Here in the Philippines, summer time is one of the most awaited months of the year aside from the Christmas season of course. Schools have their summer break until the early weeks of June. That’s when schools reopen. At last, students get their much awaited freedom from the four walls of their classrooms.
Like all summers, they anticipate graduation ceremonies, fun at the beaches and discos, family reunions, malling, frequent local and foreign travels and endless bonding time with their relatives, close friends and jamming with their gang mates. Summer time spells FUN indeed. It’s a time when Filipinos move like busy bees in a beehive.
Then there is the Holy Week celebrations, where a great majority of the Filipino population observe this time honored lenten period. Catholic Churches nationwide are filled to the brim with worshippers from all walks of life.
It’s also during summer time when the whole nation celebrate their local “Fiesta”, or yearly festivities in honor of their patron saints. Fiestas date back to the colonial Spanish time. These festivities are marked with very colorful and fun-filled events. You have marching bands parading in the overly decorated streets with pretty lasses dancing to their tunes, traditional native games, sports tournaments or local intramurals, parades of several multi colored and intricately made floats of all shapes and sizes, carnivals with all the rides you can think of, culminating with a long church procession by days end.
Thereafter, there is a big community party where native foods and delicacies are in abundance. From afar, you can smell the aromatic smoke of roast pigs and calfs. Everyone is invited to eat all and drink all until you drop “dead”. Fiestas can range from 1 day to 3 days in succession. You also have local beauty pageants and singing contests with top prices at stake.
It’s amazing how our townfolk manage with the financial expense and needs of a fiesta. Even poor agricultural and remote villages will always manage to have a fiesta by hook or by crook. I guess it’s an offshoot of a Filipino trait of “Bayanihan” or the spirit of communal unity and togetherness.
Yes, fiestas in this part of the world are quite similar to some Latin countries once ruled and influenced by the Spanish empire of yesteryears. These kind of festivities are similarly celebrated in my own hometown of Sorsogon. And you know what, I was once a majorette of our local marching band parading the town from morning till night. LOL! Tiring but exciting! I wonder if I can still whirl that baton with ease.
Yes my friends, summer is indeed a time of fun, excitement and enjoyment. I had a fair share of that cavalcade of fun!
[Originally published at bitLanders.com rated 4/5 Star]