I am posting again some past summer pictures taken in Bolinao last May 2011. I thought I would like to group these pictures into one category; and they fall under religious pictures, I guess. These shots were taken inside the St. James Church and some in Fatima Hill.
FATIMA HILL (9:00 am)
Fatima Hill was not originally in our itinerary because I have never known such place existing in Bolinao. The plan was to have landscape photography in Port Bolinao Light Station; not to be confused with Bolinao Lighthouse; to capture the light tower that helps the local fishermen of Bolinao Town proper and the people of Santiago Island to navigate in their respective fishing areas. Prior to this, I brought a picture of Port Bolinao Light Station Tower and I shared it with our tour guide and asked him if he knows where this is. He is quite puzzled – thinking. “Oo, alam ko to, tara!” Then he drove us to the place. We thought this tower was just standing somewhere near the Bolinao shore, like the Bolinao Lighthouse, but apparently it is erected on a hill, and the way leading to the top of the hill was close or restricted to the public or visitors. So we never had a chance. But our “tour guide” suggested that we might want to try another famous hill – the Fatima Hill – it is just a minute drive. So we headed to our “Plan B” destination. Good lord, it was open but you have to climb quite number of steps leading to the top of the hill. The hill is actually steep and quite high but nevertheless I am excited to see the things waiting for us.
I thought I was disappointed with the place, it was barren. No things that would interest me. No people too so it was creepy. But of course, obviously, it was called Fatima Hill and it is kinda expected that there is a statue of Our Lady of Fatima on top of the hill. I think this place is crowded during Holy Week, this was evidenced by some burnt candles around and there were benches too – so this place was never barren at all – some Bolinao local go here to pray – and then I feel solemnity. So I just quietly inspected the area, and took some pictures. The breeze from the sea was quite relaxing. The panorama was good. You can see the Santiago Island and some parts of the Bolinao mainland from this point of view and even the faint Port Bolinao Light Station tower.
We just only had some minutes to finish our thing here so we headed down the hill. I am sure I would like to see this place again but during Holy Week I think.
After Fatima Hill, we decided to go to Luciente Wharf or some local call it Picocobuan Port, for our next destination, via banca to Silaki Island Giant Clam Hatchery - But i’m gonna skip that story, – let’s stick to religious pictures first.
St. James The Great Parish
The heat was exhausting – we just came from Silaki Island and our next destination is the St. James The Great Parish.
I know this church, I have read a lot about it, I have seen a lot of pictures of it, but I missed visiting this church whenever I go in Bolinao for the past 4 years. So on my 5th visit, I should see this church, seriously, now na!”
The church was obviously old – 402 years old, and another famous Pangasinan church for me to visit aside from the Our Lady of Manaoag. But compare to Manaoag, the St. James Church is smaller, suffice for the population of Bolinao. I think it is still under renovation because of the past typhoons that have hit this part of Luzon. I wish I could have seen this church before it was destroyed – what could have been the look of the ceiling of the church before now that it was replaced by steel beams and lined with silver heat reflecting pad – it’s not rustic. But some of the massive wooden beams are still there – interestingly, a number of sleeping bats are clinging upside down to these wood beams, indeed. And that’s why some parts of the church have bat poop or guano – yun rin pala ang amoy ng guano.
It was already past lunch, the breeze of hot and salty air makes you wanna go siesta – I want to doze inside the church. It was calm and quiet. But of course, we still have some places to visit, so next stop were Balingasay River and then to Enchanted Cave.
To follow is the story in Silaki Island Sanctuary, Luciente Wharf, and the Patar Beach itself.