Welcome to My Site

If this is your first visit, welcome! This site is devoted to my life experiences as a Filipino-American who immigrated from the Philippines to the United States in 1960. I came to the US as a graduate student when I was 26 years old. I am now in my early-80's and thanks God for his blessings, I have four successful and professional children and six grandchildren here in the US. My wife and I had been enjoying the snow bird lifestyle between US and Philippines after my retirement from USFDA in 2002. Please do not forget to read the latest national and International News in this site . I have also posted some of my favorite Filipino and American dishes and recipes in this site. Some of the photos and videos in this site, I do not own. However, I have no intention on infringing on your copyrights. Cheers!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Today is Halloween-Time for Witches, Nonos and Ghosts

Photo from Marinduqueno, mandin

This last couple of days, if you go to the retail stores and shopping malls here in Northern California, you will see that most of the decorations are now about Halloween costumes, candies, masks and other items for the Halloween Night Festivities.

In the Philippines, the Internet and newspapers are already filled with stories about witches (aswang), capri (giant people), or elves(nonos) as well as stories about ghosts and apparitions. Superstitions and folklores are part of life in the Philippines, specially in the provinces.

When I was growing up way back in the late 1940s, my parents and relatives had been telling me of stories about aswang (flying witches) visiting homes in the middle of the night and looking for pregnant women, so they could suck the fetus from their stomach or for beautiful babies so they could eat their liver. The aswang takes the form of an animal perhaps a black flying cat during the night. But during the day, they lived a normal life and looked like an average person or perhaps even a beautiful young lady.

One way of discouraging the aswangs to your homes is to put garlic in all the windows as well as amulets. Other superstitions are about the giant people called capri. There are two kinds, the white (the good one) and the black (the evil one). Opposite to this are the small people, the elves or Nono as known in Marinduque. The Nonos lived on big trees in the jungles or even in your back yard. They may be harmless if you left them alone. But if you disturbed their territory, be prepared for bad luck, calamities or sickness.

One of the most popular beliefs and folklore in Marinduque are the existence of Nonos . Last year, the 12-year old son of our caretaker disappeared for about 4 hours. When he returned he told us that a group of elves had captured him. He said they were friendly and told him that we should not cut the big balete tree in our backyard.

There are also stories about ghosts ( white lady apparition) and witches. In Iloilo, my town of birth, there is one town where there are a lot of witches according to the residents of the neighboring towns. However, there are no proofs that this is true.

In my resort property here in Amoingon, Boac, Marinduque some of our neighbors claimed that once in a while in a moonless night they have seen an apparition of a white lady. The white lady is supposed to protect the property from robbers and intruders. She is supposed to be the ghost of my mother-in-law who loved the beach resort and its gardens. The neighbors are scared of this apparition. So far, I have not seen this lady in the flowing white dress.

With regards to the Nonos, even though I really do not believe in their existence, I still say TABI PO NONO (Excuse me, Nono) when passing under the trees and bridges in my property at night and after sunset. Even my 4 year old grand daughter from Sacramento, has learned of this phrase. We told her of the TABI PO NONO phrase four years ago, during our golden wedding anniversary celebration. The funny part is, when they were in Boracay (an island resort) a week later for a vacation, she said the same phrase while passing a bridge at the Boracay Regency Hotel, where her mother and grandmother were staying. Hurrah to the memory of a 4-year old.

Witches, nonos and ghosts are part of life in the Philippines not only during Halloween but also the whole year round. I hope you have a super-scary Halloween night!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

UP College Years Photo Memories-Fr John Delaney

The following were photo memories of my University of the Philippines college years in Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines from 1953 to 1957.

Fr Delaney Dies News

Announcement of Fr Delaney Death

Fellow UPSCANs, 1953

UPSCA Meeting Central Council and Liberal Arts Chapter with Fr. John Delaney,1953

Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Seven Real Wonders of the World

Macrine in front of Chichen Itza Pyramid
How many of the seven have you visited? Macrine and I had only visited two (#1 and #6). Enjoy the video.

1. The Pyramid at Chichén Itzá (before 800 A.D.) Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico;
2. Christ the Redeemer (1931) Rio de Janeiro, Brazil;
3. The Great Wall of China (220 B.C and 1368 - 1644 A.D.) China;
4. Machu Picchu (1460-1470), Peru;
5. Petra (9 B.C. - 40 A.D.), Jordan;
6. The Roman Colosseum (70 - 82 A.D.) Rome, Italy;
7. The Taj Mahal (1630 A.D.) Agra, India

Friday, October 28, 2011

UPSCA Photo Memories-1953-1954

The following photos were taken during our University of the Philippines Student Catholic Action (UPSCA) days in Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines, 1953-1954.
Me and Macrine Dancing, 1954

Macrine-front row and in the Middle

choir list, me singing bass AND Macrine-soprano

1953 UPSCA Choir program with thank you note from Fr. Delaney

UPSCA Choir, 1953

Macrine and I during a Monthly Social Event, 1954

Central Council Meeting, 1954. I am in the first row, second from the left

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Marinduque Power Crises

Gov Carmencita Reyes of Marinduque
The pen is mightier than the sword—Marinduque power crises | ViewsHound

Current Update of Power Crises from Eli Obligacion:

No brownouts expected until end of the year ; short-term plan after December is being addressed quietly by Cong. Velasco; also long term plans (to be operational in five years), but am not free to disclose plans yet. Meanwhile, Pres. Aquino as part of accelerating development in the countryside approved sitio electrification and barangay enhancement program with funds for this purpose released to Marelco (30 Marinduque sitios will benefit from this rural electrification program. Cheers!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Tribute to Fr Constantino Sarmiento Nieva-1929-2011

Constantino Sarmiento Nieva in His Youth
Fr. Constantino Sarmiento Nieva, was born in Boac, Marinduque on November 9,1929. He soared to the great heights of his aspirations, conquered the world through his critically-acclaimed books, including the THE TRANSCENDING GOD, THE TEACHING OF THE AUTHOR OF THE CLOUD OF UNKNOWING, and with the wings of compassion and understanding, spread God's love and his word among his flock in the US.
Visit with Fr Tino on 5/11/11

Fr. Tino, was also listed in the World's Who's Who of Theological Experts and Authors. He was a cannon law expert, a classical pianist, a lawyer from the University of the Philippines, a published author, a humanist, a good son, a generous brother, a great uncle, a wonderful great grand uncle, and a complete renaissance man, who lived the embodiment of an Asian Leader. His death was announced by his neice, Ms. Bing Carrion-Buck via e-mail on October 13, 2011 reaching us here in US the next day. The following are some of the photos I have of Fr Tino which I am sharing to all readers of my blog and FaceBook friends. May his soul rest in peace, Amen.

The 1953 UPSCA Choir
1. Tito Tino-First Row ( seating)-second from Right
2. Macrine-Second Row ( standing)-second from the Left
3, David B Katague (me)second Row standing) eleven from the Right
In the photo are Dr. Vidal Tan-President of UP at that time, Professor Molina-conductor and Fr John Delaney, spiritual of the University of the Philippines Student Catholic Action ( UPSCA) and Chaplain

Graduate School Days in Room and College of Law Graduation in UP

1.Fr Tino during Papa Dinoy and Mama Elena 25th Golden Wedding Anniversary and Macrine in Boac
2.During His Ordination as a Roman Catholic Priest in Manila

Fr Tino at Rene Nieva Office, Perceptions-Inc, Manila, and at Chateau Du Mer Marinduque during the House Blessing, 1997

Fr Tino blessing of the Chateau Du Mer Beach Resort and Conference Center, 1997

More Pictures after the Blessing of CDM

Here's Macrine's e-mail to relatives as soon as we heard of Tito Tino death.

From: tagajaro@comcast.net
To: "yong nieva"
Cc: "ATOL morente" , "MACRINE katague" , "BOB howard" , "BABY orlina-howard" , renev@nieva.com, "Thelma Santos" , "fe jambalos" , "Lito Quiazon" , "Lito Quiazon" , "Rene Nieva"

Sent: Saturday, October 15, 2011 11:14:05 AM

Subject: Re: Fr.Constantino " Tino" Sarmiento-Nieva has joined His Maker. Please pray for him.

Hello all, cousins, friends and relatives: Dave and I are saddened by Tito Tino death. But death is a reality of life and we are accepting it with pride and realism. Tito Tino had led a good life and was instrumental in our marriage. We have enjoyed numerous visits with Tito Tino, when he was still residing in the East Coast, New York and Long Island specifically. Those memories with him will never be forgotten as long as we lived.

I immedaitely called Pepot, who is here in Mountain View, CA awaiting for the birth of her first grandchild. I also informed Ms Thelma Santos, Dr Rudy Jao and Ms Norma Mercader. We extend our thanks to all our relatives specaially Bing Carrion Buck, who personally took care of him after his retirement. To represent us in the fumeral services in Boac, is my sister-in-law, Ms Siony Jambalos.

Macrine Nieva Jambalos-Katague

Monday, October 24, 2011

Childhood Dreams-Fullfilled and Unfullfilled

One of my unfulfilled dreams is to be able to draw, sketch or paint- the way my father used to do. It turned out I did not inherit his genes to be good in art. But one of my daughter and a couple of my grand children appeared to have the talents for drawing and painting. The above water color painting is a photo-copy of the original painting by Fernando Catague ( a relative) displayed at the Iloilo Museum several years ago.

Goals and dreams of childhood—fullfilled and unfulfilled | ViewsHound

Friday, October 21, 2011

Photo Memories of our Wedding, May 8,1957

The Family Group Picture-Nievas and Jambalos Clan

Engagement Announcement

Wedding Invitation

Groom-David Balleza Katague, Jr.

Bride and Bride of Honor

Bride and bridemaids

Family Tree-Bride

Family Tree-Groom

Parents of the Bride and Groom. From Left to Right: Dr. David Jamili Katague, Mrs. Elena Nieva Jambalos, Groom, Bride, Mrs Paz Balleza Katague and Mr Bernardo Jambalos, Jr.

Wedding Ceremony at the Boac Cathedral

Wedding Cake decorated with miniature Chapel of the Holy Sacrifice, UP, Diliman, Q.C., Philippines

Cake Cutting

Wedding Certificate Signed By Ninong and Ninang

Wedding Journey-On our Way to Honeymoon in Manila

At Home-after the Wedding Honeymoon

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Chicago Photo Memories, 1960-1964

The pictures below were some photographs taken during our years in the Chicago area.

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