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Bagasbas Beach International Eco Arts Festival June 12, 2010

Posted by stephanie in Uncategorized.

June 4th marked the beginning of the BBIEAF, which my host family, the Palencias, combined with the staff of Our Lady of Lourdes College Foundation hosted for the whole weekend. Just some possibly mundane information, the arts festival is a celebration of the natural resources the Philippines has to offer, which mostly consists of bamboo, coconuts, and cheap labor (sort of joking about the last one. But in a sad way it is true). Artists from all over the globe (i.e. Israel, Greece, China, France, Britain, U.S., Japan) came and built these installations the size of two story buildings using only the Philippines natural resources. An interesting twist to this is that each artist is assigned a community in the Philippines, and these communities help the artists bring their installations from ideas to reality. This included building the actual structures, being the muse for the installation, providing supplies, etc. The artists worked on the installations for a week, and the results were pretty impressive:

Mia from Greece made this lighthouse one. As you can see, it was sturdy enough to climb, and at night they lit a bonfire on the top of it.

Here is a picture from the inside of it, looking up.

Here is me climbing it, with Kate (a high school teacher at OLLCF). Look how pale I am compared to them! Apparently being pale there is really attractive, so I was attractive for…oh 2 days in the philippines. That’s what hanging out at the beach all the time does to you.

Tanya Preminger from Israel made this one. The other artists were betting how long it’d stay up. It ended up lasting for almost 2 days, before all the people climbing it made it topple over. I think it’s amazing she got the bamboo to curve like that…

The French man made this one. it has stars everywhere, and people liked sitting on it.

HERE’S MY FAVORITE ONE. The Brit made this one…I forgot his name 😦 But I like how his had moving elements (they’re like pinwheels or whirligigs if you can’t tell from the picture). It ended up being the favorite of  most of the people attending the festival.

Rana, me, Abinhav, the Brit, and Tom. A.K.A. TCinGC team plus artist

crap video of the brit’s art piece. turn your volume low, or even mute it. It’s stupid sound.

A filipino artist did an interesting ethnic dance where he basically wrapped himself with the rope around his middle, and proceeded to continue to wrap it around himself while banging on these iron gongs until the tension was so strong that the bamboo pole the rope was connected to fell over.

Asides from looking at art pieces, the art festival included a lot of feasts, during one of which I met who I thought was a nice old Japanese grandpa. Me being abnormally into Japanese related things, I immediately walked up to him and started trying to talk to him in Japanese, and failing miserably. He was really nice about it though, and encouraged me to go study in Japan, and also told me he lectured at CMU before. Later on, another Japanese person joined us, and through him I found out that the grandpa I talked to was actually Takahiro Iimura, a really famous time lapse video artist who shook some president’s hand, and knew John Lennon and Yoko Ono. (lamely) I felt really cool after that.

The next day during breakfast, I found out my fail at Japanese made quite an impression on him, because Ryan (an english professor at OLLCF who was in charge of making sure Iimura was taken care of during his stay) told my fellow teammates and I that out of all the people at breakfast, Iimura wanted to sit with us. I felt very honored. We ended up asking him really stupid questions like whether he liked Japan or not, or liked it in the philippines or not (Neither of which he could really say no to…), and being the typical CMU students we are, we ended up fixing his laptop to be able to use wireless internet -_- Then being typical kids, we all asked to take pictures with him, none of which I have. I will post them up when I them so you can see what he looks like.

On the last day of the arts festival (Sunday June 6th) anyone who felt like it hopped on a bus and toured all the touristy spots in Daet. I ended up going, mainly because I wanted to go where the air conditioning went -_- However, it ended up being really fun, asides from the stomache ache I got from the street food. Here are a few places we went…

I’m in San Jose again! well, the San Jose, Daet beach.

I met Jesus somewhere along the bus route. Hello, best friend!

At the end of the trip, when everyone already left, we went to a surf shack, where surfers hang out. It was actually really nice. We met some brazilian guy, and all these other surfers. Surfing lessons are about 9 dollars an hour, including a board. pretty sweet deal.

One of the surfers showed us how they practice surfing on dry land. it looks a lot easier than it is… Tom (my TCinGC teammate) completely wiped out on that thing. and I mean seriously wiped out. He must have been 10 feet in the air before he landed on his side.

Anyways, one of the most entertaining events that happened was actually during the bus ride, during which I ended up talking to Ryan, the english teacher from OLLCF that I told you about before. I think it’s hard to understand what it’s like to talk to a filipino, without actually having talked to one before. They’re honest, sometimes brutally honest, but about 80% of what they say is just a joke. I am not exaggerating at all. They say everything with a straight face, and then start giggling afterwards saying “just kidding!’. It took awhile for me to get used to assuming that everything is a joke instead of…not. So basically, our conversation actually started with him asking about my boyfriend. So let me explain…you can assume anything you say to anyone in the philippines will get spread around and mentioned to you again by someone completely different from who you originally spoke to. A few days earlier, the topic of relationships came up with Gerry and a couple of OLLCF students that help him out in the CS department, and so during that time they came to know that I had a boyfriend in California who was 19 years old, Chinese with a Chinese passport, 5′ 9″ (they gasped at that, since the filipino average height is around 5’4″, 5’5”) extremely handsome (just kidding I said he was cute. at least to me. I might be biased…please do let me know if I am since I’d rather not be delusional. I’d appreciate if give me a number from 1 to 10, from not cute to stud muffin, and please add additional comments such as “he needs a haircut” or “why is he so freaking skinny he’s skinnier than you stephanie you could probably wear his pants as skinny jeans”), and etc. Well, Ryan found out, and told me it wouldn’t be weird in the philippines if we were married. He even asked if I had a ring yet. He also asked where I met him, and what I liked about him, and more information about him. It was like girl talk, but not with a girl…which is interesting cause all the filipino guys I met so far are fine with talking about these things. In fact, most of the times they bring the topic up. Anyways, after his interrogation finished, I proceeded to ask if he was married, and what his age was. He said no, and then told me to guess his age. My first guess was 22, then 23, then 25….turns out he was 28. I then asked the secret of his youthfulness, and he said that it’s cause filippinos smile all the time -_- sounds to me like he was feeding me crap. Anyways, the end of the conversation ended up being the most interesting, because whether by my counterinterrogation or not, he developed a headache. So being a nice person I am, I offered him tylenol, thinking it was the normal thing to do. Turns out, people in the philippines never eat pills for headaches. In fact, I had to convince him that everyone in the US ate it, that it was safe, and normal, and not illegal. So he ate some, and then proceeded to tell me for the next hour or so that he was sleepy, woozy, and will never eat tylenol again. The next day, he comes up to me at school and tells me that tylenol is illegal in the philippines for some unknown reason, and that I had fed him illegal drugs. So now, my nickname is the drug dealer. I feel so gangsta.

Anyways, that concludes my summary of the arts festival….that happened a week ago. I’m really behind on blogging, and have resorted to jotting down keywords on journals or my laptop or whatever I have on hand to remember what happened that day. I’m also very behind on emailing a lot of people…my apologies to everyone…Hopefully the internet that is now accessible in my room (started today!) will help me with that.

okay bye.



1. Natalie - June 13, 2010

hehee steph i loved this post, i have several things to say

(1) COOL ECO ARTS FESTIVAL!! all those structures look so cool and i like that the festival is on a beach!!! so beautiful!!! jealous! that green man is … very interesting looking ahhaha. im amused.

(2) I like all your little anecdotes, especially the ones where you talk about conversations with people… so cool that you met a Japanese video artists! who knows john lennon + yoko ono!!!!!

(3) i want to talk to you about your boyfriend too!!! girl talkkkkk. i like the part where the guy gasps at 5’9″ ahhahah

(4) i haven’t taken tylenol in like at least three years… i never take any medicine and i think i would definitely get a headache if i did. youre an illegal drug dealer!!!!!!!!!! so badass

keep updating!!! at least you know you have one loyal reader/commenter =)

2. GUESS WHOOOO - June 13, 2010

1) YAY an update. I’ve actually been creeping on this site for a while, wondering when you’d update.

1) Takahiro Iimura?!?!?!?!?!????
jk i don’t know him. but that’s cool. you’re so outgoing at unexpected times. or maybe you’re outgoing by default and you’re just not outgoing at times.

1) Yes, you are delusional.

1) Arts festival sounds cool. I went to one too, called the Three Rivers Arts Festival.

1) I miss you D=

1) I miss you ❤

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