Estelea's Blog

French Mum, humanitarian, restless explorer and doer on sabbatical in Cebu (Philippines): one Attila in each arm, I am exploring the “toddlers safe” corners of the region, while trying to keep some room for Me.

Pit Senior ! Welcome to Sinulog!

Another great thing Filipinos do better: Parties!

Heart thumping drums and trumpets, breath taking parades, bright an colourful costumes and massive heat : welcome to Sinulog, the most awaited Cebuano grand street parade !

A bit of history (thanks Wikipedia): On April 15, 1521, the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan arrived and planted the cross on the shores of Cebu, claiming the territory for Spain. He presented the image of the child Jesus, the Rajah Humabon. Hara Humamay (or Amihan in some versions) was later named, Queen Juana in honour of Juana, mother of Carlos I. Along with the rulers of the island, some 800 natives were also baptized to the Roman Catholic Church. At the moment of receiving the holy image, it was said that Queen Juana danced with joy bearing this image of the child Jesus. With the other natives following her example, this moment was regarded as the first Sinulog. With the other natives following her example, this moment was regarded as the first Sinulog.

More here about the origins and the meanings of the festival. Now follow the pilgrims and the dancers, pack litres of water  and shout “Pit Señor!” (“Pit Señor” is the short form of “Sangpit sa Señor,” a phrase in Cebuano that means, “to call, ask, and plead to the king” – shouting petitions and thanksgiving to the Santo Niño ).  And because we are in the Philippines, have fun!

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17 comments on “Pit Senior ! Welcome to Sinulog!

  1. anroworld
    January 17, 2016


    • estelea
      January 18, 2016

      It was really something! We did not attend last year because of the heat and the crowd, not really kids friendly. But this year, the whole fam really appreciated the show (at least for a few hours. Soooo hot down there) !

  2. that traveling nurse
    January 17, 2016

    Love, love, love, love one million times! 😛 Can you dance to the beat now? I can hear those drums and whistles in my head and I know how hot it can get. hehe… Where were you stationed? or did you walk around? Our high school usually stayed around Mango Avenue, now I think its called One Mango Avenue. And strangers used to smear your faces with paint, all in good fun. I don’t know if that is banned now a days though. When it was time to go home late in the afternoon, we just walked and walked until there were jeepneys which were usually full of passengers that you have a hard time getting one. Parties post sinulog were rare back then. Now, its like one big party the whole weekend! Times have changed. Sorry, Im having a flashback moment. 🙂

    • estelea
      January 18, 2016

      We were on Mango too! Super early (I mean, 0900 AM on a Sunday is super early for normal people, no?). As usual Ms Attila was not really keen on moving out of bed, but you should have seen here, I had no idea they had learnt how to dance the sinulog at school! She was just hyper! Her bro was blowing his whistle like a deaf hard rock singer. But the heat got us! after hardly 2 hours, they couldn’t even throw a loud “Pit Senior” any more.
      It was so impressive, those dancers are so beautiful, they don’t seem to feel the heat at all, they are like floating.. And I need to get the brand of their make up, totally water resistant 😛

      True that it had become like a big party. My younger friends had a blast, even if the majority had their phone and wallet stollen. Granted! I am even wondering how come they “lost” only that, given their alcohol level and the billion of people in the streets .. We are too old for that, Sinulog was enough to make us super happy. Our feet, eyes, ears and heart loved it so much! If we are still around next year, we ll do the fluvial parade …

      • that traveling nurse
        January 18, 2016

        Yeah those dancers are truly impressive. Wearing those heavy costumes, dancing and walking under the heat of the sun and the main dancer even more so, having to hold the Sto. Nino while dancing and usually they have heavier and more elaborate costumes! You made me laugh about your water proof make up comment. 😛 So I guess the local government people were unable to quarantine the snatchers that day? Usually on Sinulog I heard that the snatchers and pick pockets are all rounded up and put away somewhere (I forgot the name of the place) so that the people and the guests can celebrate and enjoy the festivities without having to worry about their wallets or cellphones being stolen. Im sorry to hear that. And yes, we are getting old because we can’t do a whole day Sinulog affair anymore. Most my friends don’t even watch the parade, they go to the beaches because there is no one around! I am happy you had a grand time! 🙂 Proud Cebuano moment here.

      • estelea
        January 19, 2016

        You can be proud dear! and re: snatchers, the temptation is too big: you have thousands of foreigners totally drunk and their wallets and phones are at your fingers tips … I guess they cry “Pit Senior!” with conviction after 😉

      • that traveling nurse
        January 19, 2016

        Ah, that part sucks. But such is life no? 😉

  3. bouaziz
    January 17, 2016


    • estelea
      January 18, 2016

      Et encore, ca durait 12 heures et on est restes juste 3! Extraordinaire!

  4. rosemawrites
    January 18, 2016

    Your opening line made me smile wide, Estelea. ^____________________^
    I think we’re really good with parties. I hope you’re having a great time in Cebu amid this festivity! 😀

    • estelea
      January 18, 2016

      You are the BEST when it comes to party! and setting up a karaoke out of the blue 😛

      • rosemawrites
        January 18, 2016

        Oh that is true! A party isn’t complete without karaoke! 😀

  5. Bouaziz
    January 18, 2016

    J’espère que vous avez fait de jolis films?les gamins ont dû se régaler!

  6. Gerry Ajesta
    January 19, 2016

    I hope I can watch Sinulog and experience the craziness and the party of course. 😀

    • estelea
      January 20, 2016

      Come next year! But be here on Friday if you want the whole Sinulog Marathon 😉

      • Gerry Ajesta
        January 20, 2016

        We’ll see if I can finally see Sinulog next year. 😀

  7. Pingback: Jumble Spoiler – 03/24/16 | Unclerave's Wordy Weblog

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This entry was posted on January 17, 2016 by in Cebu, Expat, Philippines, photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .

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