From Canada to Manila part 5

We got up in the morning and boarded a bus to Tanay, Rizal. I was filled with excitement. The bus was packed with people from different parts of the world lead by Grand Tuhon.

The rain did not damper anyone’s spirits. The Sierra Madre mountain range was extremely beautiful. It was nice to see green everywhere! The air was fresh. It was exactly like how I remembered it. I missed my childhood.

Right after a short snack break, we were training right away. Grand Tuhon spoke about the Filipino culture and the pureness of Kali. Then it was training time. Footwork! Footwork! Footwork!

Intensity is something GT is not short on. Applying the correct techniques with purpose is something that GT does not take lightly. However, even with all the intensity GT took his time to help others. A lot of techniques and options were shown and it’s hard to describe all of them. I highly suggest you attend one of GT’s seminars or come to the 7th PTK Conference.

“HIT HARD! HIT HARD! HIT HARD!” is something you’ll hear from GT. He is also known for his slaps. We like to call it GT’s slaps of love. If you want to learn more about this techniques please come to the seminars. You’ll feel what I’m talking about.

I did not take a lot of pictures that day because I didn’t want to miss any techniques. We did a lot of knives and take downs. My favorite part was everyone’s enthusiasm. People who have been training for a while were happy to lend a hand. There were no egos, just fellow PTK practitioners helping others.

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From Canada to Manila part 4

I finally got the chance to go back to my family’s sugarcane plantation. Memories of old started flooding back. The sights, the smells, the people and the overall peace of the land was something my spirit needed, badly.

My cousin asked me to go with him to provide snacks and drinks for those working (magkakarga) on the plantation. We hoped on his tricycle and took the short ride to see them. My other cousin was there waiting for us.

I used to watch the magkakarga pile up the sugarcane on the trucks as a child. I remember how hot it was even early in the morning. It had not changed. It was still hot. The men wore long sleeved shirts to protect themselves from the sharp leaves and the little thorn-like debris.

It’s hard work doing this. You’re under the hot sun and the canes are heavy. You need to have good coordination and balance. The trucks are tall. You must use a ladder to get up and load the trucks. One slip can cause serious injury.

Over the years, I have developed a lot of respect for these men and women. It is not easy work and I don’t think anyone has been able to make millions of dollars let alone pesos. However, this product was enough to pay for my father’s education along with his other siblings. One of the reasons why I made it to Canada is because of sugarcane.

While the magkakarga rested and snacked, I noticed they had a large blade they called “pangtadtad” or “panadtat.” I could not help but ask to “play with it.” It was heavier than most bolos or machetes. It has a special purpose that you’ll see in one of the pictures. As I played around with the panadtad, I could not help but think, “I’m doing this for fun. These guys are using this for a living.” Respect.

I hope you enjoy these pictures. Please like and share them with your friends and family.

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From Canada to Manila part 3

Now for some more fun stuff. The 6th Pekiti Tirsia Conference started in a local restaurant called Bulalo Republic. Here we all gathered for dinner and amazing introductions. It was great to see everyone united under One PTK. It was an international gathering. Our brothers and sisters from the Philippines, Canada (that’s us!) the UK, the United States, India, Malaysia, Korea and I’m sorry if I’m missing one or two other countries. I was proud to see some active member in the Armed Forces of the Philippines!

We had great food, fun entertainment with a live band, and of course we were in the presence of a great group of people who are united under One PTK-under Grand Tuhon Supremo Leo T. Gaje Jr. There was an amazing electricity in the air.

The following morning, we boarded the bus and took off to Ten Cents to Heaven Resort.

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Huncar’s Balintawak.

Family Day weekend is one of my favorite Canadian holidays. For our American friends, it’s the same day as President’s Day. My family and I love Northern Idaho. So we packed up and drove to Sandpoint, ID.

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However, we stopped in the beautiful town of Cranbrook, British Columbia. Here you’ll find a lot of mountains surrounding the town, plenty of trees, motels/hotels, restaurants and this is the home of Huncar’s Warrior Arts.

The man behind this gym is my friend Guro Joel Huncar. He’s been a great student of the martial arts. He has an open mind when it comes to learning. I enjoyed the fact he also believes that every martial art has something to offer. He welcomed me and my family in his new gym.

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Unfortunately, we came during a holiday. Therefore Guro Joel did not have any students honing their skills when we stopped by. However it was a good time for us to visit him. Guro Joel’s gym teaches a number of activities and classes. There’s Krav Maga, Muay Thai, ¬†and of course his passion, Filipino Martial Arts Balintawak.

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I am excited to see Guro Joel’s gym. It is complete with washrooms, mats, various sizes of heavy bags, sparring gear, mitts, rattan sticks, and more. There’s a seating area and did I mention the amazing skylight? Yes, there’s a skylight in the middle of the gym. It provides natural lighting.

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We started filming for our documentary. It was a good one on one interview. The next time we meet, there’s going to be a lot of action filmed.

So for those of you who live in the Cranbrook area, come see Guro Joel Huncar. There are programs for kids, adults and families.

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