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Caraganon-sano’s race to Bohol

By Fedilmore Reyes

I cannot wait for May. It’s the time when the whole clan go to Bohol. Bohol is my parents ancestral territory, where the great Boholano of the ancients, Dagohoy, once reigned.

May is when Bohol sinks because thousands Bol-anons come visiting home is the common joke among Bol-anons themselves. Perhaps that is one shining trait of Bol-anons as they love to make fun without belittling themselves.

Every sano and sana (male and female buddy) is fair game or a term of endearment. In Tagalog, it means kababayan.

There are many Bol-anon migrants all over Mindanao, particularly Caraga region, mainly because it’s nearest to the Bohol shores.

“Molabay lang ka’g bato, Bohol na” bragged my late grandfather, who insisted before he died, to be buried in Carmen, his hometown in Bohol.  “To be with the Chocolate hills.”

The Chocolate hills famous all over the world for its uniqueness, is every Bol-anons pride.

But going home to Bohol is not fun, not on the month of May because everyone is elbowing each other as they board the boat, the only one boat from this side of Mindanao.

Sometimes, I fear of overloading because we know how people have no discipline and hard to control and authorities don’t do their job well.

“How I wish there are special planes from Butuan to Jagna so that we get there comfortably fast,” voiced-out an auntie from Ubay town.

Bol-anons are proud of their famous and respected sano’s like actor Cesar Montano and Jose Abueva. Not heard of this guy? Why, he is the former president of  University of the Philippines!

He is one of the respected Abueva brothers from Tagbilaran City. The other brother is Napoleon Abueva, an artist, named a national artist of the Philippines.

In the line of beauty and pulchritude, one young Boholana bagged the Binibing Pilipinas World crown a few years ago and another one reached the finals years later and join the movies but bowed out early.

She was even on a cover of a men’s magazine. But who can forget the famous Loboc Children’s choir that performed in elite cultural centers and who sang like angels?

It is not a wonder that most respected Caraganons from all the cities and towns of the region have Boholano’s blood. And let us not forget-Yoyoy Villame! the most famous Bisaya singer and entertainer of Visayas and Mindanao.

The other most popular Bol-anon was a former lowly bus driver of the island.

Even when Yoyoy is now gone, his songs are still played on radio, sang by young and old. The most popular and hilarious is the Magellan’s “anthem.” Thanks to the high-school graduate, we all got to know Philippine history-with a lively twist.

Yoyoy, by twist of fate, became the country’s famous historian! Magellan should thank him or he (Magellan)be hardly known this side of the world.

May is nearing, just  weeks to go and I cannot wait to go home to my ancestral land, home to my loving and critical ancestors. There is much love and grace there.






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