In a progressive province of Aklan, settles an unassuming town of Ibajay. Ibajay lies on the Northwest part of the Province of Aklan. It is bounded from the North by Sibuyan Sea; South by the Municipality of Madalag; East by the Municipality of Tangalan, Makato and Malinao; and West by the Municipality of Nabas and on Southwest by the Province of Antique.
The celebration kicked off on Saturday at 12 noon, when Ibajaynons and visitors (me included) gathered in front of the Rectory bringing our/their own stuff, I settled for a twig while others had crabs and shrimps tied to a pole and gyrating to the drum beats – under the heat of a 10 o’clock sun. Usually, I learned, the town folks carry with them anything – from twigs, flowers, leaves to a pig head to welcome the Sto. Nino. On a personal note, I needed one to be noticed from a throng of believers and revelers. Euphoria – it may seem but the faces of the Ibajaynons beam with faith and piety.
This is the tradition I read from Bombi Mobo. Right before my eyes were faces painted with sooth from the bottom of pots and kettles. The steps, unpracticed and non-choreographed, denote an impression of playing with the Sto. Nino. Humble painted faces of devotees emit an overwhelming expression of thanksgiving.