Tonight: The Tan-okest Show on Earth

I never knew Dr. Shirley Agrupis had an inclination towards arts and culture. To begin with, she is a hard-nosed science professor educated abroad. Also, the lady is constantly busy either in conducting research on biofuels or in collaborating with foreign experts visiting our university. But she called me the other day asking about a festival that has need neither for microscopes nor test tubes.

“I am intrigued about that Tan-ok. I want to go,” she told me.

The other day, I spoke at a journalism workshop at Pasaleng National High School in Pagudpud. It is the farthest barangay in the northernmost town in this province at the tip of mainland Luzon. It takes a two-hour ride from Laoag City to get to that place which is a few ‘tumblings’ away from Cagayan province.

You would think they are secluded in their little paradise, but all the kids and teens there know about Tan-ok (which literally means greatness), and want to go watch if only they could.

Crystal Felipe is a medical technology freshman at the University of Sto. Tomas. Beauty and wit personified, she is focused on her studies. She does not let anything distract her from getting good grades and excelling in school.

But part of her mind will wander at the Marcos Stadium in Laoag City tonight, Nov. 17. This time, Crystal will only be in spirit at the event that gave her goose bumps, in most pleasant ways, last year.

Stories like these, dear karikna, make me realize that the Tan-ok ni Ilokano Festival of Festivals, a brainchild of Manang Imee Marcos, has arrived as the biggest show in the universe I live in. Everyone is abuzz about this year’s edition believed to be even grander than its debut last year. Continue reading “Tonight: The Tan-okest Show on Earth”