Six degrees of separation Mindanao Style
I ask Maui and Sunnie who we are going to meet at Tribu. Sunnie says some Talaandig tribe musicians, a guy named Waway. I had heard that name before, Ros' good friend who she said I *had* to go and meet. She was even trying to get me to go to Davao with her then swing up through Bukidnon where the Talaandigs make their home. I wonder what forces in the universe are at play now. It seems like everyone in Mindanao knows each other. These activist/artist/cultural worker networks are intricately intermeshed. I guess I'm going to meet Waway afterall.
We enter and the musicians are already playing atop a walkway overlooking the club. We head to the back where some of the Kambayoka tour members are. I meet some more of Ros' friends, a visual artist from Cagayan de Oro. Next to me is also the Department of Tourism (DOT) guy for the region. I proclaim that I survived Marawi without a bullet scratch on me.
We drink some San Miguel beers with ice and listen to the music. Their traditional instruments consist of drums, a lute like instrument and a flute. They are all younger around their late 20s and 30s. Ros told me much about Waway and for his passion in preserving his people's passion.
We chat about how my trip overall went and what I did. The DOT officer said he will tour us around the ecovillage tomorrow morning. Their latest campaign is WOW Philippines (World of Wonders). I saw some of their ads when Dick Gordon, DOT head, was touring the US showing the videos, very splashy videos. I don't particularly like Dick Gordon. He made most of his money exploiting women in the Subic Bay area courting US Navy men. This also makes him perfect as the head of the DOT.
The musicians end their set and come to join us. I'm still pondering why I'm supposed to meet Waway, one way or another on this trip. Maui introduces us. And our conversation goes like this:
me: nice to meet you. Ros over at Tarzan's told me a lot about you. Said I should meet you.
waway: good meeting you.
That's it. And thus completes the Mindanao version of six degrees of separation. Maybe I'll work with him in the future.
The group hangs out a bit more, then we head back to the hotel. I need to finish packing. Tomorrow is my last day.