Pit Senyor!

(BODYSUIT: Vintage/ SKIRT: Julie’s Closet, $6.99/ NECKLACE: from Angelie, Nicole and John/ PURSE: Forever 21/ EARRINGS: from Katsie/ BANGLES: from Camille/ CUFF: Icing, $2/ WEDGES: Burlington Coat Factory/ EYEWEAR: Forever 21, $5.99)

A stack of bangles from India given to me by a very good friend, what I’m wearing is only an eighth of what she gave me.

Feathers are very festive, don’t you agree?

Another “Sinulog” celebrated here in Houston…none of those big parades, crowded streets, awesome fireworks, crazy street parties; just a small and solemn celebration. One day, I will come home to you Cebu and I will Pit Senyor like I’ve never done before. (crossing my fingers for January 2013)

What I am missing right now…

(Photo credits: mycebuphotoblog, official Sinulog website, cebu tourism)

I find it amazing that Cebuanos outside the Philippines still look for ways to celebrate Sinulog. Viva Sto. Nino! Shout to my lolo, David Odilao Jr., “Father of Sinulog”. yeah, yeah, yeah. I am a proud grand daughter—deal with it.

Father of the Sinulog Mardi Gras

Sunday, October 2nd, 2011

By Manual N. Oyson

OVER 20 years ago one Sunday when the religious “Sinulog” dance of faith and veneration was transported from within the private walls of the Santo Basilica on Jones Avenue to become a public showcase, with college students meandering and dancing in the streets surrounding the basilica to the beat of (would you believe?) “Hala bira!”

That was then an experiment, in the cultural tradition of Aklan’s annual “Ati-atihan” and Iloilo’s “Dinagyang.”BRAINCHILD: Instead of frayed and furrowed women candle vendors dancing and supplicating to the Santo Niño, with their rhythmic one-two steps within the gates of the historic church, the same was brought to the streets for the very first time. It was an experiment that immediately caught the fancy and excitement of the public, including visitors and pilgrims from outside Cebu.

Big colleges and universities willingly marshaled their physical education students to the brainchild of then Director David S. Odilao Jr. of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development to showcase the “Sinulog” to the general public for the first time. They have been doing so every year since, while the “Sinulog” has become a religious and cultural spectacle of revelry and merrymaking of pandemonium proportions.

If for this reason alone, Odilao should be included among the ranks of the 100 most notable Cebuanos of the century. His forte and expertise was not politics, education or entrepreneurial. Rather, it was cultural reawakening and revivalism. In 1982, no less than former Cebu city mayor Florentino Solon called him publicly “Father of the Sinulog.”

OVERLOOKED: Despite his expertise, Odilao has practically been disregarded by organizers since the “Sinulog” Mardi Gras became a world-renowned extravaganza. But he will not be forgotten. He is a recipient of the Perlas Award as one of the 10 most outstanding Filipinos in the field of tourism; the Great Cebuano Award in the field of leadership; and the Presidential Award from Arena-7 and the Civil Service Commission.

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