WITH Sinulog only days away, it seems that everyone is excited--everyone except the drivers.
Alladin Bulado parked his jeepney on a roadside in Barangay Inayawan, Cebu City, while his wife Juvelyn called for passengers.
Another jeepney, which plies the same Inayawan-Colon route, was parked a few meters ahead.
“I will let the driver ahead of me fill his jeepney with passengers first,” Bulado told Sun.Star Cebu.
This unwritten agreement among public utility jeepney (PUJ) drivers is not always followed.
Bulado, however, always abides by it to avoid trouble.
“Drayber ra man ta. Di man mo-asenso atong ranggo (We're just drivers. It's not like there is a promotion waiting for us),” he said.
As the feast of the Señor Sto. Niño draws near, some streets in downtown Cebu City are closed to traffic.
The road closure resulted in rerouting, which affected Bulado and hundreds of other PUJ drivers.
The rerouting started last Saturday and Bulado only earned about P1,500 in the past three days when he should have earned around P2,200.
Despite earning less, Bulado said he will continue to drive until Sunday, the day of the Sinulog Grand Parade unlike Roland Amaro, who drives a Talamban-Colon jeepney.
While Amaro is not affected by the rerouting in downtown Cebu City, he said he will not drive on Sunday for fear that his jeepney will be damaged.
“There will be so many people by then and I expect a lot will cling on to my jeepney and it might get damaged,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Fiesta Señor season makes Jason Lanaja, 22, and his family happy because several devotees buy new Sto. Niño icons or let them repair the old ones.
Fellow vendor Ascuncion Rallos, 60, said that the Sinulog season is the best time to sell icons.
She also sells religious reading materials, prayer guides and rosaries.
Lanaja's family was commissioned by a company in Liloan to carve a ten-feet statue of the Sto. Niño. They received P90,000 for the job.
“This is the first time somebody ordered a statue this big,” said Lanaja.
They usually earn P5,000 a day on the days leading to the Sinulog.
Lanaja is thankful to the Sto. Nino for the blessings they received this month, which is why they don't overprice their statues.
The smallest icon costs P150, while a four-feet statue is priced at P12,000.
“Mahadlok mi nga gabaan sa Senyor kon magpa-ugat mi sa presyo (We fear the Child Jesus’ wrath if we overprice our goods),”.