JUST when we thought that we are still on the year’s very fresh start, the mischievous 2019 has already risen to its feet and to the door – without any prelude or warning. The lowly-workers, already lurching and racing to catch up with the clattering, have already realized the trend from years of experience; February will breeze through like fleeting memories, March and April will be counted as a single month, while Summer will quickly swing to the months of rains, and before we close a lid, the “Ber” months will hover to remind us that the end is near, and the next year is about to arrive. “Is that all there is to life?”
Thankfully, this year is particularly special because of an added season – the season of speeches, of sweet promises, of free food and drinks, of gifts and give-ways, of short-lived but anticipated livelihood and active economy, of handshakes and smiles, of courtship and fooling, of jesters and pesters, and choosing, losing, and winning.
Luckily, at least for this year, we will be saved from the boredom and drudgery of human routine, and the usual anticipation of expected events. Hey, we have to admit that our excitement is strong on this one. The “Election festival” is undoubtedly this year’s highlight.
But before that season, the first quarter of the year is already full of colorful events, from the city center to the region’s outskirts – Etag Festival, Tinugbo Festival, Coffee Festival, Spring Festival, Flower Festival, Strawberry Festival etcetera. A human culture perhaps? To make the noise and smoke reach the heavens at the onset of the year to spare us from the lurking adversities down the road. Whatever it is, we pray that the interesting and vibrant activities in the next six months, should translate into pulsating local economies and a humanistic society in the next six years.
But, back to the lowly workers who are expected to work hard in sustaining the said events in the next 35 or 40 years of their lives: “What inspires us (aside from being obligated by duty to do so)? As once a g-string clad little boy in the Panagbenga parades, or an excited child queuing for a slice during La Trinidad’s Giant Strawberry cake, “events organizers” like us are inspired by new-eyes or fresh witnesses. Old eyes would grow bored and unimpressed by the same celebrations year in and out, but the glimmer on those eager new-eyes is worth the stress of it all. Sometimes, the memories we spark or etch for the members of the community during the festivities, is a legacy in itself.
As we have written a week ago, the 2nd La Trinidad Coffee Festival with the theme “Brewing Unity through Coffee” will be held on February 7 to 10, 2019 with the following activities; A coffee conference for stakeholders, assembly of coffee farmers, coffee-techno forum, cupping activities, barista demonstration coffee farms/ facilities tours or visits, and unlimited coffee at the park.
For the La Trinidad’s Strawberry Festival, the launching of the event through a press conference will be on February 20, 2019, while various institutionalized and traditional events will transpire on March 4 to March 29, 2019. Other community-led events were set earlier and later than March. The 2019th edition of La Trinidad’s Strawberry Festival bears the theme: “La Trinidad: My Home...my Pride.”