CELEBRATING CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR IN MY HOMETOWN OF CATEEL

Today, I’m compiling all the beautiful snapshots I took during the two weeks holiday vacation I spent in my rustic hometown of Cateel, Davao Oriental. Yes, two weeks of sheer joy, funny moments and exciting merriment enjoying the most wonderful time of year with my family and friends in this special place so close to my heart.

Christmas Eve Mass at St. James the Apostle Church
Christmas Eve Mass at St. James the Apostle Church

Before I went back home, I had few invitations to travel and spend the holidays somewhere. In fact, I had plane tickets purchased earlier but I opted to cancel all my planned trips and declined travel invitations for December to spend fully my two-week break in my quaint hometown of Cateel.

The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013

This was the first Christmas after that horrific calamity that hardly hit our town last December 4, 2012 – the Super Typhoon Pablo. During those times, Christmas holidays was barely felt. Power supply was down. Most of houses were roofless. People didn’t have much to buy food and stuffs to prepare for Noche Buena and Media Noche. Gloomy as it may sound; it was the darkest Christmas that Cateel ever had.

I Felt the Christmas Rush in Cateel
Christmas Rush in Cateel

But one struggling year after that catastrophic day, Cateel and our people are moving forward facing new homes, new hopes and new beginnings. And this time, our people were up, jovial and ready to celebrate CHRISTMAS and NEW YEAR with a big bang! As a true son of Cateel, I didn’t want to miss this event! This is something I want to experience, something I wanted to look back when I grow old, and something I want to share to you and to the rest of the world.

Midnight Scene in Cateel During the New Year's Eve Celebration
Midnight Scene in Cateel During the New Year’s Eve Celebration

From my hometown of Cateel, allow me to share these photographs to you to inspire you and make realize that in the midst of all tragedies and calamities, there is love, there is hope, there is GOD!

Cateel 2013 Christmas (15)
My Davao-based friends who traveled to Cateel to join me in THE TRAVEL TELLER GIVES BACK 2013
Cateel 2013 Christmas (53)
Me and beautiful family. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (157)
Our makulit and sipat na mga batang silingan. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (159)
Reconnecting with friends – old and new!
Cateel 2013 Christmas (168)
Sta Filomena Beach, our favorite beach spot every Christmas and New Year
Cateel 2013 Christmas (176)
Boxing Day, Cateel Style
Cateel 2013 Christmas (177)
The usual food we have on our table. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (192)
Say HELLO to TONGKIP. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (211)
Beach Life is and has always been part of my Cateel Vacation. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (237)
Parlor Games for the Kids at Rizal Street. This is where I grew up.
Cateel 2013 Christmas (239)
We used to do this when we were their age. πŸ™‚ I miss being a kid. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (244)
So amazed to see these kids dancing BUDOTS BUDOTS! πŸ™‚ Puede ilaban sa Camus Boys! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (259)
Tomato Dance: It brings back so many happy thoughts.
Cateel 2013 Christmas (262)
Gwyn-gwyn and Angel: FOR THE WIN!
Cateel 2013 Christmas (271)
Being with these kids brought out the CHILD in me! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (281)
We wish to do it every year! πŸ™‚ Reliving the Legacy of Tiyo Dodoy Veroy.
Cateel 2013 Christmas (283)
Lola Villa coaching her grandchildren in the longest line game. They won! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (299)
Sim sum sim sum give a name of fish cannot be repeated anymore! forΒ example: PAGOKPOK
Cateel 2013 Christmas (316)
My good looking cousins. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (324)
New Year’s Day Street Party
Cateel 2013 Christmas (418)
TALONG, oh nasaan ang talong! Hanapin mo ang TALONG!
Cateel 2013 Christmas (440)
We were joined by the rest of our kababayan during our New Year’s Day Celebration
Cateel 2013 Christmas (466)
We were joined by the rest of our kababayan during our New Year’s Day Celebration
Cateel 2013 Christmas (467)
We were joined by the rest of our kababayan during our New Year’s Day Celebration
Cateel 2013 Christmas (470)
THE STARS OF THE NIGHT: Miss Gay Talisay Universe 2014
Cateel 2013 Christmas (474)
THE STARS OF THE NIGHT: Miss Gay Talisay Universe 2014
Cateel 2013 Christmas (500)
Our STAR DANCER, my inaanak Vianne Pascua Vertudazo. πŸ™‚ Proud of you Nak. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (528)
THE STARS OF THE NIGHT: Miss Gay Talisay Universe 2014. Thanks for making us LOL!
Cateel 2013 Christmas (614)
young at hearts! πŸ™‚ mga ka-batch ko lang! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (626)
parang mga ka-edad ko lang! πŸ™‚ hahahaha!
Cateel 2013 Christmas (627)
Syempre, di mawawala ng inuman!
Cateel 2013 Christmas (639)
BAGONG TAON NA! Inuman na!
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1108)
Our new HOME in Cateel after Super Typhoon Pablo. Our old house was totally damaged.
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1121)
New Home. New Hope. New Beginnings
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1122)
My brother Dong wrapping the gifts for THE TRAVEL TELLER GIVES BACK
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1127)
SANTA OLAN on Christmas. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1131)
RAINY RAINY CHRISTMAS!Β 
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1166)
St. James the Apostle Church wasΒ jam-packedΒ during the Christmas and New year’s Eve Mass
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1183)
St. James the Apostle Church was jampacked during the Christmas and New year’s Eve Mass
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1191)
St. James the Apostle Church was jampacked during the Christmas and New year’s Eve Mass
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1204)
St. James the Apostle Church was jampacked during the Christmas and New year’s Eve Mass
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1218)
Pahalik sa Batang Hesus
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1226)
Handaan sa NOCHE BUENA
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1245)
Christmas Day Salo Salo with Cousins. πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1247)
Parade of Gifts for the Teens of Cateel | The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1268)
Parade of Gifts for the Teens of Cateel | The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1270)
From The Travel Teller and FRIENDS
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1278)
Thanks EDWIN, CAROL, SARAH and NICOLE for joining me in The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1285)
Gifts for the Teens of Cateel
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1287)
THANK YOU SO MUCH SPONSORS
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1293)
The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
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SKY LANTERN on NEW YEAR’S EVE
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Handaan sa MEDIA NOCHE. πŸ™‚Β 
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1321)
The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1346)
THREE of the most special women in my life today! πŸ™‚ ATE LULU, ATE MIMI, ATE PINKY
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1366)
The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1447)
with my HELP CATEEL VOLUNTEERS
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1486)
THANK YOU GLOBE! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1592)
THANK YOU SMART! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1561)
The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013 | A Huge Success
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1573)
With MAC STUDENTS
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1588)
Me and my brother DONG! πŸ™‚ thank you DONG for all the support! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1619)
MARCO, LEON, DOLPO, BAYANI and DURAN – friends from Davao who traveled to Cateel to join The Travel Teller Gives Back 2013
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1662)
Lamyerda sa CATEEL and BAGANGA. My friends were so amazed to see the beauty of my hometown! πŸ™‚
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1718)
My beloved Carol and me at Aliwagwag Falls
Cateel 2013 Christmas (1719)
My ever supportive travel buddy Edwin aka Madayaw Wow Dagway and me at Aliwagwag Falls
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.
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The busy streets and sidewalks of CATEEL on the DESPERAS NG BAGONG TAON.

FROM MY HOMETOWN OF CATEEL IN DAVAO ORIENTAL,
A VERYΒ PROSPEROUSΒ NEW YEAR!

8 Replies to “CELEBRATING CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR IN MY HOMETOWN OF CATEEL”

  1. hello olan cateel is so blessed to have an awesome person like you, believe me although you may not expecting in return the help that you give god knows already from your heart. cheers olan were proud of you.

  2. Thank you, Olan for these inspiring comments and photos. Great to see the town’s spirit of hope, resiliency and determination is alive and kicking. Indeed, a start of bright future. Never cease to keep us inform and updated. Miss our town, kiddo!

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