Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Detour Decision

My Negros Oriental Tour: San Carlos City to Bacolod City, NegOcc
What has Bacolod got to do with my Negros ORIENTAL tour?! Calm down folks, calm down hehe! The impulsive roamer in me, myself and I took the helm again, so there I found myself heading for Bacolod hahaha! It started this way… I was done with my last morning roam of the San Carlos City People’s Park and was checking out of Lola Nitang’s. I was all set for the Ceres bus terminal to ride back to Cebu via Toledo. But the courteous and caring staff at Lola Nitang’s had to remind me with “sir, make sure you check the signboard if the air-conditioned bus is going Cebu as some are going Bacolod”. I said “ok thanks” and remarked that I thought it wouldn’t hurt if I suddenly found myself in Bacolod. They laughed, I laughed… and I think somewhere in my lowly brain that joke of mine was taken all too seriously hahaha!

The detour
Well yes, I may have been joking at my very own self (I can do that, yes)! But fortunately or unfortunately, on arrival at the expansive San Carlos City bus terminal, after ogling at a goat and a pig that both seemed uncomfortably tied to the back portion of a tricycle, the very first air-conditioned bus I saw (picture above) was not going to Cebu but to Bacolod via Don Salvador Benedicto. Hah, I casually hopped in… took a right-side window seat on second row… and there I was, destined not for Cebu but Bacolod hehe. I thought I could still change my mind when the Cebu-bound bus comes. Instead, first to come (to my side) was the bus conductor! So, that was it… final… I paid and was on my way to Bacolod! Yehey!

What’s with Bacolod anyway?
Well, I can’t count the many times I’ve been there… but let me justify this crazy detour and you be the judge if I was sane enough having done this! First, I have mostly approached Bacolod from the air (ex-MNL or ex-CEB) and I have crossed to it from Iloilo thrice via the fastcrafts BUT this would have been the only time I enter the city via a long land trip! So yey, I was going there hehe! Shallow? Well, second, one of my hangouts in Cebu (Pipeline) recently opened a branch in Bacolod and I knew some of the staff there as they went OJT in Cebu! So I thought I’d say hi and hello! Not good enough?! Here’s third, I heard the sights and scenery via the mountains at Don Salvador Benedicto are supposed to be fantastic – with mini-Chocolate Hills or something. I knew I wouldn’t be stopping anywhere there but was curious at how beautiful they might be seen from a speeding bus (if at all I could see them from a speeding bus anyway hehe)! Still a shallow reason? Well fourth and most importantly for me… NAPOLEONES! Ah, now am craving for them again, argh! Yes, I can finish a whole box of that damn delectable and heavenly delicacy in one sitting! Why the hell can I not find them anywhere else but Bacolod? Argh! I hear there’s a new stall over at Megamall selling Napoleones… but how cruel… I am now residing in Cebu!

Aight, justified or not, the last reason was reason enough for me to hit Bacolod. Yeah, Napoleones! Yummy yum yum! Yummm!

The language switch!
Note to ambitious multi-linguals like me, myself and I. San Carlos City and environs as a linguistic group is bilingual. They all perfectly speak Cebuano and/or Ilonggo without an effort switching from one to the other. When? Well, when triggered – that is if you talk to them in Cebuano, they’ll answer in the same language while if you blurt out in Ilonggo (Hiligaynon) they’ll naturally speak the same without any issue. Note further that they don’t mix the two languages unlike the folks over at Bantayan Island who have their very own language that is an interesting intermingling of Cebuano, Ilonggo and Waray words. That makes San Carlos similar in status with Naval, Tarlac, etc., Or haven’t you noticed? Yep, in Naval(Biliran) and even Leyte(town in the province of Leyte), most would be speaking Cebuano, but speak to them in Waray, they respond in the same. Again, they do not mix the two as you would do taglish. That is also the case in Tarlac, most would be speaking in Ilocano, but talk to them in Kapampangan, they converse in the same. Interesting, right?! One of the many titillating finds I have had by roaming this country!
*Footnote: my tutor and a friend who are both into matters of the tongue informed me sometime ago that Cebuano, Ilonggo, Waray, Tagalog, Chavacano, Ilocano etc are not anymore called 'dialects' these days but 'languages'. I forgot what they said the reason was, but just the same I heeded. Ah this is a changing world - even the dear 'panatang makabayan' is not anymore how I have memorized it when I was little!

Thus, when I rode this bus destined for Bacolod, syempre nag-ilonggo na ko ah! Aw ah nakapraktis gid! My tutor is probably clapping her ears (oops hands) at reading this. Yey! That actually makes this (language) my 5th reason why the detour to Bacolod. So, it was not only a physical re-routing in my travel itinerary after all, but also an exercise for the left side of my brain and that wagging center of my mouth hehe! Worth it, right?! Hu-o ah!

Let’s see…

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


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