It was for unity that UP Ibalon was formed from Paglaom’s broken remains. I thought the outcome was similar to a break-up of a dysfunctional family whose members had to part ways. The quarrels were intensely unbearable and Paglaom had to go.
As Bicolanos, we certainly got many things in common, but we had to suffer the break-up nonetheless. There were bickerings on issues that were contentious, but most were trivial, almost silly and childish. The regular Bicolanos who were just out to seek friends and share their evanescent passage through school, weren’t bothered. But it couldn’t be denied. There were those whose points of view were so disparate—in their ways of choosing good company, in their judgment of what was essential.
Today, we are in pursuit of unity again. Zards Colambo keeps a revised constitution for a guide. From Davao, Mighty Baylon links with Ibalons to strengthen the ties among us. And so are Yasmin Paje-Banzon and Gods A. Lanuza, who’re in Vancuover, Canada.
The Naga group of Andy Gimpaya, Butch Robredo, Fatima Balaquiao, Eden Borja-Fernando, May Magdalene Yorobe, Analee Badiola, and Ann Mariano seeks out Ibalons who might find interest in a bonding for a cause, this time as Ibalonians with wisdom to boot.
No wonder Rolan Bulao is open to be with us. Teddy Rigoroso and his group are about ready to be invited. Grace Penaflor-Sapuay, Rhoda R. Poliquit, Donna Nolasco and Kulas Sala may have questions that deserve answers. UP Ibalon Bicol reaches out for those who are out there. Let’s grind the ax and break our bread together!
Yet, why then do we have UP Harong and UP Tanaw? Do we want unity in the narrow confines of a province? A town? A barangay? Is our drive for sequestration greater than the need to be bonded together? Are we unlike the rest of the Filipinos who’re in endless pursuit for wholeness and meaning?
With the scandals and outrages happening in our country, the need to close ranks and be united is ever more important. From fire and ash, we must be renewed; the phoenix within us must rise!