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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.

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Friday, April 21, 2006

entry arrow8:42 AM | How I Spent My Summer Vacation

I wonder if it is really summer. Only the sun tells me it is, and when I do pass by the Boulevard, the blue-green resplendence of Tanon Strait is like a seductress, and Siquijor -- only thirty minutes away by boat -- beckons like a beautiful witch. But I find myself not having time to do anything, except for the stolen hours I get when Mark and I (always impulsively) jump into his car and go away to Valencia town up in the hills, where it's cooler, and where we can swim among waterfalls and in river water. Still, there's the heat. No matter what I do -- duck into the shadows, apply generous amounts of sunblocking lotion, curtain off my windows to ward off the steaming rays from the outside, worship the night and proclaim allegiance to its cool, undarkening ways -- the humidity and the inescapable brightness of the every day are particularly harsher this year: the hottest summer in Dumaguete in living memory. I die of thirst every single minute. I am reduced to wearing cotton t-shirts again and cargo short pants, the official fashion of Dumaguete. And to compound all these summery "discomfort", here is my reality in the name of duty, work, and responsibility: a thousand duties to accomplish before deadlines always hanging above my head like a double-edged sword (among them the revived Poetry Edition of Sands & Coral, the Fiction Project I have with Kit Kwe which is long overdue, editing two issues of Silliman Journal, directing a farewell program for our outgoing University President, polishing off the second collection of short stories for publication, editing the Edilberto K. Tiempo anthology with Timothy Montes, reviving the Survey of Philippine Literature website, and deciding for sure -- and before April 30 -- whether or not to join the Palanca this year) and six units to teach for summer school -- although that one is never a pain because I like teaching Philippine literature in the summer, in Dumaguete, a magical time when the people I teach about in my classes actually roam the streets of Dumaguete. This summer, I am teaching Dean's novel Salamanca, the first Filipino novel I totally enjoyed, and he will actually be around to give a forum on speculative fiction in the Philippines for Silliman University, and perhaps a little talk on the writing of his novel.

Forgive me for my silence then, good people. (And my beloved Kristyn.) I'm just trying to breathe... So many things have happened in the past two months. So many things. I do not even know where to begin...


[0] This is Where You Bite the Sandwich