‘Twas a bright Saturday morning when I wake up with a never-before had combined feelings of anticipation and enthusiasm. Firsts are always memorable and in fact on that particular day, as the ferocity of the sun’s rays became unbearable, the excitement that enveloped me was also far escalating. I have always loved to witness and discover new things probably because they make the pages of my life fonder to look back and reminisce.
Finally, the long time of waiting was over. At the age of 22, I witnessed the much-talked about, world-renowned Masskara Festival in the city of smiles, Bacolod City. It has been five months since the time that I first set foot in the city but I was like counting days and its Masskara time.
MASSKARA Festival! The excitement in the air was rising. People from all walks of life filled the sides and corners of every street. There were children and grown-ups, white skinned and brown-skinned, oval and round faces, people of all sorts. The scorching sun’s heat never deterred people from walking all around the corners brushing elbows with unknown acquaintances. Happy and eager faces met everywhere. Group of friends laughed their way kiosks after kiosks in search of something. People’s voices mixed up as they belt out their all-time favorite pieces in innumerable “videoki machines” spread all over the city park. Festive sounds reverberated in every highway. Colors varying in hues were a common picture. Festival dancers graced their way on the tortuous streets who still managed to say hi’s and hello’s to their parents and friends along the way. ‘Twas indeed a perfect time to celebrate!
Masks of the World. This is what the 27th Masskara Festival was all about. Feathery masks. Elongated masks. Name it and it’s there! All with vibrant colors crafted skillfully in various sizes and designs. They were all captivating and pulsating which proves the ingenuity of Filipinos. It was a conglomeration of all faces in the world. Asian. European. American. Australian. It was a time to unite the world using the symbol of the mask. When defined, a mask is a covering for the eyes, mouth, or whole face. It conceals or disguises true feelings as manifested by our face. Indeed the Festival is merrymaking! It is a time to forget life’s complexities. It’s a time to forget that we are a country in poverty amidst wide and abundant natural resources, a country with public servants becoming public masters, a country lagging behind in science and technology amidst our intellectual manpower. It is a time to celebrate that we are Filipinos able to excel with other races in the world and a time to foster our friendship with other nationals.
So the next time you plan for a place visit, Bacolod is for you! Enjoy! I just did!