Wednesday, July 21, 2010

the cove

The Cove is an Oscar-winning documentary that depicts in painful detail the horrors of dolphin fishing in Taiji, Japan. From the outside, the town seems to be devoted to the majestic creatures swimming off it's shores. Statues are erected, boats designed to look like dolphins cruise the shore, and a whale museum is the pinnacle of the town. But the small fishing village has a big secret. Every year from September to March, fishermen motivated by the multi-million dollar dolphin trading industry gather in this cove for the hunt. Slaughter, or perhaps massacre. I don't know which word is stronger.

Do not mistake my words as those of a hardcore animal activist. I am far from it. As a carnivore, I can't imagine life without meat. Even if the only fish I eat is tuna in a can.

I can only describe what wen't on in the cove as evil, pure and simple. As men, we've learnt enough about dolphins to know that they are probably the smartest creatures on earth. One only need common sense to know that they can communicate with each other and just like us they know pain. Watching them being gored to death whilst the young are made to listen to the agonising calls of their parents is horrifying.

There's a quote in the film that says, "If you're not an activist, you're an inactivist." I guess, it's easy and convenient for people like me to make strong pronouncements condemning acts of barbarity like this. After all, talk words are cheap. But I hope through this blog, I can spread the word and will eventually reach someone like Richard O'Barry, a former dolphin trainer who has since recanted and become the mammal's strongest ally.

To all the men and women who were involved in the making of this film, congratulations for a powerful, compelling and an absolute brilliant documentary and thank you for bringing this to our attention. I hope more people will see this film and become involved in your advocacy.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


If you're thinking of going to a place you've never been before, you know, for an exciting adventure, make Sablayan your destination. "Seated at the heart of Occidental Mindoro, this first class municipality is endowed with nature’s blessings making us the province’ top destination of local and foreign tourists."

Don't worry about the accommodation because I have the perfect place in mind for you to stay in whilst you are there. La Sofia Appartelle is your home away from home.

La Sofia, named after my maternal grandmother is our ancestral home. After my lola's death more than a decade ago, my mother with her siblings, being the enterprising Batangueños that they are, decided to convert the house into a lodging facility. There are 18 budget friendly rooms available (single, double and family) and most of them are fitted with air conditioners. A stay in cook is also at hand to cater to guests' dining requirements. It is also located in a prime spot and is only minutes away to pretty much everything including the market, church, hospital, schools, museum, tennis court, the hills, tropical virgin forest, a cave and most specially the beach. The beach is the South China sea no less!

Should you decide to stay there, please keep this in mind: Credit is good but we need cash.

For details of your Sablayan adventure, please click here.

Monday, July 12, 2010

terror ride

You're not even that high. Neither you are fast nor big. But to say that you are probably the most terrifying ride I've ever been on would be an understatement. Considering I went on Saw, Colossus, Stealth, Detonator and Nemesis Inferno without much ado.

Slammer, it was good to meet you but never again. You left me with a big, fat and stinking headache that I wasn't able to go on the Tidal Wave. Which was a shame because of all the days to get wet this summer, yesterday was it.

So Thorpe Park, I will definitely come back.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

choir of the world

They've done it again. The University of Santo Tomas Singers, won the Luciano Pavarotti trophy at the 2010 Llangollen International Music Festival in Wales. It is the oldest and one of the most prestigious singing competitions in the world. The UST Singers made history by being the first to win the Choir of the World honor twice.

I wanted to see their concert in London last week but I missed it because of work. Nevertheless, I am extremely proud of what they have achieved. Not only as Filipino but more importantly as a fellow Thomasian. This is a great gift to our alma mater as we celebrate our 400th year.

Watch their amazing performances here.