Fiesta Fever in the City
This early, you may see Carnival operators setting up their rides. There is now a modest Ferris Wheel set up along one of the busiest avenues in town. And, also the metal framework of a merry-go-round had been prepared, as of this writing, they must have attached, most probably ponies, to the fun-filled machinery.
Understandably so, because they are the longest to get ready. Logistics-wise and the whole nine yards. Furthermore, another Fiesta Rides-Park is being assembled along the Maharlika Highway. The Peñafrancia Fiesta, indeed, is just around the corner.
Buses with pilgrims have started to arrive in the churches of the City. The Metropolitan Cathedral and the Basilica are top priorities of course. The early bird gets the worm so they say, in this case, the early pilgrims get the advantage of a much lesser volume of human and vehicle traffic.
However, nothing compares to the actual beginning of the Religious Phenomenon: being the largest Marian Devotion in Asia. The Traslacion heralds the formal novenario as the Images of Ina and El Divino Rostro are transferred from the Peñafrancia Shrine to the Naga Metropolitan Cathedral. The logic, of course, is to be able to accommodate more people.
Security is also a factor as more uniformed personnel are given a tour of duty in the City to augment the existing number of the force here. Medical assistance teams will also be fortified, especially, during the crucial days wherein there would be throngs of people, almost that of a sea.
Children are very excited when the Fiesta is celebrated. Apart from a short vacation to partake in the Religious Traditions, the whole place is filled with, literally, eye candies: assorted colorful balloons are aplenty, toys extravaganza, clothes baratillo, and special feasts in Children Restaurants-- Biggs Diner, Jollibee, and Mc Donalds.
It is a family affair, even up to extended relatives, picnics can be seen in the garden section of the Basilica. And, here is an insider’s tip, by the way, if you do not have any place to stay, you may spend the night at Jesus’ place at the Basilica. That is allowed then, and, we hope that until now, it is open to people who cannot afford a place to stay for the night. Ina has a special place for you there.
If you have been away for many years, or even, just a couple of years due to the ghastly pandemic, you are in for a pleasant surprise. There are many buildings that have mushroomed in the bustling, idyllic City. And, there are a few avenues that had been widened to boot.
The Plaza Rizal, also had been renovated. In addition, there will be more parks and condominiums etc. that are under construction and will be built in the not so distant future. Well, the City is absolutely improving its cityscape by heaps and bounds. It is about time.
It is a celebration. A coming together as children of Ina. An invitation to thank her Son for saving the City of Naga from the Pandemic. Remember, how the Image of The Holy Face visited almost every nook and cranny for the Perdon Processions. True to form, it is similar to the story of the Devotion to Jesus’ Face after miraculously saving His people from Cholera Morbo.
Last couple of years that horrid hindrance prevented us from undertaking a spiritual journey in full force, but now, this year there is no more reason that is life threatening that would stop as from saying a prayer in thanksgiving to Ina and her Loving Son.
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