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March

Maayong Adlaw!

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n the province where food is cheap and access to places is easy, budget would be one of the major dilemmas when moving into the city. Food is a need and leisure in going to work, school parks, malls, mountains, while beaches are part of recreation activities. Of course, to do all these, one needs money. It varies where you are. In the Philippines, there are two categories - the city and the province. As a migrant in the city for the past four years, budgeting food and getting to places I want to go to have been a challenge for me. The Big City, also known as Manila, could be really fascinating. Cars, shopping malls, high-rise buildings and fine-dining restaurants are just some of the things city dwellers go nuts about. The province, on the other hand, always has the stereotypical image of mountains, beaches, bungalows and anything that is color green. Life there is always laidback. Almost everyone makes their own food--- coming from their very own backyard to the kitchen and finally, putting it up to the table for a festive meal. So my journey begins with a little bit of both worlds. My journey to Davao City is an experience I will remember

How far can your money go? I 
by Cristina Tupaz  for the rest of my life. The place is beyond paradise for it offers you everything you want and need- whether today you want to go fancy and tomorrow, you want to go to the beach. For one, to have a better picture of Davao, let’s start with the question: How far can your Php1000 go in one day? Imagine how you want to spend your day somewhere paradise-like. White beaches, friendly people, sunny weather, good food, good music--- all great things rolled into one. But the catch is, you do not have to spend too much. In Manila, if you want to go to the beach, it would take you hours, lots of money and very complicated roads to take and other problems that will suck up one’s energy. In Davao, it will only take you 30 minutes to get to the beach from the town. What is more exciting is that the fare is very cheap--- just less than Php20. Plus, you get to feel the fresh air touching your skin and a beautiful sight of what Davao has to offer. Upon reaching the beach, a small boat will take you to another island about 10 minutes away, which again, would cost only P15. Paradise is now called Samal Island. Thus, the resort where we stayed at is called “Paradise Island”. There, I found peace with the

sight of clear blue water and white beach. How can a place as commercialized as Davao take you to paradise in just a snap of a finger? To avail its facilities, entrance only costs P100. With that, occupying and use of chairs, tables, comfort rooms and the beach are al- ready included. Hence, for a budget of P300, I was able to have a sumptuous meal of my choice for lunch – seafood, pork, Spanish cuisine. You choose. Food is very good, mind you. For recreational purposes, Paradise Island offers a range of water activities to choose from. Kayak, aqua cycle, jetski and snorkeling activities ranges from Php90 to Php4,000 (of course, bear in mind jetski-ing is always expensive). Nothing beats the feeling of soaking in the sun, with the sight of God’s best creations humans can never put to words. A day has passed and everyone goes back to the city. A little bit of traffic will catch you at a busy time in Davao City. Going back to the hotel, one can take the s a m e e a s y r o u t e going to

Samal Island which I found very hasslefree. Before going back to the hotel and call it a day, one can ease up energy by eating somewhere, again, bearing in mind the budget to work on. Mandarin Tea Garden is the most popular Chinese Restaurants in Davao. It offers a variety of Chinese cuisine at a very cheap price. The serving is mouthful. Paying only P200, I feel I ordered too much. I could not even finish everything. Food was really great, not any Chinese food in Manila can compare. Davao is really surprising. It is a mixture of both worlds anyone wants to have. It is amazing that one does not have to go far, far away to be in a different place. In Davao, everything you want and need is just around the corner. Life there is unexplainably easy. In less than a thousand pesos, one does not need so much effort to find paradise. I love Davao. No, scratch that. Actually, I want to live in Davao someday. ∎ IN DAVAO,  FOOD AND  AMENITIES  COME MORE  AFFORD‐ ABLE.   P400 will   already buy  you a relaxing  day at the  beach.              
Photo by Zarah  Dayao 

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March 2011

rip
Untitled
by Andrea Zarah Dayao
Under the resplendent pigment of its woven fabric an innocent seraph of heaven subsists. Marveling her exuberance, she was enriched yet delicate. But like your dale filled with green and growing things Someday my darling you too shall go, and the world shall rest its hope… in you

o

avao

Samahan
by Rose Anne Valledo
Saan nga ba nagsimula? Paano nag-umpisa ang pagkakaibigan? Nang mabuo ang PJ, nagsimula ang lahat Nabuo ang samahang walang makakasira. Tiwala sa isa't isa na nagpatibay ng samahan, Samahang mapagkakatiwalaan. Minsan ng sinubok ng tadhana ang samahan, Ngunit hindi nagpabuwag at nagpatalo Subalit nagpatibay pa lalo ng samahan. Minsan lang makumpleto, Ngunit pag nagkasama ay parang wala ng bukas. Problema ng isa’y problema ng lahat, Kaaway ng isa ay kaaway na rin ng lahat, Walang makakaapi isa man sa PJ, Asahan mong lahat ay makakaaway. Ganyan katibay ang samahan ng PJ. Hindi ka mag-iisa, Nandyan sila upang dumamay. Tunay na hulog ng langit, Sa puso ay hindi ipagpapalit, PJ, salamat at sa buhay ay dumating.

Blue Paradise
by Andrea Zarah Dayao
Such fate of this paradise’s early promise, waves dancing and swaying leaves, waves we played on at morning and leaves frolicking to the wind’s last shaking And all I have now is the shoreline of that paradise and the journey that now has ended

Litrato
by Cielo Eunice Flores
Ito ang samahan na walang makakapagpabago. Minsan sobra, minsan kulang, pero ganoon pa man, pagmamahalan ay buo. Sana ang mga ngiti ay hindi lang sa litrato. Napagdaanan na ang lahat, patuloy pa rin sa pagtayo Ng pangalangang PJ sa isip at sa puso. Sana ang samahan ay hindi lang sa litrato. Bawat isa ay pinagkaloob ng angking ganda at talino. Kamay ang gamit sa pagsulat ng mga artikulo at mga kwento. At sa pagdating ng panahon, makalimot man tayo, sana kahit sa pagtanda, buo pa rin ang litrato.

Hawak Kamay
by Rose Anne Valledo
Ano mang problema ang dumating Ano mang unos ang harapin Tayo ay hawak kamay at sama sama pa rin Di pagkakaunawaa’y isang pagsubok Na ating hinarap Walang anu mang makakapaghiwalay Sa higpit ng ating pagsasasamahan

March 2011

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A Literary and Photo essay on the island under the sun ☺
Photographs by: Andrea Zarah Dayao and Rose Anne Valledo

Paalam
by Rose Anne Valledo
Nang magkasama sa Print Journalism minor, Kasiyahan ang naramdaman. Ang mga ngiti at payo ang pinabaon, Nang mga taong binigay ng pagkakataon, Mga minamahal naming guro, Ms. PJ, Sir Nath, Sir Jerrie, Sir Jokay, Na handang tumulong at umalalay. Kasa-kasama umaga hanggang hapon, Tawanang walang humpay at tigil Mga pangyayaring ating pinagdaanan, Na umabot hanggang Davao Na tiyak mananatili sa ating mga puso. Ngayon ay huling buwan na magkakasama Isang pagtatapos at pamamaalam Mananatili sa puso’t isipan, Mga alaala ng samahang walang tatalo. Asahang magkikita tayong muli at magkakasalubong, Sapagka’t puso’t isipan, iisa at magkakaugnay.

Countryside
by Andrea Zarah Dayao
We rant over our wants— traffic jams, crowded trains, messed-up hair, busted cellphones and laptops even accept our execrations. And them in the countryside, who before chant over a good harvest and wild hog for supper, now fume for only one thing: the ancestral domain seized from them up to this very day.

Low Tide
by Cielo Eunice Flores
Lulubog, lilitaw ang tubig na iyong natatanaw Nagtatanong, nagtataka, saan na napunta ang ganda? Tila naging malungkot ang dagat, ang buhangin na naghihintay sa tubig na umangat. Sa init ng araw, mistulang na uhaw. Ang buhanging naghihintay, sa tubig, ayaw nang mawalay. Bumalik na ang tubig, sa ganda ng karagatan, ang mga tao’y muling nagbigay ng pag-ibig.

Hakbang ng Sama-sama
by Rose Anne Valledo
Malapit na ang ating pagtatapos Malapit na rin magkahiwalay. Ngunit madami pang pagsubok, ang dapat suungin Pagsubok na haharapin ng samasama Ilang hakbang na lang Tayo’y magkakahiwalay na Ilang hakbang na lang Tayo’y haharap na sa panibagong hakbang ng buhay.

Bala
by Andrea Zarah Dayao
Ang gobyerno ay gumagastos ng P3.00 sa isang libro. May badyet din itong P1.00 sa bawat gamot. At sa M16 rifle, P16.00 ang ginagastos ng gobyerno sa bawat bala nito. Kung pagkain lang ang bala, Walang kakalam na sikmura

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March 2011

E ditorial

The state of disarray of airports in the Philippines
dure of the passenger from arrival at the airport to boarding is composed of nine steps. This includes checking of tickets, boarding passes and/or receipts four times, and x-ray check twice or thrice, usually upon entering the airport and once more before boarding. According to Oposa, this can be reduced to check-in and x-rays upon entering the pre-departure area and before final boarding. Most airports in other countries use this procedure, and it makes for more efficient and hasslefree travel. Many airport users are now taking concrete actions to push for the improvement of Philippine airports. There is a Facebook page that calls for the improvement of airports in the country. Users report their negative experiences and observations while suggesting ways to further improve the airport system that is in dire need of an overhaul. Several writers and bloggers have also made their opinions known, further igniting the discussion on the many anomalies and flaws of local airports. Atty. Oposa’s letter,which has been made public by blogger Cecile Van Straten was recently replied to by Maj. General Jose Angel Honrado (ret.), head of the Manila International Airport Authority, but did not offer much consolation in terms of immediate solutions. Honrado acknowledged that Terminal 1 is in a bad state of disarray and could use a lot of renovation. He further stated that improvements are slowly being made in terms of cleanliness as well as the state of bathrooms and seating areas. Honrado ended the reply by asking the Filipino people to understand that these improvements “do not happen overnight” and they “need more time to undo the neglect.” These statements were met with much reaction from concerned users, and has even brought up the discussion if the airport should be privatized to hasten the improvements. A Twitter user said that “it is such a shame,” citing that a 15-storey building was built in China in 6 days, and it takes 25 days to complete renovations in one restroom at Terminal 1. Needless to say, it will take a lot of people power before government officials hasten the improvements to the airports and address suspected corruption with the airport funds. It is a wonder that the president of the current administration hasn’t stepped up and given more importance to this issue when it his father’s name that graces the gateway to the Philippines. ∎

Airport Anomalies

J.S.
by Jasmine Shewakramani 
Travelling is such a funny experience. I don’t mean funny as in humorous, but funny in a rather oh-wow-thisis-so-deep-we’re-talking-about-life kind of way. When one travels, sometimes it’s not just the destination that matters, but the journey as well. Travel is such an encompassing word which essentially means movement. In this sense, travelling starts from the journey to and ends with the journey back and includes everything in between. This means that even the means by which we journey to a place are included in the travelling experience. Airports are the first places tourists see when they enter a country or a new city, and the last when they leave. First impressions last, and for all the wonders the Philippines has to offer, the state of the international airports in the country has left much to be desired. Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA)’s Terminal 1, for example, has seen better days. According to many reports from users online, it is so dilapidated that they feel embarrassed for the foreigners who come to the country by way of this airport. Bathrooms are dirty, plumbing is broken, fixtures are rusted and tabos are placed in each stall instead of toilet paper. Tiles all over the facility are cracked, and linoleum used in decoration is faded. In addition to this, chairs and benches provided for passengers at waiting areas are broken. Cushions of these seats are ripped and the stuffing has popped out. Some of these seats are new yet they are evidently not made of quality material since they have not withstood heavy use. Facilities have not been renovated in a long time, and the airport does not have conveniences that should be made available to travellers, like free wi-fi and decent lounge areas. On the other hand, NAIA Terminal 3, the newest airport with upscale architecture and upgraded facilities more appropriate for international flights, has been in use for several years now but is not fully operational. Even if it has more check-in counters, better seats, improved lounges and decent restrooms, it only services three domestic carriers. Not all the check-in counters are used by the airline assigned to it, and more than 20 percent are totally unused. It still makes checking in a long process. Despite the new administration’s promises to make it fully operational by the end of the previous year, improvements are yet to be seen. NAIA is one of the busiest airports in the world. According to a report published in the Inquirer, the airport serviced 24.1 million passengers in 2009, and the numbers keep growing. It is no wonder the state of the airport has brought on much frustration for regular users, especially considering the fact that it charges a terminal fee for each departing passenger. This amount ranges from 200 pesos for passengers flying to domestic destinations, to 750 pesos for those flying international. Considering the number of people using NAIA annually, this is a substantial amount for the airport’s budget. However, it is not evident, and no financial documents are released to show the breakdown of expenses, leading passengers to believe that there is some sort of corruption happening. The Philippines is the only country in the world that requires a terminal fee that is paid separately before departure. Other countries which charge terminal fees or airport tax incorporate the fee in the tickets bought at respective airlines. This greatly lessens the amount of time spent for check-in and prevents pocketing of money by airport employees, a practice observed and reported by Filipinos who use NAIA Terminal 1. As a matter of fact, the check-in procedure in Philippine airports compared with those in other countries is unnecessarily lengthy. In a letter wrtten by environmentalist Atty. Antonio Oposa Jr. regarding the flaws of the current system in international airports in the Philippines addressed to concerned government offices, the check-in proce-

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