Town Fiesta... and Unexpected TB Meetup

Pampanga Travel Blog

 › entry 3 of 14 › view all entries
Oh ha... Aegis yan! sosyal!

July 26, Town Fiesta of Sta Ana, Pampanga. Obviously, they are celebrating the feast of St. Ann (or Sta Ana), the town's patrol saint. Fiesta, normally to celebrate the feast day of each town's patron saint is integral part of Filipino Community Life. Spain has brought fiestas to our shores when they occupied our land for 300 years. However, it is notable that our fiestas (and also true to other practices) were mixed with our indigenous practices - best example is Sinulog, Ati-atihan and many others. If there are 10,000 towns in the Philippines, it means, there are 10,000. I grew up in San Jose, our fiesta is on May 1. feast day of St Joseph. On top of Christmas day, New Year and Birthday, Town Fiesta is one of the most important dates to any Filipinos.

Normally, fiesta is a day of exuberance and immoderation.

Banda dito, banda doon!
Tables are flooded with foods. Everybody is on festive mode - loud music, marching bands, colorful flaglets are all over the town especially near the church. For some towns or cities, there would be street dancing. It is just too colorful. However, these festivities are not without critics - and I am somehow on their side. Here's why •Filipinos are not really rich (in general). They would save money by cutting off their budget reserved for the necessities just to spend everything for fiesta. This is one of the many illnesses we acquired from our tyrants - being a show off. It is okay for me if the family can afford to have a "bongang bongang" fiesta, if they can afford it. We all need fun in our lives anyway. It is all about value system of the individuals anyway.

Back to the fiesta that I went to, it was the same house where I spent my Holy Friday and Black Saturday (see other two blogs). Throwing a good feast for this household was not an issue. This was more of a thanksgiving for them • visitors who were mostly friends and families celebrated fiesta with them and for a normal Filipino, celebration means eating, endless eating I would say. Since this was in Pampanga, people here are known for their tradition of good cooking. I was not disappointed a bit. They prepared, well my favorite foods - kare-kare, dinuguan, kilayin to name a few. They also served variety of yummy rice cakes.

After eating, we went to the town’s small museum located next to the church. My friend  (a TB member: balayan)who invited us to this fiesta has put up this museum which displays items about the town’s old church since it is an ecclesiastical museum-- it contains history of the local church together with it, are the old pictures of the church exterior and interior, pictures of past and current parish priests, priests and other religious from this town. This is such a noble act and a good way to create an awareness to the people about places like this.... maybe I should put up something like this in my hometown... hmmm. We stayed there for less than an hour. It was really a decent a museum.

After the museum, we visited another house owned by the auntie of our friend. This is another practice • to hop from one house to another. Since we are still full from our previous meal, we all settled for some desserts • variety of sticky rice cake. I was feeling full from all of this carbo-loading but I am not complaining... This is what I call - sweet life. J

We went back to my friend’s place, thinking of going home since it was already dark.

amigo_ricardo and my friends and family. :)
To our surprise, dinner was ready. So what to do, we sat down again, and eat some more while the head of the house (our friend’s mother) started packing foods that we all be bringing home. Giving visitors something before they leave is another Filipino practice. So bring plastic bags with you when you get to be invited to a Filipino fiesta. J J J

And for the unexpected TB meetup - a friend brought with a friend who turned out to be another TB member.

.. he is a nice well travelled fellow, maybe he will join future meetups.. It was nice meeting you amigo_ricardo! J



rotorhead85 says:
Sounds like an awesome way to explore the PI!
Posted on: Feb 06, 2009
Vikram says:
I can relate to your point about locals being poor because they save up money only to spend it on fiestas. I've seen a lot of Indians do it as well. I'm also curious to know what kare-kare, dinuguan and kilayin are. Great blog as usual mate! You have a wonderful way of bringing things to life.
Posted on: Dec 20, 2008
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Oh ha... Aegis yan! sosyal!
Oh ha... Aegis yan! sosyal!
Banda dito, banda doon!
Banda dito, banda doon!
amigo_ricardo and my friends and f…
amigo_ricardo and my friends and …
trono ng...
trono ng...
photo by: planisphere