For the most part, while in the Philippines, I’ve lived the longest in Buntog, a small barrio in the Province of Capiz. While I was there, Buntog was on its peak as a wet market. Every Sunday, people from neighboring barrios and towns would flock to Buntog to buy their food. It has this draw because of its accessibility either by train or jeepneys or buses, or even by small boats.
Now Buntog doesn’t enjoy this popularity anymore. The discontinuance of the railway was the beginning of the end of the place as the center of commerce in that small part of the province. When the main highway was relocated from Buntog to Dangula, Buntog as a marketplace was brought down to its knees.
It was however the Typhoon Undang (aka Agnes internationally) that drove us away from the place of my childhood. It destroyed our house along with 201,013 homes in the Philippines in 1984. In addition 163,506 more homes were damaged for an estimated losses of US$96.6 million. (Source: Wikipedia.)
The photo above is that of a playhouse of the Philippines’ national hero, Jose Rizal. It reminds me of the kind of house we used to have; although ours was a little bigger. It was made mostly of bamboo and nipa leaves. Devoid of air-conditioners, we survived years of summer there.