Posts Tagged ‘cuyo’

I’m back now after reading the draft of the 124-page “Ploning” written and soon-to-be directed by Dante Nico Garcia a.k.a. Angga. It felt like reading a book!

Two or three days ago, I was with Angga. We strolled along the airport area hoping to find the perfect location for our future bar-cafe which we will most likely call “Tabirab” because we find the name cute and has a lot of character. In Cuyunon, one of the vernaculars we speak here in Palawan, it means “I don’t know about you or I don’t believe you.” If I say: “Elam kanimo, ang katabirab kaw!” that would be saying “I don’t know about you, baloney!”

This photo of Angga was stolen from his Friendster profile. His hair is no longer like this. I told him I want this hair back because it’s full of character. Angga is, of course, the writer of Ploning. He will soon direct the movie too!

We were with Emilyn, Malou and Ruth that sunny afternoon. Rash, another friend, who’s interested to partner with us in this bar-cafe was somewhere we don’t know. I couldn’t wait for her since I hate waiting, especially when I’m early or on time, so I cajoled everyone to do the foot trip without her.

Angga, Ruth and I and the rest of the foot gang were eying this particular place where there’s still a souvenir shop. Before we even got there, we met Redempto D. Anda a.k.a. Dempto, my mentor and former editor in Palawan Sun. He was riding his mountain bike, and that day too, he won the essay contest for the media sponsored by Shell Philippines Exploration B.V. and the Provincial Information Office.

It was Dempto to whom I sent Angga’s first and second drafts of Ploning a few weeks ago. That afternoon was an opportunity for me to introduce Angga to him since he told me he’s very interested to make a review of the future movie in his blog here at wordpress. But he said he hasn’t read it yet because he was busy.

Angga with popular Philippine actress Judy Ann Santos who will play the part of Ploning. He’s best friends with her; for friends money isn’t a matter of importance just to do a film that primarily seeks to promote the unique culture and traditions of the Cuyunons of Palawan. I stole this picture too from his Friendster. This was taken when they were filming “Ouija.”

The meeting with Dempto reminded me that I, too, has a copy of the drafts. I’ve already uploaded the teaser video of Ploning here. Since it’s 124-page long, I’m forced to discuss it piece by piece. It’s a long read, besides I couldn’t print it because I’m out of printer ink right now.

The story started at Tabunan Shore in Cuyo. From the dark, one slowly hears two voices singing “Ploning” (yes, Ploning is a popular song of the Cuyunons); a guy and a little boy; they were accompanied by guitar.


Nga labing maleban

Ang gegma mo Ploning

Nga ing kandadoan

The singing goes on until near the calm shores of Tabunan, a mystery is revealed through the reflections of a gas lamp. There are many gas lamps and people are on the shores gathering shells. Picking shells is a typical event in Cuyunon communities. I was reminded by my lola — when we were children, my grandmother, a Cuyunon, would take us every weekend to Canigaran beach to also pick shells we can cook for food.

Although to many this is a way of being careful with money and resources because they don’t have to go to the market to buy, it’s also a form of meeting together to catch stories about their lives; not necessarily to gossip, but just to see how they are doing. Of course, those days were gone here in Puerto Princesa. We no longer go to Canigaran to pick shells. But I’m pretty sure that in Cuyo, residents still do this.

Back to Ploning, the mystery revealed was that of two teenagers passionately and tenderly making love inside a small crude shack. They kiss and they almost don’t want to do it, but their emotions show great love for each other. You can see tears falling from both their eyes.

The sound they emit is like there’s something hard being rubbed on the floors made of bamboo strips. Before they reach their key moment, the young woman stretches her arms above her head, the guy slides some balugo (tree) seeds to her palms and closes them tightly with his own.

I can’t wait to see this scene on the film because it’s so bold, vivid and strikingly impressive — very exciting and intense to start a film. For a minute, I thought it’s like “Blue Lagoon.” Angga’s creative mind was probably oozing that time he was writing the script. He gets a standing ovation from me for this opening of the “Ploning.”

More to follow.

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I have above the teaser video of “Ploning” which was written and will soon be directed by my friend Angga Garcia in Cuyo in January. The film’s inspired by the fact that Angga’s Cuyunon and he wants to show the world his birthplace because he’s proud of it and its unique culture and traditions.

The first time I saw this teaser video was at cuyopress.com — a website started by Mandy Perez a.k.a. Banbanen for Cuyunons living all over the world. Angga had placed it there in the hope of encouraging all Cuyunons to be proud of their roots, their customs and traditions that are truly exceptional.

I have a copy of the first and second scripts, and I’ve started reading them. But because I was busy the past few weeks, I didn’t understand a single of what I’ve read. It’s embarrassing, I know!

Anyway, I promise to get back with a few of my thoughts after reading them again in the following days. In the meantime, relax and enjoy the video.

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