibinahagi niya ang isang kasabihang Pinoy: ang sikreto ng kaligayahan ay gawin palagi ang hindi gusto. Kung may tiyaga, may nilaga baga. Sumali siya sa contest na ito upang magkaroon ng bagong karanasan at matulungan ang kaniyang pamilya.

Magiging maligaya kaya si Joy sa loob ng bahay ni Kuya? Panoorin ang kanyang video: http://www.telecinco.es/granhermano/gh_12mas1/concursantes/mary_joy/

Pinoy tampok sa TV sa Spain

14 Jan

Tampok ang Filipino community sa programang Babel ng Television Española (TVE2) ngayong Linggo, ika-15 ng Enero, alas 12 ng tanghali. Ayon sa website ng Babel, ang  mga Filipino ay kabilang sa mga imigranteng matagal nang naninirahan sa España. Ngunit kahit pa matagal na sila rito ay marami pa rin ang hindi nakakakilala sa kanila.

Ang mga batang nasa larawan ay mga mag-aaral ng Iskwelang Pinoy, isang programa ng Centro Filipino para sa mga batang ipinanganak sa España (Barcelona) na naglalayong turuan sila ng Kasaysayan at Kultura ng Pilipinas, Ingles, Tagalog, Christian Values at iba pa. Bisitahin ang website ng Babel para sa karagdagang impormasyon: http://www.rtve.es/television/babel/

Sa kabilang channel naman, sa Antenna 3 ay muling sasabak sa isang singing competition EL NUMERO UNO ang kababayan nating si MARIZ MOLINA.

Nangangailangan si MARIZ ng boto para magpatuloy siya sa competition. Ang top 5 na makakakuha ng pinakamaraming boto, shares at views ay makakapasok sa competition. Kailangang mag-register para makaboto at makapag-share. Hanggang ngayong Linggo lang, ika-15 ng Enero, alas 12 ang botohan. I-click ang link para bumoto at makita ang video ni MARIZ MOLINA: http://www.antena3.com/programas/numero-uno/casting/barcelona-dia-1/

Maraming salamat kina G. Gerry Ortega at Bb. Jhess Lozano sa pagbibigay sa amin ng impormasyon.

Rizal, el escritor en la Biblioteca Nacional de España

24 Dec

La Exposición estará en la Biblioteca Nacional de España, Madrid hasta el 12 de febrero de 2012. Para más información sobre la exposición y el ciclo de conferencias acerca de Rizal, visita este link: http://www.bne.es/es/Actividades/Exposicionesactuales/jrizal.html

La Biblioteca Nacional de España acoge la exposición Entre España y Filipinas. Jose Rizal, escritor, organizada por la Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo, con la colaboración de la Biblioteca Nacional de España y comisariada por Dª. Mª. Dolores Elizalde, investigadora científica del Instituto de Historia del CSIC. La muestra que coincide con el 150 aniversario del nacimiento del héroe filipino y se encuadra dentro del programa del Tricentenario de la BNE.

José Rizal (1861-1896) fue un gran líder político y social, hombre ilustrado y humanista, profundamente comprometido con la sociedad filipina. Fue considerado impulsor de la modernización y de la construcción nacional de su país. Se licenció en Medicina y en Filosofía y Letras, y ejerció como médico oftalmólogo. Fue investigador de historia y gramática llegando a hablar más de diez lenguas y un incansable viajero.

Más allá de su dimensión política y social, Rizal fue un destacado literato, autor de dos grandes novelas, Noli me tangere y El filibusterismo. También cultivó otros géneros: poesía, ensayo, artículos periodísticos, libros de viajes y fue autor de un amplio epistolario.

El objetivo de esta muestra es profundizar en su faceta como escritor de las letras hispánicas, valorándole como un Galdós de los trópicos y contextualizándole en el ambiente intelectual de aquellas Filipinas ilustradas del siglo XIX. Con ese propósito, en la exposición se desarrollan las siguientes áreas: El marco colonial, Memorias de juventud: los años de formación, Un mundo ilustrado, La sociedad de Rizal, Argumentos para un escritor y Mi último adiós. Revolución y ruptura. Texto de la Biblioteca Nacional de España.

Schwoooshing his way to the top

12 Dec

(Ed. Note: Entrevista con Nata. In this section, our correspondent Nathaniel Sisma Villaluna will share with us his creamy and delectable stories, 100 % inspiring yet zero in fat.)

What is interesting about fencing?

It’s like playing chess. Para siyang chess with movements.  Kailangan mo talagang mag- isip. Hindi ka na lang basta  sumusugod . Kailangan mong i-check ang situation kung papano ka a-atake. 

Joel Landicho. Top Filipino fencer in Spain

When did you realize that you wanted to do fencing?

Noong nasa University  of the East pa ako.  It was by accident. ‘Yun lang kasi ang tugma na P.E. subject  sa sked ko. Then I decided to try it. Tapos okay naman.

But before that, did you have any idea what fencing was all about? 

Before that, wala kong  idea about fencing.  Sa  P.E.  lang talaga. Yung first days talaga, I liked it na. Interesting kasi ang fencing eh. Tapos unti-unting  naging maganda ang performance ko.  Sa mga laro namin sa P.E., hindi ako basta-basta natatalo.  Ang training ay two days a week. Tuesdays and Thursdays . One hour and a half.

How many students were there in your class?

Sa P.E. namin, ilan lang kami,  mga 16 to 20 students.

What happened after you finished your P.E. class? 

After one year, since interesado talaga ako , nag-try out  ako sa varsity ng school.  Nakapasok naman ako. Then, I trained with them. Dalawa kasi ang purpose ko noon, gusto kong maging  part ng varsity team at makakuha ng scholarship.

Was the competition for the scholarship stiff?

For the scholarship, yes.  Kasi bago pa lang noon ang fencing sa UAAP kaya konti lang ang binibigyan ng scholarship.

How did you prepare for the scholarship application?

Actually walang preparation na kailangan. Basta nag-training lang ako kasama ng mga varsity. Isa sa mga requirements ay isang medal sa UAAP. Kaya hindi agad ako nakakuha ng scholarship kasi wala pa akong medal.   

When did you get your first medal?

After a year. First medal ko, gold.  It was   a team effort actually. Inter-university lang.  Naging three times a week na ang training ko   sa school.  Tapos sa sa Quezon City Sports Complex  and ‘pag Friday  sa Philsports.  I was in my  second year.  I was taking up Electronics and Communication Engineering.

Then I got the scholarship on my third year. Halos naka-20 medals na ako noon.  Interschool, UAAP and National Open. Yung sa scholarship ko, my tuition was covered and  may konting  allowance.  Tapos ang requirement ay  dapat mapasa ang majority ng subjects.

Joel harvesting medals during his varsity days at the University of the East.

 Why  is fencing  not popular?

Hindi siya popular kasi pag naisip ng mga tao na expensive  ang fencing, hindi na nila tina-try.

Do you plan to be a professional fencer?

Yes.  It’s really a dream.  I want to be a professional fencer.

What was your ranking?

Sa Philippines,  I was number 8. 

Were you able to compete outside the Philippines?

No. Kasi top 4 lang  ang nagco-compete internationally.

Why did you come to Spain?

I came here in  2006. After passing the board exam I decided to join my family.

How did you learn about the fencing club in Spain?

Through a friend, Ignacio.   It was my second year in Spain, in 2007. But before kasi, akala ko mahal mag-fencing dito. Pero hindi pala.  Papahiramin pala nila ng mga gamit  ang mga  new members.  Pero hindi nagtagal,  unti-unti  na akong bumibili ng  mga gamit.  Fencing shoes lang kasi ang dala ko from the Philippines. Meron din kaming membership monthly fees na  binabayaran sa club. Masaya ako.  At last, makakalaro uli ako.  Nagtre-train ako ng 2 to 3 days a week after work. Sa training, nagpakitang gilas na agad ko.  They saw me perform and  sabi nila magaling  daw ang coach ko sa Pilipinas. Hindi ko sinabi  na number  8 ako sa Pilipinas.

Joel now in a Spanish team

How are  your clubmates?

Alam kong maraming magagaling dito.  Iyung mga nakakalaro ko natatalo ko naman. Magaling sila pero bihira yung magaling talaga. Tapos later on nalaman ko na  yung mga magagaling wala  sa club. Nandoon sila sa national team nagtre-training.

What  do you do during the fight?

Yung natutunan ko sa Pilipinas, ina-apply ko sa moves ko .  Siempre, mag-attack ka muna pero fake lang  para malaman mo ang moves ng kalaban.  Based sa reaction niya, malalaman mo na kung anong klase siyang kalaban.

When  was your first competition in Spain?

After one year na.  I competed under the  name of the  club, Cardenal Cisneros.  The competition was in Barcelona and I was the only Filipino.  I placed 36th out of 75 players. Maraming natuwa sa result ng performance ko. I was congratulated  when I came back to Madrid.

Winning with the rest of his teammates

What was your most memorable  competition? 

It was also in Barcelona, October 2010. I placed second.  Nanalo ako ng Cup.  I was very happy. It was my first time.

Joel’s first win outside the Philippines

Is the Filipino community aware about your achievements?

Only my Filipino friends.

Do you think it is important  that the Filipino community  is aware that somebody is representing the  Philippines  in competitions here in Spain?

Oo naman.  Kasi at least may konting suporta, moral support.

With your Spanish citizenship  coming out soon, will you be representing Spain in your future competitions?

At the moment, since hindi pa ako Spanish citizen, hindi pa ako qualified mag-represent ng Spain. Pang-team lang ako.  Pero kapag na-grant na ang citizenship ko,  mas maraming suporta ang natatanggap ng Spanish citizen. Hindi ko naman  kayang suportahan ang sarili ko ‘pag nag-represent ng Pilipinas.  Dream ko kasi  mag compete internationally.  I competed in La Coruña for the World Cup and I represented the Philippines. I placed 64th.  Alam naman nila doon sa Philippines na I was representing our country and they know about my Spanish citizenship application. I coordinate my participation with them.  In February  next year, kapag hindi pa ako Spanish citizen,  I will represent  the Philippines.

Have you competed outside of Spain? 

I played at  the Campeonato de Europa representing  the fencing  club of  Spain. It was in Italy last April  2011.  The Russians were really good.  Also, the French Olympic medalists. We did not win.  But  it was a good experience.  I learned a lot from that competition.  Dapat palaging confident ka.

Whenever you lose or win, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?

Magtraining pa ng magtraining.  ‘Pag nananalo naman ako, ganoon din. More training. Siyempre ‘pag tumataas  na yung ranking mo, gusto mong mag improve ng mag-improve pa . Training pa rin.

You live in both worlds and you have competed internationally as a team, what are the things that should be improved by the Philippine fencing team?

More international competitions.  Kulang kasi sa  budget. Kailangan nilang pumunta sa Europe para magtraining. Nandito kasi  yung magagaling.  Normally yung mga magagaling katulad ng mga North Americans and South Americans,  pumupunta sila sa Europe para magtraining sa Italy, sa France.  Kailangan mong makalaban ng madalas ang mga magagaling.  Para mahasa pa. Kung ka-level mo lang yung kalaban mo, gagaling ka pero konti lang. Pero kung talagang magaling yung nagiging kalaban mo na  talagang binubugbog ka, tiyak na malaki ang magiging improvement mo.

Of all the competitors, who do you think are the best fencers?

The  Italians, French and  Russians.

What are your plans in the future?

I want to play until I reach 37 years old. Although meron ngang players na 60 years old na naglalaro pa rin.  I want to be a coach in the Philippines.

 Do you have a favourite fencer?

 I admire this Japanese  fencer, Ota Yuki.

Your dream competition?

 The Olympic Games.

Achille Marozzo, a Bolognese fencing master, once said, “In these modern times, many men are wounded for not having weapons or knowledge of their use.”  For his part,  Joel Enriquez Landicho,  not only knows that he’s got a weapon in his hand but also knows how to use it. 

Last October 8, 2011, he competed at the TNR FLORETE FEM Y MASC MADRID 2011  organized by the Real Federación Española de Esgrima (Royal Spanish Fencing Federation) where he brought home the  second place cup. This victory (added to his previous points in 2010 and 2011) catapulted him to the number one spot according to the  Ranking Nacional   Florete Masculino Absoluto.

Congratulations, Joel! Filipinos in Spain are proud of you!

The Loboc Children’s Choir in Barcelona!

29 Oct

The last time I wrote about them was six years ago. The article was about Filipinos and Filipinas who have given their fellow countrymen more reasons to smile.

The last time they were in Barcelona was in 2003, eight years ago, when they won two major awards at the Europe and its Songs 6th International Folksong Choir Festival.

They garnered 97.5 points, the overall highest mark in all categories (beating also the adult choirs), which earned them the First Prize in the Children’s Category and the Europe and its Songs 2003 Cup being the Festival’s overall champion.

Next week, the Loboc Children’s Choir is back in Barcelona. You can listen to their angelic voices at La Sagrada Familia and Catedral de Barcelona on Thursday, November 3, and at Iglesia de San Agustin on Friday, November 4. 

These are the only dates you can watch them here unless you fly 7000 miles from Barcelona, all the way to the island of the famous Chocolate Hills and the smallest monkey in the world–Bohol, Philippines. DIT

Uno de los tres paraísos está en Filipinas

23 Oct

Hay playas que sólo caben en los sueños, en la imaginación, acaso en un perfecto ‘spot’ de imposibles promesas. Pero hay playas que aún siendo de ensueño existen. No es fácil llegar a ellas (mejor que sea así), pero es posible. DTlux.com ha reunido tres de esas playas soñadas y perfectas, una de ellas es la de White Island, en Filipinas.

Este lugar, extraído de algún paraíso imaginado, está formado por aguas cristalinas, islotes de fina arena blanca, manantiales de agua caliente y hasta otro del que emana agua carbonatada natural.

White Island, a donde se llega en avión desde Manila, se encuentra en una isla volcánica en la costa norte de Mindanao. Un lugar donde uno puede perderse en una de las puestas de sol más hermosas del planeta. ¿Y las otras dos?

Se merece visitar también al Parque Nacional del Río Subterráneo de Puerto Princesa en la isla  de Palawan. Este parque mezcla un fantástico paisaje kárstico de caliza con un río subterráneo navegable de 8,2 kilómetros. Una de las características del río es que atraviesa una cueva con grandes formaciones de estalactitas y estalagmitas y varias cámaras de gran tamaño y luego desemboca directamente al Mar de China Meridional. En su parte más baja tiene la influencia de las mareas. Se cree que es el río subterráneo más largo del mundo. En la boca de la cueva se encuentra una laguna límpida encuadrada por árboles antiguos que crecen justo al borde del agua. En la playa cerca de la cueva los monos, grandes varanos monitor y ardillas encuentran su lugar.

Este rio subterráneo puede estar incluido en las Siete Nuevas Maravillas de la Naturaleza si lo apoyas votando aquí: www.new7wonders.com Noticia compartida por Neil de la Cruz.