staying cool

Today is the first day of summer according to my calendar.  No rain for the past few days and I am waking up to warm sunlight filtering through my bedroom windows in the early morning.  It’s time to hit the beach!

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A friend once offered to teach me surfing, but that was at a time when I was spending the entire Sunday mornings playing golf.  If the offer is still good today, I will most definitely take those lessons.  This definitely looks fun.

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Surfers on a break on top of a cliff along the highway in the municipality of Dulag.

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Around a short bend, a group of skim boarders are also on a break.

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The view from where the skim boarders were sitting.

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Some days are spent on the beach, from morning until afternoon.  It sounds like a nice retirement plan.

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…just have to remember to bring a beach umbrella.

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As with everything in life, the fun has to end.  Tomorrow will be another day.

just another Sunday

I had a very nice quiet walk this morning…

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A day in the life…

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I’ve read the news today, oh boy…

I have always been a Beatles fan.  There may or may not be any relation between this photo and the song which this blog title shares, except maybe for the opening first line.  Here’s the link for your listening pleasure.  Enjoy!

finite bounty

Much has been said about teaching a man to fish…

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…and much, much more has been said about going forth and multiplying.

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If anyone were to heed the call to procreate, it should be the fishes in the ocean.

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A small catch of small fishes; how long will it be before they run out?

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When that day comes, there won’t be anything to say about teaching a man to fish.

something old, something new

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This used to be a copra warehouse.  It has been a copra warehouse for many years, maybe decades.  It now serves as a passenger terminal for vans for hire.

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Tacloban City has changed for the better and also for the worse, and then there are some things that haven’t changed at all.  More specifically, some people’s way of life for the past 3 decades still remains the same.

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They are the cobblers who have long occupied the sidewalks of Rizal Avenue.  Except for the young man second from the right, they have been around for as long as I can remember.  Their trade hasn’t flourished, but it hasn’t dwindled either.  Businesses on that street have come and gone: the comics stands that lined the street corner have long disappeared; the general store at the corner gave way to a pharmacy, which in turn gave way to this fast food restaurant.  There will be a new building beside this fast food restaurant soon.  The landscape has already changed yet these hardy people remain.  Times are changing, now faster than ever.  Who knows where they will be another decade from now?

one of these days…

There wasn’t one single soul out on the beach today but me.  OCUY2239

The last time I’ve seen a different view of this vista was from the airport terminal 2 weeks ago.  It was cloudy and the early morning sun was peeking through the clouds, casting light on this little island in the middle of the sea.  One of these days I should should be able to take a picture of that image that has been imprinted in my mind.  One of these days the rain will stop and then I should take a long walk with my camera.

out of focus

Pope Francis came to Tacloban City last Saturday to console the survivors of super typhoon Haiyan.  It was a very emotional event for everyone in attendance.  Pilgrims from all over the country endured the cold wind and rain to listen to his message of mercy and compassion.

I opted to stay home and watched the proceedings on live TV broadcast. I was moved, and realized only then that I, too, am a survivor of this tragedy.

I hope this visit by Pope Francis gave everyone the closure we all need to leave those painful memories behind.

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The weather disturbance has been affecting my focus lately, but a little sunshine should be able to fix it.

inner peace

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2014 turned out to be another gloomy year end.  A strong typhoon battered us on the 8th of December, and then another weaker typhoon on the 30th.  The latter brought so much rain that flooded many towns, broken some bridges and caused landslides in several municipalities.  This year end one-two punch has knocked us down again for a second time in 2 years, dousing whatever high spirits with gloominess.

I’m starting this year with a heavy heart and weariness that demand some effort to stay optimistic.  A change in scenery perhaps, a shift in focus and the avoidance of survivor stories.  We’ll see how this pans out.  This photography has always been emotionally driven and I will need to find my inner peace.  May you find yours.

Happy new year!

the best Christmas party ever!

This year, the school children of Lorenzo Daa Memorial School experienced a Christmas party that’s so different from what they have been used to.  Situated in sitio Paglaum, a remote area 40 kilometers from downtown Tacloban, the school has a population of 200 pupils and students.  Most of these school children had no idea what a party is like for the average city kid until now.

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With sweet treats and entertainment filling up the whole day, these kids probably had their best Christmas party ever, courtesy of the Rotary Club of Tacloban.

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This might be my last post for the year, so here’s a very Merry Christmas to all of you.  It’s been a long time since I’ve taken family photos and I’ve got a lot of catching up to do.

once bitten, twice shy

If we are to believe that super typhoons come about only once in every century, then we shouldn’t have any more of these catastrophic hurricanes in the next 200 years.  I certainly hope this is true because this is getting to be very tiring and traumatic.  Last week’s calm was the precursor to this storm.

Typhoon Hagupit (Ruby) didn’t hit us directly this time, nor was it as violent as Haiyan, but it was the longest 8 hours of fierce wind and rain that battered Eastern Visayas.  The eastern seaboard of Samar received the brunt of the typhoon and news are now slowly trickling in.  As of this writing we still don’t have electricity, or maybe the better term should be powerless.

Everybody seemed well prepared this time.  People living in the coastal areas moved to evacuation centers as early as Thursday.  Everyone bought their food supplies early and the groceries opened until the last day before the storm made landfall.

The weather was still bad on Sunday.  It was not the usual sunshiny day after the storm.  People had to wait until Monday to return home.

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Aside from their houses, these may be their only other possessions.

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The trip home is a short one, but nobody knew what to expect when they reached home, if it was still standing.

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The statue of the Santo Niño is a staple in most Filipino homes.  There has been a lot of stories about this statue of the child Jesus during super typhoon Haiyan, of how the flood water didn’t reach where it stood, or how it miraculously stayed dry while everywhere around it was submerged in water.

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Fishing boats were tied on top of the bridge, safe even if it didn’t stay dry.  It will sail another day.

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A fisherman reassembles the outrigger of his fishing boat.  Things will be back to normal for him who has learned the hard lessons from the year before.

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Picking up the pieces.  This time there are pieces to bring back home, and there is a home to return to.

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The less one has, the less there is to worry.  There will always be trade offs.

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and imagine if only we didn’t have to worry about anything….

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It feels good to be back home again, and all the dolls have made it home as well.

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Too old and partially paralyzed to get a regular job, the challenges have just multiplied for this aging carpenter.

And these are the stories of our lives…

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