Finding Peace in Zamboanga City

The plane ride to Zamboanga was partly different from my previous travels: no overly excited, loud tourists taking selfies and no foreigners. I can tell that the passengers were mostly locals because they were speaking Chavacano, the city’s Spanish-based local dialect. When the plane landed in Zamboanga, it meant many things for the group I was traveling…

The Siege of Zamboanga’s Youngsters by Makoi Popioco

A little boy cowered behind an overturned wooden chair, avoiding gunfire. The other boy breathed heavily, he dashed his small feet forward and with his frail hands, he fired. The boy hiding behind the chair got shot, fell down, and played dead. I raised my hand, pointed my index finger, pulled the invisible trigger in my thumb,…

Children of the 90s: The Fallen Officers of Oplan Exodus

During the first People Power Revolution in EDSA, these six brave men pictured above were babies or simply biding their time inside the wombs of their mothers. Like me, they grew up in the 1990s — when songs from the Eraserheads ruled the radio airwaves and when brownout was rampant. Years ago, they were just children. And they were still young when…