Showing posts with label lanterns. Show all posts
Showing posts with label lanterns. Show all posts

Monday, December 25, 2017

Parol - Christmas lanterns

I had a meeting in Angeles City last week and took the opportunity to go lantern-shopping. We went to the shops in Dau, Mabalacat where we previously bought lanterns. A friend asked us to get her a parol and told us her budget was 1,500 pesos. That seemed to be a low budget for a nice lantern but you can get a nice medium sized parol for less after some bargaining with the shopkeepers. We ended up purchasing more parol as I got one for my parents' home and my colleagues also bought one each for their homes. We already have several at our home including one like the one I got for my parents.

The shopkeepers turn on the lanterns when customers arrive. It is a very colorful display that tends to capture your attention and convince you to get one for your home. We got one each as well as a parol for our friend who asked us to get her one.
There are various designs and sizes that will fit your budget. And all are made very well. In fact, the province of Pampanga including Angeles City, San Fernando and Mabalacat, is well known for parol. There is an annual competition for the best parol in Pampanga and the competition is a tourist attraction in the province.
Some people prefer the colored lanterns as they are still colorful even when not lighted (i.e., during the day). I prefer the simplicity of the white parol.
There are other Christmas-themed decors available at the shops including Santa Clauses, reindeer pulling a sleigh, and flowers. I prefer the parol over these more 'contemporary' decors.
My brother sent me this photo of the parol at our parents' home in Cainta. I got this for only 2,300 pesos and you cannot get a similar one with comparable size and workmanship for less than 5,000 pesos in Metro Manila or nearby places.
The parol is one of the symbols of Christmas for Filipinos as it represents the star over Bethlehem when Christ was born. You know there is a Filipino abroad when there is a parol displayed at their homes. I remember seeing parol displayed outside the windows and balconies of apartments and high-rise condominiums around us when we were previously living in Singapore. My Ninang (godmother)  in Japan also had a lantern hung outside their home that my Ninong (godfather, who was Japanese) says reminded them of the Philippines and family. We have one similar to the one I got for parents hanging from our balcony as well as a classic star that hangs over our lanai.

To our family to yours, a Blessed Christmas!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Pasko at Parol 2016

We have always had a Christmas lantern (parol) diplayed in front of our home even before we had our daughter. We felt it just wasn't as Christmassy without the parol even if we had a nice tree and decorations in our house. Since I always have out of town trips for my projects, I had many opportunities to get a parol from Pampanga and Tarlac during fieldwork there. The first big parol we had was from Tarlac in 2004. I bought it at a roadside shop (MacArthur Highway) where they manufactured and sold lanterns. I actually bought two - one for the office and one for our home. The office lantern survives today and is displayed in front of our building. It just needs some repairs including replacement of many bulbs. 

We noticed our lantern was also already needing some repairs and it seemed not big enough to be prominent on our balcony after we moved into our new home almost 3 years ago. And so the wife made it part of my mission during a trip last November to find us a new parol. I did find one in Pampanga where they make really good lanterns. A roadside shop in Mabalacat was the maker of our new parol and my colleagues also got theirs for their homes from the same shop.

Here's a very short video of our new parol. It's attracted quite a number of admirers already and among them children doing their Christmas carol gigs around the village.

A Blessed Christmas to All!