Wednesday, April 18, 2012
April 1st- 8th:
On the morning of April one, I was in Santa Cruz, Marinduque. Catherine’s mother was on the island so I went there to meet her and have some fun in the sun. April 1st also marked the beginning of Holy Week. The streets were flooded with people carrying palms (real palms too!). They paraded around the town stopping at different residences to hear the beautiful tunes of groups of children standing on balconies. The swaying palms coupled with the melody of the children were a good way to start the festivities of Holy Week. This was also my first sighting of the Moriones. The costumes were colorful and pieced together ever so perfectly from head to toe.
Marinduque is the island choice for Holy Week festivities and the Moriones is one of the major attractions. The Moriones represent the story of the Roman soldier Longinus. I have been hearing about them since the first day I arrived on the island. I actually had a hard time finding a place to rent because some of the persons had vacant family homes so that they can host people during the Holy Week events. The festivities here are not just for Marinduquenos, people from all over board ferries to the island to join in on the religious customs that take place throughout the week. I actually saw traffic in front of my house when the boats came to shore. Traffic, can you believe that? Normally just tricycles and jeeps zoom by all day, only breaking for stray dogs and pedestrians but holy week was packed with cars and vans full of people. On a side note traffic is something I definitely do not miss… hehehe.
One day when I went out for my afternoon run. The Moriones were walking down the street through my barangay. There were many parades and the Moriones were always walking to and from their homes. Some of them started to run with me and it was a great moment. It was one of those times in my life when I did not realize how cool it was until a little while after it happened. What a sight that must have been and probably something I will never experience again. I guess every great moment can’t be captured on camera, good thing I know my memory will hold on to that piece forever. The parades are neat to see. Every costume is different. Some Moriones have been participating in the events for many, many years. When a person decides to participate it is for more than one year because the costume is expensive. Some of the masks alone can cost 10,000 pesos to make. The costumes can be male, female, adult, child, colorful, bold, authentic, native, but every outfit is exceptional!
The Moriones can be seen in parades, street dancing, and other performances through the week. There are also many people from around the Philippines that come to sell their handicrafts in Boac. There is a huge tented area where people set up their individual stalls for buyers, reminded me of county fairgrounds. I bought many souvenirs! There are also some food places and even a smoothie place to help keep the visitors happy, healthy, and full of goodness! I definitely had one or many smoothies. Splurge when you can, right?! At the end of the week, Good Friday is the reenactment of the story of Longinus and the Roman soldiers. When all is said and done, the week of festivities are unforgettable!
Hope everyone has a great Easter! I am a little behind in writing down my story but I am going to catch up this weekend!
The Athletic Hippie