Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sunday, July 13, 2014

This week has gone by so quickly.  When we left this morning we were having a “brown out” (no electricity), when we returned many hours later, still a “brown out”.  The weather remains very warm and humid.  We hear the “hot season” is over and we’re now in the “rainy season”, but nothing much has changed, although it rains more.  We went to church in Caduha-an (about an hour north of Bacolod).  This is a branch of about 100 people in attendance today, next Sunday a new ward will be created.  Their building has no air conditioning, no screens on the windows, just fans noisily turning to create a little air movement.   We were actually a few minutes late, due to delays in traffic.  Our first wait was a parade going down the main road in Talisay celebrating, Barangay Day (Barangay is like a precinct, but actual legal town within a town).  Vehicles decorated with colorful balloons, lots of people and flat bed trucks full of people and many drummers banging loudly.  Drums and loud music are very popular here.
Barangay Parade with Rooster booster
Drumming away. . .

And several funeral processions.  They included people walking behind the hearse (or converted mini-van) carrying the casket.  This seems unusual to me, because these processions are on the main highway which is mostly a two way road.  Some people carried umbrellas to protect themselves from the warm sun and others had towels or tee shirts wrapped around their heads.  When we first moved here four months ago, I was a little bit afraid when I saw people with these coverings.  Some even cover most of their faces with only their eyes peeking through; they looked like ninjas!   I realize now this is how they protect themselves from the sun.   An umbrella isn’t always convenient.  As George would rather me not mention, he passed an ambulance on the highway with lights and sirens on.  His excuse was they weren’t going fast enough ;-).  As mentioned, almost anything goes when driving here.

Karen tried this Rambutan fruit outside a missionary apartment--she said it was very sweet and tasty like candy
Some interesting use of words we have seen:  A large arch built across the entire road at the entrance to one of the small towns has a banner across it that reads  “Where life’s sweet and the past is forever”.   A local dentist’s motto, “An ounce of dental prevention is a worth than a pound of cure” (actual words).   When you donate blood here it is called “bloodletting”.  It is touted as a way to reduce risk of “heart disease” and “heart attack”, “reduce cancer risk”, and a way to “diet” and “remain fit”.  Sign me up!

Guitar playing singer trying to earn a few pesos
Women selling shell fish in neighborhood
There are all kinds of entrepreneurs here.  The self reliance couple here said that 95% of people here are self-employed—even if they have a job.  You can see here some examples—these are very creative and hard-working people and go to great lengths to support their families.  Unlike the U.S., if you don’t work here you don’t eat.  Hmmm, maybe America could learn a few lessons from the Philippines.

We had to try sugarcane juice--look at all the benefits! ;-0 It was very sweet

Woman selling fish door to door

Vendor out selling 'necessities' in busy traffic

Trike hauling bamboo
Man harvesting fruit on a vacant lot--literally a few doors down from our apartment
We live in a jungle!

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