It was 4 o’clock in the afternoon when I woke up; the sunlight rays are kissing through my skin, the soft serenading voice of the coastal wind is penetrating to my ears and the beautiful scenic view around appears Like I’m In some kind of a shooting for a film ?everything seems perfect. “Am I in heaven, Lord? ” I confusingly asked myself. I later then realized that I was at a beach resort located at the east coast of Agrarians. Agrarians is a province located at the southern tip of Mindanao in the Philippines. It has seven municipalities?Maitre, Mulligan, Gala, Akimbo, Misaims,Label and Mammalian?each endowed with different tourist destinations open to everyone who are seeking for adventure and serenity.
Sixteen kilometers away from the busy life at the city of General Santos situates the capital town of Agrarians; Label. This is where we can find the Agrarians Capitol building. Inspired by Greek architectural design having its six long pillars on the outside and white-dyed buildings all around, it was as if the home of the Greek gods from Mount Olympus had moved from Greece to Label.
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As I stroll around the 24-hectare wide capitol rounds, I passed by a great work of art?a sculpture?made by Kabuki Pence Milan, a prolific artist who also crafted the giant durian monument In Dave International Airport. The sculpture was entitled “Gong” which was a tribute to the first people. From Label, a 35-minute ride brought us to Pork Balancing, Barongs Tuna, Mammalian. “Balancing” is a native term for panda which according to one of the residents of Pork Balancing, was abundant at the place.
One special thing about Pork Balancing was that the women in their place formed an association which aims o offer Jobs to the unemployed women and for this, they came up with the Bilinguals Trading and Weaving Center. Joanna Managing?one of the forerunners of the said association?revealed to me the “rugs to riches” story of their success. According to Sangria, the association started on 2007 with the amount of only four thousand pesos in their palms and there were only four weavers back then.As time passed by, the association prospered and gained more money. “All in all, we already have 18 weavers and a total assets of 4 million pesos” she added. The products which the association are weaving were shawls, bags, wallets and analogs. The price of each product Is quite costly compared to the commercial products sold In the malls for they were crafted for about three days depending on the designs.
One unique distinction of the Balancing weavers among others is they were not using complex machines in making their products.Instead, they are using this equipment called “Tanana”, which is purely made of lumber and “Outsold”, an oblong-like shaped material which contains the colorful threads made of silk and cotton. As the project f the Bilinguals Women’s Association flourished, help and assistance came from different agencies In the government Including Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), MONGO Mammalian, and Department of Trade and Industry (IT). These sectors became the reason why the products have made it to the international market. The countries which patronize the exported products from Balancing were Alaska and London.
The next spot right after Mammalian is The Coconut Queen of the South–Gala. The latter Is a historical place for it is the first municipality in Agrarians Board Member Benedicts Vaccine Uric Sis’s residence where the Familial Uric Memorabilia takes place. Familial Uric Memorabilia is a house filled with collections of antique from 17th to 19th century. Inside the house are stuff which are?believe me or not?more or less than 100 years old. Some of these are mirrors, chairs, tea sets, jars, paintings, pearls and kimonos.After every antique that he presents, Honorable Uric always interjects “This is priceless”. “Many have come and offered me Phi, 000 for that (pointing inside) wine bottle but I refuse”. This clearly shows that the Familial Uric are maintaining and taking high regards to the rich culture of Gala.
Approximately 200 meters away from Familial Uric Memorabilia is another historical site owned by the family of Councilor Vainer Alleged, the grandson of Ex-mayor Emilio Alleged?one of the original inhabitants of the heritage houses in Gala.The houses can be perceived as a Spanish-designed one given the fact that it was built after World War II. The delicate carvings at the ceiling, the foldable windows that seemed like a door, and the nostalgia that it brings the first time you saw it is indeed proof that these should be cherished and preserved.
To perfectly end the day, the last destination that we stopped by was at Islam Jarring del Mar?the Island Garden of the Sea and the Portray of the South.The totally fascinating beach resort with a 7- kilometer fine white sand stretch, sparkling blue sea that seems inviting everyone to dive at an instant, and the cold breeze from the coastal wind which keeps on whispering in my ears is owned by the fishing magnate and a hotel owner; Marlin Tan. By the time that we came at Islam Jarring, few are only there. However according to Doors Marco’s, “Many tourists usually come here during weekends and especially during every Scarab fest on May’.The long adventure which all started from Label, to Mammalian, and lastly at Gala was a very tiring tour. I decided to take a nap in order to regain my energy. I had a 30-minute sleep and when I slowly opened my eyes, I was shocked?surprised to be exact.
In front of me was a paradise which I have never seen in my entire life. The King of the East, now having his last concert is slowly fading and disappearing as it meets the edge of the deep blue ocean. The scene created a spectrum of colors? yellow and orange interacting with each other.When you are at Islam Jarring del Mar, Sunset Boulevard is the perfect place for chasing the sunset. Before reaching the boulevard, you first have to take a 5-minute walk in a cliff-like route; a challenging way where the clear sea water and big rolling waves are playing beneath while thick profound clouds are talking above.
The sun has already set at the west. My favorite part of the day has now bid his goodbye. I realized later on I was not in heaven?I was on a field trip; I was at Islam Jarring del Mar.