Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Feast of Saint John the Baptist

Every 24th of June, areas in the Philippines that have St. John the Baptist as patron saint celebrate his feast day with the traditional “basaan” or “buhusan” (dousing of water).

Anyone who goes to the town of San Juan, Metro Manila on the morning of June 24 cannot stay dry. Neither will anyone who visits small towns near a stream, a river, or the sea before noon. The experience is supposed to remind of one's baptism.

Small children use a tabo, usually an empty can used as a water dipper, to douse strangers with water. Older persons my fill their ancient coconut shells with perfumed water to sprinkle on passersby. Others get their bamboo cylinders fitted with pistons to squirt water on whoever passes by. Still others use water pistols.

Unfortunately, the tradition is being threatened by killjoys or local bullies who douse car owners or jeepney riders with water from open ditches. Their actions have made others question the very idea of the festivity.


posh_post said...

hay indi nabasa dito. kasi that day lang nag stop ang bagyo at sumikat ang araw. :)

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