Fiesta Update!

Full Living Color

Full Living Color

This is just a short post adding a little more information to my previous Fiesta Time post and some pics that we obtained while attending Calbayog City’s annual Fiesta recently. When we visited a friend’s home in town to share in their offering of some Filipino delicacies, we also found ourselves simultaneously attending a “house blessing”. House blessings are (also known as house healing’s, house clearings, house cleansing’s and space clearing) religious rituals intended to protect the inhabitants from misfortune. Many religions have house blessings of one form or another. In this country of predominantly Catholics, most folks often have their homes blessed at Epiphany, on January 6 and commemorates the visitation of the Magi to the child Jesus.
Teri and Lynda

Teri and Lynda

In this case though our friend Lynda, whose home is still under construction and because she has already occupied the home, had decided to combine the “blessing” with the city fiesta and kill two birds with one stone. A local priest was invited to preside over the ritual and conduct the blessing. The ceremony was performed in the local language and my wife and I took up residence in the back of the room as we found ourselves participating as witnesses to this customary ceremony. As they say…”when in Rome”. Candles were passed out to everyone in attendance, lit, and we stood their quietly spilling wax onto the newly tiled floor along with everyone else. Because the candles were blessed by the priest, it was perfectly fine to drip wax all over the floor. Surely it will be cleaned up afterwards…then again, I don’t really know for sure. Maybe it just wears off in time.

The Ceremony

The Ceremony

Because the owners son was walking around taking a video, I figured it was okay to snap off a few frames for myself. The priest slowly made his way around the house (upstairs and all 5 bedrooms included) sprinkling holy water in all corners and across the floor (I even think the awaiting Lechon in the kitchen was ‘not so’ inadvertently bathed with a few

drops), all the

Parading the Home

Parading the Home

while we stood and melted our wax. I must comment that while everyone else’s wax was neatly accumulating and creating tiny little stalagmites on the floor, my wax was strewn from here to there. And I’m not the fidgety type! I quickly realized that this takes practice (and patience) and the next time I partake in a wax dripping event, I will try to be more creative.

After about 15 minutes from the start of the blessing, it was all over and candy was tossed and thrown throughout the house, supposedly to summons good luck. Now, I’m not the superstitious type, but in this case they were throwing out good candy and included Hershey’s Chocolate Kisses. In the Philippines, good chocolate is revered – it is like gold! So I happily partook in the gathering of strewn candies picking select chocolates from the floor. I could learn to like this superstition!

Who's Ready to Eat?

Who’s Ready to Eat?

After all that, it was time to indulge in some good fiesta food and of course, I found myself second in line at the lechon table, before all the carving and chopping on the guest of honor began. It’s good to get the pick-of-the-litter, no pun intended. 😉