IT'S that time of the year again. One beat, one dance and a wave of zombies?
No, not really. Just a surge of assorted humans willing to plunge into the Sinulog revelry. If you’re not much of a downer, chances are, you’ll go out and get lost in transit this week. For your reference, here’s a list of potential individuals you’ll probably bump into as the seemingly apocalyptic episode in the city progresses. Brace yourself.
HARDCORE CHILD DEVOTEES
These Sto. Nino de Cebu-replica-carrying-waving folks are everywhere. They are those who patiently tread the long and winding road of the procession toward the Basilica del Santo Niño. Their unwavering faith would probably rebuke the agnostic under your skin. So, if that supernatural chill creeps into your spine, might as well join the club. Never forget, the Child Jesus is the reason for the Sinulog celebration.
POLITICIANS SLASH CELEBRITIES, VICE VERSA
Both are different icons. But in a country where politics has become entertainment and the other way around, it’s probably safe to group the respective players under one umbrella. They smile, wave and even shake hands with everyone as much as possible from the float, from the stage, in disco bars. You’ve probably noticed that over the years, Sinulog has become a campaign field.
On the commercial side, Sinulog is one of the most successful income-generating occasions for Cebu, and the tourism sector is one fortunate beneficiary. At the zenith of the festival, tourists land in Cebu, doubling, tripling the city’s revenue prospects. It’s not unlikely for you to rub elbows with these beings. And when you hear that twang, gotta put that swag on, yow!
HUMAN CHAINS AND METRO AIDES
These teams are responsible for stampede control and trash. Police, marshals, National Service Training Program students included, are stationed around the metro during Sinulog to monitor the crowd. Cleanliness-wise, it’s been reported that the Sinulog Foundation collaborated with a non-government organization to achieve a zero-waste Sinulog. Do your part for a change.
DANCERS DRESSED TO KILL
They hail from different towns and cities across the board. They come down packaged in ultra-cool, bright guise of folkloric, mythical and historical themes. These Pit-Senyor!-shouting contingents are head-turners in the streets, making the Sinulog parade the grand show that it should be. Rain or shine, eyes on the prize.
Unlike the pros armed with bulky, legit weapons, this band of whiny amateurs just let their DSLRs dangle around their necks like it’s the most natural thing ever. The equipment just hangs there for props purposes, only. Seriously, some of these self-proclaimed hobbyists are among the most annoying people during Sinulog.
So what (if) they get drunk? So what (if) they smoke? They’re just having fun. They don’t care who sees. So what (if) they go out? That’s how it’s supposed to be—young, wild and free because it’s Sinulog. The party animals, rednecks and hard-boiled skaters may fall under this category.
MOSHPIT SENYOR! MOB
They are the barricade boys and girls possessed by the glory of rock and roll. They are concert loyalists determined to headbang Sinulog away by hook or by crook even if it means shelling out transportation allowance for a one-night show of random bands, a cup of Jack and stickers, if they’re lucky. Horns up. Fists in the air. Yeah!
THE LOW BALLERS
Bazaars are all over the place during Sinulog. If you’re retailing your Sinulog away, then good luck to hagglers. Some are such extremists that you could almost slap the merchandise in their faces for free to shut them all out. Your sales spiels would come in handy.
RABBITS IN A HOLE
To those who are probably sick and tired of the same old annual hurly-burly, the city is the last place they’d want to be during Sinulog week. A night at the beach under a canopy of stars would probably be the best alternative. Hibernating in the house with pizza, beer and movies isn’t too bad as an alternative too.