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What’s fiesta without a fair?

THIS is one place we thought doesn’t attract a crowd anymore—peryahan. That they still exist proves there are always people who wouldn’t mind playing kids once again so they could shoot plastic ducks for the jackpot prize of a box of three-in-one coffee.

The peryahan along Osmeña Blvd., Cebu City has been attracting mostly young couples on a date and families on excursion from the province since December. Ukay-ukay stalls and a high fence of GI sheets cover it from view. If not for the Ferris Wheel that can be seen from outside, one thinks nothing is going on at the vacant lot where the old SSS building used to be.

The place is more than a peryahan. It’s a carnival complete with rides whose clanking noise offers more thrill than the ride itself. Carnival workers are ready to assure riders all that metallic noise is normal and that they will finish the ride in one piece, so stop acting scared and hold on tight to that handlebar now.

The names of the rides promise an exciting experience involving animals. There’s Golden Swan, the Eagle Express, the Flying Dinosaur, the Octopus, and there’s the Calesa, which involves horses. Of course, there’s the Carousel minus the nursery tunes. The Carousel involves horses too, although younger and more cheerful looking.

The ride most preferred by dating couples is the Horror Train. Although it doesn’t involve animals, it features characters so ugly they look funny. It also shows how the makeup industry in this part of the country has deteriorated.

There are mummies, ogres, witches, zombies, corpses, the devil, and the makeup artists who double as ticket sellers.

In the Horror Train ride, a locomotive enters a “tunnel” where the creatures mentioned above supposedly live. Because evil creatures are territorial, they attack anything that invades their privacy, including a locomotive that looks like coal mining carts painted red.

The riders must play their part and scream. After the trip, they are required to tell the next batch of riders how scary the experience was so they’d better spend their money on a box of popcorn instead.

Completing the fiesta atmosphere is the videoke singing (four stalls of them), which for all the violent incidents related to it may also be considered as one really dangerous ride—the song “My Way” is on the list.

Outside, the bingo announcer’s invitation can be faintly heard: “Subay-subaya lang ang tingog sa trompa (Just let the barker’s voice lead the way).”

(sun.star cebu, january 21, 2008)

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2 Responses to “What’s fiesta without a fair?”

  1. hai, I still remember yesterday the world was so young…hehehehe miss going to those “peryahan” bai. Nindot to na mga times when maka daog kag plato or mug or glass by just dropping 25 centavo coins on a makeshift board, na nai drawings na mga square2. If masulod imong 25 centavo coins sa square na drawing without touching their lines…daog ka ug mga ingon ato hehehehe or magpusil2 tag mga plastic ducks to get candies or whatever is available nila na mahatag eheehehe..*sigh* I miss the kid in me…..

  2. another rai and rei’s “misadventures”:

    kirai passionately told me how happy she was last sunday kai naa daw xa did2!
    so we went to the same peryahan and later realized that we were too early! ha!
    oh well, we had fun for free “rides”
    rides na dili mu.andar kai sarado p lagi cla…
    nisakay ra mi den sariling sikap sa pic…
    hahaha.. it’s like we own the whole place! hahaha…

    too disappointing for a first timer to enter a peryahan.. hehehe..
    but mubalik jud mi ni kirai pra mka.xperience nko ug tinuod na rides..kanang mu.andar na! heheheeh…


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