Briones: Rigmarole

IT’S summer already.

According to the state weather bureau Pagasa, it officially started last Tuesday.

In a statement released by Pagasa Administrator Vicente Malano, its recent observations “showed gradual increase in daily temperature recorded in most parts of the country.”

Their analysis, he added, showed “the weakening of the Siberian High Pressure Area and the establishment of the North Western Pacific High Pressure Area.”

Our very own Al Quiblat, Pagasa Mactan senior weather analyst, said that April 10 marked the official termination of the northeast monsoon in the country and the start of the dry season.

These all add up to the weather being generally “warmer and drier.”

Well, why didn’t they just say so in the first place? I didn’t need all that gobbledygook to realize that summer has arrived.

I walk everywhere--well, as long as it’s within a five-kilometer radius of our office on P. del Rosario otherwise I hop on a jeep or grab a cab--so I know that it has been very hot and very humid lately.

Ergo, it’s summer!

And what better way to take in the sights and sounds and smells of the city than to walk.

The benefits of walking far outweigh its drawbacks. Yes, the weather can be daunting but we are in the tropics. If you can’t take the heat, move to Antarctica.

But if you do decide to go out for a stroll, here are a few reminders:

Don’t forget to look down once in awhile.

You don’t want to step on some dog poo-and let’s just assume and hope that it’s from a dog—or sprain your ankle from a crack on the ground because these are everywhere.

Also, be wary of mentally-challenged individuals who make the sidewalks their home. Don’t get me wrong. They’re harmless. Most of them, anyway.

There’s this one guy who has staked a claim to the doorpost next to the post office on Jones Ave. right across Camp Sergio Osmeña. He argues with himself. Sometimes, he gets over-animated and starts flailing his arms. Don’t be alarmed. I doubt he even knows we exist.

When he’s not around, a woman takes his place. She stations herself a couple of feet down from where he usually squats. She, too, seems to have a running feud with an imaginary someone.

I’ve learned to accept them as part of the scenery. So I maintain my pace whenever I pass either of them.

Lastly, ignore the source of that indescribable stench that suddenly invades your nose.

Trust me, you don’t want to know where it’s coming from. But if the odor manages to make a lasting impression, then consider this, you’re walking in the eight safest city in Southeast Asia.
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