Gerona, Tarlac -- Longest boodle fight in the country?
This came when this town celebrated its annual fiesta with the longest boodle fight set in the municipal main thoroughfare yesterday.
“More than 7,000 people ate our modest ‘handa’ of adobo and afritada. More than 100 meters ang mga lamesang nagamit,” said Mayor Eloy Eclar.
Boodle fight is a local Army term when the personnel and officers eat together in the open and long table and the food laid down on banana leaves.
At least 920 tables were lined up along the main street of the town and all were covered with banana leaves where the rice and viands were laid down in a stretch. All standing, the throng of people ate with their bare hands.
Eclar said it was his own money spent for the 2,500 kilos of pork and chicken meat, 12 cavans of rice. The 8,000 bottled water were, however, donated by the local mineral water businesses.
“Blow-out ko sana ang ganitong boodle fight noong oath-taking ko, pero ngayon fiesta na lang namin ko ginawa,” said Eclar, who was sworn in last June 30.
The soft spoken Eclar is a multi-millionaire who made it big in the construction industry. An engineer, he started his career as a “lowly” municipal employee of this 3rd class town back in 1986. When he resigned in 1998, he put up MB Eclar construction company which is now one of the biggest construction firms in the province of Tarlac.
“Noon nakikikain lang ako kapag fiesta namin. Kaya ngayon na medyo natupad ko na aking mga pangarap, gusto ko naman na ako ang magpakain sa aking mga kababayan,” also said Eclar.
Sought for comment, local resident Jimmy Ocampo said, “first time nangyari ang ganito kahabang boodle fight sa Gerona at malamang sa buong probinsya o buong Pilipinas. Sana maging tradisyon na ito tuwing fiesta”.