Thursday, March 5, 2009

Mangroves and Madyass

In Kalibo, my host dad Botoy took me around the city, which still showed some of the damage left over from Typhoon Frank. As we crossed a bridge, I could see lamposts which had been twisted by the winds and rain.

The team traveled to the Bachawan Echo Park, a giant mangrove forest. We walked almost a kilometer through the trees, some of which had been lost in the typhoon. It was a beautiful sight, as we trekked underneath the canopy of leaves and branches.

Afterwards we took a our of Asu Banga, an agricultural college where Botoy, a farmer for many years, gives a weekly lecture each Saturday. I was very impressed with the wide variety of programs the students are working on.

Though retired, Botoy still works as the publisher of the local newspaper, the Madyass Pen, and took me to his office. Though small, it has the air and presence of a real newsroom. I checked out some of the rough drafts of upcoming pages, and Botoy showed me how he gets from articles to the finished copy. We joked that if he ever needs someone to take over that he should give me a call. We also saw a pig farm, as well as a beach owned by Botoy's wife's family.

Once more I and the team took to the airwaves at DYRU, the local radio station. Doug, Jon and I answered some questions on where we had gone and our experiences. Our last stop before hitting the road for Roxas was the Kalibo Pilot Elementary School, which has seen some support from the Rotary Club.

On to Roxas!

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