January 15, 2014

DOWN SOUTH | Who Did You Spend 2013’s Last Sunset with?

Inside the tunnel-like tent, it was hot. So Nanay in her 70s chased the shade running scarce in the treeless lot at Cebu South Road Properties. She sat on a kid’s stool in the tent’s shade with her sunglasses on. The younger ones huddled at the big tent in the […]
January 12, 2014
Kawasan Falls, Badian, Cebu

Starting 2014 with a Visit to the Muse | Kawasan Falls Cebu Philippines Photos

It is a personal pilgrimage. To visit my muse, that is. Despite my countless visits, Kawasan’s vigor strikes me as exciting as the first time I set eyes on her. We were supposed to visit this place on New Year’s Day to lead off the year with rush, flow, exuberance. […]
January 5, 2014

Images from the Bus Window: The Yellow Hunt

Somewhere mid-2013, I embarked on a photography project I named “Images from the Bus Window.” Instead of randomly shooting subjects from the bus window, this project now comes with a theme. Let me start with the theme yellow. For Hannah Reyes, a very young and hot photographer I admired a […]
January 1, 2014

Visiting the Tent City Before 2013 Ends

Yesterday, we visited the Tent City at Cebu South Road Properties where some of the survivors of the Super Typhoon Yolanda took refuge. Temporarily, I hope. Chad and I personally selected the toys at Carbon, the biggest and cheapest market in Cebu. We argued, deliberated, and finally agreed on the […]
December 17, 2013

Project Rebuild: Sending Christmas to Bantayan Island

Last Sunday, I headed to Bantayan Island, located in northern Cebu, at three in the morning to give the P32, 000 cash donations and little gifts for the kids I would surely meet along the way. Bantayan Island is the first site of our modest Project Rebuild, an initiative to […]
December 8, 2013

Palompon after Yolanda (Haiyan)

  In one of the rooms at Palompon Elementary School, these words were framed: Nobyembre Paglilingkod | Pagmamalasakit Ang pagmamalasakit at paglilingkod ay kusang pagbibigay ng ating sariling kakayahan na maaaring material, moral, at ispiritwal sa ating kapwa lalo na sa mga kapus-palad at nangangailangan. 
December 4, 2013

Twenty Days After: Post-Haiyan Lives at Tacloban

The highways are already cleaned up. The debris in the pictures are from the coastal streets especially Magallanes and the one by the public market. Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation is conducting a “cash for work” program. People—around 6000 of them—are paid P500 a day. They shoveled dirt, put them on a […]
November 21, 2013

Project Rebuild for Haiyan Survivors

To donate, click here or directly deposit it  through Paypal under the email backpackingwithabook@gmail.com. More than food, survivors need shelter and livelihood to start their life anew—after Haiyan claimed and orphaned thousands of lives, damaged billions-worth of properties, left thousands homeless and jobless, traumatized those who survived. We will help them […]
November 14, 2013

Sun.Star | Portrait of Bohol after the Quake

“Ingon sila silot daw nis Ginoo nato. Pero para nako, grasya ni,” Tatay in his ’50s claimed after taking several gulps from his glass of tuba. “Daghan kaayog grasya naabot human sa linog,” he further shared. The tuba vendor scooped a spoon of lilong doused in native vinegar and spiced […]
October 7, 2013

Badian: A Sea, a River, Friendship, and Yes, Love

Photos of and in Kawasan Falls and Terra Manna Badian Cebu June reminds me of sun-, sea-, river-kissed skin, of beautiful girls supporting my silliness, of falls jumping, of marine beauties, of Camiguin, of Terra Manna. June reminds me of distance suspended. Once more. June reminds me of not my here […]
September 26, 2013

Camiguin in Memories

I feel the need to write Camiguin sooner than expected. More often than not, I let my trips sleep for a year or so before browsing through the notes again and letting memories resurface. And the strongest senses of Camiguin in my head are the overwhelming presence of Mt. Hibok-Hibok, […]
September 23, 2013

Lovely Photos to Convince You to Visit Siquijor

Revisits offer new perspectives. For several reasons.  First, time. It’s been three years since my first visit. Three years could do and change a lot to a place or to a person. Siquijor has changed. I am changed.  Second, the mean of transport. Pressed for time, my friend from work […]