Thursday, December 10, 2009


My Negros Oriental Tour: Municipality of Tayasan
This is second to last town before I could declare I have seen all the ‘town and city centers’ of the province of Negros Oriental. And well, Tayasan in my list had nothing for me to see at town center. I just had… ‘see the municipal hall and church’ in my itinerary. There is a waterfall a spring and a lake that I have read about on the web, but I surmised those would be far from the town center and better visited if I had family or friends with me. I just really wanted to be at town center for now – esp that Jimalalud has overwhelmed me with theirs!

This is still part of the ‘sugar central’ that stretches from Amlan all the way to San Carlos and the Negros Occidental towns and cities. So the views of the fields are fairly the same – sugarcane plantations. I particularly muse at seeing them transfer the harvest from ground to truck. It is still the same old way of carrying heavy long bundles of the cut stalks up a plank to the truck. One must be very strong to be able to do that. Am not sure, if these days, those plantation workers are still called ‘sacadas’ as they were in the flourishing past.

Okay, just a few deep breathes of ooh sand aahs watching the fields on board a Ceres bus, then I was standing in front of the Tayasan Municipal Hall. And I said, now what hehe! I caught the building in a state of reconstruction – of the fa├žade, that its. I could see maroon-colored steel pipes already formed to what obviously looks to be the frame of a roof of that external staircase from ground level to the ‘ceremonial balcony’. I could see the outlines of how it would look, and I was not sure I liked it. The ‘roofing’ in whatever material it maybe made, I was sure would ruin the aesthetic quality of the building – which as it is, was not even fantastic. At least, the symmetry of that roofing might come out to make the building look like some roofed escalators along the streets of Hong Kong Island hehe!

Looking at the two front corners of the building though, I could still discern that this municipal hall was built circa the American occupation-inspired buildings. Then it received quite a bit of sprucing up along the way, until this recent soon to be finished addition. If anything, the additions (i.e., the green roof above lower-windows) made the building look like it has multi-layered front walls that gives it some kind of a 3D look. But I shook my head at the perimeter fence, also under construction. It is so high and so solid to be called decorative. Thus, if not decorative, it becomes a ‘protective’ or ‘exclusive’ element of the building. But it is a ‘public’ facility and should be the last to kept away from its people by a solid wall! They can do good with the chicken-wire fence of Jimalalud!

This municipal hall by the way, sits at the very side of (and very close to, I must say) the highway. So there’s not much of a space between the road and the fence nor the fence and the building. Ah, I wondered how they do their ‘Bayang Magiliw’ every Monday, because both sides of the municipal hall are other structures (residences and other government structures) also very close to it. But where the municipal hall lacks space, across the highway is a great expanse of a green grassy playing field and a park surrounded by big trees. Wow!

This open field of a park is probably the same size as at La Libertad’s or Siaton’s and definitely bigger than that of Bais. This one on Tayasan looked more beautiful to me – probably because I was there on a bright sunny afternoon. By the corner of this park just across the municipal hall is a nice new green and white building that houses other municipal offices of the town and I think there is even an open recreation or multi-purpose hall at second level. I did not take a photo of this area because... Right next to it is the town’s police station! Afraid to take any shots, lest they think of me as some bad element doing a reconnaissance mission hehe! Hadlok ko! Hmm, Tayasan’s police station must be the envy of many a police force in this country! Theirs sits amidst big trees at the side of the park such that many (or all) policemen I saw pulled their white monobloc chairs out to the breezy shaded pathway for a rest. Was there a 'duyan'? There should be! Big shady trees all the way up to the church.

Oh yes the church. Consistent with the situation of their municipal hall, Tayasan’s church does not also have the luxury of space. Well, moreso, because they also walled it up with a concrete fence to separate the meager space between the building and the street beside the park. Why are they fond of fences? Is this a town of thieves? I do not think so, since I never even hear anything negative about this area of the province in the news! At least the fence has decorative grills to reveal much of its tiny frontage hehe! Were it not for the image of San Antonio De Padua atop the entrance, I wouldn’t even have thought it was a catholic church. It looks like a chapel of other religious denominations hehe!

I had to call out to the cleaner to please let me in just to take a few shots. He reluctantly opened the gate and let me in via a side entrance. And I could see that he was busy cleaning the church floor. Well, I tried not to disturb him and proceeded with my few shots. This is a small church they’re trying to make big via extensions on the sides to accommodate more pews. And those parts have yet to have ceilings so it must be hot on some times of day. At least the sides are just decorative grill doors and not solid blocks so air can circulate well.

Tayasan probably has the simplest church in this province (though I have not seen Ayungon’s yet). The altar is not only very simple, it borders on the ugly hehe. Looking at said altar, esp that there are two panels to hide the altar boys and other church paraphernalia, it looks like a corner at some university’s hallway going to the comfort rooms hehehe. Sorry for the comparison but that’s what comes to mind. It is definitely not the lack of ornamental and flowery bling blings and retablos like in many churches. I actually even like the minimalist look. Probably it has something to do with the color of the walls, the stone framing and probably even the tiles. Plus, anyone can be more imaginative with those plywood panels and the little stool that hold the framed image of Our Mother of Perpetual Help. Well, am no canonic architect (if there’s anything like that hehe), I just thought this church needs help in that department!

Alright, out of the church, I walked circling the expansive beautiful green park towards the highway so I could catch a ride to Ayungon. There is a circular ‘whatever-you-may-call-it’ by the corner of the park with some concrete benches. It actually is a nice place to be just watching the ‘nothingness’ in the quiet breezy park, though it mainly serves as a bus stop, therefore waiting shed for passengers. I liked it that no ride came immediately by, as I enjoyed just sitting there watching the few moving things wherever I looked. Cozy, even serene place, this park! And there was a fantastic catch! Have you seen a true shepherd? I did!

As we know from the bible, and from stories on TV and the movies, shepherds are people who herd flocks of sheep, right?! And since there are not that many sheep in this country (yet) we never actually see a shepherd, right? Hah, I saw one in Tayasan! Yes, I did! The manong caught my attention by his guttural calls like “huu, huu” as he approached the highway from somewhere by the vicinity of the church. When I looked he was walking a group of animals that I initially thought were goats. When they passed near me, I got really excited watching them. The manong was yes, herding his animals of 2 goats and 7 sheep including 2 bouncy lambs that kept running front and back of the group. The goats were laggards so they usually got the whip from a long twig that the manong used hehe. Yes, them goats hehehe!

And the most interesting part was when it was time for them to cross the highway. Whaa! The adult sheep went straight for it, the two cute lambs kept that playful hopping back and forth while the goats even hesitated because after a trike that passed in front of them going leftwards, a rightwards V-hire with noisy engine stopped to let them cross but it flicked its headlights and honked. Well, another whack from manong shepherd got them goats scampering forwards heeeheeeheee! I had fun watching that scene, and sorry Tayasan… that one was most memorable for me than the rest I said above hahaha! Its not as if anyone can witness that incident everyday anywhere in this country! And I was fortunate to have seen it front seat!

Another retirement haven I can suggest to the dear folks who want the ‘unhectic’ life. Yep, Keiko, tell the old folks, lamb-chops is possible in this place hehe!

If you want to read the chronology of all stories on this tour, click the following:
01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35
36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65


  1. Thank you for visiting our good old Tayasan. I love the honesty in the way you described the place and I am amused someone really took time to blog about it. HAHA Anyway, hope you can explore it more and somehow tell a friend that Tayasan is so laid back that you can just forget everything for a while and see nature took its course. Have a good day!

  2. What's the story Why it called Tayasan?