From Virac airport to the Catanduanes State University is just a stone’s throw away, we were fetched by the CatSU vice president himself Dr. Ramon Felipe Sarmiento who is also the co-convenor of this year’s Philippine Association for the Study of Culture, History and Religion (PASCHR).
Without previous meet-up, just an email and an SMS the CatSU Sentro ng Wika at Kultura welcomed us to his humble abode and buzzing office with open arms and all smiles. It was with this recommendation we visit the coral stone church in Bato town and the Catanduanes museum at the auspices of the old capitol building.
Prior to the celebration of the 7th Abaca festival, we had a glimpse of island life with a visit to the fertility island at Bagamanoc and along the way the Panganiban campus of CatSU. We also spend an afternoon at San Miguel the location of the other port apart from Virac the gateway to Albay and Bicol mainland.
Truly, Catanduanes is a happy island though rocked by natural calamities every so often it has risen time and again stronger with its people, the Catanduangon keeping their faith intact and their hearts happy and fulfilled.