Every year it has been our Gatdula family tradition to spend Holy Week in my father's hometown in Cavite. Since 1980, we have been participating in the Filipino Catholic's yearly Lenten procession and it has already been our sacrifice for the blessed season.
Wow! To think that we have been doing this for 35 years! Such is our family's commitment that we have vowed to still spend Holy Week in our beloved Cavite even after we have gotten married, have kids, and be wrinkly old. Hopefully, our children will be the ones to carry on this blessed tradition in the future and never let go of it until the zombie apocalypse.
Of course, I will still be there guiding them as a friendly ghost.
Woah! That escalated into "weird so quickly!
Off to Cavite!!!!
Before we would all go to our province the same time as my parents on Wednesday. But since us weirdos have work, we decided to head out the day after.
Of course, we would always have breakfast at our favorite Jollibee!! It has already been tradition for us almost every year! He he he he he he....
If you're looking for Andrei, he deserted us to go with his Lolo and Lola. He is SO excited for Holy Week and would really count the days!
My favorite breakfast in Jollibee!
And we're near!
My Dad's old house in Cavite!
When we arrived, little Andrei ran out to see us. We see that our Karo for the procession is almost ready.
My family was assigned the karo where Simon helps Jesus with His cross.
Ours was always station 11. Isn't it beautiful? I told you Andrei has been so excited ever since last week. Here he is practicing on his walk when somebody was fixing the generator under. Ha ha ha ha ha ha!
We live in front of the Filipino Catholic church (aka Aglipays).
Our church was recently renovated. Though it looks much, much better now, I still miss the nostalgia and old style from before.
It was very hot out and we waited inside while lunch is getting ready.
Check out the candle which Andrei already marked this early.
Our first Cavite lunch!
SUPER delicious Adobo!
Believe me, we were all drooling over this! The perfectly seasoned tender chops of chicken and pork were so perfect with steamed white rice!
Grilled fish. I forgot what kind. Basta it had scales and fish bones.
Very saucy pancit canton!
Fried Chicken ala Max!
AND my favorite here in Cavite.... TALABA aka OYSTERS!
As we were about to be called for lunch, Andrei snuck outside to water the plants.
Like I told you always. He HATED eating!
The long table was already full so I joined the kiddies by the counter.
After eating, my brother and his family arrived. It was just so funny that Kuya Jay called the boys and showed them how his phone could record ghost voices.
He he he he...
It would have been very believable if the ghost didn't say "Pangit si Mati...."
I think Andrei believed it though and was positive that the ghost was telling the truth.
After a bit of rest, we went to our town plaza to play basketball.
Actually THEY played basketball. I'll just sit by the sidelines and act all pretty. Tee Hee!
Go Yap boys!
There were actually other local boys playing. Andrei joined them and shared a few shots.
While they were playing I was having some donuts and a tall tumbler of slurpee!
Actually that's Mati's slurpee. It's his favorite. I just bought the large one so that we could share. He he he he he he!
For some reason, the boys who were already playing did not let the kid on the far left join in. So he just watched on the sidelines and would give Andrei a shy smile when the ball flies over to his direction. The other kid was one of the "jocks" who was still very nice and would get the ball for Yub when it would bounce off.
For me these two nice lads made the game more unforgettable for my Andrei!
After a short siyesta, we woke up just in time for the procession. We got ready by having some snacks!
Andrei got ready by snacking on some sugar!
We had some pancit bihon, puto, and sandwiches.
We also have a big potful of boiling batchoy. Mati ignored the pancit and feasted on a hot bowl of the spicy soup!
Yummmm.... It was sooo good that Mati had 3 bowls of 'em!
Later we heard the town band blasting their procession music.
And the procession started moving.
Our karo is all lighted up and ready.
Andrei was ready too to offer his candles to our Santo.
While we are ready to take a dark Yelfie!
Some of the other participants in the procession.
There was actually 10 karos before us.
And this is ours.
Sorry but our electrical guy really had our lights on full blast... Tee hee!
My mom would buy the flowers yearly in Divisoria. She changes the color theme every year. Aren't they pretty?
For the first day, my husband and the two boys had the honor of pulling our family karo.
Awww.... Just look at the little lords! Mati is all tall and proud while Andrei really tried his best to pull and keep his candle lighted at the same time!
It was a fairly long walk but the weather would always be cool and the feel of the night gave me a warm feeling inside.
It was all clear skies with a lone moon that night.
Sometimes there would be long pauses especially when the road goes downhill.
For 35 years, Veronica with her blessed towel will always be behind us.
After the procession, we dropped by the church to offer our prayers.
Oh Andrei don't worry! You're not going to burn!
When Mati saw an empty stage, he immediately ran up to it and played around.
As for Andrei, he concentrated on the candles that were flickering silently for Mama Mary.
I can't help but notice this majestic old house beside the church. Too bad that the house was not maintained. But still, I consider it always a beautiful site across us!
After dinner, as our usual practice, we went exploring with the boys!
Rocio really wanted to check out this house. If you are familiar with the movie KISAP MATA, this was the house where the ill-fated couple hid from their family.
Back at home, we watched THE EQUALIZER where pareng Denzel kicked some major Russian mob ass!
Haaaay.... I heart you...
I heart you Chocolate pudding and Denzel! Tee Hee!
The kids however huddled over this small player because somebody forgot to bring extra connection wires. He he he he he he!
In our room! Another YELFIE!
Andrei asked to sleep in his Lolo and Lola's room (sniff sniff) so it's just me, the Chinese Adonis, and the Master Mati that night.
Next day at breakfast...
We woke up sort of late but they were still cooking up all my favorite breakfast food just hot off the fryer for us zombies.
Canned Meat loaf!
Add to that our Adobo from last night and garlic rice! WOW!
In Cavite, Andrei had this funny habit of filling his glass with ice then getting hot water from the thermos.
We often warn him of getting burnt with the very hot water but he wouldn't listen.
After filling his glass with hot water, he will then get some cold water from the jug.
He does this EVERY TIME he gets a glass of water in Cavite. It's so tiring if you ask me. Ha ha ha ha ha! But he was very dedicated in doing it. With that, I'm impressed at his determination to doing it HIS way even if it's something as menial as a glass of water.
After breakfast, Andrei squeezed in a bit of play time with his classmate from school who, coincidentally, goes to Cavite every Holy Week too! Small world huh??
Later on my husband and brother fetched us to visit the graves of our grandparents. It has been awhile since I've been here because usually, during all soul's day, we go to Lucena.
We then trekked downwards to do a bit of explorins (sorry that's how I call it with the kids he he he he he).
At this point, Andrei got hold of my hand. Even if he is my son, I still feel an extra jolt of happiness every time he does that. You see, he may always claim to be a "big boy" and he hates it when I baby him. But when he gets my hand, I get kilig knowing that he needed me at that moment. Mommies would understand this feeling.
Haaay I just hope someday even if he's all grown up, he'll not be embarrassed to hold my hand in public.
Oh well... Drama MOMent!
Who would've thought there's a hanging bridge like this in our town?
The bridge may seem strong but it was very wobbly!
Andrei got scared a bit and wouldn't budge.
But wow. Whattaview!
Mati and I both agreed that we could stay here for a long time and just drink up all in the simple beauty of the place.
Of course, swimming was out of the question. Looking down we saw a lot of gleaming circular thingies.
Sparkling waters you say? No. More like JELLY FISHES! He he he he!
That didn't bother my master Mati though.
He asked to stay behind to enjoy the view further.
I love it when my boys appreciate true beauty!
Of course, my husband decided to spoil the "sanctity" of it all by doing chin-ups.
Wait. Come to think of it... Grrrooooowllll....
After our short, fun but VERY hot adventure, we passed by 7-ELEVEN to cool off with some slurpees!
BACK AT HOME, GLORIOUS FOOD WAS WAITING FOR US!
My ninang Saling's Kare Kare! Our FAVORITE!!!!
And MORE pancit!!!!!
Again, I joined the kiddie table!
Our plates! EGAD! These were all so good!
Happy eating for me and the little lords!
After eating, we went to the plaza again to burn off all the food we ate for lunch.
That's Andrei doing the angry face. Believe me that's HIS angry face.
This time we really yanked Mati to join us.
My poor Master Mati got tired in a flash! Tsk tsk... You need more exercise kasi.
Once more it's one-on-one for the Yub and Andrei!
Good thing Mati joined again later on.
I'm so happy that Yub's dream to have sons to play basketball with came true.
As for me, my dream to have sons like Calvin (from Calvin and Hobbes) came true too!
Oh yes! They cannot stop with the finger horns!
Even if it was supposed to be just me and the Yubsker for the shot!
Back at home, we had another great snack all ready for us before the procession.
THIS would definitely be a hot but delicious slurp!
Every Good Friday, it's my eldest brother and cousin Rogee who would pull the karo.
The rest of us will be lighting from behind.
Even if we've been setting her up for 35 years, I still get this feeling of awe whenever I see our karo all lighted up.
Other ladies were at the back.
It was a long procession ahead.
I wanted to join the others at the back because the kid behind me seems to be a walking Fire starter.
But Andrei insisted that we stay behind our karo. He really wants to stay close to it.
Tee Hee... PANTIHAN???
Rocio, Karen, Ate Jit, Mati, and my Mom!
My ninang Saling and Tito George!
Doing more walking....
It was a very good walk this night!
Procession is done!
We parked our karo after the long walk. Poor Mati was still panting.
Kidding! He he he he he!
Andrei immediately ran to his Lolo.
Our family with the staff! Sayang Tita Saling and family were somewhere and was not able to join the group pic.
Some of the Gat's staff and angels! Thanks for all the help!
ERICJAZ FOODIES with the little lords for Holy Week this 2015!
Putting down the karo and getting it ready again for storage. Awwww... It's always a sad sight. Next year again.
After dinner the boys relaxed and just lounged around with their downloaded programs.
Ate Jit and I had coffee and some chips.
Did I say chips? I meant chocolate. BWA HA HA HA HA!
My niece Rocio played chess with Tito George. He's very good at the game (being the coach of the Chess Team of their school) and he gave Rocio some useful tips.
My niece and Tito George had about 3 games of chess at the table. I got kicks by cheering and jeering them on. Tee heee...
Was so amused to find out later on that we still have an old-school phone at our home. He he he he he! Would you believe that nobody recognized it when it was ringing? NGE.
|Andrei, I know you hate posing for the camera. But we GOT to work on your smile.|
I admit that I am not as excited going to Cavite for Holy week the way I was before. However maybe the reason why it's not as scandalously fun is because I'm not a wide eyed hormone induced teenager anymore. I find that spending Holy Week in Cavite in my adulthood gives out a different kind of meaningful joy that cannot be equaled from all the guffaw or kilig moments in my teens. Plus the feeling of spending these family traditions with my children and seeing that they're enjoyment like I did before is just indescribable.
Of course, Holy Week is not about fun. It's really about observing our Lord's sufferings and sacrifice for us. Then, rejoicing in his resurrection. I'm just feeling thankful and blessed that my family was bestowed with this kind of yearly tradition that will keep us all together every Holy Week in God's name.
Belated Happy Easter everyone!
Back in Manila, I set up a mini Easter "egg" hunt for the kiddies and our angel Analyn.
The challenge was to look for the hidden letters scattered around the house. If they're able to spell a complete EGG, they get P100. For every letter they get it's P10!
Wasn't able to use real or chocolate eggs because I hid these the night before. Tee Hee....
Oh well. Everyone seemed to have fun anyway!