Our school breaks up for the summer and the cicadas are singing now! I don’t like the winter because I easily succumb to the cold and I love the summer!! Recently we often have an evening shower like a squall, dump heavy drops. In Nagoya, during the daytime, it’s so hot and muggier than Manila I suppose. I suggest Japanese also should have MIRIENDA (forenoon and afternoon snacks) and SIESTA, napping.
I talk with Mr. Ota, the president of the Areppo Soap at the World Compass
site, the Fair Trade event. Here’s the photo of us and the Areppo Soap tower.
He is so nice and talkative guy.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t listen to him talk about Syria, but I could hear about Cocowell the company that aid to Philippine and Slow Coffee that sell fair trade coffee. Here’s the reports of their talk. (Sorry, but Japanese only.)
On the last day is the Sunday and it rained do heavily and we don’t have many customers and visitors and I hope we could have more people. Now Nagoya is the Fair Trade Town but only a few people know about this and at the international cooperation events in Nagoya City not many customers have always showed up. More people can know about NGO events and come up to them I hope.
On this occasion, I talk about Baguio, the City in the sky.
6. Spooky?? No, your stay will be nice and cozy!! The Gateway to North Luzon -- Baguio, the city in the sky--
I travelled to Baguio and stayed TALA SHARE and GUEST HOUSE http://www.tala-guesthouse.org/english-top/ managed by the Cordillera Green Network, the environmental NGO in Philippines and Japan. I saw the “Luplupa Villagers and the River Creatures” exhibition in Kyoto before and these pictures drawn with pigments made from earth materials are so beautiful. You can see it thorough the picture book from CGN. http://cordillera.exblog.jp/24500217/ At this exhibition, I happened to meet Mr. Yamamoto Kiminari, who composed music “The Spirit of Forest.” http://www.yamamoto-kosei.com/index.html He visited that beautiful Banaue Rice Terrace and inspired by the trip. Baguio city is the gateway to the Rice Terrace.
Unfortunately, I visited only Baguio at that time, but I hope I go around north Luzon someday… I really feel the spirits’ sign in Baguio City. Living in nature and value of spiritual and holy things lead to “Wisdom of Diversity” I recognized in Baguio.
Baguio city doesn’t have an airport so I went there by bus. There is the Agno River on the way. This is the river in the island of Luzon in the Philippines and it originates in the Cordillera Mountains. Roughly 2 million people live in the Agno River Valley and the river is dammed by three hydroelectric plants; the Ambuklao Dam, the Binga Dam, and the San Roque Dam. The water releases by the dams, rainfall in the rainy season and typhoons increases the water level of the river and this is a serious concern of the indigenous peoples along the Agno River upstream of the dam, as well as the downstream communities.
CGN and FoE (Friend of the earth) are Japanese NGOs that inspect those large developments, including Japanese ODA (Official Development Assistance.) They also make efforts to draw the attention of legislators to this issue of politically-motivated killings, because in the Philippines, sometimes residents’ leaders are killed extra-judicially and resulting in the local people keeping silent, which has had a huge impact on their freedom of expression.
And the Cordillera also sits upon a rich mineral belt that traverses the region. For the mining companies, it’s a golden opportunity, but for the indigenous people of the Cordillera, it’s a serious crisis of their life. CGN promotes indigenous people’s rights and work for the recognition and defense of these rights, especially now in the face of globalization, multinational companies. CGN also promotes sustainable agriculture and environmental education.
At the TALA SHARE and GUESTHOUSE managed by CGN, you can enjoy good fair-trade coffee. The coffee is made from organic Agroforestry in the north mountainous areas in the Luzon Island. I enjoyed it with the other guests in last March. All the guests and staffs are so nice at TALA.
Then I could talk with Ms Mariko Sorimachi, the representative of CGN. I saw the exhibition of original paintings of “The Luplupa Villagers and the River Creatures” in last December so initially I intended to ask about the paintings drawn with earth materials.
However, I was shocked to hear about Mr. Vince, Vincent Francisco Navarro, one of the soil painting workshop facilitators at CGN. He passed away at the young age of 23 last February and the memorial exhibition would be given at Café Yagam, located at the TALA GUESTHOUSE site two days later. Ms Sorimachi was so shocked and overwhelmed by grief. Vince was supposed to fly to New York and study the art of the American Indians, but he had a bypass operation for his colon and small intestine, and his condition was worsened by lung infection. I pray for the repose of his soul.
You can see Vince’s paintings here. He actively worked as an artist, in addition, he transmit the culture of traditional paintings. He was a splendid volunteer for CGN where he taught mud paintings and pottery to children in Mt. Province, Kalinga and Abra province. He was devoted sun so he used to accompany his mother, a ticket seller in one of the local theaters in Baguio, by becoming a “lagarista”(cinema reel porter). When the movies faded, he became a “komboy”(porter) at the Baguio market.
I wish his talent could have bloomed in New York. In closing, let me introduce the soil painting picture book. Now it’s only in Japanese but you can see the pictures and the artists’ and children’s names. I hope you will savor every beautiful picture and the animistic culture in Kalinga.
[August 31, 2016]