Sining Kabataan para sa Kapayapaan 2012

"The more we sweat in peace, the less we bleed in war" - Vijaya Laksmhi Pandit (1900-1990)

I can still remember that very moment when I first heard this phrase. It was in YMCA's Extemporaneous Competition way back in my high school years. Since then, this quote reminds me of how peace is one of the elusive things that a lot of people in this world are looking for. And that is the answer towards justifying why liberty becomes the greatest gift to humanity. Right now, I find myself in the midst of my own discretion, finding myself as a peace advocate, a believer of reconciliation of dissenting parties, a Mindanaoan weaving my own thread of efforts for a peace that we can call truly ours.  

Last November 17, the "Sining Kabataan Para sa Kapayapaan" Pre-Finals Selection was conducted under the theme  "Love of God, Love of Neighbor, A Challenge for Mindanao". The activity attracted about 54 different submissions all over Mindanao and encompasses different forms of art like paint, drawings and digital art.  Here are some of the winning posters in the said event. 

The members of the selection committee were Datu Loloi Sandigan, Anna Marie Dizon, Rhea Connie Coopera, Rev. Philemar Sabarre and Abduljabbar Guro. 

After the activity, the Top 20 posters will be brought to Davao for the finals. The winning poster will be used as the official poster of the Mindanao Week of Peace, and the winning artist will be invited for an all-expense paid trip to join the peace dialogue in Davao as well as receive cash prizes.  

With the help of these happy volunteers from CCCM-JPED and Mindanao Tri-partite Youth Core, the event was deemed to be successful. But this is yet the start of the many activities that are lined-up for the celebration of the Mindanao Week of Peace 2012. By taking the steps slowly, peace in Mindanao will finally pave its realization someday. 


Seeking Adventures at Dahilayan Adventure Park

"The Little Baguio of the South"

This is how some people describe the Dahilayan Adventure Park right now, which is also called Forest Park. If you want to have extreme adventure, for sure this place must be a very good option. It boasts the longest dual zipline in Asia. It also has the Zorb, Trampoline, ATV ride, treetop challenges, winch boarding, drop zone, ropes course and many more. 

When you set your foot at the place, the feeling of the cool wind gushing at your face and welcoming you at full delight is just very heart-warming. It actually feels like you're in Baguio, where it's windy in a sunny day. It's cool everywhere, literally. There are many lounges and picnic tables. There are many picturesque shots that you can take photos of. It's really a wonderful scenery out there. 
The Forest park is located around 44 kilometers from Cagayan de Oro City, at a municipality in Bukidnon called Manolo Fortich, which happens to be my hometown. It's a place with loads of things to do. I think what you have to prepare is a bit of money for the rides, since they range from about P200 - P800. The park itself has some swamps and man-made lakes where there are fishes and ducks swimming. In the forest area, you can find many miniatures of animals of great diversity. 

If you could notice, most of the animals are miniatures of those that rarely exist in our country. Giraffes, for example, can't be found in the Philippines. They make up a good view of display shooting up as if you really are trapped in a real forest.  There are playgrounds and fish ponds in the area. If you feel hungry or thirsty, a restaurant is right at the gate area which serves a diversity menu. There is also a souvenir shop that sells customized t-shirts, key chains and many more. You can also opt to have a henna tattoo. 

If you're going to go to Dahilayan, it's best if you have a private vehicle so that you can have full control of the time on when to leave the place and also for checking the nearby places. There is a resort  adjacent to the Forest Park which also offers different sets of activities for enjoyment.

Dahilayan is really at its verge of development. I even wonder how developed it can get by now since it has been some time already from my last visit. And some celebrities had their movie shot in the awesome area. But the best healing is to check the place by yourself. 

If you can't secure a private vehicle, there is a ride by van from Cagayan de Oro City that will really get you to Forest Park. It waits in Coffeeworks Divisoria by 8 am during Saturdays. Other good option is to take a van to Camp Philips from Agora Terminal and upon arrival, take a deal with a motorcycle driver fixing the rate first before you take the ride. Most importantly, always verify the details before the trip and plan ahead. 

You can check their website here:


10 Awkward Things that I Do ( And You Might Too)

In a lot of times, we find ourselves in awkward situations. Don't get me wrong 'cause I know all of us have these awkward moments. It's just either we don't wanna admit it, or we find it awkward to talk about awkward things that we do (whether it be in public or not). And so I came up with a list of the things that I do awkwardly, just so to find out if other people do so and not make me feel looney on this matter. 

1) Pretending to laugh.

Sometimes, I pretend to laugh on times when I don't get the thing and everyone else is laughing. That's just crazy. It's maybe because we just don't wanna feel like we're too 'bobo' lagging behind a common joke which everyone finds hilarious. But on some cases, I understand jokes pretty well, but I don't find them funny. And that's where I start pretending to laugh just to make it look like 'I'm not the room's party-pooper'. Yet guess what, there's always that someone who comes out to be the one who can't pretend to laugh. It's a choice that we should all respect, the variation of how we fit ourselves in a specific situation. And it's certainly, awkward!

2) Singing when someone finds us talking to ourselves. 
Admit it or not, but I have asked a couple of people about it and it also happened to them. There are times when we just wanna talk to ourselves, right? It's not the typical 'shirts-off posing or fueling narcissism in front of the mirror'  shit but it's a natural human doing in our alone times. And the absolute rule is to never get yourself caught, otherwise the person who caught you talking to yourself will think that you're silly. I do that sometimes, like recalling a debate speech or rationalizing what to respond to someone. And when someone finds me doing so, I pretend to sing in a random note that even me don't understand. That's crappy awkward!

3) You have to Google a word so you can respond to a chatter.

And there's a tip here. You need to google that hellish word out of nowhere that is used by that alien person chatting you as fast as possible so that he won't find out that you don't know the meaning of that crap. Okay, that's just a long sentence. I do that sometimes 'cause I' m not a vocab geek. But at the same time, it's unnecessary act. But if you do so, it might get a bit awkward but it can help you in improving your dictionary. I actually feel like I wanna help X Factor by banning the word 'amazing'. Shoot to you, Brit. 

4) Everyone is quiet and you sound like a dying whale because of your cough - the worst when it happens in a retreat.

Dude, this is one of the worst feelings ever. Like ever. Last year's November, I went to a leadership retreat in Taytay, Rizal. And I'm at my worst state. I was having a fever then, with cough and colds. It's a retreat, right? So we do have a lot of quiet sessions. But I can't help it. There are times when I just can't exit because I'm in a closed circle discussion or asking an excuse in a group of 30 to go to the comfort room is just not an option. What am I gonna do? Keep the noise as awkwardly minimal as possible, even if you sound like a dying whale. Awkward! (I love whales though)

5) That moment when you say goodbye to someone and you both walked the same way
Well, it happened to me a couple of times. And you're like, f*ck , that's just awkward, most especially if you're not that close to that someone. 

6) When you can't stop laughing while telling a joke and when you're finally done, your friends don't even get it.

This is so me. When I share jokes, I can't help myself but laugh about the whole idea and I always end up having friends who are laughing at me and not on the joke simply because they don't get it. 

7) When you stutter and someone dropped it off because the person thinks you're over. 

Sometimes, I really stutter when I'm talking and it's weird when people drop it off and start talking thinking that you're done. It happened to me once, I guess. When I was introducing myself to a couple of people, and I got a little bit stuttered. But then the emcee started thanking me for that. Well, thanks! 

8) That moment when you try to explain a song but you don't wanna sing it and your friends are like 'What's the first note? Can you sing it?'

Okay. I just said it. I find it really awkward though because I have been into so many 'trying-to-explain-a-song' moments and I just don't really wanna sing it because I don't know the lyrics. 

9) There's something in your friend's face when you're eating together and he/she's in front of you. Or you were in a date at a movie theater eating pop corn and you don't know where to scrub your hands to get rid of the orange flicks. 

It's awkward. I'm sure it's gonna be difficult to tell your friend about the situation. But at the same time, I think it's gross to continue eating with such a view or the possibility of it getting into your food. On the second one, and someone taught me this, you just have to rub it off in the bottom of the chair and you're cool. 

10) That moment when you accidentally typed your password at the username box when you're using someone else's computer.

The worst is if it's your girl/guy, right? Privacy call, pronto! I think everyone deserves privacy, but sometimes, lameness pays off. 

So I know that a lot of people have their own miseries and awkward moments to share. I have a lot when it comes to previous relationships but it's too privy to share. I think awkward moments are good in a way because they're good sources of hilarity. I pretend to text when placed in an awkward situation, or pretend like I'm not listening and say that it's one of my random pet peeves. But it depends from one person to another.
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