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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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Thursday, November 24, 2016

entry arrow2:07 PM | The Fiesta Storm

They've canceled all Cebu-bound ferries today. The makeshift plastic billboard outside the Cokaliong ticketing office at the Boulevard declares so in not too many words: "NO TRIP" -- all capital letters scrawled on a piece of paper inserted into a groove of the small billboard. And just to emphasize the sincerity of such terse pronouncement, the ticketing windows are closed, too, effectively telling you there is no one to talk to, to bargain with, to inquire things from. Questions like, "Will you resume operations tomorrow?" Or, "What do I do if I've already bought a ticket?" Or, "Does love exist, and if so, can the rain cure it?" There is no one around. Beside Cokaliong, the George & Peter Lines ticketing office, equally shabby-looking, was shuttered as well. And so it goes. There was definitely no getting off this island for now. A tropical depression was fast approaching from the east, and the projections of its rainy path predict a swathing through the heart of Central Visayas, eventually going towards Palawan. The storm lands squarely upon Dumaguete on the 25th, and right on the nose of the city's fiesta. Already, the skies above the sea off the Boulevard are prophet to the impending cold front: everything in the horizon, including a sketch of Siquijor in the distance, are in various shades of sombre blue-green -- dark turquoise, dark cyan, teal. You couldn't tell though from the quiet waves washing ashore. Nor from the weight of humidity still hanging in the air. And in the next block, down Silliman Avenue to the crossing of Hibbard Avenue, downtown has become a beehive of a parade about to begin. The people are milling about, filling out the sidewalks in anticipation of the start of the annual fiesta parade. The school bands are practice-playing their marching music. The young majorettes and minorettes -- little girls in skimpy twirler costumes and boots -- are looking lost in their makeup and tight buns, while they're ushered about the crowded streets by their frantic mothers, looking for the right assembly point to meet the others. No one at all takes heed of the coming rain. The fiesta is upon us -- and in the name of St. Catherine of Alexandria, who does not exist, let the revelry begin.

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