Who does not know Chavit Singson? He was the man who squealed about the Jueteng Scandal that eventually led to Erap’s ouster.  While before his name was associated with Jueteng-gate, Ilocos politics, his friendship with world-famous boxer Manny Pacquiao, and his (Chavit’s, not Manny’s)  lovely women………..of late, people remember Chavit for his not-your-typical-nor-ordinary pets in Vigan’s Baluarte.   Should this make us happy?

This tiger had a lengthy “pictorial” with a long line of guests, each of whom posed for a fearless solo shot with the awesome animal.   Watching them line up, pose and try to touch the animal, helped along by the zookeepers who never let go of the leash on the animal, I couldn’t help but feel pity for the tiger.  It didn’t look like it was having a grand time. The way it growled and  turned its head left , right, up, and down,  it could have easily lopped off somewhere away from this scene,  perhaps dragging one of the zookeepers along. But it didn’t.  I’m sure not even a team of those short and thin-looking zookeepers could manage to hold it down. I suspect the animal’s drugged.  

After the pictorial,  back to the cages they go.  Very small cages.  I hear Chavit “plays” with these animals when he is not busy playing with something else like they are his pets.  I can only surmise that they are fed very well before meeting the master.  

The ostriches we found in Baluarte probably had a better life.  They had the “space” and were likely left to roam around the grounds.  

So with the deer, ponies and other animals we found.  Well, at least they look healthier than those starved at the Manila Zoo!

Fed well. Clean environ.  Drugged, maybe not.  Would that make it better?

The Zookeeper and (His Ward) Tiger