Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Taloctoc, Kalinga House

I would describe the native Taloctoc house as extremely simple.

It is composed of one small square usually measuring around 14 X 14 to 20 X 20 floor areas. If I were to compare it to houses now, then it would be a hut.

This would be elevated and made up of bamboo and coconut lumber. The roof would be composed of nipa leaves or cogon.

Since the floor is made up of bamboo slits, one could peep below where chickens and other farming materials are housed.


Observe the background and you could visualize how a Kalinga hut looks like.

It has two doors on both sides and therefore, there is nor need for windows as the two doors in such a small area were enough to provide sufficient ventilation. What more the holes from the rattan woven walls add to the fresh air.

There would be a small veranda where visitors are received. A stairs made up of wood, served as the access of people to the house.


Saturday, January 17, 2009

Beverly Hills Dentists in Taloctoc?

Going to the dentist always scares me. When I imagine the sharp object drilling into my teeth, it gives me the shivers. Back in Taloctoc when I was a kid, there were no dentists around and people resorted to homeopathic treatments for toothache. They also had devised natural ways to extract the tooth by using a variety of concoctions which were almost always effective.

Nowadays though, people undergo dental procedures as easily as brushing their teeth. The local apparatus though could not match the ones available abroad.

The Beverly Hills Dentist would be a professional who is highly specialized and skilled, and who have had excellent training experience in areas like the academe and the clinical setting. The twenty five (25) year - experience of the staff could surely ensure appropriate skills in the performance of intricate and delicate dental tasks.

The utilization of the state of the art apparatus in various procedures, like cosmetic dentistry to treatment of bad breath, would put to rest the anxiety of patients about the dental treatment.

There is also an ongoing discount of $ 50 for new patients, which is a welcomed privilege amidst the economic recession.

At present there are dentists now in Taloctoc. I do hope they’re as good as those dentists from Beverly Hills.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Similarity Between Taloctoc and New Jersey

One of the traits that the Kalingas are famous for is possessiveness over their territorial domains. This has been the source of many tribal wars where innocent lives were wasted.

In the 1960s, the natives tilled the land and derived their livelihood from it. There were no land titles but only oral agreements between the natives to separate their properties from each other, but these were honored without question.

Only stones marked the demarcation line of one property from another.

When a big dam was planned to be erected by the government, Taloctoc and all the people of Kalinga, had united as one to protest the project. The natives won and their rice fields, kaingin and villages had remained safe and undisturbed.

There were a few feuds among the villagers regarding properties but these were resolved eventually by the elders. The land was rich with natural resources and no one would go hungry as long as one worked. Mother Nature abounds also and made the place a small paradise.

If I were to compare Taloctoc to a state in the powerful nation of America it would be New Jersey - the 2nd wealthiest state. This bustling state has several cities that speak of historical landmarks - like the Ellis Island monument-to name one. Big businesses are also found in this state, like Pfizer, Johnson and Johnson and many more leading pharmaceutical companies. What's amazing also about this state is that the peace and tranquility nature offers could be found just around the corner.

The Real Estate New Jersey has several attractive options for those interested to buy real estate. New Jersey promises a haven amidst the economic recession that now plagues the world. It is a place where you’d be sure to live comfortably because the economy is stable and the cost of living is affordable.

Just like Taloctoc, you’d certainly find a happy home in New Jersey.

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Way It Used To Be in Taloctoc: The Underwear Experience

Clothing has never been a problem with the natives of Taloctoc. This is where I truly learned that a book should definitely not be judged by its cover. This is because the natives way back in the 1960’s were occasionally in their birthday suits without worrying of malicious stares / intents or of being ostracized by society.

It was me who was considered the alien when I came home from the city, with my undies, slippers, boots, and umbrellas.

A native child usually was barely dressed and oftentimes was naked. The old women were dressed in “tapis” a rectangular woven cloth which was fastened at the waist. They were topless! While the men wore g-strings only.

But no one was raped or sexually molested. Women were respected and revered.

The children rarely got sick. They were made stronger by the exposure to the elements in their environment.

When I arrived at the village from the city, I was fully dressed: complete clothing, boots, undies, and an umbrella (it was raining at that time). The native kids made fun of me and called me “botas” (boots).lol… and there was a time they even called me “panti” lol…referring to my undies.

Previously, when they bathed in the river, they did not make any effort of covering their private parts. But when I arrived, they became conscious of their nakedness. At times I had thought, that I was a "bad influence" to them. I stood out like a sore thumb - the butt of jokes.

I survived all of those though, and befriended them instead; and taught them how to use the things I had.

I also tutored most of them in the bamboo classroom that we had when my mother cannot make it to class.

Soon they learned how to use panties, boots, slippers, umbrellas, etc. When we grew older they learned to wear bras.

I enjoyed being their fashion model.

I ‘m sure if I would see them now, they would be wearing the latest and classiest underwear as they had also pursued college education and are now respected professionals in their own right. Their undies would certainly be elegant and classy.


All of these they could easily obtain from intimates, a classic source of exotic, exciting and enticing underwear. And which I would gladly recommend to them.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Summer Labor and the Kaingin Rice

Photo by: Jenn of Jenn Was Here


One of the cycles of labor that the Taloctoc youngsters go through is the summer labor or “Uma”.

This is the “kaingin” time in which an area in the mountains is cleared for planting rice during the summer months.

The month of April would see the native folks, burning and clearing the area making it ready for rice planting after the first rainfall.



We had built a small hut in which we could take a rest during lunch. This hut was our house in the evenings when the native folks usually went home to the village after a hard day’s work.

Since I was not used to hard labor and the hike every morning and evening to and from the mountains, I would stay with my grandparents in the kaingin hut. This would save us the hike everyday.

Before the first rainfall, the kaingin would be cleaned thoroughly and weeded. I would wake up very early in the morning and take a walk savoring the nippy, fresh morning air.

The awesome view from the mountain top as the sun arises from the east, and the wonderful, morning silence when all one can hear were the chirping birds and the melodious sound of the cicadas , was something I always looked forward to.

I would have fun picking up mushrooms from tree stumps for viand. Then I would fetch water down the stream with my bamboo pole.

It was heavenly!

You have to experience it to know what I mean.

Eric of Ruminations of a Small Town Mountain Boy describes aptly the peace and contentment nature brings to a person in his post- "The Games They Play".

It would be during the months of May that rice planting begins.

The succeeding rains then would allow the rice seedlings to grow robustly into a full grown rice plant ready for harvest in the month of June or July.

Harvesting was also a whole day affair. It has to be finished in a day. The labor was done through the cooperation of all the native folks until all of the villager's kaingins would have been harvested.

Everyone helps everyone – the true “bayanihan” (unified) spirit.

The kaingin rice varies in color from those harvested from the ricefields. It is pinkish to red; bigger and fuller than the field rice. It is also more delicious and believed to have more nutritive value.

It contains more essential nutrients than the field rice and could be eaten without any condiment, viand or side dish. Its aroma is also pleasant and is an appetite inducer.

If the ordinary rice has vitamin B12, the kaingin rice has more vitamin B12. It also has niacin (vitamin B3) which are essential substances in cell growth and blood cells development.

After all the hard labor in the kaingin, it was pleasurable to sit down and eat the kaingin rice which was still the best that I have tasted so far.

Oh, how I miss those days.

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