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Date > 2023 > July
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Slice of Life

Monthly Chronicles

Monthly Chronicles

July Chronicles July 31, 2023

July Chronicles

Location Google Map: Siquijor Island, Philippines

July and the Rains
Pleasant surprises, mangoes galore, heavy downpour and festivities....that's July in Siquijor.

Bitcoin Donation

Bitcoin Donation to Start the DayBitcoin Donation to Start the Day
(July 18, 2023) I installed a LINE app when I was still in Thailand and I haven't looked at it since. For some strange reason, I launched the app today and to my pleasant surprise, there was a message 4 days ago from a former yoga student, saying he just gifted me some Bitcoin. I checked my wallet, lo and behold, the equivalent of 4 months rent was deposited. Whoa!

Catching UP
I haven't really been in touch with him since I left in Oct 2022, so it was a complete surprise.

Bitcoin Donation to Start the Day
He was devoted to the yoga practice and continuosly pushed himself to achieve excellence

Ending Thoughts
This is certainly most welcoming and needed! But it's also a quick reminder for me to keep in touch with those who made the effort to learn yoga from me. Where have they taken the practice?

Low Tide in Minalulan Beach

Getting Away
(July 17, 2023) Hoping to get away from the monotony of reading Autobiography of a Yogi, I went to Minalulan Beach hoping to take a dip in the beach with overhanging tree branches for a shade. To my dismay, it was low tide and the water was too far away. But hey, I still had the shade!

Low Tide in Manalulan Beach
to my dismay, it was low tide and the water was too far away

Ending Thoughts
It wasn't utter failure. I had a sumptuous picnic for one with my tuba vinegar, eggplant omelette and Francis loaf. I was a quiet afternoon well spent.

Group Yoga with Catherine

Yoga Community
(MWF July 2023) I've heard of Catherine's yoga since I arrived but I was too immersed in my own practice. Feeling the need for community, I asked Noel to be invited.

The group was mostly housewives or working mothers. The sequences were beginner type and payment was donation-only. There wasn't much of an interaction as people arrive, do the practice and leave.

group shots are taken after the class

Ending Thoughts
It's not really the kind of yoga community I'd been used to in Cebu City or Thailand were participants were mostly young, single and had a lot of disposable time. Still, the group is a much-needed break for me. I didn't offer to teach and declined the offer to teach. I just want a community.

Graduating from the Police Academy

Graduating from the Police AcademyTagged Along by Marlon
(July 16, 2023) I didn't know the celebrant but they were Marlon's neighbbor. As tradition in Siquijor would allow it, a guest can bring his own guests - so I was the tag-along. Marlon has done this many times, tagging me along fiestas and private family celebrations. I'm always cordial, polite and forthcoming.

Graduating from the Police Academy
after 4 hours of roasting, the lechon was done

Lechon Celebration
This was perhaps the biggest lechon I've seen - about 90 kilos according to Marlon. They had been roasting the whole pig on a spit for over 4 hours already until it got done. And yes, it was delicious. I thought any pig bigger than 30 kilos would be bland, but people in Siquijor know how to roast their lechon.

Ending Thoughts
Being in Siquijor, I realize that things are done differently and the benchmarks are different. Usually, in the big cities, a graduation is an intimate family gathering...perhaps dinner in an expensive restaurant. But here in Siquijor, a kid who graduates college is a huge big deal. Not every kid gets a college degree. Becoming a policeman is a source of great family pride and cause for community celebration.

Fish Kinilaw

Fish KinilawRare and Expensive
(July 1, 2023) Ever since I visited Surigao and tasted their coveted kinilaw fish dish (raw fish with vinegar and spices), I've always craved it. But that dish isn't readily or cheaply available to the rest of the country. Even here in Siquijor, a small island surrounded by water, this dish isn't that common, and the prized fish (Tarugho, Tangigue) for this dish is hard to come by and expensive.

Jac's Restaurant
There is however, a restaurant in Lazi that serves that dish. Yes, it's expensive at P400/plate, but I simply craved it for too long. Besides, I could get a 20% discount. Moreover, I know this restaurant does it right. Throwing financial caution to the wind, I ordered one plate. It's supposed to be for 5 pax, but I was the only one and that's the only thing I ordered - I didn't want any other dish to compete with it.

Tarugho Fish
The fish available was a Tarugho. I don't know the English name, but it's a big fish like Tuna. The fish was cut into big cubes and marinated in the resto's sauce. I brought my tuba vinegar just in case it needed a kick.

Fish Kinilaw
Kinilaw Tarugho in all its glory

Ending Thoughts
I'm glad I did it. This also reminded me why I travel - I get to savor the regional specialty which is done right, reasonably priced and abundant. This dish made me want to visit Surigao again, just to feast on kinilaw everyday. Hmmm...maybe!

John and the TM group

An American who happens to be a meditation teacher from the Transcendental Meditation group (TM) came into town - John. As a meditator myself, I was initially drawn to him. Together with the locals, Noel and Ivan, who are meditators themselves, we would have an adhoc chill episode where we talked 'spiritual' stuff.

John and the TM group
with John and Noel

Surprise...Surprise !!!
The surprising narrative I got from him, as sanctioned by the TM group are as follows:

  1. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (founder of TM), Jesus, Jehovah, Mohammed all hangout together to this day in the astral planes and talk about their grand plans for humanity - John is even one of them!
  2. The gods were often wrong about their decisions about humanity and have to go back to the drawing board (the gods said, "ooops"?)
  3. These gods and all the astral beings on that plane are no better than humans here on the physical world. They are egotistical, argumentative, blundering and have their self interest at hand

Ending Thoughts
Such claims could start an eyeroll - as it did me. However, in my reading of Autobiography of a Yogi, the author wrote about the apparition of his recently deceased guru, Sri Yukteshwar Giri, who talked about what happens to the soul when the body dies.

He said there are 2 major realms - lower realm is the astral plane where people who recently died arrive at. Within that realm are also plants, animals, goblins, fairies and elementals. It's a much better place than our physical realm. From here, the recently departed can either go back to earth (reincarnation) to pay their karmic debts, or if they have already settled it, they can continue to stay in the astral plane to work on removing their desires and longing to free the soul.

The other realm is the higher plane, called the causal plane. In this realm, the astral body is already gone and what remains is the causal body. Souls here resonate at a much higher frequency. Yukteshwar was tasked by the divine to stay at the causal realm to help its denizens shed the last vestiges of longing and desire to enable them to leave the causal plane and into the Ever-Existent (whatever that means, but I guess you share the dining table with the real God).

With the foregoing, the 2 stories are more or less consistent with each other. Do I believe it? Partly. I believe in reincarnation. But the thought of the gods hanging out with each other talking about the blunders they did? Hmmm. But see for yourself. Here's the link where the TM group released a video talking about these things:

--- Gigit (TheLoneRider)
YOGA by Gigit Yoga by Gigit | Learn English Learn English | Travel like a Nomad Nomad Travel Buddy | Donation Bank Donation Bank for TheLoneRider

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More on Lazi:

Lazi Local Info
  1. Resorts - Lazi has some beach/dive resorts on its west coast - Gabayan Riviera, Lazi Beach Club, Bahura Dive Resort. However, the popular area for tourist resorts are in San Juan
  2. Transport - Lazi is the junction where the jeeps begin their clockwise route (Lazi-San Juan-Siquijor Port) or the counter clockwise route (Lazi-Maria-Larena Port). Because the jeeps are rare with about 2 to 3 trips/day only in the morning, it's practical to just have a motorcycle here in Siquijor. With its affordability (a brand new Rusi motorbike is as low as P45k), people just buy motorcycles...especially those who live up in the mountains.
  3. The Boulevard - Lazi's main draw is its seaside cobblestone promenade. When the sun goes down, people gather here for eats, drinks, open-air, harbor view and the sunset
  4. Lazi Port - Kho Shipping, the shipping line operating from Lazi Port, has stopped its service to Cagayan de Oro, Iligan, Dumaguete, Tagbilaran and Cebu. Passengers can go to Siquijor Port or Larena Port for boat services out of Siquijor Island

More on Siquijor Island:

Siquijor Island Local Info

Jeeps - there are only 2 routes for jeeps within Siquijor Island - and they are rare. Most people have their own motorcycle transport.

  1. Siquijor Port to Lazi - last trip leaves at 3pm from station near market
  2. Lazi to Siquijor Port - jeeps depart from the Lazi Port area. 5 jeeps, the last trip at 12:30 pm. Lazi to San Juan, P50.
  3. Larena Port to Lazi - jeeps are unpredictable. As of this writing, there is only 1 jeep plying the Larena-Lazi route. This jeep leaves Larena for Lazi at 9:50am. After that, no more jeep. You'll have to take a tricycle to Siquijor Pob for jeeps going to Lazi
  4. Lazi to Larena Port - 6am (daily) and 9 am (M-Th)

Food - these were suggested by a local to me

  1. Lechon manok & liempo - roasted pork belly and chicken at Joel's in Siquijor Poblacion. I've tried this myself...yummy, even if the chicken was no longer hot
  2. Bibingka - sweetened rice cake by Fidy's Bibingka (P30) in Sawang, Maria. I've come back for this and I buy for other people as well as 'pasalubong' - they love this
  3. Siopao - at the Rosita store near Thrifty (P25) in Siquijor Poblacion
  4. Peanut butter - by Rene. Just ask around in Siquijor Poblacion. It's popular
  5. Torta - sweet cakish bread at the Thrifty story in Siquijor Poblacion
Siquijor Island Map
Siquijor - Dumaguete Boat Trips (as of Jan 2023)
  1. Montenegro Lines - at Siquijor Port, P234.00/pax, P169/bicycle, 7:30am/10:00am/2:00pm/4:30pm

  2. Montenegro Lines, Siquijor to Dumaguete

  3. Aleson Shipping - at Siquijor Port, 6 am and 6 pm daily, 1:30 pm M-Sat, Regular P200.00/pax, Aircon P250.00/pax

  4. Aleson Shipping, Dumaguete to Siquijor

  5. Ocean Jet - 40 mins,at Siquijor Port, 0919.066.5964,,, 6:00am/6:00pm, P350/pax (tourist/open air), P580/pax (business class)

    Ocean Jet

Siquijor - Tagbilaran - Cebu City Boat Trips (as of Jan 2023)

En route to Cebu City, the ferries usually make a stop-over to Tagbilaran (Bohol) to pick-up more passengers or unload.

  1. Ocean Jet - 8:20 am, at Siquijor Port
    To Tagbilaran: P800/tourist & open air, 2 hours (arrive 10:20 am), P1200/business class
    To Cebu (Pier 1): P1600/tourist & open air, 4 hours (arrive 12:40 am), P2400/business class
  2. Lite Ferries - at Larena Port, no Senior Citizen discount for online ticket purchase
    To Tagbilaran: T-Th-Sun, 3 hours, depart 7 pm - arrive 10 pm, P475/standard (Tourist, PHP 750)
    To Cebu: T-Th-Sun, 10 hours, depart 7 pm - arrive 5 am, PHP 605/standard (Senior P484), Tourist, PHP 770
  3. Apekoptravel - at Larena Port to Tagbilaran: 1:00 pm, xxx hours, P750
    Reserve through call or text: Cleare - 0938 283 4760 | Grace - 0936 534 6564 | Jessel - 0961 759 6711, Pay via G-Cash: +63-917-880-1464, Email:, Facebook messenger: Apekoptravel. Enter your birthday and nationality to get discounts: 0 to 3 years old free, 4 to 9 years old will have 20% discount, 10 years old and above full price, Filipino Senior Citizens will also have 20% discount

Siquijor - Plaridel Boat Trips (as of Jan 2023)
  1. Lite Ferries - at Larena Port, T-Th-Sun, 2:00 am, 5 hours, PHP?

Siquijor - Cebu (Liloan) - Cebu City BUS Trip (as of Jan 2023)

There is only one bus plying this route - Sugbo Urban. Tourist class coach, a/c, comfortable, Sun-Fri (these dates keep changing). P420 for bus, P275 for ferry to Liloan. Larena Port around 5 am, makes a clockwise roundtrip around Siquijor Island - Larena, Enrique Villanueva, Maria, Lazi (stops at Lazi market for breakfast and leaves 6:50 am), San Juan, Siquijor (arrives 8am, P50 from Lazi to Siquijor Poblacion) and catches the 1pm ferry at Larena Port (Sundays at 3 pm) for Liloan, Cebu and resumes its land route. Arrives Cebu City (South Bus Terminal) 10 pm.

Sugbo Urban is the cheapest and most convenient way because it goes around the island (clockwise) along the circumferential road, passing through - Enrique Villanueva, Maria, Lazi, San Juan, Siquijor...and back to Larena where it takes the ferry at 1 pm. This saves you the hassle and high transport cost of a tricycle. Besides, it's a long trip from the other side of the island to be taking by tricycle.

Sugbo Urban

Sugbo Urban

Suggested Destinations After Siquijor Island

These are the nearest popular destinations from Siquijor by boat

  1. Bohol - Bohol is an island northeast Siquijor. Tourist attractions are Chocolate Hills, Tarsier Monkey, Loboc River Cruise, Beaches of Panglao, whale sharks (recent offering), freediving (recent offering)
  2. Cebu - Cebu City is the usual gateway into the Visayas. But in Cebu Island itself, there are many offerings - Whale Sharks of Oslob, sardine run at Moalboal,Thresher Shark of Malapascua
  3. Dapitan (Zamboanga del Norte) - I haven't been there but a lot of island ferries ply this port. There must be something here.
  4. Dumaguete - Dumaguete is a small charming progressive coastal town in Negros Oriental. Cafe and restaurants line the famous Boulevard Boardwalk. Tourist attractions include Japanese Shrine, Casaroro Falls, snorkeling along the southern coastline (Dauin, Masaplod Norte, etc), Balinsasayao Twin Lakes
  5. Plaridel (Misamis Occidental, Mindanao) - I haven't been there but a lot of island ferries ply this port. There must be something here.


Siquijor Blogs
Siquijor Island
  1. Goodbye Siquijor April 18, 2024
  2. January Chronicles: Bandilaan Meditation January 2024
  3. My January Yoga Practice: A Journal January 31, 2024
  4. Jan 2024: Squid, Balangawan, Margarita Pizza January 2024
  5. December Chronicles: Yuletide Season December 30, 2023
  6. December Snapshots: Bolo Bolo Dip, Christmas Lunch, Tuba Denizens, Friends Forever, Men Working, Cow / Crow December 1-30, 2023
  7. Eggplant Bulad Pizza December 20, 2023
  8. Canghaling Cave November 14, 2023
  9. Kings and Queens November 13, 2023
  10. Barangay Vote-Buying October 22, 2023
  11. Real Estate Mapping October 1, 2023
  12. Learning Cebuano: Oct October 1-31, 2023
  13. Oct Food Hack: Pizza, Kinilaw, Coconut Bread, Fish Okuy, Carrot Omelette,Lemon-Grass Tea October 2023
  14. Sep Snapshots: Fisherman, Granny, Pedicure, Big Fish, Garbage September 1-30, 2023
  15. Sep Food Hack: Fish Tinola, Ratatouille, Chayote Omelette, Flat Bread September 2023
  16. Together Forever Sep 11, 2023
  17. The Cigarette Talk Sep 1, 2023
  18. Siquijor Star Meditation Center Aug 31, 2023
  19. The Lost Dogs of Siquijor Aug 27, 2023
  20. Moving to a Bungalow! Aug 22, 2023
  21. Aug Chronicles: CDO produce August 31, 2023
  22. Aug Snapshots: Pan de Sal, Palpitate, Taho, Tuna, Pineapple August 1-31, 2023
  23. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
  24. July Chronicles July 31, 2023
  25. July Snapshots July 1-31, 2023
  26. Learning Cebuano: July July 1-31, 2023
  27. June Chronicles June 31, 2023
  28. June Snapshots June 1-31, 2023
  29. Learning Cebuano: June June 1-31, 2023
  30. May Chronicles May 31, 2023
  31. May Snapshots May 1-31, 2023
  32. Learning Cebuano May 1-31, 2023
  33. In Search of a Cool Climate May 25, 2023
  34. The 64 km Bike Ride May 16, 2023
  35. Lazi Fiesta May 15, 2023
  36. The Boulevard Opening May 5, 2023
  37. April Snapshots April 1-30, 2023
  38. Learning Cebuano...Again! April 1-30, 2023
  39. Kris Visits Siquijor Mar 17 - Apr 15, 2023
  40. Exploring Siquijor with Marky Mar 25 - Apr 11, 2023
  41. Siquijor Healing Festival April 5-8, 2023
  42. The Talk at United Church of Christ April 2, 2023
  43. Mar Snapshots Mar 1-31, 2023
  44. Vigil for the Ghost Ship of Siquijor March 31, 2023
  45. Judging an Essay on Gender Equality Mar 29, 2023
  46. The Thief, the Shaman, the Elves and the Police Mar 20, 2023
  47. Finally Acquiring the Motorbike Mar 18, 2023
  48. Bitcoin Blunder Mar 15, 2023
  49. Maria's Unsung Beaches Mar 11, 2023
  50. Lagaan Falls Mar 9, 2023
  51. Tibhong Spring Water Source Mar 8, 2023
  52. Bolo-Bolo Natural Spring Mar 2, 2023
  53. Reasons to Get a Wife March 1, 2023
  54. Feb Snapshots Feb 28, 2023
  55. Camagung-Ong Natural Spring Feb 28, 2023
  56. Heeeere's Johnnie! Feb 26, 2023
  57. Manifesting a Motorbike from Thin Air? Feb 18, 2023
  58. The 'Bad Guy' of Siquijor Feb 15, 2023
  59. Amazement from Drivers License Renewal in Siquijor Feb 15, 2023
  60. Locong Falls Feb 9, 2023
  61. Inguinal Hernia? Goodbye ABS! Feb 4, 2023
  62. Jan Snapshots January 31, 2023
  63. In Search of Tubod Cold Spring Jan 27, 2023
  64. 1:4:2:3 Nadi Shodana Jan 26, 2023
  65. Lazi's Boulevard Jan 22, 2023
  66. Lazi: A Monthly Stay Jan 21, 2023
  67. 7 Days in Maria, Siquijor Jan 14-21, 2023
  68. Capilay Spring Jan 17, 2023
  69. Siquijor: In Search of Resonance Jan 9-14, 2023
  70. Riding Around Siquijor's 86km Coastal Road Apr 3, 2012
  71. Exploring the Cantabon Cave of Siquijor Feb 23, 2012
  72. Jovee and Missy's Excellent Adventure Nov 6-7, 2010
  73. Freediving in Siquijor's Marine Sancturaries Apr 23-24, 2010
  74. Island Tour of Siquijor Apr 22, 2010
  75. Kram's Siquijor Wedding Apr 21, 2010

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