Presidential sister Kris Aquino explores Ilocos

Presidential sister Kris Aquino visits the Laoag La Paz Sand Dunes, part of the Vigan-Laoag feature on KrisTV

Friday last week, we received a call from KrisTV informing us that they were coming over to shoot sand adventure at the Laoag La Paz Sand Dunes. Reny, the LEAD Movement President (of the NGO that innovated sandboarding in the Philippines), asked if Kris Aquino would be coming over, and we got a “yes.”  Initially, I thought it was a prank call. Weirdly, we get one of those crazy calls every once in a while. After an exchange of emails with KrisTV researcher Cyrill Tajanlangit, I was still sort of speculative until Wednesday pm when two of Kris’ close-in security aides visit Reny at our home. Don’t get me wrong, of course, we appreciate protocol, after all Ms. Kris is a presidential sister and the undisputed Queen of All Media. Elation sets in.

So real, Ms. Kris Aquino tours Ilocos. Watch out for the airing of the Vigan-Laoag feature on ABS-CBN KrisTV. Its new timeslot is 8AM.

We were more than pleased to have the show’s special guest, the irrepressible John “Sweet” Lapus, on a LEAD Movement sandboard. We watched him go through an emotional roller coaster ride — from a state of frenzy to pride and exhilaration. At the end of the descent, he yelled, “Bongga!” (A Filipino term that means fabulous or awesome.) He heaves a sigh of relief  and adds, “Bandang gitna nakakalula. Pero ang sarap, Kris!”

Sweet, Bimby and Kris AquinoJohn Lapus gears up while Kris Aquino and Bimby watchJohn "Sweet" Lapus on LEAD Movement's sandboardReady, set, go!"Nakakalula...""Bongga!"Kris Aquino and Bimby

With Bimby in tow, mom Kris goes back to offroad with Junior Fariñas, youngest son of 1st District of Ilocos Norte Representative Rodolfo ‘Rudy” Fariñas.

Kris Aquino tries offroading at the Laoag La Paz Sand DunesDarla Sauler and LEAD's Benny Arce

Entertainment writer Darla Sauler with LEAD Movement Executive Director Benny Arce. In the photo below, with KrisTV segment producer James is LEADer MC Manangan.

MC Managan with JamesPicture 039

Everything went on very quickly. Stole the moment. Sorry, high noon heat!

With special  thanks to Ms. Krs Aquino, Sweet Lapus and KrisTV.

Our LEAD Movement, sandboarding innovators in the PhilippinesHappy to be a member of LEAD Movement, the innovators of sandboarding in the Philippines

No blinking now. Proud Ilocano moment. LEAD, which stands for Laoag Eco-Adventure Development, conceptualized sandboarding in 2009 in hopes of attracting more tourists to Ilocos Norte.  Although Reny likes to call it a backyard project, we aimed to market the unproductive, idle vast centuries-old sand dunes for niche tourism helping the essential trickle-down effect. It was a long and ardous road.  Those who have followed the blog early on are familiar with that road. It’s almost as old as BlauEarth. We never thought sandboarding would reach this far, this big. We’re moving on to a new adventure. In the works…

On a personal note, I wish to extend my thanks to all those who’ve helped the group in one way or another, to the media for the exposure, and to all those who found hot Ilocos sand adventure cool.

LEAD Movement

Also to the LEAD Movement sandboarding team who never tires. And to you, lovelies, who follow the blog, like my posts, and keep me inspired writing about anything under the Ilocos sun. Can I say, you give meaning to my world?

Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2012

Noynoy and Kris Aquino experience the warm Ilocano hospitality

“They came out. There, I cannot ask for more.’ — the  reaction of Senator Noynoy Aquino (son of late Philippine senator Benigno S. Aquino and former Philippine president Corazon C. Aquino), who is running for president in the coming Philippine elections in May this year, to the warm reception his party received in a campaign visit to Ilocos Norte, hometown of the late Apo, former President Ferdinand E. Marcos. It was the first time he and his sister, moviestar/television host, Kris Aquino, set foot in the Marcos bailiwick. People Power Revolution, also known as EDSA Revolution, toppled the 20-year Marcos regime. It is the same people’s power that catapulted their late mother to presidency in 1986.

“I was surprised because I was expecting that this airport would be empty, but I’m very grateful  that the people were here, but, of course, when we went out, it’s a whole different story altogether. On the way here, I said two rosaries and I said, ‘mom, please give us strength that I won’t say anything that might cause the Ilocanos to be angry towards Noy and me, and I pray that our trip here will be fine,”  Kris was quoted to have said.

Kris looked happy while she announced,  “… nanggaling kami sa Laoag, eh, grabe naman po ang pagmamahal na pinaabot sa amin (… we were in Laoag… the love that they extended to us was super).”

In a reconciliatory tone, former Ilocos Norte representative Imee Marcos,  eldest daughter of late former president Marcos, said in a television interview, “We should forget the past…  I’m quite relieved by the Marcos-Aquino situation. I’m hoping that it is the same with them.”

The Ilocanos, known for their warm and enthusiastic hospitality, proved that magnanimity is also part of their culture.