Monday, January 28, 2008

The Capitol Lagoon and the Carabao

Anywhere you go around Bacolod, one cannot miss to spot the gray coloured beast flocked by either sparrows or mosquitoes hovering on its head. One cannot always miss the site of this friendly beast of burden that has become one of the symbols of our nation. From the boy scouts' hanky, to the mascot of a prominent newspaper, this beast has always been on the spotlight. I myself never miss this beast for my office in near our library with its design copied from the house of our first president, Emilio Aguinaldo in Kawit, Cavite with the head of the beast below the infamous balcony. Obviously, I am talking about the carabao or the water buffaloo.

When I was still young, I was really fascinated with my uncles riding on the back of this beast in the afternoons. My fascination was unquenchable that I bravely asked one of my uncles to get the carabao in the field and bring it home. He said yes and a big smile flowered in my face. And there I went, took the carabao and rode over its back. Unfortunately, I am a dumb ass who does not have any idea how to manuever it. And so the carabao plus I, went directly into a muddy ditch and the beast just stayed there cooling its ass with me stuck in shame.

Coming over to Bacolod City, one will never also miss the sight of live carabaos especially in farmlands. One will also have a fair share of the smell of dung these carabaos usually leave in the streets. But one great spot where carabaos have never got tired of skirmishing and their masters never abandoned their beasts is in the Capitol Lagoon. "It is located in front of the Capitol Building. To the north and south ends of the rectangular lagoon stand the statues of a woman and female water buffalo and a man and a male water buffalo, respectively. The woman standing beside the female water buffalo is a massive sculptural work said to have been done by a Italian artist whose work was never been duplicated until a Negrense artist who finished Fine Arts from the University of the Philippines duplicated the Italian's work of art by coming out with a man and male water buffalo. Presently, the lagoon grounds is a favorite jogging area of Bacolod residents."

In Marikina City, you can also see carabaos (white) flocking the riverside. These beasts also come and go, depending on the tide of the river.

In the Capitol Lagoon, these carabaos have become a landmark to visitors and the people of Bacolod and Negros Occidental as a whole. The Capitol is the seat of power of the province where hardwork, patience and dedication is at its best like the carabao. Any visitor coming over to the City of Smiles should never miss this wonderful and relaxing place.
(picture courtesy of bacolod city government)

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