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Absolutely adorable Christmas decors

Absolutely adorable Christmas decors

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Absolutely adorable Christmas decors

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Korea
Korea is a land of history and tradition, a land of brilliant and splendid culture of 5,000 years.

Wake-uppers:

Seen: Oliver Glovasa, election officer of Dauis, was chosen as “The Significant Ten” of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) “for demonstrating excellent and dedicated services to the Commission while exhibiting positive and supportive attitude towards peers and co-workers, thereby serving as a role model for every one.”

Seen: Spotted in Bohol last week was actress Maricel Laxa-Pangilinan. According to VRS, Maricel was with her family. They were staying at the Be Grand Resorts in Panglao.

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19 days before Christmas, some places in Bohol were transformed into unique centerpieces for the holidays.

Don’t waste those plastic bottles just yet. Hundreds of 1.5 liter plastic bottles have been transformed into a Christmas tree at Birhen sa Barangay Parish Shrine or Cogon Shrine in Tagbilaran City. It’s hoped the spectacle will encourage the public to think about how to reuse and recycle at an often wasteful time of year.

The bottoms of the bottles were turned into snowflakes, while the remaining parts were hanged as leaves. The top of the tree was comprised of caps which turned into a giant star.

It’s beautiful at night when it’s lit from the inside and the green color of the bottles sparkles.

“Their Christmas tree is a creative and innovative ways of recycling,” said Glendon Villagonzalo of Cogon High School.

Not only it will bring the holiday spirit into the community, it also helps the environment.

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At the Tagbilaran City Hall Compound, 2,000 LED bulbs brought life to 11-meter (36-feet) Christmas tree at the compound, keeping a tradition of spreading holiday cheer to thousands of Tagbilaranons.

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The city hall added a new attraction this year- the “Disney in the City” theme.

Kids and adults alike are free to interact with the display, which featured the Disney characters and popular film icons like Peter Pan, Tinkerbell, Sofia the First, Maleficent, Kung Fu Panda, Monster Inc, Big Hero, Cars, Toy Story, Frozen, Aladdin and The Minions.

Residents in Tagbilaran City have reasons to celebrate Christmas with the Christmas decor  at the City Hall Compound. –LPU/BC
Residents in Tagbilaran City have reasons to celebrate Christmas with the Christmas decor at the City Hall Compound. –LPU/BC

“I like the place because of the Disney characters,” said Jerwin Jala, 9. He came with his friends Winzel  Olorvida, 8; Lawrence Castillon; 9 and Glendon Villagonzalo, 14.

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In Sierra-Bullones town, the 25-feet Santa Claus is an attraction for the town fiesta on Dec. 8. Touted as the tallest in the province or probably in the country, their Santa Claus is a white-bearded man wearing a red coat with white collar and cuffs, white-cuffed red trousers, and black leather belt and boots.

“You’re (a) dwarf at our giant Santa Claus,” said Gerry Cagas.

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Another giant Santa Claus, which is moving ‘ya round’, also attracts mall goers at the Island City Mall.

In Carmen town, a giant Christmas tree accentuated with small parols is also an attraction at the town plaza. Red parols also attract people in baragay Mawid in Duero town.

Meanwhile, Tubigon has a special Christmas program and the lights-on ceremony of their Plaza Lights on Dec. 11. It will feature nativity scenes and parols.

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Police officer Melinda Mendez-Basalo with actress Maricel Laxa-Pangilinan at the Tagbilaran Airport.
Police officer Melinda Mendez-Basalo with actress Maricel Laxa-Pangilinan at the Tagbilaran Airport.

Images of Korea

Korea never fails to fascinate me. Whether you are for a long or short visit or even for a transit tour (there is a free Korean transit tour for those with long layover at the Incheon Airport), you have the time to explore the sights, sounds and smells of Korea.

I was able to re-visit the place last week. My first visit in Korea was in 2006 for a youth exchange program sponsored by the Korean government. My second visit was in 2013 although it was a very short one.

Here are the “must-see’s” while in Seoul, South Korea:

Gyeongbokgung is a royal palace built in the Joseon Dynasty.  It is the largest of the five grand palaces and served as the main palace of the Joseon Dynasty.

Insa-dong is famous as the most traditional street, lined with a large number of antique shops and folk art galleries.

Cheonggyecheon is an 11 km long modern stream that runs through downtown Seoul. The stream starts from Cheonggye Plaza, a popular cultural arts venue with many attractions along its length.

Dohuobu was a government office building in the Joseon Dynasty, and you can see Korean traditional and architecture and lifestyle in the past.

Yonggungsa temple is located near the Incheon airport It is a place to experience Korean Buddhist vulture and beautiful nature. It is founded in 670 during the reign of King Munmu of the Silla dynasty. The temple is famous for its 1,300 years old zelkova tree, tablet in Yosachae written by Heungseon Daewongun.

Christmas tree made from recycled plastic bottles at the Cogon Shrine in Tagbilaran City, the tallest  Santa Claus in Sierra-Bullones and another giant Santa Claus at Island City Mall spread Holiday cheers. –LPU/BC
Christmas tree made from recycled plastic bottles at the Cogon Shrine in Tagbilaran City, the tallest
Santa Claus in Sierra-Bullones and another giant Santa Claus at Island City Mall spread Holiday cheers. –LPU/BC

Visitors can see the co-existence of the past and present. For me, Korea is a place where the present cherishes its past while it looks to the future.

Of course, I didn’t leave Korea without bibimbap, bulgogi and kimchi! I also took home some roasted seaweeds (laver). I missed the visit to the famous MBC’s Dramia where explosively popular MBC K-dramas- The Moon Embracing the Sun, Jumong, Queen Seon Deok and Dong Yi were filmed here. Maybe next time.

Hahay….So much to see, so little time!

From the window of the plane going to Los Angeles, I took a fleeting glimpse of the Palace. It seemed to bid me goodbye, inviting me to visit again — you know, Kimchi and An nyeong ha sae yo!

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Thanks for your letters, all will be answered. Comments welcome at leoudtohan@yahoo.com, follow leoudtohan at Twitter /Facebook.

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