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Pahiyas Festival

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Pahiyas Festival

Day of the fiesta came, May 15. We were lucky because the next fiesta date that fell on a weekend was on 2016.

We left Castle Bernardina at around 10am to have brunch at Buddy's in SM Lucena. We had Lucban longganisa and pancit again.

Then we rode the FX going to Lucban. I wasn't prepared for the traffic that jammed us not even halfway to the town. It was bumper to bumper for all of 2 hours. Sigh.

Hanging decors

I was so relieved when we finally got out the stuffy FX. It was still some distance to the proper but we managed. We bought native hats for protection first because the sun was beating down strongly.

homeowners have outdone themselves with these decors

First Runner Up

Since this was my first pahiyas festival, I was really excited to view the colorful houses decorated with  crops and kiping. And boy, I wasn't disappointed. We didn't start at the beginning of the route but just went with the horde of people.

Some houses were totally unique and it wasn't long before we found the first  runner up winner which won  P50,000. I learned from earlier research that only houses where the parade will pass decorated. The route was changed every year and it would be 7 years before a house would need to decorate again. This was done to give the owners enough time to prepare for the event.

artificial rain

Happy fiesta!

I couldn't help but be amazed at the creativity of the homeowners. One house was covered all in tomatoes and one had fashioned some sort of fountainin the roof to make it look like light rain was falling. I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves.

Kiping with sugar

Lucban longganisa

Now that we had seen the first runner up, it becameour mission to find the house that won first place. By 5pm, we had already seen the third runner up, the pancit festival parade, the floats again, street dancers, but still no sign of the champion, not even the second runner up.

Third Runner Up

Second Runner Up

Thanksgiving for a bountiful harvest

weird insect-crop things hanging from the ceiling

We paused to eat at Patio Rizal, the only place that wasn't jampacked at the time. My feet were really killing me but I was dead set on seeing the champion before we left Lucban.

We went the opposite direction where we first started the route and very soon came upon the second runner up. By now, the decorated houses were alight with christmas lights as it was nearly 7pm.
Ropes made from coconut husks

Then finally, finally! We glimpsed the winning house. It was covered in lights that reminded me of Polycarpio street in Mandaluyong on Christmas. The grand prize was P65,000. We entered the house to get our pictures taken on the balcony and thanked and congratulated the owners as we left.

With our mission completed, I thought everything would be over. I was wrong. We still had the challenging task of getting out of Lucban and be home for a decent night's rest because we still had work the next day.

Grand Prize Winner
We figured we had no chance to get a direct bus to Manila so we fell in line for a jeep going to Sta. Cruz. When we finally arrived, all the buses were gone and we were informed that the next available bus would leave at 2am. What!?

So taking our chances, we road another jeep to Pagsanjan where we transferred again to go to Calamba, Laguna. Then a tricycle ride took us to Turbina where a bus to Cubao was waiting. We were the last passengers to climb aboard. Whew! At last we were on our way home and we arrived at 1am.

I was so tired but I would do it all over again in a heartbeat!


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