BAGUIO

Olsim: “Peste, Val”

The Eternal Student

“PESTE talaga Val!” my friend expressed in our inebriated rituals. I thought it was about a Valentine’s Day frustration, but surprisingly it was about our most recent events. The exasperation though, did not boil from the “festival” itself but the very close transition from one festival to another – “it is like playing the championship game immediately after another game in a single elimination playoff”.

In the “office” (unofficially), legend has it that the committees are still on the planning stage of the next festival (although the actual meetings started last year). “Peste, Val, parparigatem met dakami (You are making our lives difficult)”. The complications are difficult to explain; as an implementer, our actions are based on policies which are authored by authorities who have the mandate of the people. Hence, our actions are really mandates of the people – if they want a weekly festival, then so be it...daily festival? So be it. Plus, although as much as my colleagues refused to admit, they actually enjoyed every bit of it. I did too. The jokes are obviously only to pester you for drinks – “Peste, Val”.

The recently held La Trinidad Coffee Festival drove most of us to sick leaves which we could not afford – after all, who would be there for the upcoming Strawberry Festival? “Peste, Val”, my friend is actually laughing at the word play that could not be avoided. But, after the Coffee Festival and Strawberry Festival, we have a highland vegetable week (vegetable festival), tourism week celebrations, and many more. In the background, almost all towns are celebrating their own beautiful festivals. Hence, if festivals are essentially celebrations of blessings and bounties, then perhaps we could not afford to be irritated by them – festivals are positive manifestations of socio-economic development which all local governments strive for. These are, I believe, what we live for.

***

The recently held 2nd La Trinidad Coffee Festival has evidently gained “ground”, may be summed up with the following numbers: over 350 coffee farmers assembled, 7 coffee farmers organizations participated, 140 tour participants, 4,280 cups of coffee served, and more than 70,000 coffee trees profiled. If a festival is meant to celebrate a bountiful harvest, then the town is in the right track.

But March in the Trinity is a month of the Strawberries. Right after Baguio’s flower fest, La Trinidad will have its month long festivity starting from March 4, 2019. Details of the activities shall be addressed tomorrow (February 20, 2019) during the La Trinidad Strawberry Festival 2019 Press Conference at the Municipal Park. Happy Festivals everyone and may we enjoy and preserve the earth’s blessings and bounties.

***

I would like to apologize to our readers for missing an issue last week. If there is such a thing as a birthday slack, then please spare me some for failing to submit a column for the first time since I have been a contributor. We’re back anyway for your weekly dose of learning and adventure. For comments and suggestions, please email me at valredsmail@yahoo.com.


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