06 July 2009

Gathering and Hunting from the Sea

A very casual pose indeed.

The coastlines of our country are inhabited by people who gather and hunt food from the vast and productive marine factory of life. The relationship of man and the mysterious ocean is comprised of a mixture of management, dependence, reverence, and, in sad cases, abuse. The ocean informs their daily rhythm, their skin color, and their tools.

Interesting silver earring, no doubt from the nearby Paracale.

At Pulang Daga in Daet, Camarines Norte, we came across a strikingly slender and lithe young man, holding a few small lapu-lapu fish which he had speared and then hung on a dangling rope with hooks. His homemade flippers were made of sheets of plywood cut into a roundish shape, with rubber foot straps punched through.

Lapu-lapu against the wooden flippers.

The goggles were another thing as well-- locally made, with a leather strap to pull around your head. His spear was a wooden stick with a fastened pointy edge.

Leather straps.

And so he hurried along after our short conversation, and in a few minutes a child and his mama came by, this time with a less bountiful fish catch (the kid was still learning). They, however, carried a bucket of collected sea cucumbers that they sell to people who sell them to Chinese, who love the stuff. They had no idea how to prepare the penile creatures, and had no interest and looked slightly disgusted by the idea of eating them.

A basket of fish and a bucket of sea cucumbers.

Young fisherboy.

They had more or less the same tools (except their goggles had a rubber strap instead of leather) as the first young man, but with a basket carried by the woman.

Goggles with rubber strap, fortified by a nylon string.

After awhile, they were "collected" from our blabbing away by a man who came out of the thick and thorny row of pandan plants after taking a leak. He looked a bit familiar, and turned out to be the twin brother of the first young man we came across, only with shorter hair and a more mature, responsible appearance (no photo, it started to rain). A good short encounter, while it lasted.

The gathering and going.

Popular Posts