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Sunday, June 22, 2008

HINGOTANAN Island BOHOL, my home sweet home


I was born in Nocnocan Island, 30 minutes travel from Hingotanan - the place where my both parents came from too, and where the rest of my relatives stay. The very reason why we had to live HINGOTANAN was because my father as a Minister/Pastor was assigned here. I was the only child back then, I think I was only 8 years old when we got to move here. Now, we are 7 siblings in total. Geezzz, imagine how meaningful Hingotanan Island is for us - that's why I am calling this as my HOME.

Hingotanan Island is situated in the province of
Bohol. It is one of the tiny islands surrounding the province which is not even found on the map of Bohol. From a distance one can identify the island by its coconut trees and white beach. Around it are also about 15 fishing islands which are also part of the town of Talibon.

Historically, Hingotanan Island was an island connected to the town of Talibon in the province of Bohol, the town which produced the late President Garcia. But latter when a new town of Bien Unido was created, Hingotanan Island was assigned to Bien Unido town. Although it has got its new identity as one of the islands of Bien Unido, Hingotanan keeps its contact with the main town of Talibon where big ships dock and where hospital and schools for higher education are found. The local folk commute to Talibon to sell their products and secure goods for daily life.

THIS IS MY HOME!!!. Undoubtedly like paradise when I was small. People here depend on the sea to live. Most of them bear the scar of a life too early acquainted with poverty and deprivation. But poverty and deprivation never break their spirit. Instead, generally, they are a happy and resilient people. They have always bounced back from every tragedy coming their way. Perhaps because to them all the pains, all the sufferings, all the hardships are soluble in alcohol. They are real survivors too. They can and will survive in any godforsaken place in the world. Living and dying are a lot easier and simpler to them.

Hingotanan is the only fishing island in the town of Bien Unido which has a complete High School. In fact, this island where I finished my elementary & high school. Parents from the surrounding smaller islands send their children to the island of Hingotana for the Secondary Education. Islands noted to have sent their children to the Hingotanan Barangay High School are Bilangbilangan Dako, Bilangbilangan Gamay, Gaus, Maomaowan, Butan,Sagasa, Malingin,Dawahon and others which I can hardly remember by name.

It is difficult to understand that there is lack of food in Hingotanan Island when the island itself is noted to be rich in natural resources. The shift from being a fishing community to a seaweeds farming community has created an effect of food shortage. The greater majority is involved in seaweeds farming and the small fishermen who catch fish by crude means cannot meet the demand of the people. It is also because instead of selling their fish products to the local people, they would rather hide and bring and sell these products to Cebu or in the town of Talibon for higher prices, giving them chance to come out of the Hingotanan island and personally secure other goods or materials for their family.
It is funny that instead of eating fresh fish, many Hingotanan islanders have to depend on canned mackerel fish, or noodles as the mean dish together with rice. As people exert more efforts in planting, harvesting and drying seaweeds, their intake of qualitative food is decreased. The health of the people is at risk. But there are also small initiatives of individuals who make possible for people to buy food. There are appearing small eateries, where people can buy ready made food. There are few individuals buying and selling meat to the islanders, and a few trying to slaugther a pig and selling meat by a kilo. The hope to create a local market in the island has been a long time dream that has not been realized until now. When the weather is bad, it becomes much more difficult to secure food.

Like I said to you on my first blog, I've been working here in Angola since 2001 and whenever I go on leave to Philippines, I always visit this place...I love this place really & since I got married to an English man, which we go home to England more often, my husband & I always been talking about of visiting HINGOTANAN island again, and this will be very soon! YES this year.

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Anonymous said...

Hi Madz - im so glad to come across your blog when i googled Hingotanan. This island too gave me so many good memories. Sadly, i have not been to the island for maybe 25 years and i wonder what progress has been made. My grandfather is the late Oben Mabalatan. I have promised my kids to take them to the island in 2005 but was warned of high winds so we could not take the joyful pumpboat ride. Next time na lang. What is your maiden name, basin pa makaila ko nimo.
Be well


Madz said...

Hello Nong Ted, I didn't know how to reply to you, but have decided to write on here if in case you come to visit again! Well, I am the eldest daughter of PASTOR BASALO (Baptist church). Ummmmm if you never visited Hingotanan for at least 25 years, then we would not have been there yet I guess!

My family still lives there, in fact we visited just last month with my hubby for 7 days only! Changes? progress? uumm I can't really think of anything special that have happened there...people are still the same except that you won't see those old faces anymore during your time hehehe..

Will be writing about our fishing experience this time, well if you explore my blogs, I have written about Panglao Island Nature Resort too which we only came to visit this time! Wonderful place...By the way, maybe you can give me your email address or add me to your YM if you have. Mine is

Bye for now, God bless you & family!

Athan said...


I've found your blog thru google when I searched for hingotanan island philippines. I've been to your place. Ako kuya just recently naanha dira para magnigosyo ug seaweeds. Hopefully mo okay among seaweeds business dira puhon..


Madz said...


Hi Madelyn,

Just happened to browse about Hingotanan on the web a while ago and got lucky to have read two features, yours and Elizabeth Padillo's. It's good to know there is another lucky one from our island like you whom God poured his blessings and kindness.

I might have not known you and your parents so well, but the fact that a person like you whose roots is not really from Hingotanan as you claimed in your blog, and yet so proud to be one, is a gesture worth emulating and be accorded special accolades by the people of Hingotanan.

Anyway, me as a pure Hingotanan breed, salutes you for your extraordinary expression of loyalty and love for our beloved island, Hingotanan.

More power to you and your family.

Ang tawag nila sa ako sa Hingotanan is: NOY GUILLY

Hopefully naka-ila ka pa sa ako.

Guilly Paden

Madz said...

Hello Noy Guilly,

You wondered if nakaila pa ko nimo? Of course, we've stayed in your house for ages (when I was still about 5 yrs old til 2 years ago when I decided to give my parents' a house they deserve!), so there's no reason for me not to remember you Noy... Still haven't got a clue then? I pressumed you didn't recognize me at all!!...

uuuuummm I am the eldest daughter of Pastor Basalo, who always once had a poor & oddly face:) kidding aside..... We all "Basalo siblings" have grown up in your place, we do love that house Noy.. and I'd like to take this opportunity to say THANKS A MILLION for the opportunity you all have given us. God will bless you more....

Anyway, I am always proud to have been representing Hingotanan as my hometown/homeisland than Nocnocan, the fact that I grew up there, gained respect for my family, attained my education, that if it wasn't from "the only island offers high school education", I wouldn't have reached this stage in life and have achieved my dreams!!

Have been coming backwards & forwards, been always for ages since I have worked here but I've always missed and treasured those things Hingotanan had brought me to life, and through God's mercy and calling of my parents to serve people in the Lord's name, never ever we all forget and leave this place. We all keep on coming back here and keep calling as our treasured island.

Thansk for dropping by and I am so glad to hear from you! Regards ko nila Ate Nila, and many more....

God bless you always,

jedahp said...

I've found your blog thru google when i browsed for Hingotanan Island Philippines. i've never known you but i cant afford not to leave something here. hingotanan is just my home. i am pure cebuana and my first time in hingotan was December 1998 when i was still mother found this place through PANINDAHAY ug bisan unsa lang. although it was my first time, i already wanted to stay and start a new life there.i could not describe the feeling of being there. waking up in the morning nga nagputi ang pumpboats sa baybayon kay hunas, nindot kaayo tan-awon and during nighttime, saba kaayo ang bawod nga lami kaayo ikaligo nindot kaayo ang huyohoy sa hangin.ahhhahhh i really thought i found a place to start a life, simple life. yes, hingotanan is indeed NINDOT KAAYO NGA PLACE but sad to know later, some if not all, has to learn more ethics. i was once a victim of that but still i love hingotanan.

now i have been in the PNP service for 6 years. i was assigned first in Negros Oriental, Talibon, Cebu city, Talisay City and the latest is Mandaue City. but my love of nature and simpleness of life, i requested for transfer of assignment here in Bohol and god is really good, it was approved and hopefully, thru the help of Bien Unido Kagawad, Froilan Romo, i can be assigned in bien unido bohol where hingotanan and some of the islands like malingin, maomawan, bilangbilangan, sagasa are my areas of responsiblity. i wanted very much to share my being "police officer" to Hingotananons especially the women and children. and my ultimate goal is to keep away all the children from drugs.

on monday, june 15 i will report to PNP Headquarters, Tagbilaran City for my hopeful assignment in Bien Unido Bohol.

I love your place, Hingotanan, your place that i also loved since the day i step into.

take care and its nice to show the world how i love hingotanan. and sooner i be useful to it.

jadahp said...

by the way, when you were there diay sa hingotanan, i saw you with your hub. how did i know that? kahibawo nakas mga taga hingotanan. nahibulong lang ko nga grabe kahayag ang inyo. hehehe..chika kaayo oi..takecar e

ps sorry diay sa mga misspelled words. faet ning nagkatiguwang ta oi.

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