Cityscapes

Finding Grace in a State of COVID

I have not had an entry in my personal diary for so long.  The significant years of our migration to Australia starting the year 2005 have been lost in the pages of my memory, and I’m trying to retrieve them especially in these slowest of times: longer nights and shorter...
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Finding Grace in a State of COVID

Who Am I?

Question begets answer.  But in the midst of a pandemic, it may be an exception.  Not an exception to the rule but exception to reality.  Removed from reality, I am an aberration.  I depart from the usual, normal, typical, and on to obscurity, absurdity, and I dwell headlong as a...
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Who Am I?

Who’s Out In A Face Mask Society?

Whenever I go to a mall, I always see the signages “No Face Mask, No Entry” and “Observe Social Distancing” Whenever I go to church, I always see the signages “No Face Mask, No Entry” and “Observe Social Distancing” Whenever I go to school, I always see the signages “No...
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Who’s Out In A Face Mask Society?

7th Filii Biennial Reunion

Pots, Pans and the Recipes – Filii’s Kitchen Daily Bread Houston, TX was the venue of our 7th biennial FILII-NA reunion held last June 5-11, 2019. The choice of the venue was unanimously agreed upon since our host, Fr. Roger – the parish priest, had offered the parish new Life...
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7th Filii Biennial Reunion

Deep Into Unchartered Territories

Seven clicks into Highway 403 from the Starbucks franchise in Matheson, I got off the Erin Mills exit and took a beeline to the first street on my right.  Two successive left turns, then one right turn followed by another left turn, and house #241 on Fudge Terrace Avenue on...
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Deep Into Unchartered Territories

Pandemic Lockdown: A Quarantine Experience

Suddenly, the world turns upside down and the people are in quandary, brought about by the looming dangers of the pandemic.  COVID-19 according to WHO is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus. The virus manifests as mild to moderate illness symptoms associated with cough, sore throat, and...
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Pandemic Lockdown: A Quarantine Experience

Footprints of the Pandemic

On a good sunny day in summer, when the weather bureau issued no warning alert on extreme heat and high humidity, I would drive and park my car in our neighborhood's Rathwood Park along the Rathburn road.  Then I would spend a good hour walking repetitively around the whole circular...
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Footprints of the Pandemic

Locked Down for Better or Worse?

The Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has wrought sweeping, horrible havoc all over the globe. No nation on the face of the earth remains unscathed by it physically, socially, economically, religiously, and, if I may add, spiritually. Nobody stays free from the hardship, fear, and uncertainty which the flagrant...
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Locked Down for Better or Worse?

Working From Home: A Personal Take on the New Normal

Where were you on March 16, 2020?  This date is very significant to many of us since this was the start when most corporate offices had advised employees to work from home and non-essential travels were banned. In my entire professional career for 35 years now, I never have imagined...
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Working From Home:  A Personal Take on the New Normal

Exploring the Parameters of the Pandemic

There are many catchwords that this pandemic has given birth to, which in turn describes our present lot. Some of the words are quarantine, lockdown and new normal. However, I would like to propose another word: re-imagination. This is not in any way longing for a future utopia after this...
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Exploring the Parameters of the Pandemic

Rethinking Faith Amid the Health Crisis

How will the Church keep the faith alive in the “new normal”? The Coronavirus certainly forced us to change our traditional ways of celebrating our Catholic faith. This year’s Holy Week experience was not only historic but most of all unforgettable since we have celebrated it in different ways. Religious...
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Rethinking Faith Amid the Health Crisis

Coronavirus and Me: Encounters and Lessons

Wuhan Who or What? My first encounter with coronavirus led to my discovery of Wuhan, a city in the province of Hubei in China. Before the virus struck, I hadn’t heard of Wuhan. But when CNN broke the news about the novel coronavirus, it showed footages of the place where...
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Coronavirus and Me:  Encounters and Lessons

“Filii”pino Welcome for North American Balikbayans

It was my first bout with the infamous traffic deadlock from MOA, Pasay City to Loyola Grand Villas, Quezon City.  For the most part during the trip I entertained myself by looking out fleetingly at silhouettes of the colossal infrastructures I have not seen before.  I was in awe as...
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“Filii”pino Welcome for North American Balikbayans

Iloilo Filii meet their Canadian Brother

It didn’t take Medelianism philosophy for Iloilo Filii to figure out the best venue to hold a mini re-union and a welcome bash for fray Ted Fullona, a fellow Ilonggo who was on vacation and back in Dumalag, Capiz during the week of February 11th.   On short notice and under...
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Iloilo Filii meet their Canadian Brother

The 2018 Sinulog Festival in Carmen, Cebu

The rhythmic sound of drum beats emanating two blocks away from where we stand begins to vibrate.  As the sound gets closer and louder, you can sense the excitement on painted faces of spectators and revelers -- boys, girls, men, women, seniors -- aged from as young as two to...
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The 2018 Sinulog Festival in Carmen, Cebu

Cardinal Tagle Conferred 2018 Rotary Peace Award

LUIS ANTONIO CARDINAL TAGLE, Archbishop of Manila, was proclaimed Peace Awardee for 2018 by the Rotary Club of Makati-San Lorenzo, on February 23rd 2018.  This was also in celebration of the 113th anniversary of Rotary International. Among its 6 Areas of Focus is Peace and Conflict Resolution. Here are some of...
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Cardinal Tagle Conferred 2018 Rotary Peace Award

A Pre-war Gem: Remembering Old Santo Domingo

Intramuros at the time of the Spanish Colonial period was synonymous to the City of Manila.  Other towns and suburbs beyond the city walls were referred to as “extramuros” or “outside the walls”.  It was both the seat of government and center of its social institutions: religion, education and economy....
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A Pre-war Gem: Remembering Old Santo Domingo

The Fall and Rise of Dumalagnons

At the Roxas City airport, a guy who just arrived from Manila, asks a lady vendor, “Manang, saan po nakatira itong si Mrs Jasmin Fuliga?”, showing her a piece of paper on which the name is written.  “Fuliga? Ay ti, taga Dumalag ina siya” (She’s from Dumalag) the lady answers...
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The Fall and Rise of Dumalagnons

Memoirs of the 6th Filii Biennial Reunion in Canada

The month of September heralds the advent of autumn in Canada and for Canadians it means anticipating the onset of leaf fall. As temperature begins to drop gradually to a comfortable level and the end of everything estival and serotinal becomes impending, somewhere in Philippines, California, Texas, Florida, New Jersey...
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Memoirs of the 6th Filii Biennial Reunion in Canada

Spiritual Journey to the Shrine of Our Lady of Manaoag

Manila, Philippines, October 11, 2017. FSDPI (Filii Sancti Dominici Philippinensis Inc.) in May 2017, launched its first pilgrimage project to the Basilica of Our Lady of Manaoag where the image of Blessed Virgin Mary as Queen of the Most Holy Rosary is enshrined. The project is managed by the FSDPI committee...
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Spiritual Journey to the Shrine of Our Lady of Manaoag