June 21, 2024

Populating our family’s tiny Ibaloy compound in Bakakeng Central is an array of animals consisting of free-range chickens (most, if not all, have names), four dogs (Kimchi, Curry, Sushi, and Snowy), a cat called Otis and Speedy the turtle who fancies himself a psychologist and political analyst and is paid in cockroaches.
Let’s include the numerous birds of various species who visit our “green” compound regularly warbling their songs. These beloved creatures of God (and maybe the Devil when it comes to Otis who just doesn’t care) continue to bring much joy to this near-sighted Ibaloy writer’s household. Our chickens provide us with organic eggs; the pooches protect our property and serve as best friends; Speedy gives advice and control the cockroach population; and Otis is just there. Enough said.
No wonder many individuals would prefer having animals as friends instead of their fellow human beings. Your pets don’t talk back at you, betray you, or stab you at the back and are forever grateful and loyal to you (except maybe for cats who do not give a damn as long as you feed them). Compare these to the less than sterling qualities of many humans, even family members in some cases, who, well, you know what I mean. Again, enough said. So, hooray for animals! May they not have selfish, ungrateful, backbiting and conniving humans as pets (in a parallel universe, that is) hi,hi. Mabuhay!
Anyway, City Veterinary and Agriculture Office (CVAO) Head, Dr. Silardo Bested said the city government’s rabbit dispersal project is “alive and hopping” with around 1,800 of the cute and furry creatures distributed to interested residents so far. He said the P10-million Department of Agriculture-funded project, which includes the distribution of rabbits and chickens, was launched last year in partnership with the city government through the CVAO.
According to nutritionists and other health experts, rabbit meat has very low cholesterol content as compared to that of most livestock.
The project is also in line with the 16-core agenda of the city government under Mayor Benjamin Magalong that include strengthened livelihood and entrepreneurial services, poverty reduction, and more. For more information on the ongoing program, interested parties can visit the CVAO at Slaughterhouse compound or call 443-5332. Cheers!

FYI: The Baguio Smoke-Free City Task Force convened a meeting on May 18at the sangguniang panlungsod session hall to present updates on the enforcement, monitoring, smoke cessation, and other accomplishments during the pandemic up to the present. The group also crafted and discussed the communication plan for 2022 to 2025 to further strengthen the ordinance and to effectively reach out to primary target key population groups. The plan gives deeper understanding and convinces the target key population groups to stop or prevent them from smoking/vaping.
Dr. Donnabel Panes, City Tobacco Control coordinator, discussed plans on intensifying smoke-cessation in every district health center, including City Hall. She said those who are willing to quit may go to their desired private clinics for smoke cessation services.
Other issues were also raised such as areas frequented by smokers/vapers and establishments allowing quests to smoke/vape despite not having an approved designated smoking area and dropping areas used as locations for sellers to drop cigarette/vape products.

Here’s ‘In a Station of the Metro’ by Ezra Pound: “The apparition of these faces in the crowd:/
Petals on a wet, black bough.”

Let’s end with a prayer: “Lord, my heart is broken but You are near. My spirit is crushed, but You are my rescuer. Your Word is my hope. It revives me and comforts me in especially now. My soul faints, but you are the breath of life within me. You are my help, the One who sustains me. I am weak but You are strong. You bless those who mourn, and I trust You to bless me and my family with all that we need. You will rescue me from this dark cloud of despair because You delight in me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”
May our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ continue to bless and keep us all safe.