26 Nov 2014
Tomorrow Julien and I travel down under to Cairns, Australia and I can’t wait to dive the Great Barrier Reef for the first time!
I also can’t get this song out of my head thanks to some fabulous singing friends…and a giraffe.
16 Sep 2014
This is #5 in my V2V project where I post a picture of a village sign and some info about the village.
Give it up for my home village! MUNGI TOWN! Woop woop!
Mangilao derives its name from the word ilao, which means to look for something. In the past, hunters and fishermen would go to Mangilao to search for crabs, deer, wild pigs, and fish. The mayor of Mangilao is Nonito “Nito” Castro Blas and he has been the mayor since 1988. Makes me wonder who holds the record for longest Guam Mayor in office.
Mangilao seems to me like it’s actually two villages. One side of Mangilao is the location for a number of GovGuam agencies: Department of Corrections, Department of Youth Affairs, Department of Agriculture and Department of Public Health and Social Services. That side of Mangilao is also the center of Guam’s higher education campuses – University of Guam, Guam Community College and Pacific Islands University. Other notable schools in Mangilao are Henry B. Price Elementary School, Father Duenas Memorial School, and my high school alma mater, George Washington Senior High School. (GO GECKOS!)
On the other side of Mangilao, up the back road to Andersen, there’s Latte Heights, Latte Plantation, Banyan Heights… all which are residential communities that branch out to border northern villages Dededo and Yigo. See what I mean about it seeming like that area is a village of its own? It’s not, though. It’s all Mangilao.
In the 1920s, naval Governor Henry B. Price launched a vigorous “back-to-the-soil movement” to convince Chamorros to develop their agriculture and become self-sufficient. Governor Price built a road into the area as well as a school to encourage farmers to live in Mangilao during the week and return to their homes on weekends. After the war, the village saw a lot of growth with thousands of construction workers employed by the military who moved to the village. Roads and houses were built to accommodate the workers, and grocery stores began to line the village’s main road. (Guampedia)
In 1960, the population of Mangilao was 1,965. Today it’s over 15,000. “Rapid development in this village has made it quite populated, as it is now the home of many Micronesian islanders who have chosen to migrate to Guam.” (Guam Mayors Council)
Learn more about Mangilao from Guampedia: http://www.guampedia.com/mangilao/
Some of my favorite things in Mangilao are: Pagat Cave, Tagu’an Point (1,000 Steps) and George Washington High School. GO GECKOS!
Shoutout to all my favorite first cousins in Mangilao. You know who you are.
Raise your hand if you’re from Mangilao! They don’t call it Mungi (Månnge’) Town for nothing. Månnge’ means delicious, ergo, people from Mangilao are so deliciously good we’re mångge’.
“Of course we don’t mean that literally. It’s just that we’re really into the sense of taste.” – Pale Eric
8 Sep 2014
This is #4 in my V2V project where I post a picture of a village sign and some info about the village.
Hafa Adai, Piti!
Piti comes from the Chamorro word puti. Puti means hurt, pain, ache, discomfort (physical or emotional). Piti is approximately two miles long and wide and, as of the 2010 US Census, has a population of 1,454. The mayor of Piti is Vicente “Ben” D. Gumataotao.
Piti started out as a small pre-Spanish settlement, with plentiful fishing for the ancient Chamorros and remained a small village until the Port of San Luis of Apra (Apra Harbor) became the chief harbor of the Spanish government.
Ships anchored in Apra Harbor and transferred cargo to a nearby pier. From Piti, goods were transported by two-wheeled carts pulled by steer or oxen to the government store in Hagåtña. For many years, the road connecting the pier in Piti to Hagåtña, made of crushed limestone, was the only real road on Guam.
On April 7, 1917, at the start of WWI, Piti and Apra Harbor were the site of a confrontation between U.S. naval officers and the German ship SMS Cormoran II. After agreeing to surrender his men, the Cormoran captain scuttled his ship and it sank to the bottom of the harbor. Zee Germans were taken as prisoners of war.
Underwater, the Cormoran rests beside the WWII Japanese cargo ship Tokai Maru, (sunk by the USS Snapper). It is one of the few places in the world where divers can explore a World War I shipwreck next to a ship from World War II. You can actually touch them both at the same time. Pretty neat.
Learn more about Piti from Guampedia: http://www.guampedia.com/piti-piti/
Some of my favorite things in Piti are Micronesian Divers Association (MDA), the always amazing snorkeling/diving around the Fisheye underwater observatory, Family Beach, and Patrick Palomo. Shout out to my homegirl Pia who works hard at the Port. Pia, let me know if you see any spiders.
Piti might not be the biggest village but it’s one of the island’s most important for it contains the commercial port of Guam, Apra Harbor and the super important Cabras Power Plant that hustles 24/7 to deliver A LOT of megawatts of power for us all. Raise your hand if you’re from Piti! High five, Piti!
1 Sep 2014
This is #3 in my V2V project where I post a picture of a village sign and some info about the village.
Malesso’ is the southernmost village in Guam and Ernest T. Chargualaf is the mayor. As of the 2010 US Census, the population of Merizo was 1,850.
Always known as a place for fishing, the village’s original name, Malesso’, derives from the Chamorro word lesso’, a juvenile stage in the growth of rabbit fish. Juvenile rabbit fish, or mañåhak in Chamorro, run in schools at certain times of the year in the bays and inlets of the village. Their arrival is always an occasion of great excitement, as groups of people large and small work nets to gather the local delicacy.
While there are few accounts of the pre-Spanish colonial era on Guam, Merizo’s abundance of fresh water, its protected lagoon, extensive reef and shorelines, and its fertile valleys suggest that the area likely sustained a large population. By 1833, however, the population was estimated at only 318. By this time, disease, calamity and the Spanish-Chamorro wars had reduced the native Chamorros.
In 1946, the first woman was elected to the Guam Congress. Rosa Aguigui Reyes, from Merizo, served in the congress – an advisory body to the island’s naval governor – and was also a longtime educator. She died January 2007 at the age of ninety-one.
Learn more about Malesso’ from Guampedia:
Some of my favorite things in Malesso’ are: Priest’s Pools, Cocos Crossing, the annual Crab Festival, the view of Cocos Island from the pier and Josh Tyquiengco.
Raise your hand if you’re from Malesso’! Your own village is so cherry.
13 Aug 2014
This is #2 in my V2V project where I post a picture of a village sign and some info about the village.
Agat! Why you gotta act so tough?
Just playing. Seriously, I didn’t mean anything by that. Please don’t jump me.
Agat is considered Guam’s Gateway to the South. The current mayor is Carol S. Tayama and she is the first woman elected as mayor of the village. You go, girl. I mean, Mayor.
“The village of Agat may have been named by the first clan who came to settle in the area from the northern part of Guam. It is also possible that the village name Hågat originally was derived from the word Aga, which is the Chamorro name of the Marianas Crow which is a large black bird that makes the sound “aga” while flying low over the jungle. The village’s name, too, could be derived from the Chamorro word håga, meaning blood.”
“It is believed that Chief Coroo headed the first clan of Agat. Beloved by his people, he was also the eldest in the clan. Chief Coroo divided the village into families, each with its own surname.”
“Pre-war Agat was a small village with a coast lined with coconut trees that produced copra (coconut meat). The village also supported farming, ranching, and fishing. Rice paddies existed on the coastal flats as well as the flat inland areas.”
Read more about Agat here: http://www.guampedia.com/agat-hagat/
Some of my favorite things in Agat are this super slick village sign, the Spanish bridge, my BBBS Little Sister, Jan-Z’s and the annual Mango Festival.
Raise your hand if you’re from Agat! We’re cool, right?
6 Aug 2014
I started a “Village to Village” pet project where I take a picture of a village sign and drop a little knowledge about said village with some help from Guampedia.
Hagåtña is the capital of Guam and the current mayor is John A. Cruz. But you knew that, right?
“Hagåtña is derived from the word haga meaning blood. It is believed that this village came about due to the bloodlines of the families that established the village. Carbon dating indicates that the village was inhabited 2,630 years ago and possibly as long as 3,020 years ago. These dates indicate that Hagåtña was settled prior to the appearance of Latte.”
Some of my favorite things in Hagåtña include the Sirena statue, the gazebo at Plaza de España, Latte Stone park, boat basin, Hit Radio 100 and Cup and Saucer.
Read more about our island’s capital here: http://www.guampedia.com/hagatna/
Raise your hand if you’re from Hagåtña! I like your own village sign.