San Nicolas and Santa Teresita: Historic and Folkloric Notes about some of its Barrios

Exploring forgotten stories about the barrios of San Nicolas and Santa Teresita.

Balandis: the Slanted Houses Along a Road in Cuenca/Alitagtag

Exploring this quaint area in Cuenca and Alitagtag where the houses are slanted away from the road.

Mataasnakahoy: Historical and Folkloric Trivia about some of Its Barrios

Revisiting obscure barrio histories of the barrios of the Municipality of Mataasnakahoy.

An Old Tourist Spot in Taal Called the Pansipit Fishery

A throwback to a by-gone era, when tourists around Luzon visited this resort in Taal and Lemery.

The Hitchhiker who Gets on at the Zigzag in Cuenca Batangas Lipa

A tall tale familiar to all who drive through this curving road in Cuenca. Is it really a tall tale, though?

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31 May 2016

Changing a Misconception about How Magellan Died at the Hands of Lapu-Lapu

Ferdinand Magellan.  Image credit:  Wikipedia. By Unknown - Unknown, Public Domain,

Ask Google the question “how did Magellan die” and based on this exact text search string, the search engine will confidently declare that the Portuguese explorer’s cause of death was a “stab wound.” I do not blame Google because this was also how I had always thought Magellan was killed; i.e. at the hands of Lapu-lapu by way of either a lance or a sword. I do not recall exactly how this notion of Magellan’s death came to be etched in my mind; but my guess is that I was influenced by pictures in elementary Social Science books depicting that historic battle at Mactan, Cebu in late April of 1521.

27 May 2016

Antique Book Suggests Batangas Tagalog was Once More Widely Spoken in Pre-Hispanic Times

Image credit: by Juan de Plasencia -, Public Domain,

The book’s complete title, in Spanish, is “Doctrina Christiana en Lengua Española y Tagala Corregida Reglos por Los Religiosos de las Ordenes.” In English, “Christian Doctrine in the Spanish Language and Tagalog, with Correct Rules for the Religious of the Orders.1

25 May 2016

Schwarzkopf’s Shaping Future held Hair Fashion Show at SM City Lipa

Receiving the certificates of appreciation are (center) SM City Lipa Mall Manager Liza F. Dimaculangan and PR Manager Wendy C. Bautista, together with the Schwarzkopf hair specialists from Australia and New Zealand during the culmination event of Shaping Futures.  SM City Lipa has been supporting advocacies in the promotion of welfare for women through SM Supermalls’ SM Cares program.

Thirty women and youngsters were given free hairdressing training by the world renowned beauty care brand Schwarzkopf Professional. The training was part of Schwarzkopf’s “Shaping Futures,” a unique training program dedicated to teaching disadvantaged youngsters the craft of hairdressing so they can forge a brighter future for themselves. Its unique training program has powered the company's growth around the world, with Jordan and the Philippines two of the five new country additions in 2014.

21 May 2016

Azkals’ Neil Etheridge and Walsall Miss Chance for Wembley Play-off

The 2015-16 Walsall FC team. Image credit:

The Philippine Azkals’ first-choice goalkeeper Neil Etheridge missed a chance to play at Wembley after his English League One club Walsall lost both legs of the promotion play-offs to Barnsley by the aggregate score of 6-1.

20 May 2016

Did the Tagalog People Originate from Batangas? (And Other Notes About the Origins of the Tagalogs)

Image credit: by Sulbud at English Wikipedia [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Percy Hill, in an article published by the Philippine Magazine in 1937, seemed to think so. “The shores of the lake [Taal], its towns and river settlements, are in all probability the ancestral birthplace of the Tagalogs, who, according to tradition, were named taga-ilogs (people from the river) from their primitive nayon (village) on the Pansipit…1

Passport Application Procedure, DFA Consular Office at Robinson's Place, Lipa City, Batangas

This page contains information about how to obtain a passport at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Regional Consular Office at Robinson's Place, Lipa City, Batangas.  Before proceeding, please take a moment to read this announcement that was posted outside the consular office.  Kindly note that this web site is NOT in any way connected with the DFA and this article is posted as a public service.  The information contained herein MAY CHANGE over time, so kindly consider the date of this posting which may be seen near the top of this article.  Finally, the author does not have the time to respond to all questions or clarifications; but you may post yours anyway and hope that others who have undergone the application will take time to reply.

15 May 2016

20 Forgotten Filipino Superstitions from an Obscure Lipa City Historical Document

The superstitions enumerated in this article are from an obscure document entitled “Historical and Cultural Life of the City of Lipa” which I downloaded from the National Library of the Philippines’ Digital Archives.1 The document is incomplete and the date is missing, but given the papers’ yellowed state when scanned and the use of a typewriter to create it, my guess is that it must have been created at the latest in the fifties, but most possibly even earlier.

13 May 2016

The Story Behind the Sinking of the Galleon San Diego Off Nasugbu’s Fortune Island

By Unknown - Illustration from Peregrinationes" from Théodore de Bry, 1603 (copy in Boston Public Library). Wikimedia Commons.

“That, whereas, because of the coming to these islands of two hostile English [sic] ships, the preparation of a fleet to attack them was immediately discussed with the resolution and advice of the Royal Audiencia, and for this effect it was resolved that Antonio de Morga should go to the port of Cabit (Cavite) to attend to the fitting and despatch of the said war-vessels and the defence of that port… he has attended until now, to the defence of the said port, and the fitting and equipping of the said fleet, consisting of the vessel “San Diego,” of Sebu (Cebu), the galleon “San Bartolome,” which he caused to be finished in the shipyard launched, an English patache1 from the city of Malaca, a galliot1 which was fitted up, and other smaller craft…2

10 May 2016

Mayors and Vice-Mayors in the Province of Batangas 2017-2019

Below is a listing of all Mayors and Vice-Mayors in the Province of Batangas as per the results of the City/Municipality elections held in 2016. Terms end on 2019.

How Batangas Voted in the Presidential, VP and Senatorial Elections

With 100% of Certificates of Canvass received by the Commission on Elections from Batangas, the picture is crystal clear how much support – or lack of it – each presidential, vice-presidential and senatorial candidate received from the province.

08 May 2016

Lighthouses in Batangas: Safety Beacons for Seafarers

Image sent in by Jigger Gilera, MD.

Lighthouses are beacons of light that shine in the dark and serve as “navigational aid for maritime pilots at sea or inland waterways.” They “mark dangerous coastlines, hazardous shoals, reefs, safe entries to harbours, and can also assist in aerial navigation.1

03 May 2016

The Girls from Batangas in the UAAP Women’s Volleyball Finals

The deciding match of the UAAP Season 78 women’s volleyball final was dominated by one Kim Kianna Dy from De La Salle Zobel in Alabang, who deservedly was named finals MVP. However, something not lost on followers of the league was that both sides of the court were littered with lasses from Batangas.

01 May 2016

Finding Ferdinand: the Search for the Irish Ancestor of the Mayo Clan of Lipa

Image credit:  It's Xiaotime!

After I posted my previous article about the escapades of the British army in Batangas in the 18th century on social media, my former boss Brother Manual Pajarillo, a De La Salle Christian Brother, left this comment: “I am a 7th generation Mayo, who trace their roots to an Irishman Ferdinand Mayo, who married a lady (named) Pantoja of Lipa. In my rough estimate of about 40 years for one generation, that places him being of a young marriageable age between 1762 and 1770. Which means that if there is any truth to the legend, he would have been a mercenary soldier who went AWOL when his British employer (the Army) withdrew from Lipa at the end of the war.1