Apart from Pangasinan, I have also experienced living life in the province here in Bicol. This is where my mom was born and where I eventually met my (travel) hubby.
We were able to experience Bicolano culture during our highschool years. Unlike in Pangasinan, we have many cousins (45 first cousins alone) and my Lola is more carefree than the elders in my paternal side. At our age and with a lot of cousins, we became more adventurous this time. Out of the blue, we would go to the nearest brook or beach just to swim and go home dripping wet. At times, we would solicit money from our uncle and aunts and have our lunch in the farm grilling fish and pork in charcoal and cooking rice in clay pot. We will then place all our food in banana leaves just like a boodle fight but instead of eating directly on the leaves, we have the trunk of banana tree as our plate and fresh juice straight from the coconut. At night, we would play Hide and Seek or “Patintero” in group of 10s occupying the whole street (imagine that long stretch of players). We would sleep late night and wake up early morning just to jog or bike.
There are also a lot of municipal and religious activities during summer. There’s always a basketball tournament that we devotedly watched to support and cheer our cousins who were players and sometimes ends up with a clash with the cheerers of other barangays. On Maundy Thursday, we would walk 10kms to visit Amang Hinulid (a penitential rite in honor of an image of Jesus lying dead). Come May, we would watched Lagaylay (where ladies dance and chant prayers in honor of finding a cross) which is done for 9 consecutive nights.
We usually go home on holy week to attend our annual reunion, August to celebrate our municipal fiesta and September to attend the Peñafrancia festival.
Famous Tourist Spots Our Lady of Penafrancia, Naga website: www.penafrancia.net
Camsur Watersports Complex, Pili website:www.camsurwatersportscomplex.com
Caramoan Peninsula, Caramoan website: www.caramoanisland.com
Souvenirs & Delicacies Pili Laing Bicol Express
How to get
By train (10-12 hours travel time) Philippine National Railways – (3190041) website: www.pnr.gov.ph
By private vehicle (8-10 hours travel time) From SLEX, take Calamba Exit going to Turbina. From there, you will pass by the provinces of Laguna, Batangas and Quezon.