Monday, 27 August 2007


Post 19: Lolo Ramon's Story

According to my grandmother Meding, my Lolo Ramon was a stubborn man. There was this notorious thief (name disclosed), who was once feared of and even the police were scared to catch and put him to jail. “Your Lolo thinks he could catch a bullet with his fingers, ‘naturod kuno et inkulong tu met numan inusar tu bagat ket asel’(he thinks he is brave and maybe he was, he had put the thief in prison just by merely talking with him.)”,my grandma said.

Lolo Ramon continues, "Meding was so scared when I brought home our first adopted prisoner. She's a kind hearted woman but when it comes to our children's safety she was like a hawk. I never believed in putting an offender to jail would make him better. So what I did was get most of them and let them stay in our home. I eventually had proven my wife that they too could change if they are given that chance. These prisoners were a great help and never caused any harm."

"Kay-kay, a motherless boy who was being beaten by her stepmother, became one of my sons. He was the favorite of my children as an addition to the big family."

"Some of Meding's cousin also stayed with us. Many of them were her nephews and nieces who instead of going home to Buguias during school break, preferred to help in our new coffee plantation Dr. Dacanay made me start."

"After my first term , I did not run for the office. I gave it back to the giants who also became my good friends. They served their years then the people of Tublay gave it back to me, 1959 to 1962" ...

Sunday, 26 August 2007

Beach On Fire

I was awestricken by the fireworks me and the kids went to see at the beach last night. My husband was on his way coming home from work and wouldn’t be able to see the show, so I had to backpack the boys, camera and tripod on my own.

Still exhausted also from the clutter of people, cars and baby push chairs after the fireworks display, I’ll make it an excuse for – “You’re just a Google away”.

Here’s an article from our place, Cavallino's -Treporti's Website and some pictures I took while I was carrying Dylan and Lukie next to me imagining that his fingers are his camera’s lens.

Beach On Fire

25th AUGUST 2007
The longest firework display in the world: 12 km of fireworks

Beach on Fire is a firework display of record-breaking proportions: last editions attracted some 200.000 enthusiastic, spectators, fascinated by the breathtaking, awe-inspiring flashes that, in a splendid combination of colours, illuminated the sea and the Cavallino Treporti beach.

The display will be launched from 12 different points along our 13 km of beach, and will be controlled in a synchronised way.

The fourth edition of the event will take place on Saturday 25th August 2007 and with its statistics it looks set to become one of the most eagerly awaited and prestigious events promoted by the Adriatic’s many holiday resorts.

The initiative created and organised by the municipality of Cavallino Treporti
in conjunction with numerous local businesses, also represents an occasion, as the summer draws to a close, to thank the many traditional guests who with their affection and loyalty spend their holidays with us each year.

More pictures of fireworks display taken this summer by Boogs here: I Fuochi

Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Bees And Ducks

Mama and Dad

The Secret Life Of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd is a book that will always remind me of my mother - Normie. Today is her birthday. She should have been 53 if she’s still around to spoil her grandchildren.

“The next ten thousand years she would fix my hair. She would brush it into such a tower of beauty, people all over the world would drop their harps just to admire it. You can tell which girls lack mothers by the look of their hair. My hair was constantly going off in eleven directions...” Lily’s narration from the said book - Lines that first struck me when I was already on the third page.

Normie was born in Balatoc Itogon Benguet. Her family lived in Batuang Itogon who came all the way from Tadian Mt. Province for the gold mines. His father Felix Dulaycan and her mother Lydia, whom I can’t remember her maiden name, had six children. They too were young orphans when my grandmother Lydia died and Mama Normie at a young age became her siblings’ keepers.

I was in Grade 5 back then, I came home from school when my two sisters were spooning the peanut butter from the container. I asked them why they’re eating it with out bread and they told me, “Mama had let us!” That was our last 'merienda'(snack) with her and we were so clueless how weak she was that time.

I have so many beautiful memories of her that could surpass the number of pages to Sue Monk Kidd’s book though I only spent 12 years with her - Why she had so many shoes, her scent and a lot more.
Aunt Betsy, Irish, Mama, Me, Noeda and Dad

I can never forget the laughter I drew out from her when she can’t keep up on chasing me as she holds a ‘tsinelas’(flip-flops). She was in fury to whip out my butt because I made my sister cry and from a cautious distance I watched her trying to stop and hide her laughter as she says, “ Lovelyn, kala dyay! Darasim”( You come here! Hurry up!).

I always picture her with her dance as she sings her “Ducky Song”:

“Five little ducks went swimming one day.
Over the pond and far away.
Mother Duck said, “Quack, quack, quack, quack.”
And only four little ducks came back...”

I was singing this song to my 8 month old baby as I was feeding him last week. My eldest son Lukie was on the couch intently listening to my song and I saw his worried face. When I came to the "last 1 duck who went to swim and then no more duck came back", he was already in tears. I knew why so I went next to him and explained that the ducks grew up. They went to have a family of their own that’s why they did not go back to their Mama. “Just like me and Papa”, I said. “We came here in Italy and Lolo Danny and Lolo Mondax stayed in the Phillipines.” I told him and his face lit up. He was smiling again and went for the tissue for us to wipe
our eyes.

I know my mother duck is up there with harps and cellos played by the angels as she sings her “Ducky Song” on this day of hers.

Saturday, 18 August 2007

Baby "D", The Explorer

Dylan turned eight months last August 5 and what a little explorer he is becoming. There’s the trash can to turn up side down, the drawer to empty, the toilet bowl to climb and my house plants to eat. My funny little scavenger who delicately picks up everything from the floor and so calmly confident to put it into his tiny mouth.

With our eldest son, Boogie and I were that cagey first time parents who are in to book tracking on what’s next to our son’s “baby development”. Thanks to my mother in law, Mama Becca, who sent us these English parenting books which are now gathering dust because of the ‘internet’.

For Baby “D”, the computer made it easier to fill us up with those forgotten “what to expect” weekly progress. When I was still pregnant with Dylan, I registered on this site -
PregnancyWeekly - and from then on, every week I receive an e-mail from “BabyWeekly Newsletter”.

This week's e-mail brought up that napping will be of lesser time. It says, Baby “D” will not retain his usual morning nap but he’ll have longer time of sleep in the afternoon.

Here are other tips from BabyWeekly Newsletter:

The Thirty-Seventh Week In Your Baby's Development:
Hi! Does Dylan become very distressed when you leave him? He is still learning that even though he can't see you, you still exist. The concept of time is still new to Dylan as well, and he's uncertain when you'll come back. Here are five suggestions to help make goodbyes easier:
1.Establish a goodbye ritual. Follow through after saying goodbye and leave quickly. Returning or waiting for Dylan to stop crying may prolong the distress.
2.Provide Dylan James with a favorite toy or object to hold or cuddle when you're gone. Some children are comforted with a blanket or something that smells like you, such as your sweater.
3.Gradually introduce new people and places. Allow time for Dylan James to become familiar with a new caregiver or place while you're still there. Begin leaving him with a caregiver for just short periods of time and visit new places a few times together before leaving Dylan James there for longer periods of time.
4.Try to avoid leaving Dylan James when he is tired, hungry or sick.
5.Dylan James will take behavioral cues from you, so don't act anxious or guilt-ridden about leaving. If you make a big production out of it, so will he.
A Tip from the Trenches

Watching you leave teaches your child an important coping mechanism and is an important developmental step. Don't sneak out - this will leave your baby unsure of where you are and what has happened to you when you're suddenly gone. Have Boogie or the sitter stand at the door with Dylan James and wave goodbye to you as you leave. If he sees you get into the car and drive away, he knows you're gone and won't spend any time looking for you in the house. It's an honest approach and your child will respond to it better than if you sneak away.

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

For Michael: Its Just You

One of my ‘Must Clicks’ - Bill Bilig had an entry on his blog - from the boondocks, about a Filipino U.S. Marine who died in Iraq HERE: Its important for you to read all the comments of the said article as the full story came out from the readers of the blog.

I wasn’t suppose to write a comment on it as people who personally knew Michael are the once writing there. But, I keep on going back and made me write this after I conceded from my wide awake mind who’s trying to fight sleep:

I know this is hard for Michael's family and all of you who are close to him.

I'm a mother too and I can't help to post my part of grief. Was about to sleep over it but I really can't and made this little contribution.

For Michael: Its Just You

Such a mystic bliss our breath being one,
With your kicks that keep me awake till dawn.
Then you came forth dire such gripe,
Sweet first cry all was swiped.

Lucid childhood passed my sight,
Walking those first steps – what a fright.
I held you tight but had to let go,
Scared I was, to school - its just you.

Those vigils over the chills and head so warm,
Cough so I hear, gives me harm.
Sleep my child I’ll be here,
I’ll look over you with such care.

I can’t keep those hands to stay small,
Your feet to walk only the bounds of my wall.
There you go again , I had to let go.
Delve into the realms of dreams – its just you.

Off you went but I really ache.
I cried for your smile till I shake.
Countless wishes, if onlys and why,
I’ll wait for you, my hopes are high.

Then you came in the foggy blur
Oh so cold, I can not cure.
There you go again, I have to let go.
The living end of your pilgrim – its just you.

How many more mothers have to bare,
That their sons they can not spare.
All these obscurities and mischief,
Its just you - but forever is my grief.

Monday, 13 August 2007


Post 18: Lolo Ramon's Story

The nearest primary school for Ambassador children before was Poad Elementary School which is located in Acop Tublay Benguet. Its an everyday morning walk of four kilometers for my aunts and uncle, Eddie, Juling, Mary and Betty just to attend school. Then another 4 km going back home.

"Daniel 'Danny', envied his siblings who were leaving the house everyday. He convinced Meding first before my wife convinced me. I was not in to it because he was only six years old. But, he went anyway. Danny was always crying when he comes home from school. He was always bullied by his much older classmates. They even eat his lunch and worst put cow's dung into his lunch box after. He stopped going in the middle of the school year." Ramon smiles as he tells this.

Ramon being the mayor made a proposal to his colleagues to build a school in Ambassador. He volunteered to donate a part of his land for it. The 'Munisipyo' has no money for this project but they agreed to work for it's legalities. My grandfather presented this to the residents of Ambassador and they immediately started to work.

" First, we have to level the mountain and we don't have any equipments such as bulldozers like they use today. We did it with our bare hands. Old and young , men and women were all helping. I could not forget what we did before we put up the long, high ceiling-ed and big 'inatep'(nipa hut). After loosening the soil manually, we have to flatten the land. We did this by tying ropes in both ends of a huge long log. Then we pull the rope while others were pushing it."

"Its worth remembering the oneness and sincerity of every person who helped in putting up this school. All you see were smiles on their faces no matter how hard the effort they have to give. Being there was like a feast or being in a party. Even if the sun had set, it seems no one likes to end the day"

" It was 2 years of hard work from a scratch before it was finally completed on 1951. The first students were the old people so that they could at least learn how to write their names. Meding volunteered to be the first teacher because the government could not provide a teacher yet."

" The next year, Grade One formally started then Grade II the next year with a real teacher now. Grade III and so on. Danny's batch was the first elementary graduate of Ambassador Elementary School on 1956."

When my grandfather died, the people in his town requested for the name of the school be changed. It was later granted and changed into Pontino Elementary School in honor of my 'lolo' Ramon Pontino. It was where me, my brothers and sisters graduated elementary.

The location of the school is the best part of my grandfather's inherited land. The scope extends to almost two hectares. It was just below our house, a minute walk and its where I spent most of my childhood. Hide and seek, 'pinal-paltugan'(shooting), playing under the rain and throwing hard cow's poop to our 'kalabans'(opponents) were what we used to play. Then volleyball, basketball and soccer as we grew up.

Now, the number of Ramon's grandchildren is rapidly growing. Each one of us dreams of putting a house of our own close to our known home. His land is no longer enough for all of us. And, since its close to the highway, now the price of that land is worth millions.

The site of the school could have accommodated us - the 3rd generation and even three succeeding cluster of great - grandchildren. But, my 'lolo's' effort, our education and our childhood memories will never be replaced by a house, wealth or any material possession. 'What inheritance could be better than that?'

Friday, 10 August 2007


If back home in the Philippines, “package” is congruent to “abroad”, here, we also have our “little excitement” as we wait for our boxes that come monthly.

father and son

Kuya Arthur is a father of two who has a Filipino Store in Padova, ‘La Etnica’. A two and a half hours drive from our place - Cavallino. 10 Filipino families live here and every end of the month we give our list of Pinoy goods needed to my friend Lorna. She then sends it to Kuya Arthur thru fax. After 3 days or so, our boxes are delivered carefully packed with our names written on it.
Sample prices: Marca Pina Soy sauce-1.50 euros(90pesos), Payless Pancit Cantoon-30cents(18pesos),Bagoong Isda Balayan 2eu(140p).Clover(med)-95cents(57p) for me, Taquitos 75cents(51p) for Papa and Oishi-70cents(49p) for Lukie.

We have an Italian owned shop, Rizzo, in Venice that sells selected Filipino Items but its more expensive.
Another shop in Piazza Le Roma which is nearer than Padova(Arthur’s Store) but their prices are even higher than Rizzo. The irony is, its owned by a ‘Kababayan’.
Lukie loves Ligo Sardines(70 cents). He calls it, “fish from the Philippines”. They had put Mega Sardines this time, probably Ligo’s out of stock. I haven’t tasted this Mega Sardines yet, hope its OK.

They also sell, frozen Bangus, fish/sguid balls, lumpia wrappers but all are products of Thailand. ‘Gata’(coconut milk), 'Patis'(They call it Squid Sauce) and 'malagkit' rice, for these three, we preffer the Thai's than Pinoy made.

lukie and his friend/enemy - marco

Every item has a pasted translation of ingredients in Italian. Pancit or they call it here ‘Pasta d’ Riso’, fried rice – ‘Riso Cantonese’ and Spring Rolls are among our host countrie's favorites.

Oooppss, how can I forget the rice!!! Only 25 kilos per sack with prices ranging from 15 euros to 32 euros depending on it's kind. All came from Thailand. We get the cheapest(15 eu = 900pesos), its the same as the 'Milagrosa' in the Philippines.

Thursday, 9 August 2007


Just want to share an excerpt from one of my favorite books - ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW I LEARNED IN KINDERGARTEN by Robert Fulghum


All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be, I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate-school mountain, but there in the sand pile at the Sunday School.

These are the things I learned:
Share everything.

Play fair.

Don't hit people.

Put things back where you found them.

Clean up you mess.

Don't take things that aren't yours.

Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.

Wash your hands before you eat.


Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.

Live a balanced life - learn some and think some
and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work everyday some.

Take a nap every afternoon.

When you go out into the world, watch out for
traffic, hold hands and stick together.

Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in
the Styrofoam cup: The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that. Goldfish and hamster and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup-they all die. So do we.

And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned-the biggest word of all--LOOK

Tuesday, 7 August 2007


Post 17: Lolo Ramon's Story:

Tublay started its township year 1900. Ora Juan Carino was the first Governor of Benguet on the said year. His brother, another son of Tublay, who helds in Baguio, Mateo Carino was the first representative of the Chief Executive of the American Insular Government 1902.

Bangilan Acop is the father of Fernando Cosalan, both former town representatives (mayor) of Tublay were the roots of Andres Cosalan who represented Baguio and Benguet in the Batasang Pambansa 1965 to 1984. Ronald Cosalan his son, also became the Congressman of Benguet 1995-2001. Just to name among the many Tublay breeds and with it's continues production of political leaders, Tublay was then dubbed as 'The Athens Of Benguet'. (Source: Tublay History: and

"1949, election for town representative (mayor seat) was held. The 'Lalakay' (elders) leaders of Ambassador gathered to encourage me in joining. Since the government was put up, my 'barangay' was never given a chance to occupy a seat. I never wanted that responsibility because Ambassador alone was hard to keep. But to their insistence, I gave in. " Ramon continues.

"Politics was dominated by the Carino-Acop-Cosalan clan since 1900. They were the giants in the political arena. They were my co-contenders aside from three other locals who were also their relatives. We were all 6 candidates compiting for mayorship."

"The voting system before was through "colors" because most voters can't read nor write. From a box, we the candidates will randomly pick a paper and the color that we got will represent us. The people would then cast into the ballot box their choice of color that represented their candidate."

"On the stage at the 'poblacion' during the election day. The six of us were seated with our respective color pinned on our chest. A white ribbon was so proud and brightly stuck on my left chest. I won at the end of the day. All the total votes of my 5 opponents added, would not beat my gained support. 1949 to 1952, I gave Acop's and Carino's a time to rest. I owe it to the Kankana-ey's stealing, the Ibaloi's would have not voted for me if not because of them."

"I then understood what my dream was telling me. It wasn't death after all but the beginning of me to stop driving the roads of Kabayan. It was for me to take the white feather and give a ride to the passengers of my hometown - Tublay"....

Saturday, 4 August 2007

The Face Behind The Blog AND 7 Random Facts/Habits About Themselves

Aysus! Another tag from TINA . Busted! Why? The first rule said post a picture of you that is not currently online. Oh well, my photos are here and there. Yep, (with the background music of: “You’re So Vain”).

I’m scrolling over those pics and I can’t find one that wasn't posted somewhere yet! This entry might 'shoooo' away readers.

I admit, I can’t be behind the camera cause I’m a shaky photographer and all I know is shoot, shoot, shoot. Definitely no artistic mode on that field so I surrendered and said, “Come on, shoot me Papa!” Lucky am I to have a free “pix’y publicists” in tow hikikiki...

33 years ago

Went over all my blog and I guess the only thing I wrote about “the real me” is my hair. Though my life is so transparent with all my writings - from my budding family to my ancestor’s story, this tag shouted, "Only Lovelyn please?"

college days

dating days

Then I received a message thru ‘friendster’ from NIKKI in NY that I’ve been tagged: 7 Random Facts/Habits About Themselves. I replied that I would be doing it soon but as I am working on Tina’s Tag, might as well incorporate the two. I too would be repelled reading 2 blogs of “ME ONE. ME TWO”.

I hope Tina and Nikki wouldn’t mind me doing it this way:

1. I AM GAY: Being carefree makes me lighter than my weight. You can easily make me laugh and get annoyed cause you’re not even being funny. That’s the story behind all my ‘hehehe’. Spirited smile is free and makes you young. Oh, so silly being gay. But, it could really make you happy!

33 years after and a mother of two

2. SPREAD THAT LOVE: Gave me two lovely boys with their father as the ‘yummy’ main dish. Extended say how to splash-splash LOVE: I am friendly and do not hold grudges even if people are hurting me. I always believe that there's goodness in every one. I don’t know if it’s a virtue if not a curse but indifference makes me heavy. Ask Bill Bilig and Tina, I always go comment on their blogs like we are ‘best friends’.

3. TOO BLOGGISH: Emails, friendsters, blogging and communicating thru the web is my ME time. Writing here like I am to submit an article due the next day. To some reason, its all the while practicing my typing skills. Tina’s right and I’m so ‘makulit’, how therapeutic!

4. SHE WORKS HARD FOR THE MONEY: I am a stay home mom who once held 4 jobs. With ‘A LUKIE’ to take to school everyday and runs all the time for the boat to get him home in the afternoon. Mothering calls for everything so with the cooking that gathers the family of three for dinner. Then Dylan came and I slowed down. Its not all money and I don’t care anymore if financially its tight. Cars, houses here or there...whatever...I still hold my say that these material things won’t kiss and hug me back!


5. RUN WALK RUN: I jog twice or thrice a week. I started it again after a loooonngg time. Another ME hour - alone out there at the beach. I thank Boogie cause coming home after an 8 hour tiring work, he takes charge of the kids and encourages me to go RUN-RUN, WALK, RUN...

6. I’M A FAN: Thumbs up to working mothers who are able to do great jobs on their careers and successful home keepers at the same time. I’ve tried it once and I can’t do it for now. I hope when Dylan goes to kinder I still know what real job means.

7. PSSHHH: Enough, did I say I was tagged? Thought I am writing a apology (but you’ve read it anyway)! Hehehe...WAIT!!! I forgot to say I'm a cry baby. I cried over the "THRILLER" of prisoners in Cebu. People are capable of being good touched me.

I too have ill sides but I'm saving it for tags such as: The Cruela Devil In You...Just in case.

This is TINA and click her site for the rules of this tag:

Now I’m tagging back Nikki with Tina’s tag. Miss Bugias again, Salome and Gandang Igorota(You may choose between Tina and Nikki's tag).

Friday, 3 August 2007


Post 16: Lolo Ramon's Story

"Bado had again bought animals for my family to raise- sheep, goats and cows. Only this time he gave more than 15 cows. I did not accept it at first because I don't want to take advantage of his kindness. But, he convinced me saying it is not a gift. He told me, "You will be just my keeper Ramon, my co-owner to help raise and breed these beasts". I then took it to 'Nalseb', a four hours walk far from our home. My eldest son Edward and some of my nephews helped me look after these animals."

"1947, I started to drive again. I worked as the first driver of Dangwa Bus for Baguio - Kabayan Benguet route. The road was narrow, rugged and a steep. A simple mistake would send the bus down the cliff. It was a dangerous job but a great help, financially. Specially so that my three older children were going to school and Meding gave me two more sons, Alexander and Roger after Daniel."

"I had a dream one night that the road to Kabayan was cut and I couldn't see the other half of it. Then a white feather fell from the sky and landed on my palm. When I woke up, it dawned on me that my dream was a sign that I am going to die. The white feather is death and I took and accepted my fate".....

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