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Driven by the conflict in their own place, Badjao, who are native from Sulu, moved to other neighboring places. For their survival in their new environment, sometimes, we can see them in the streets begging for foods. I can see them more often in pier area since I always travel every weekend from Cebu to Leyte via sea. They’ll get closer to the docking ship where passengers will likely to throw some goods and coins into the sea and for them to catch and submerge for the flipping coins. Some of their companions will race with their motor-driven-boats for the arriving ship which came usually from Manila and begging for money and food.
The girls in this painting seemed shy and reluctant since they were teased by some of the passengers. The little boy, whom I think a 2 years of age, was very busy opening some cracker given by a generous traveler. The only thing amazed me was that the boy knew already how to swim in his young age. In all day, they’re soaked and wet in their boat and no wonder that their hair became blond and the skin complexion became dark. Sometimes they are called Sea Nomads. They became boat dwellers due to their occupation and built stilt houses in a fertile fishing ground.