Sunday, June 28, 2009

Voyage of the Balangay: Into the water, out to sea

balangay sunsetTwo weeks ago, I wrote about the voyage of the Balangay. Yesterday, the Balangay was put out to sea, not without some tense moments for team leader, Art Valdez, who cut the rope that tied the Balangay to land. We were shown the video by Carina, the balangay held in tow by the builders and volunteers with rollers underneath, it was airborne for a few seconds before splashing into the waters of Manila Bay. It righted itself almost immediately, laying to rest any doubt of its seaworthiness.balangay outpouring of blessingToward the sunset hours, a priest blessed the Balangay and its accompanying boat. the Balangay was christened "Diwata" or fairy in the vernacular while the small boat was named Gabriela Silang after the famous Philippine heroine.balangay visionary art valdezArt Valdez, the leader of Philippine Everest team always takes time to remind visitors and guests of how significant this event and how symbolic the Balangay is. Yes, it is a reminder of the Filipino's affinity to the sea, but beyond this, it is a testament to the Filipino's capability. As declared in the project's battlecry "Kaya ng Pinoy", the Filipino can make things happen if he/she sets his/her mind on it.balangay bajau boat buildersThe Balangay would be at the waters off the CCP terminal until it sets sail two weeks from now. It would be outfitted with a sail made of organic cloth by then. Much credit goes to the Bajau boat builders who lent their expertise in boat building to this historic project. Feel free to drop by to show your support for this cause and the team.


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