NOW that the Cebu City Government officially canceled the Sinulog 2021 Ritual Showdown among many other activities, a lot of Cebuanos feel empty inside. To the majority, Sinulog is more than just a time for fun and letting loose -- it is their identity.
But cheer up! It's better to be safe than sorry. The Covid-19 pandemic has taught us the value of loving one's self. By protecting yourself, you are also protecting your loved ones. It is also a perfect time for reflection and recollection and to truly understand the true meaning of the Sinulog.
While we are waiting (praying) for this pandemic to be over, here are some of the things we miss about attending the Sinulog Festival. Look on the bright side, if we beat the virus in 2021, we can do all of these things in 2022!
1. Shouting 'Pit Senyor!' in public
Short for "Sampit ni Senyor Santo Niño!" This phrase means giving praise to the Santo Niño. It could also mean offering our problems to Him. Hearing "Pit Senyor" over and over again during the revelry will always be an earworm that would linger on for the rest of your life.
2. Singing the chorus of the Gozos with a crowd
Oh, how we miss singing the traditional "Gozos" or most commonly called the "Batubalani sa Gugma" at the Basilica. We miss waving our hands in front of the Santo Niño in unison. There's really nothing like it. Seeing a sea of people filled with faith and hope in the Santo Niño could overwhelm you with emotions. Be sure to carry a tissue next year. When all of this is over, we would surely be in tears. For now, let's continue singing it at home. "Kanamo maluoy Ka unta..."
READ: How the Gozos (Bato Balani sa Gugma) touched the lives of Cebuanos
3. Seeing babies dressed up as Santo Niños
Who could forget the adorable babies dressed in colorful Santo Niño costumes? Most of the parents who dress their little ones as the baby Jesus believe that the child will grow up to be Christ-like. Seeing these "Santo kiddos" reminds us that we were once as pure as children. Maybe we could pinch their cheeks next year.
4. Watching the street dance, higantes and floats
The colorful costumes. The intricate dance moves. The loud music. These are just some of the things that make up the Sinulog Festival. Going to Mango Avenue or Osmeña Boulevard wouldn't be the same if you didn't stop and admire the performers painting the streets. You also couldn't help but giggle when the higantes participants pass by. We also used to dance to the same beat they are dancing. Prititit!
5. Star-hunting with friends
"Is that Piolo Pascual?"
"Girl, kita kong Kim Chiu."
Whether you are a fan of them or not, anticipating the arrival of your favorite celebrity will always be a Sinulog highlight. You get all giddy when a star waves back at you. You also either feel kilig or roll your eyes when an actor sings a cheesy early-2000s novelty song. Either way, you and your friends could flex on social media that you've seen a celebrity.