Posts tagged ‘summer’

Weekly Photo Challenge: Achievement

soccer boys
I took this picture while roaming around like a homeless person in a public park in Maryland. It was a group of boys and their coaches posing to commemorate their victory in the last game of summer.

soccer boys being honored
I saw them passed under the outstretched hands of their parents forming an honorary arch.

soccer boys having pizza
… and treated with pizza afterwards.

i left the park thinking i just witnessed a piece of America that would warm any heart.

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November 14, 2014 at 2:10 pm 12 comments

weekly photo challenge: carefree

one hot summer day, i took these pictures of a kid in the park enjoying spontaneous spurts from the water jets on the ground. at that moment in time, he didn’t have any care in the world. it was joy unbridled, bowed and then unbowed. it was simply priceless.

August 16, 2013 at 10:39 pm 14 comments

Live Simply

Live Simply
Location: San Francisco, California
Summer is a time to let go and be free and be yourself. It’s a time to take time off from work and enjoy nature. The sunny beaches. The parks. The lakes. The green forests. Oh, it feels good just to think about it. It’s unfortunate that summer has its bad side. It’s also a time when we put a lot of strain in the environment.

In the first place, It seems that the best stuff that nature can offer are usually far from where we live. This requires us to drive and consume gas and contribute to global warming. And when we arrive there, what do we do? We make our presence felt by polluting the place. For instance, we celebrate the outdoor by cooking barbecues with charcoal which contaminates the air by releasing hydrocarbons and tiny soot particles to whoever can breathe them.

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August 9, 2010 at 10:39 am 9 comments

A Rite of Passage

A Sidney Snoeck Photo

When I was growing up in the Philippines, summer was something to look forward to. It was a time of unbridled fun and laughter. It was a time to get away from books and school, to romp and play in the rice paddies, to jump naked from the rails of the bridge into the river 20 feet down below. But there was one summer I welcomed with dread. It was the summer of my circumcision.

I guess I was 10 or 11 then when my cousins stopped by the house to announce that they had decided to go for it that morning. They asked me to join them. Of course, I said, with a slight quiver in my voice.

We walked in subdued silence to a place by the river where our courage would be tested. Under the shade of a tree, we saw an old man patiently sharpening a razor. A few kids were already milling around him when we arrived. We joined the group and waited for the ritual to begin.

Beside the old man was a wooden contraption that looked like an anvil. It was at the tip of this contraption where the foreskin was separated from the glans, stretched, and cut.

After waiting for what seemed like an eternity, the old man gave the boys guava leaves to chew and directed them to form a line. He motioned to the biggest boys to go first on the line, supposedly to set them as models of courage for the other boys. But it wasn’t meant to be in our batch. One of the big boys ran away bottomless when his turn came. Another fainted at the sight of blood, and two bawled out in pain when they were cut. My cousins did better than these models of courage. They faced the old man and his razor like true men.

After the cut was made, the old man told each one to spit on his genital. The saliva mixed with guava leaves was to disinfect and cause the wound to heal faster. Afterwards, he told the newly circumcised to dip himself in the cold water of the river to constrict the blood vessels and stop the blood letting.

When my turn came, I was at the point of fainting. I had seen so much blood in a day. To my relief, the old man told me I wasn’t ready. He found that my foreskin wasn’t fully retractable yet. Unless the foreskin could be pulled back completely behind the head of the penis, he couldn’t perform the procedure.

It was a month later that my father sent me to a clinic in the city where a doctor circumcised me under the watchful eyes of a female nurse. The trip to the clinic didn’t exempt me from the pain. I suffered when the doctor forcefully retracted my foreskin still adhered to the glans. Then I suffered more when he injected anesthesia into the head of the penis. I never experienced that much pain in my life before. Somehow the presence of the nurse calmed me down a bit. She held onto my hand tightly until the procedure was completed.

It took two weeks after the procedure before I was able to walk normal again. But it was worth all the pain I suffered. The stigma of growing up uncircumcised in the Philippines was more than my family and I could bear.

June 1, 2010 at 9:50 am 25 comments

Spare the Air, Dammit

Courtesy: Daily Mail

Traditionally, the Labor Day weekend marks the end of summer. It’s the time when we look forward to autumn when the weather turns cool and becomes more comfortable.But not in California where temperature still goes to 100 degrees in some places.

Yesterday, the weather in the San Francisco Bay Area was so bad that local authorities declared it a ’Spare the Air’ day.

’Spare the Air’ organizers has referred to it as a giant social experiment to encourage people to leave their cars at home. They believe it would help save our planet. Yt’s estimated that every car driven on the road contributes about a pound of pollution per day.

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September 11, 2009 at 2:34 pm 2 comments

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From The Book Thief

i have hated the words and i have loved them, and i hope i have made them right.

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