Saturday, 27 April 2019

Kalle 5: Old-School Cafe

Kalle 5: Old-School Cafe

          James Yap, unstoppable with his booming 3 point shots, was making his presence felt that night in a must-win game for Rain or Shine against the Magnolia Hotshots. And I was watching the game at Kalle 5 Cafe. I was seated at a table near the bar with a good view of the action packed game beamed live on TV. I was enjoying my T-Bone steak, tender and juicy as I wanted it. Of course, I was with two ladies who have made it a habit to tag along wherever I go.

          Kalle 5 is a retro-themed cafe in the Bagumbayan, Q.C. area that is making waves these days. The place takes you back to the eighties, seventies, sixties and even beyond. At every nook and cranny are memorabilia that could make one nostalgic. An old jukebox, a super 8mm projector, black and white portable tvs, transistors, vintage telephones, sewing machines and classic cameras could trigger that throw-back time.

          At the eastern end is the front of a classic Cadillac and the rear converted to a three-seater sofa. It is that area where one can have intimate conversations with friends. Or tackle confidential matters. Eye catching is the hard John Lennon poster with almost everyone being able to relate to it. And who would ignore the Robin Hood pomade advertisement that was widely known during the time of our fathers or grandfathers in the 50s?

          Rain or Shine, making a surge in the last quarter, prevailed over the Hotshots, to live to fight another day. There would be a game 7. Fish and chips and Tacos were served to the delight of my female companions. As I was having a bite, I could hear somebody singing: "Hey, now, are you listening? Can u hear me say, I will love you, Till they take my heart away." We were now taking a trip down memory lane, to the late 80s, to the time of Claire Marlo. And for somebody like me, who likes dwelling on the past, Kalle 5 is the place to be !! One more San Mig Lite, please.

Kalle 5: 

Lot 5&6 Blk. 2
Metropoli Residenza
Brgy. Bagumbayan, Quezon City
(before Eastwood City)


Kalle 5 is a retro-themed cafe. The place is spic and span with its airconditioners blowing cold, really cold.

Noticeable is the John Lennon poster hanging amidst Capiz windows, wooden balusters and a horse cart's wheel, apparently referring to our nation's glorious past.

You can watch PBA games or any other sports events at Kalle 5.

Industrial mechanical parts used as props

The front end as well as the rear end of a classic Cadillac used as set props

The rear end is converted to a 3-seater sofa.

A vintage jukebox with the original inscription of The Beatles, Abbey Road. It surely takes you back in time.

Lots of memorabilia at Kalle 5

Well kept items that stir our remembrances of the good old days.

Looking at those vintage telephones reminds you of the time when telephone lines were shared with other subscribers. "Hello, party line, baba mo naman. Kanina ka pa eh."

Front end of a  durable Willy's Jeep used in the old days serves as backdrop.

"I look into your eyes, So far away, There's trouble in your mind, You're losing faith. Hey now, let me hold you."

Camshaft that serves as center leg of a table at Kalle 5

T-Bone Steak


Fish n Chips

Satisfied diners of Kalle 5 Cafe

.At left is businessman Obet Robles  whose son Chef Ardy owns and manages Kalle 5 Cafe.


Wednesday, 17 April 2019

7 Ancient Churches In 7 Lake Shore Towns

7 Ancient Churches In 7 Lake Shore Towns

           It was high noon. About 6 fishermen were in a huddle at a small port of Laguna de Bay. With one acting as the leader, they were discussing their plan of setting up a fish cage. I was a plain kibitzer, looking at the fish nets. I was there at the port with two ladies, past their prime, tagging along and looking pleased with their lunch of fresh water fish at a nearby eatery.

           I usually travel alone but, this time, the ladies were insistent in joining as I took the Manila East Road en route to Laguna de Bay. That early, we had visited the old churches of Morong, Baras and Tanay. From the looks of it, St Jerome Church in Morong remains to be the most visited. It is the oldest in the province of Rizal, having been built by the Franciscan Fathers in 1615. At the St.Joseph Church in Baras and at San Ildefonso de Toledo Parish in Tanay, we took the trouble of taking the narrow, steep stairs at the back of the retablo leading to the belfry.

           With good roads, we easily traversed the mountain that connects Rizal province to Laguna. Atop a hill in Mabitac is the Our Lady of Candelaria Church. It overlooks the town proper and the wide green fields. Two towns away is The Our Lady of Nativity Church in Pangil. As a religious practice, it being Holy Tuesday, most statues were then covered by purple cloth and my two female companions could not get a glimpse of The Pregnant Image of the Blessed Virgin Mary. I looked for the church helper and told him of our predicament. In no time, he acceded to our request to have a clear view of the much talked about icon.

           Over at Pakil, also in Laguna, noteworthy was the retablo of The Our Lady of Turumba Church with 14 icons housed in it. Not to mention the side altars. At the neighboring town of Paete, all doors of the old church of St. James the Apostle were open. Statues of Jesus Christ and Mother Mary, the Crucified Christ and the Two Thieves and Mary Magdalene could be seen.

           At exactly 2:30 PM, we were counting. We had visited 7 churches and we had reached our target. After a brief walk at the town plaza of Paete, we boarded our bantam, turned right at the highway and headed home. It was a day well spent. And as I have always been saying, we surely will be back. Like the swallows of Capistrano.


Our Lady of Turumba in Pakil, Laguna

Our Lady of Turumba is also known as Our Lady of Sorrows.

Our Lady of Turumba Church's retablo and the side altars. The retablo houses 14 saints plus a statue of St. Michael at the top.

Souvenir shot

Hats for sale at Pakil's town plaza which is right across the church

Made of  papier mache

St. James the Apostle Church in Paete, Laguna

Wooden religious carvings for sale in front of the church

Church interior

Most statues have been covered by purple cloth.

At the town plaza of Paete 

The Our Lady of Nativity Church in Pangil, Laguna

The Pregnant Image of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Souvenir shot again for the two ladies

Our Lady of Candelaria Church in Mabitac, Laguna

Our Lady of Candelaria Church is perched on a hill.

For sale in front of the church

Church interior

Steep climb to Our Lady of Candelaria Church

St.Jerome Church in Morong, Rizal. 

St. Jerome Church, or San Geronimo, is the oldest church in Rizal province.

Church courtyard

In deep prayer

Also in deep prayer

St. Joseph Church in Baras, Rizal

Church interior

Stairway leading to the back of the retablo.

San Ildefonso de Toledo Church in Tanay, Rizal

Their nth souvenir shot. Let them be.

San Ildefonso de Toledo Church in Tanay, Rizal is also known for their Stations of the Cross.

Beautiful retablo. It rivals that of Our Lady of Turumba in Pakil, Laguna.

Leading to the church's belfry

Famous  for their fresh water fish. Since 1967.

Craving satisfied

Kanduli sa Miso

Ginataang  Hipon

Pritong Dalag

Port of Laguna de Bay known as Parola

Also at Parola in Tanay, Rizal