Mangrobang " in Mayantoc Cardo , in the
ship Richard, at Queens Ricky, at home in Hawaii and my friends call me
website is a simple product of love. I dedicate this life story
to the children back home who, like me, were born into poverty.
I created this website in the hopes of inspiring them to build
up the courage to pursue a better future. It has been my
personal experience that poverty is not a hindrance for success,
but a tool to make your desire to succeed stronger. I was
born in Sitio Katipunan, Barangay Pitombayog, Mayantoc, a very
rugged life very poor way of living which I call it survival.
During my childhood we moved to the barren rocky hills
surrounded with fertile rice fields called Bariwawa. Here we
turn the barren hills into a jungle of fruit trees, vegetables
and fish pond. Behind this farm was a river which is now the
location of the Hidden Paradise Resort. During the 80's it
became a part of Baranggay Pedro L. Quinez. My parents were both
born in Mayantoc, of undistinguished and very poor farmers. My
father is Leon Mangrobang Jr. passed away lately September of
2009 in CA. My mother is living with my brother Romeo in
California. I made the petition for them in 1989 to come to the
US. They first came to live with me in Hawaii, but later moved
to California with my brother and sister where they worked until
Alaala ko ay Ikaw,
Bakas nang Lumipas,
"Eddie Peregrina"I dedicate
this songs to all of yesterday's love." You were all important
part of my life. Let's just move on ." Honestly, I still
remember you all. Contact me if you can?
My Videos in You
Tube If your Internet connection is
slow you might find some difficulty in watching the You Tube
Videos. If you have a Broad Band Connection there will be no
problem at all .
To live in my
birth place in the 60's and 70's was very hard. It was a wild country
side without electricity and filled with many outlaws, Agtatakaw ti
Nuang, Saka Saka and Hukbalahap . The school was very far and we would
have to walk 6km every morning over the rice padish and rice fields to
go to school and do the same going back home in the afternoon. The
nearest neighbor is about 3 kilometers there is always a fear in our
heart during the night.
and Fishing For Food is my Hobbies:I started to learn and hunt for food at
a very early ages. I used a manual pump pellets gun at age of 8 then
I was 14 years old my father bought me the Squibman bolt action 22 cal.
Rifle. I grow up in survival way and remedy is always available what
ever circumstances may come. Hunting was my favorite sports because it
gave us good food. The forested rivers, rice fields and mountains
around our house is a very good source of food supply. The river is
very rich abundant of shells like, Agurong, Susu, Dukyang, Bisokol.
Dalag, Paltat and Gurami is plenty.
Struggle ? Your
future and your life is in your own hands.
Now the key is in
your activity, the level of your courage, enjoyment and endurance
towards what you do for your future. The person who can overcome the
difficulties, struggles through each day of his life and still manages
to conquer the frustrations, mistakes, and failures, is in a better
position to win the battle and a success in life.
Dream 1970's I had joined and graduated the Midshipmen Cadet Officer
Training Corps ( NROTC) at Feati University. As an officer of the Naval
Reserved Officer Training Corps, I was trained to be a strong leader
and a commander. We did our training exercises at Fort Bonifacio by the
PMMA ground. After finishing my basic and advance training, I enlisted
as a reserved officer for the Philippine Navy with the Rank of Ensign
then LT Junior Grade. Every year as a reserved officer I had to take a
refresher officer's training for one or three months with the Navy.
After a few years I was commissioned as s Lieutenant Senior Grade
Time has come. 1974 I had graduated Marine Engineering and immediately
applied for my overseas Seaman's Book at the Philippine Coast Guard. I
prepared all my papers and eager to join the Merchant Marines. That same
year I was luckily hired as Apprentice Engineer for overseas Ocean going
Vessel. It was not so easy to apply and get in. I have to look for a
Ninong and good recommendation. There is always the Palakasan,... with
Gods willing I came to board my first ship to Hong Kong.
Before we go on
with the Journey let me look back for a while!!!!!!!!!!!
I look back !!!!!From the very remote country side of Pitombayog Sitio
Bariwawa, Katipunan or so, I always come to look back to the old days.
When I was a very young boy who dreamt of luxury and wealth, I struggled
very hard to overcome the creeping poverty and lack of education, which
was a problem to every child in that very remote country side of Mayantoc. As a normal young teenager I also fell in love with the
beautiful girls of the Philippines, but because of poverty those girls
were just a dream - no matter how much I loved them- my mind was set to
leave for a better life. Life in college was a bitter struggle, with
very limited money. The struggle was so intense my body almost gave up,
but my mind was very strong with its longing for success.
sailing with my life at sea as time pass by:
were some of my previous ships. From 1974 Apprentice Marine Engineer up
to Second Marine Engineer 1985. If there was no available opening as an
officer, I accepted any available position such as Wiper, Oiler, Boiler
Operator, Welder, Fitter and Machinist. It was very important to me to
have a Job.!!!!! A new beginning in Hawaii 1986 .
NAME OF SHIP
SAUDI EUROPE TRADER
M.V. Lavander, was my first ship from 1974-1975. I was 22
years old and fresh from college. I graduated with a Degree in
Marine Engineering, and became employed as an
Apprentice Engineer. The ship was a general cargo, lumber and
log ship. I took my ship to Hong Kong, which was my home port.
There were a lot of Filipino women working as domestic helpers.
Like me, they were also trying to escape the hard life where
they came from. During Wednesday and Sunday we got together in
the park. We would go for a picnic and dancing in the Stella
Maries Seaman's Club. And more,,,,,??? Our ship sailed for
Manila, which was our port of entry to the Philippines. We load
hundred and thousand of tons of Lumber and logs from Manila,
Davao, Cotabato, Abulog Cagayan and other small ports around
Philippines. After 3 to 4 months of loading the very big ship,
we start sailing bound for Europe. Our first stop was Singapore
for bunkering or refueling for the long trip. Then we proceeded
to the Indian Ocean towards Europe. After half a month of
navigation, the first land we approach is the middle east.
Passing the Arabian Gulf and Red Sea, we finally come to the
entrance of the Suez Canal. Because the canal was so narrow
during those early years, the ship had to go with a convoy In
the starboard and portside of the ship you can see remnants of
war equipment destroyed during the war of Egypt and Israel. Out
from Suez Canal is the Mediterranean Sea. After a few days we
come to the Port of Gibraltar, which was a narrow out passage to
the Atlantic Ocean. On the Portside is Morocco and the Starboard
side is Spain. Our first unloading port is Barcelona, Tarragona
and Cartagena in Spain. Then we headed to Bordeaux France,
Italy, Antwerp etc.,,, and all other ports of Europe.
Passages to the Suez Canal
first passage to the Suez canal was 1974, a few years just after
the war of Israel and Egypt. At that time the canal was newly
open after an extensive cleanup on mines and other war related
debris. Some Egyptian traders came aboard our ship and sold many
kinds of items, such as the statue of Cleopatra made of bronze
from melted bullets from the war. At that time the canal was so
narrow that most of the bigger ships like the super tankers were
not allowed to pass thru. From my ship, I could see some of the
pyramids and destroyed houses. The name of my ship at that time
was MV LAVANDER. Routing Asia to Europe.
the spectacular capital
city of Greece, is home to over one third of the Greek
population. The capital city since 1834, the total land area of
Athens is around 250 square miles (340 square kilometers).
Athens is one of the most vibrant and dazzling cities in Europe
and its unique blend of old and new has made it a popular
destination for both business and leisure. Athens is one of the
few places on earth that can boast a history of over 5000 years.
Athens was my home Port with my Ship MT Hassan B. This was a
tanker ship with more than 100,000 tons. We come back to this
port very often. I loved this wonderful place and I met lots of
Filipino Nurses and Midwifes working at the Hospital. Acropolis
is located at Athens Greece, which is one of the historical
Ship The first Stop Port of entry to Europe. Salerno Italy MV
a very long melancholic rough and smooth navigation from Asia,
here comes our first stop and port of entry to Europe. Salerno
Italy, is a small country paradise city belted with mountain
ranges and decorated with beautiful old European houses. A
breathtaking beauty that is extended toward the shoreline and
magnificent beaches. It's one of the most beautiful scenes a
person can ever imagined. It's a very beautiful place.
as we're alongside and cleared with the Custom and Immigration
immediately rush ashore. People in this area during those year
didn't know much about Filipino's they think we are Japanese.
There's a lot of beautiful girls in Italy. We
always in a rush and eager to find a girlfriend and it's not
very difficult when you are young and fast. Time is very short
we have to learn the skill. The most effective bait for love is
lots of present from other countries and tons of promises it is
always a guarantee do the trick.
We discharged some of our cargo then proceeded to
many Ports of Europe, Genoa Italy, La Specia, Barcelona Spain,
Taragona, Pasahes, Rotterdam Holland, Antwerp, Belgium,
Portugal, Norway, Finland, England and France. MV LAVADER AND
MV GOODVIEW ARE SISTER SHIP with the same route.
our Cargo from Asia took us 2 months of unloading to so many
Ports of Europe. As we unload we began loading cargos to the
empty hatches as per telex of the Company. The Ship keeps
sailing from one place to another. In France, our New cargo is
raw materials for Oil and Grease. Our ship sail into a river
with a very strong current. The buoyancy of fresh water is
lesser than the salt water which make our ship submerge below
the water line. Bordeaux Port is a country I need to hitch ride
to go to the City or Town. Taxi is not available in the Port and
most of the people can not understand English.
is our next destination, We loaded Rocks a Raw materials for
making Steel . In Russia we loaded cement bound for Dubai. Wekeep loading up the big ship in so many countries in Europe. On
our way home to Hong Kong, we discharge cargos to so many Ports
.Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Singapore, Japan and then back to Hong
Kong. It would be almost a year before we got back to the Home
Towards the Black Sea to Russia MV
out the log it's over two weeks since we departed Singapore, our
for bunkering or refueling. We pass Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea,
Red Sea and Suez Canal. It's the beginning of Winter time , the
cold breeze of Europe meets us as we exit the Suez at Port Said
Egypt. Our discharging destination is Russia . We change course
to 20 degree Starboard bound towards the Black sea. Along the
way we pass several countries. On the Starboard side we pass
Israel Cyprus and Turkey. Going into Eagan sea the Channel is
becoming narrower. Looking on the Port side is Greece , Bulgaria
then Istanbul Turkey. Passing underneath the Bridge. About 100
to 500 meters away to the shore line. The beautiful different
views both starboard and port side is amazing. I like to sit
down on the top of the upper deck and watch every scenery. I was
off duty at that time so I have all the benefits of watching
this spectacular beauty of nature. The Black Sea is about one
nautical miles away and the weather is changing.
Black Sea MT
was almost Sunset when we reach the opening of Black Sea. From a
very calm water in the Channel it becomes
a big swell. The challenger and the destroyer of dreams is the
weather "Big waves" is starting to grow like mountains. I could
fell the strong current the big swell and the ship start to rock
and swing side to side over 20 degrees with a staggered
vibration from the Rudder as the Propeller struggle to play with
the waves. There is a typhoon as sparky announce but there is no
way to avoid. It comes with a strong rainfall and the ocean was
just like a hole of darkness. The ship keeps going and must go
on. We rely only on compass and the sextant plotting the route
of our navigation. There was no GPS navigation at that time. We
have to use mathematics calculation thru the stars and other
heavenly bodies. Every one will get sea sick on the first strike
of the bad weather but after few days our body get used to the
motion and the sea sickness start to disappear.
a very discouraging sea sick every one aboard seems to wake up
from a bad dream and start a new very exciting arrival to the
Port of Novorossiysk. As soon the custom and immigration clear
our entry immediately dress up and get ready to explore the new
found land. As expected
there are so many exciting places and things to do in Russia.
Every thing is very cheap the food and drinks.Just like a bird
in the cage to freedom. Russia is a very nice place for Good
time. We have limited money to bring ashore but most of us keep
our US Dollar and change it in the black market. There's also a
curfew, We have to be back at the ship before 12:00 midnight. I
have a lot of Good time with had a very beautiful girlfriend. I
was only 22 years old at that time. We went to Taste the winery,
Museum, and spend most time at the Stella Maries Seaman's Club.
Where Vodka Champagne and Girls made us forget the life at sea
Anapa - Russia's Wine Capital
Anapa is the northernmost Russian
resort area on the coast of the Black Sea. The rocky shore,
practically vertical in the south part of the Krasnodar region,
finally becomes a white sandy beach at the Anapa cape spreading
in a curve for 25 miles. Anapa is accessible by air, railway,
and highway to all of Russia and many countries of Europe and
Asia. Novorossisk, Russia's principal warm water seaport, is 50
km south of Anapa. From Anapa, the Black Sea connects Anapa
with Ukraine, Georgia, Turkey, Romania, Bulgaria, and the entire
Mediterranean. As one
of Russia's favorite tourist cities, Anapa has comfortable
hotels and recreation and transportation facilities. Anapa is
also home to Anapa Kinoshok, a international film festival held
every year in September
Unforgettable Experience in Russia
I went to Russia several times
and knows most the street and places to go. Saudi Trader is my
Third ship that sail to the Same Port. The first one is MV Good
View, second is MT Hassan B and the third is Saudi Trader. Like
most of the trip we went to every Seamen could passively reach.
Have all the happiness we can have just like there is no more
tomorrow to come. On this trip my pass was suspended because one
night I was not able to come back to the Ship on time. The
immigration and custom was looking for me. I was with a friend
house and almost forget to go back to my Ship. Sometimes the
time is so fast and forget it's time to go home. I was
questioned and detained for several hours and my pass was
revoked. It was not to bad because the ship was sailing the next
friend was left behind with a a very good promise that I will
come back. It's a promise that is always made to be broken. It's
also very difficult but duty is always the first priority.
It was a gorgeous beautiful morning making our exit at Suez
toward the Red Sea. On the starboard side view the mystical
barren dessert mountains while on the Port side
the plain dessert plains that the sun reflection from both sides
made the sea like Red color. I was wondering the reason why they
called it the Red Sea? Further more is the Arabian Sea then we
change course 25 degrees port side making an entry to the Gulp
of Oman heading to the Persian Gulp. Sarjah, was our first
discharging port then Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Shore leave. It was a
very hot time of liberty when we get a Taxi cab to the City
shopping area. Over 115 degrees oven like temperature. A very
hot summer and time of Ramadan. Because of the weather we sweat
like hell and our body was dehydrated and needed water. We
needed water, we are so thirsty that seems my entire skull is
out. We were so weak start to get shock shake clammy. We are
dying all the store is open but it's Ramadan it's
the law to eat or drink before six PM. The law is there religion
anyone caught eating or drinking will be incarcerated and jailed
with out question or trial. I can't go on no more strength then
one Pakistani foreigner bring us to a hidden Room and Gave us
water. It was the best feeling but we decided to go back to our
ship and go back after six PM when everything is normal.
Island Nudist Camp
Every year the company assigned me to different ship with a
different route as expected. This time my ship is a Tanker ship
. I flew from Manila to Athens Greece to my New ship MT Hassan
B. The ship is on a Dry-dock at Syros a tiny Island several
miles away from Piraeus and Athens. We stayed there for about a
month for all the major repair in the Boiler, Main Engine and
Generators. Every one is on day ship work except the AB on deck.
During the week end we explore the Island and hang out at the
nudist camp which is only mile away from us.
the people in the nudist camp is from mainland Europe. Every one
is friendly and naked boys and girls. I love the scenery of
white meat scattered along the Beaches and the Mountain side.
You can see the different sizes of human structure. I love
talking to the women in this kind of attire or no attire at all.
My eyes focused to the main attraction however my brain felt
shyness but then the girls help you overcome the unusual
experience. We go dancing in the Disco house with in the Camp
itself. Here you can wear a short or you can be naked. I prefer
dancing with a short.
the Beach every one must be naked otherwise people will be
looking at you. They said if you don't like to be naked just go
to the other side of the hill. There is another Beach for the
public which is not for nudist people. We have a lot of choices
I like it here. I am young and very strong for any kind of
I encounter a lot of action in the area .Together with my friend
we comb the vicinity talked to a lot of girls till we found
girls who spoke English and later become friends. We have the
whole day of persuasion and courtship making sure we will have
them come to our ship by night fall. Like always give them lot's
of present, care for them with respect and again tons of
promises. What do you expect when you are in the twenties. The
blood is very hot and aggressive and every minute is action
there is no wasted time otherwise you will regret during time of
is almost finished and getting ready for our departure to the
Persian Gulp where there is nothing but sand and dessert. A very
boring place there is no good time but fishing.
Place in Scandinavia
Sweden and Denmark is a part of the Scandinavian country. This
place is very beautiful. The economy is great. This is
where the car Volvo is made. Shipping is one
the greatest livelihood of the people. I have a lot of friends
and shipmates from this area.
Fjords plus an incredibly scenic drive from Oslo to Bergen along
the edge of Telemark, through the Hardanger Vidda -
Fjord.Experience the highlights of Norway with a wonderful mix
of scenery and sights. Including stunning fjords, spectacular
glaciers, and splendid museums. Norwegian Coastal Voyage
(Hurtigrute) Nordic's Grand Sailing Splendors plus our Norway's
Fjords and Countryside Program.
Panama Canal 1979
MS HALLVARD AND MS HALLDOR SISTER SHIP
are entering from the Pacific side, the first thing one sees is
the "Bridge of the Americas." In
area were 60 boats waiting to transverse the canal. Some would
wait for a couple of days before doing so. Since we had a
reservation we would begin our journey through the canal right
through two series of locks that raised us 85 feet. It was
fascinating to view the ships in the locks ahead of us 27 feet
higher than we were.
locks demonstrated the ingenuity of the U.S. engineers. Each
lock is 110 feet wide and 1000 feet long. The water comes in
through the force of gravity, there are no pumps. This is the
Roughly midway through our transit we entered Gatun Lake, one of
the world's largest man-made lakes. The many islands in the lake
are actually the tops of hills. People can buy an island, but
they can only build a grass hut on it.
The final locks -- Gatun -- had three chambers to lower us 85
feet to sea level. On this end (further west than the Pacific
side) we could look down on the ships preceding us through the
canal. In our case we had been been playing tag with a cargo
ship from Brazil that was carrying a load of copper to Europe.
In this photo you can see how much lower it is in the lock to
the very long years journeying as a Merchant Marine, it came to
a certain point of maturity that I wanted to have my
own family and get married . A time came of making a very
critical decision at the age of 27. After weighing all aspect of
life and love and through the advice of my parents, who at that
time wanted to see USA , I made a very critical choice. I
decided to get married to my true love in Hawaii. I went back to
the ship for two more years. This time I planned to built a
house of my own so I boarded a Tanker ship stationed only in the
Persian Gulp. There is no good time no girls all work only.
After I finished my tour of duty at that ship I went home to the
Philippines and Built my home in front of the Tarlac College of
Agriculture " TCA". It's a beautiful concrete house.
That is the time when the Philippines is very much in trouble.
After the assassination of the late Senator Binigno Aquino in
the Airport the country became unstable. There was a lot of
rallies and demonstration. The dictatorship of the old regime
seems to come to an end. I decided to join my family in Hawaii.
It was February 26 1986 of that same year I finally made my
decision to stay close to my family in USA.
So many more stories in
all parts of the world but lets cut it short and see my life in
Click and go to the link My Hawaii
Four Million visitors around the world visited this website
since it was created, Thanks to all of you.