I remember walking in our ‘missions’ in Mindanao, the old-fashioned way: wearing flip-flops or tsinelas. Tough topography; climbing and down again, between high trees, ferns and orchids, sweating it out with a bag made heavy by books, white sotana, stole, chalice, wine in a small plastic container (usually an empty container of ethyl alcohol), hosts in a tapper-ware, clean t-shirts, sleeping ‘malon’, and a small transistor radio for listening the news before laying on the floor of wooden shelters in a odd obscure and a somber silence broken only by the jingle of crickets.

Fervor ultimately wanes and long walks from a chapel to another are now replaced by sporadic half an hour strolls, after driving motorbike and car, with someone carrying your bag and the comfort to go back to your ‘convento’ in a nice and clean room. We just went soft and aged.

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