Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Hala Bira! Pwera Pasma!: Ati-Atihan 2013



Disclaimer: Photos are taken by: Antonio Carranza Jr.


                In honor of the Santo Niño (Infant Jesus) every 3rd week of January, Ati-atihan is celebrated in Kalibo, Aklan.  It is said to be a week long celebration and on the last three days of the week, which is the highlight of the festivities, you will find activities which will differentiate it from all other festivals in the country.  Here, you can see the locals in their painted faces and bodies dance to the rhythm of drumbeats known as “sadsad". While doing the sadsad people would be yelling “Hala Bira! Pwera Pasma!” an invocation which  seeks God's blessings to free the merrymakers from getting sick (or pasmado) despite their exposure to the heat of the sun and/or after being drizzled by the rain.


                The term Ati-Atihan is named after the Ati, an indigenous native group who are said to be the aborigines of people in Panay Island where Kalibo, Aklan is located. However, the direct translation of Ati-Atihan is “to be like Aetas or pretending to be one”.


Experience:


                Since I stayed and worked for more than 7 months in Kalibo, Aklan; I considered it as my second hometown. I had loads of memories to be treasured from this place and this will be a special place for me though I left it with some bad memories (Ooops, let’s just forget about it…LOL).


                A few months after I was transferred to Roxas City Airport I really planned to join and witness the Ati-Atihan 2013. My work schedule almost stopped me from realizing this plan since I was supposed to be on duty on the last three days of the festival. But something good turned out one night when my senior officer asked me to swap our day offs and this gave me the chance to go.


                On the other hand, my twitter friend Anton (a travel blogger and the owner of the pictures attached on this blog post) tweeted that he's going to witness the Ati-Atihan festival and that he’s passing  by Roxas City, Capiz a day before. So, I told him that I’m from Roxas City and that I’m planning to go too. Hence, we agreed to go together for the Ati-Atihan 2013.



                We left Roxas City past 0600H on January 20, 2013 on board a public utility van. We arrived at Kalibo before 0800H. Since, Ramboy’s is one of the famous restaurants in Aklan, I wanted Anton to let it try for our breakfast and lunch (brunch). Unfortunately, when we went there the restaurant has just opened so, we decided to transfer to any restaurant/fast food chain that could serve us as fast so we could catch up with the parade.


                We were lucky for we were just on time, that is, the parade has just started right after we had finished eating our brunch. This gave him the chance to take pictures of the participating “tribu” in their colorful costumes and make-ups. While the parade was going on he would ask me if I could pose with the participants which I did; and to make it fair I would return the favor though I am not as good a photographer as he is. Another thing, we were having some difficulties in taking each other’s photo ‘coz there are others who are also busy taking pictures and some are crossing the streets.


                One great thing about Ati-Atihan is that visitors and onlookers can join the sadsad with any of the participating tribu and strike a pose with them. The participants are very accommodating and ready to pose with those who would like to have a souvenir with their tribu on costume. 


6 comments:

  1. hello to your friend Anton! nice colorful photos on such an eventful day. Makes me feel like I attended Ati-atihan too.
    Thanks for the info frans. It's actually my first time knowing some of the stuff written in the first paragraph. keep it up.

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    1. Oh my! I just saw your comments on this post. I'm very sorry for the very late reply. By the way, thank you Judy and thanks to Anton. It was a great experience actually. Anyway, I'm glad that at least I've shared something informative to you regarding Ati-Atihan.

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  2. it was supposed to be my 1st solo travel so I was a bit skeptical when you said you would accompany me.Diko rin kasi sure anu mangyayari if I go solo.I would say you were a blessing ,I felt secured and I felt warm the whole time knowing I had a buddy nearby.AT dahil dyan,me Profile Pic ako!nyahaha.Thanks so much for joining me in this journey.Kahit ilang oras lang tayong nagkasama ang bagong magkakilala,we were part of each other's journey.Yun yun eh.Thanks Francis and see you again soon.

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    1. Whoooa! Ngayon ko lang nakita mga comments sa post na ito. Sorry for the late reply. Anyway, I'm happy to be with you that time Ton 'coz aside from having a company, I had loads of good quality shots from you of course. And it was a great experience and it's an honor to be with the legendary travel blogger (legendary *parang ang tanda na talaga*) or should I say well experienced blogger?! Hahaha Thank you Ton and see you around!

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  3. very nice pics and blog as well.. sama na ako sa inyu sa sunod :D

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    1. Nan! There you are J.E. Hahaha I just saw your comment on this blog post. By the way, thank you meg for appreciating our effort. Sure meg, sama-sama na dapat next time. Next year daw Dinagyang-Guimaras-Miag-ao Church (if matutuloy and sana nga).

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