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May 1, 2008

Mayon Volcano

Posted by Malou at 5/01/2008 03:24:00 PM 0 comments
Before i got married i live in the little town of Daraga province of Albay in bicol region about 150 miles south from Manila the capital of the Philippines. From our house you can see the beautiful Mount Mayon which is considered as the world's most perfect cone. An active volcano, 2,461.4 m (8,070 ft) high, of southeast Luzon, Philippines. It is popular with climbers and campers and is the centre of Mayon Volcano National Park, which occupies 21 sq mi (55 sq km). It has erupted more than 30 times since 1616; an eruption in 1993 killed 75 people. Its most destructive eruption was in 1814, when the town of Cagsawa was buried.

This is the beautiful mount mayon at night as you can see the hot lava flowing down the slope towering above the city of legazpi in the island of Luzon. Mount Mayon means "beautiful lady' is only not beautiful but dangerous.
Here's the legend of Mount Mayon
A long time ago, so the legend runs, when the Philippines was not yet separated by a wide stretch of water from the mainland of Asia, there was then no high mountain nor volcano in the region now known as Bikolandia. Kabikolan was the old name given by the inhabitants to this place. In it, so the myth says, there once dwelt a beautiful women and sturdy warriors. Thus many suitors from far-off regions flocked to Kabikolan purposely to court its maiden. They, however, returned home dejectedly because it was the unbroken code of that place that no strangers could marry its daragas (maidens). So strict were the fathers with regard to the marriage of their daughters that tribal wars would frequently mar the beauty of the village. The inhabitants, of course, were secure from the onslaught of the invaders for all of them were mostly experienced warriors.
Daragang Magayon
Of all the the women in Kabikolan, none was more winsome than Tiong Makusog's daughter, Daragang Magayon, whose name literally means woman beauteous. That was why in the whole region, she was the Kabinibinian (modest) of them all. Among the natives who fell madly in love with her, was the wealthy but selfish Paratuga. Thrice did this suitor thrust his spear near the stairs of Tiong Makusog's house as a sign of his love for Daragang Magayon, and thrice did he present valuable gifts of pearls, diamonds and gold, only to be answered with firm words of refusal. "He is not the man for me, father," the beautiful woman would say whenever in behalf of the native lover. Since the old man was open-minded, he could do no other but follow her wish.
One midnight, while silence pervaded the place, Daragang Magayon unexpectedly confessed to her father of her love affair with a certain man man who live beyond the border of Kabikolan.
"Tatay," she began tremuluosly, "it will mean eternal disgrace to our family if I am known to be in love with stranger who lives on the other side of Kabikolan (the boundry river that separates kabikolan from Katagalogan, the region inhibited by the tagalogs). To me he is the handsomest of all men I have ever seen. I owe my life to him, because he saved me from the mad currents of Kabikolan when one morning while I was bathing in the river, my feet, unfortunately, slipped on the rock I stood upon.
Tiong Makusog became grief-stricken after learning that his only daughter had already chosen her life-partner without his knowledge. Nevertheless, he controlled himself, and queried, although scarcely intelligible, who her strange sweetheart was.
"That is it," Daragang Magayon seemed to have trailed her father's thoughts, "I am sure you don't know his name because when you arrived, I was already saved from drowning, and he had immediately, 'namomotan ta ka,' (I love you) he told me one sunset when we met again at the bank of the river. 'Namomotan ta ka man," (I love you too) I replied, whereupon, I felt his lips tenderly pressing mine. What shall we do father? I don't love Paratuga. I prefer a thousand deaths than wed him!" she ended firmly.
"I will help you to find the best way out, my daughter, "Tiong Makusog, albeit heavy was his heart, assured her.
Father Taken as Captive
Unfortunately one morning, while Tiong Makusog was hunting in a nearby forest, several strong henchmen of Paratuga suddenly seized him unawares. He was taken to the home of this treacherous suitor where he was demanded, as ransom, the hand of his daughte, otherwise death from the wounds of hundred arrows would be his punishment.
That same day, a few hours after Tiong Makusog had been taken as captive, Linog, Paratuga's chief messenger arrived at Daragang Magayon's house and delivered to her a letter written on a piece of white bambo. it contained a demand of her hand in marriage to Paratuga, or her refusal would mean immediate death of her father. Realizing the futility of a further refusal, Daragang Magayon forgot her gentle Panganoron, the man who had saved her from drowning. She at once rushed down the stairs and proceeded to Paratuga's village to accept his terms to be his wife, to save her father.
News Reached Panganoron's Ears
As if aided by the wind, the news of Daragang Magayon's proposed Marriage speedily spread far and wide. It finally reached Panganoron's ears who, upon learning the strange happening, was sure him of her love, whatever consequence might befall on her? Indeed, the real love could not be believe what he heard. To him only force could make Daragang Magayon accept the marriage to that hated man. So with a bold determination to save his sweetheart from an impending danger, the daring warrior, with his trusted guide, Amihan, gathered all his men in Katagalogan to invade Kabikolan.
Panganoron and his followers arrived in Kabikolan on the day of Magayon's marriage with Paratuga. The invaders were determined to slay the unwanted suitor and his people. Before the altar sat Tiong Makusog, with Daragang Magayon and Paratuga on each of side. In front of them was the high priest who was busily mumbling words of incantation of the two parties as husband and wife. To the thousand pairs of eyes that witnessed the splendid ceremony, Daragang Magayon appeared immensely beautiful. Never before had they seen such a winsome woman! However, they could see that grief had pitilessly lodged on her lovely face.
In the midst of the wedding ceremony, nevertheless, a sharpy cry of "Tulisanes are coming!" from a villager outside suddenly out the scene into a medley of shrieking voice. Men, women and children speed away for safety. Only Daragang Magayon, Paratuga and his warriors remained to await the invaders headed by Panganoron. In a moment the battle was on. The Sharp metallic clash of blade filled the air, and mounds of dying warriors gave a horrible sound. In the fight. Paratuga was the first to fall, at hands of the bold Panganoron. Seeing her returned lover, Daragang Magayon at once rushed to him, but sadly enough, a stray arrow fatally hit her. In his efforts to lift the weakening body of his sweetheart, Panganoron was unnoticedly attacked from behind. He reeled to the ground, bleeding and breathless. His men, sending that they were outnumbered, took to their heels and left him lifeless to their enemy.
The Mount of Daragang Magayon
The next day, all the natives of Kabikolan, were sad. Daragang Magayon was dead. Tiong Makusog buried her beside the sea. In her grave, he laid all that she had possesed, including the priceless gifts of Paratuga. A week, however, after the burial, all the inhabitants of that place were surprised to find the grave mound of Daragang Magayon steadily rising into a hill. They were amazed, too, why sometimes a flock of white clouds floating over the hill would suddenly turn black and burst into a cold and heavy shower, strangely enough, pouring particulary on the crest of the hill. At night the the people would be awakened by strong earthquakes that seemed to emanate from the grave of Daragang Magayon, followed by a thundering noise of rolling stones, along its steepy slope. This horrible occurrence frightened the natives so that in a short period, the place had become deserted.
During the countless years that followed that incident, the burial-hill of Daragang Magayon had kept on growing and growing until it was transformed into a high mountain, with its top almost piercing the clouds.
Mount Mayon is Explained
Nowadays the Albayanos, believed that the spirit of Paratuga is the cause of the occasional eruption of the mountain that formerly the grave-mound of the Daragang Magayon. The legend tells us that in order to avenge his failure to wed the beautiful daughter of Tiong Makusog, the spirit of Paratuga, with the help of Linog's, is trying every once and then to exhume her grave to remit all the pearls, diamonds and gold he had given to her as a gifts. Instead of the gifts, however, large masses of stones with heavy layers of ashes, are thrown out, as when a volcano erupts.
The spirit of Panganoron, on the other hand, so the legend says, is wandering in the form of clouds above the peak of the mountain, These clouds usually visit the the burial-place of Daragang Magayon and never fail to kiss it. Apparently the spirit of Panganoron seems to be grieving over the death of his sweetheart, for whenever clouds gather at the top, they usually disperse into volleys of raindrops, thus keeping the plants vegetating on the mountain slopes fresh all the year round. The People of Albay contend that these frequent visits of the spirit of Panganoron to the mountain of Daragang Magayon, in the form of clouds and rain may account for its having a heavy rainfall every year.
Today the imposing mountain of Daragang Magayon still stands in Albay, perpetually clad with the green foliage of plants. Indeed what a striking parallelism to find this mountain, like the winsome lady of the former Kabikolan, always a radiant symbol of hope, to honor and remember the memory of Daragang Magayon, the mountain that marks her resting place is now called Mayon (short for Magayon) and the village by its slopes is at present a thriving town known as Daraga (derived from Daragang) which is still noted for its pretty women.

April 30, 2008

American Robin Nest and Eggs

Posted by Malou at 4/30/2008 09:30:00 AM 0 comments

This picture really interests me, i've never seen this kind of american robin eggs before. I can't resist looking at it and took a picture it's so beautiful. Four eggs were laid by an American Robin nesting on the trailer of one of the boats in Chaumont where we went to visit. I always love nature. In my grandparents home in the Philippines i always climb the mango trees, and star apple trees to hunt for birds nest. I only wanted to look at the little creatures because they're so cute. My grandmother may god rest her soul always told me not to touch the eggs because the mother bird is so jealous and sometimes they don't come back to take care of the eggs if they know that an intruder touched their eggs. Here are the cool facts about red robins:

1. Hundreds of thousands of American Robins can gather in a single winter roost. In summer, females sleep on the nests and males congregate in roosts. As young robins become independent, they join the males in the roost. Female adults go to the roosts only after they have finished nesting.

2. The American Robin eats both fruit and invertebrates. Earthworms are important during the breeding season, but fruit is the main diet during winter. Robins eat different types of food depending on the time of day; they eat earthworms early in the day and more fruit later in the day. Because the robin forages largely on lawns, it is vulnerable to pesticide poisoning and can be an important indicator of chemical pollution.

3. An American Robin can produce three successful broods in one year. On average, though, only 40 percent of nests successfully produce young. Only 25 percent of those fledged young survive to November. From that point on, about half of the robins alive in any year will make it to the next. Despite the fact that a lucky robin can live to be 14 years old, the entire population turns over on average every six years.

4. Although the appearance of a robin is considered a harbinger of spring, the American Robin actually spends the winter in much of its breeding range. However, because they spend less time in yards and congregate in large flocks during winter, you're much less likely to see them. The number of robins present in the northern parts of the range varies each year with the local conditions.


Posted by Malou at 4/30/2008 08:39:00 AM 0 comments
We went to Chaumont Watertown New York to take a look at the boat we recently won on ebay. It was last saturday we packed our stuff and hope for a nice day. Luckily the bright sunshine is all we can see a promise of a better day. I didn't make some breakfast so we decided to stop in to McDonald and eat. The trip is only about an hour from home. As soon as we get there i took my camera out and started shooting some pictures...Picture addict (lol!) what a lovely boat i told my husband if we don't have a house we can stay on the boat and live there. In the Philippines normally we have a small boat for fishing but over here there are a lot of choices from little to big boats. We are so excited same as Jarred he started doing his favorite game, treasure hunting. The previous owner had left tons of stuff plus little knick knacks. Later on we decided to drive on the bay, my husband throw his fishing pole on the water hoping to catch some fish. We stayed for a little bit. From the bay we can see the Canadian border i thought it was so cool...imagine only a few feet from where we stand another country lies. It was 6 pm when we decided to go to the nearest sub place to buy our food for supper. The town is so little there's not a lot of fast foods to choose from. I looked around me and watched the beautiful houses, some are made of brick and some are stones, later that night we had a heavy rain and the wind is blowing the tarp off the boat making loud noises, we didn't get to sleep that much because the temperature dropped down to 40's and it is pretty darn cold out there. We packed our stuff the next morning and headed home. We said hey that's something to do for a change...

Dual Station Bayliner Ciera Yacht

Posted by Malou at 4/30/2008 08:13:00 AM 0 comments

My husband was hooked on ebay again this time he is eyeing for a boat. I was encouraged sinced he had a good point in buying one. We can spend our time with the kids on the boat probably spend overnight if we want or just cruise on big bay or go to Sylvan Beach. It is my husband's dream to take his dad on the boat with us on the trip. His dad always liked boats we're sure we can make him happy by doing so. It's going to be comfortable enough for all of us,the inside looks like a house everything is in there. It lasted days for him to put a bid in praying that no other bidder except for us. It's a lot better that way, we might win the boat for a reasonable price. Days last the bidding are almost over we were counting down the time...minutes...then seconds...He even put in a higher bid just in case some other bidder is only waiting for the last second to put it more than ours. We really like to have this boat and finally the waiting is over. We won! My husband called the owner and set up appointment to do the paperwork.

April 29, 2008

Isuzu VehiCross Triathlon Series Truck You Might Want to Add in your Collection

Posted by Malou at 4/29/2008 11:41:00 PM 0 comments

A year ago my husband Kevin kind of just playing around on eBay and accidentally bumped on this unusual truck he was so intrigued on its features also you can't easily find it on a regular car dealers. He flew to Palm Beach Florida to pick up this truck after winning this item on e-bay and drive it home. Somehow it was quite an experience to him driving alone considering the distance from Florida to New York State where we live. This 1999 Isuzu VehiCross triathlon series is very unusual that my husband catch everybody’s attention when he was driving it. People asked many questions "like where did it came from" what year is it" " that is so cool men" . I get jealous sometimes when he started talking more of his truck other than me lol! Well can't blame him though lol! This VX was limited in production, the re is just 2,000 a year for about three years was made and was discontinued. We considered it as a rare collection. If you are ready to attract stares and own the road this Isuzu VehiCross will do the job for you it's all-wheel-drive sport utility vehicle was designed to drive as well on street as it does off road. Speaking of the standards 3.5-liter V-6 engine, rated215 horsepower, 230 foot pounds of torque; four-speed automatic transmission with normal winter and sport modes; full-time four-wheel drive with selectable low range; limited-slip differential; anti-lock brakes; the VehiCROSS provides seating for four. Comfort is assured with fully-automatic air conditioning; reclining front seats, rear folding 50/50 split seats, tinted glass and a leather wrapped power steering, leather upholstery; tilt adjust able steering column; power windows with driver's side "one touch auto down," an integrated electric door lock system and electronically-controlled collapsible, heated door mirrors are standard. Forward visibility is enhanced by windshield washers/intermittent wipers as well as side and rear defrosters; am/fm/cassette stereo; cruise control; 18-inch-diameter wheels and tires and 16-inchers as standard. VehiCross is 162.6 inches long, 70.5 inches wide, 66.9 inches tall, on a 91.8 inch wheelbase, providing just 13.9 cubic feet of cargo space behind the back seat, 50.4 cubic feet when the seat is folded, weighing about 4,000 pounds and rated to haul no more than 697 pounds of people and cargo. In 1999 VX is $29,595.00. If you are sports minded person this truck is right for you.

A response from the Lord

Posted by Malou at 4/29/2008 11:33:00 PM 2 comments
What should you do if you were in the middle of the ocean, your boat slowly sinking and you don't know how to swim? In fact it's the same question i had on my mind on my way to Cagraray Island in Bacacay Albay. At that time I was with my former teacher and Michelle a young lady teacher. My former teacher who owned a distance learning education school on the other end of the island had invited me to catalog his collection of books while Michelle was to substitute the other teacher on leave. It’s a good pay he was offering besides I wanted to see what’s on the other end, I heard it's a beautiful place, beaches, coconut trees, mangrove trees, scenic places you can go to visit so i decided to go. We hopped on a small boat loaded with passengers, sacks of rice and other stuff. Crap! The boat was loaded this can't be happening but we got no choice since going there was a scheduled trip and it's the last one too. About an hour passed by & we're on the ocean, the boat's motor suddenly come to a stop and big waves hitting us, some of the salt water got into the boat. I heard the boat go creak, creak, creak, and creak on top of the passengers screaming, kids crying i thought it was the end of my life. There is no life jackets on the boat that would save our lives and what's worse i don’t know how to swim. I said to myself darn!!! This is not the proper way to end my life…It's either sharks eat me alive or I'd die from drowning. Michele was holding my arms tightly it hurt so badly. I looked back at her with determination on my face & said “its going to be alright” even at that point i was so scared myself, i felt weak while my whole body is trembling. I closed my eyes for a moment and pray to the Lord. That’s all I did saying my prayers over and over again. I believed that He heard me because the boat's motor started up running again and finally arrived on our destination. What a miracle! A saying goes “when you knock on the door it will be opened for you”.

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