PAN DE PUGON

 

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My travel companions and I have been sitting at the Passenger’s Lounge inside the Port of Dapa, Siargao Island since 5 in the morning. We were waiting to board the MV Montenegro fast craft bound for Surigao City which is two hours away. Awake since 3am,  we haven’t had any breakfast yet and I’ve been avoiding drinking too much water to minimize, if not avoid, going to the public toilet while on the boat. I anticipated that any balancing act performed while relieving oneself inside the toilet would be futile once the boat hit the open seas. At 6am were finally seated and I stared to feel my stomach grumbling. I don’t think I would be able to sleep it off and survive dehydration-induced headache for the rest of the trip…and we still have 10-12 hours bus ride ahead of us back to Davao City.  Ayayaaaay…I had no choice but to eat something and drink.

A man with a Styrofoam box have been walking around selling “Pan de Pugon” or bread baked in a wood-fired oven. I haven’t eaten one in a long time and I surmised that with the proliferation of fast-rising, commercialized dough, it would just taste like any other bread bought from the corner bakeshop – dry and airy. Surprisingly, the bread was hot and heavy when the man handed the two-in-one pack (for P20) to me. I expected it to be warm – but it’s not. It was really hot-hot-hot…and it smelled heavenly GOOD. Maybe I was just too hungry but it also tasted delicious. It was sweet with a hint of saltiness to it. It almost seemed artisanal.  This bread is worth the toilet-break so open seas or not, here I come.

 

 

THE TUNNEL AT FORT SANTIAGO

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Darn. I can’t recall if we went through this tunnel during the tour. Did we? I don’t think we did. Now I’m wondering what’s on the other side…and I’m wondering how many Filipinos civilians and guerillas were tortured and killed inside these tunnels by the Spaniards in the mid 1800s and the Japanese soldiers during WWII.

We don’t have any from where I come from hence I find tunnels fascinating. The journey through it can be quite symbolic but taken into a simple context, it’s just like entering the House of Horrors with a nasty surprise waiting at the end.

Sorry. I just saw an episode of The Walking Dead.

 

 

 

 

(Fort Santiago, Intramuros, Philippines)

 

 

DANCE & GORGE FOR COMFORT

I could eat an entire batch of store-bought brownie mix right now and dance to Jason Derulo’s “Talk Dirty” because that is how annoyed and upset I am today. Unlike other girls who cry, sulk or turn to drama queens, I do the exact opposite. I stay inside my bedroom and dance like a whirling dervish on a sugar high. If said doomsday falls on a work week, I put on my headphones while at the Daily Grind and listen to heart-pumping, feet-stomping, ear-shattering pop-ditties to drown out the noise in my head. At this point, I ignore everyone else and mentally will the hands of the clock to speed up to 5 o’clock PM.

The brownie is just a lousy, flimsy excuse to gorge on an old-time favorite baked goodie.

Okay – comfort food.

 

THE BROWN-SKINNED, TWO-LEGGED DOLPHIN

We were waiting for our boat to depart from the port when this little boy came clambering from one of the outriggers. He was prompting us to throw coins on the water which he will dive after. “Creative Begging” was how my brother called it. I say it’s akin to a street performer except I wouldn’t encourage this “talent” because it’s hazardous to the boy’s safety and wellbeing.

While the little boy waited for us, he stretched his lithe little body like a cat on a sunny patio, and sat with his back facing the sun. I marveled at how his smooth brown skin glowed. Wow, I whispered and  snapped away. After I’m done taking his photos I called out to him to come over. He sheepishly approached me and I handed him a few coins. Go and have your breakfast, I told him.

He gave me a big smile and without further ado, dove into the water like a dolphin.

 

THAT I WOULD BE GOOD

I spent four hours inside my bedroom yesterday afternoon practically doing nothing. Oh, a little bit of this and that (reading, writing) but most of the time I was just lying on the floor and doing reverse crunches. Seriously, I was, except I was lifting my butt off the floor in an underwater-like, slow-mo pace. This music by Alanis Morissette kind of distracted me while “working-out”.  It is so ironic to hear Alanis, angst-ridden-teenager that she was, sing this song.  Her words gently reminds me to cut myself some slack and be more tolerable when things get awry because eventually, everything shall come to pass and I only have myself to deal with in the end.

MY BROTHER IS NOT A HAPPY LEMON

My friend introduced me to this new concoction at the Happy Lemon stand. It’s Green Tea sprinkled with Rock Salt and Cheese. I love it but I admit it’s a bit of an acquired taste for most Filipinos. So I bought another cup for my finicky brother to taste, and taste he did, but I couldn’t make out what his facial expression was. It was a cross between smelling a dirty toilet and gagging on gasoline. What? I asked him. Took him awhile to respond but all he said was – Insect Spray!”

Sigh. Why do I even bother?