Sula: The Green Aliens

March 11, 2011

THERE’S a monkey on our back that is hard to rid off like stubborn dirt.
Even in our choice of trees, we cannot seem to shake it off, perhaps for lack of trying. It has mocked our science, blurred our common sense and made practical fun of what should pass as authentic theology.
So there we have them, bliss in ignorance, as ubiquitous as some of our own, maybe even more: mahogany, eucalyptus, gemelina and Indian trees. They’re everywhere in our yards – back and front, church, school. You see them line up the edges of our world-class expressways and no-class highways. They are all foreign, and in our eyes, as green, if not greener, than the yakal, apitong, ipil and banaba.
We had owned the native trees before the alien varieties have owned us, or before we have decimated our forests of their native (indigenous and endemic) species.
Colonial mentality, like addiction, continues to give us the big kick.
When I was small, I used to hide myself behind the huge surface roots of giant trees at the foot of Mt. Arayat whenever I joined my uncles for the routine trek. (They were kaingeros). That was close to half a century ago. You needed at least four grown-ups to complete a wrap-around the trunk. If you looked up at the apex, you had to strain your head back to see shafts of light breaking through the foliage like an epiphany. Your eyes didn’t hurt even at noon because of the thick layers of canopy.
The trees of my youth are no longer there. Some of the species that have grown in their place are, in all certainty, aliens. All this time, I thought there was nothing with having foreign trees in our midst. I was wrong — so were those who chose them over our native species.
The awakening came at the launch of the LausGroup corporate green project aptly named “A Native Tree for Every Car.” The project is self-explanatory: you buy a car from the group, you get a native tree for free. It’s the group’s response to the worldwide call to re-green the planet to stop global warming and stave off unprecedented disaster.
During the short lecture, it became clear why the native trees are still the best for our local environment. They were meant to be and, therefore, suited to be here. Native trees do a lot of things, apart from the textbook carbon-oxygen equation. They serve as a natural habitat for other living things which serve as food or shelter, enemies or friends of other livings that, in all, sustain the life cycle. Take out the native tree, and the equilibrium is disturbed, the symbiosis upset and the cycle broken.
Trees, in short, aren’t just about the weather and global warming. They are about life itself. And life isn’t all science. Shortly after the launch, I went back to a familiar page in the Bible, in the book of Genesis. There it was, the trees created by God ahead of any living things. There must be both science and theology in the design even God Himself could not violate without harming His own works.
But man has, and look where or how we are. And it hasn’t yet appeared, for all of Al Gore’s inconvenient truth, how worse it could really get for the race in the foreseeable time.
Now I know why the little living useful things that I used to see in Nature’s fold are no longer there, from fishes to birds to insects (I don’t see fireflies anymore, for one thing) to plants.
When I was a boy, I would often follow my grandma as she navigated a nearby creek to catch stone crabs, shrimps, a little fish called bia and pluck off young ferns along the bank. She would later pick some ripe native guavas. The following lunch would be a feast that I always “taste” in my memory.
That creek is just about dead. The native trees that used to sustain it to support living creatures around are practically gone. Well, piggeries at the mount’s base now dump wastes into it, too.
I’m a bit scandalized that government doesn’t seem to mind that “alien” trees are invading our ecology, if not abetting the invasion itself. The native tree campaign adopted by the LausGroup through San Beda College and Hortica Filipina Foundation Inc. – a nationwide advocacy for the latter, is both timely and commendable – and a must.
My boss, Levy P. Laus, revived an old wise in his launch talk that the earth was borrowed from the future generation, not inherited from the ancient. I remember a noble Greek thought that a society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they will no longer enjoy.
It’s a good motivating literary piece. If not, poet Robert Frost’s two possible endings for the earth – fire or ice – should scare us enough to plant trees. Of course, our own.


Recent opinion survey of frequent travelers heading north towards Subic and Clark Pampanga revealed that the number one most frequently visited fine dining restaurant in Pampanga is Yats Restaurant & Wine Bar located in Clark Philippines.

Hong Kong-based Yats International built this restaurant in 2000 to provide a world-class cozy fine dining restaurant, as well as business meeting facilities and venues for private dinners and social functions in Philippines Pampanga Angeles City Clark Freeport Zone. North Luzon Pampanga Angeles City Clark Philippines was selected for this restaurant because of safety, clean air, absence of traffic and proximity to Manila and Subic. Clark Freeport is located near Manila and Subic. Diners from Manila and Subic can travel north along North Expressway and arrive in Clark in about 70 minutes without having to go through city driving, making this fine dining restaurant very convenient and accessible for guests from Manila.

Yats Restaurant & Wine Bar is general regarded in the Philippines as the best fine dining establishment in the country. Wine Spectator Magazine’s gave out Restaurant Wine List Best of Award of Excellence to 788 restaurants in the world. Yats Restaurant is the only restaurant in the Philippines to receive this award in recognition of its famous 2700-line restaurant wine list that has attracted many wine lovers to visit Clark Pampanga frequently to wine and dine.

Wine tastings are held regularly at this fine dining establishment, each event with a different theme. Popular themes include a tasting of 15 different Cabernet-Sauvignon-dominant red wines, old-world compared against new-world wines and a tasting of 50 years of aged vintage wines.

In addition to the wine cellars of the fine dining Yats Restaurant, more selections are available from the largest wine shop in Philippines, another property of Yats Wine Cellars called Clark Wine Center just 3 minutes away. Guests do not have to pay corkage fee for wines purchased from Clark Wine Center’s Wine Shop. 0922-870-5173 0917-826-8790 for Ana Fe.

For comments, inquiries and reservations click on Click here for inquiry and reservations

(045) 599-5600

Ask for Pedro and Rechel


Getting to this fine dining restaurant of Angeles City Clark Freeport Zone Pampanga Philippines
How to get to this fine-dining restaurant in Clark Philippines? Once you get to Clark Freeport, go straight until you hit Mimosa. After you enter Mimosa, stay on the left on Mimosa Drive, go past the Holiday Inn and Yats Restaurant (green top, independent 1-storey structure) is on your left. Just past the Yats Restaurant is the London Pub.

Yats Restaurant & Wine Bar
Mimosa Drive past Holiday Inn, Mimosa Leisure Estate,
Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga, Philippines 2023

Manila Sales Office
3003C East Tower, Phil Stock Exchange Center,
Exchange Rd Ortigas Metro Manila, Philippines 1605
(632) 637-5019 0917-520-4393 Rea or Chay

For any assistance in planning and organizing a wedding ceremony, indoor or outdoor garden reception or to find other wedding service providers, Click here to contact us click here

For assistance in hotel and resort bookings in Clark, Pampanga, Philippines, log on to

To buy wine in Manila, Pampanga, Angeles City, Clark or Subic please log on to http://www.

To inquire with the highly recommended beach resort hotel in Clark Pampanga visit

For more information about Clark, Pampanga, Philippines log on to

View/Hide Sitemap
Mimosa Golf Estate, Clark Field (Clark Airbase), Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga, Philippines
Tel: (045) 599-5600 0922-870-5194 0917-520-4401 Ask for Daniel, Lito or Cosh

Banquet, Events and Functions, Manila Sales Office 3003C East Tower, Philippines Stock Exchange Center
Exchange Road, Ortigas Center, Metro Manila, Philippines
Tel: (632) 633-1566 ask for Rea or Chay

About Us
Culinary Team
Customer comments
About Clark and Angeles City Pampanga
A la Carte Menu
Prix Fixe (Set Menu)
Other Menus & Specials
Wine List
Award-Winning Wine List
Wines for Everyday Enjoyment
Facilities Tour of Restaurant
Wine Cellars
Magnum Room Wine Lounge
Burgundy Room Private Dining
Wine Tasting Room
Bordeaux Room
Reservations & Inquiries
Reserve a Table
Function, Party and Event
General Inquiry
Getting to Yats Restaurant
Events & Happenings Reciprocal Membership
Contact Us
Map and Direction
Contact Information
Contact Form
Submit a Resume