Author Archives: rrabano

About rrabano

I’m a small business owner. I was a Pharmaceutical Rep. for Parke-Davis and with 3M Pharmaceutical. Married and busy running our 3 Clinic in N.C. I enjoy Cooking, out-door sports, Gardening, Music all kinds, Photography, Cabinet Making and I’m interested in writing hence blogging. My interest is so diverse so I can be writing about different topic. I hope by writing about my interest and opinion. I can find something I can be good at. Thank you.

Dinner at Indochine

They say “you are what you eat.” I never could figure that out. But, I’m glad I’m able to taste different food and enjoyed hanging out with my POSSE who enjoy doing the things I enjoy. So off we went to Indochine it’s a Thia Restaurant located in Wilmington NC. All I can say is it was worth the trip and I’ll do it again.

Indochine outside decor

Indochine outside decor: rrabano ©2015

Birthday Girl

My Posse: rrabano ©2015

rrabano ©2015

rrabano ©2015

Oh Yeah! Food! rrabano©2015

Oh Yeah! Food! rrabano©2015

My Posse & Friends rrabano©2016

My Posse & Friends rrabano©2015

My biggest fan rrabano©2015

My biggest fan rrabano©2015

I’m ready to do this all over again. Cheers!

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Snowed In!

With all the snow that came sweeping through the South. I wasn’t only the one that was Snowed in. But, I’m glad to have a “Man Cave to go to.”


Every man should have a Man Cave to go to.

With time on my hand. I tried my hands on making jewelry. I always wanted a big ring which I could not find in the local Jewelry Store and talking to them what I wanted is like talking another Language. Yeah! I know it’s always going to cost a lot more because what I want is a ONE of a Kind. So thanks to the Snow. I made one.

My Silver Ring.

Hand made. One ounce of pure Silver.

Happy with the results. Next project is to make the Wife one.


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The Last Act Of Love.

Mommy, Mommy, Mommy! Who’s that man in the house.”Son”! My mother said.”Give your Father a hug.” My father! I said. So I did what my Mother told me and hug the man in front of me. It shouldn’t have been hard for me to do. But, I didn’t even know I have a father. I meet him the first time in the summer of 1954. I really didn’t get to know him that much. He was gone before I know it. Mother told me he have to leave for work to put food on our table and we’ll all join him soon in America.

There are 5 children in our Family. The oldest is name Jerome after my father which is typical in our country. Philippines Island. The second to the oldest is Mary. I’m the middle child. They call me Chris  named after Saint Christopher. The forth is my sister Ava and the fifth and last is June our last name is Castaneda. We also have an Aunt that leave with us. We just call her Aunty. She is on my father side of the family. Every body call my Mother by her nickname. “Connie”.

We are a poor family. There are no middle class in the Philippines. Your either rich or poor. We lived in Quezon City. It’s one of the five largest city. The other  cities are Manila, Davao, Cebu and Zamboanga. The Phillippines is an an archipelago comprising 7107 islands. The island are divided into 3 groups. Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. There are 171 native dialect but our main language are English and Tagalog. So transitioning to America language was not to much of a problem.

We were living in a big house at one time and have several relative living with us. When mother run out of money. She gave up the big house and moved the family to a small two bedroom apartment. Dad is already gone. Its’ a typical two story apartment made from concrete and slabs. Which have a downstairs and upstairs. The upstairs was divided in to two bedroom. The downstairs was the leaving room and kitchen. There are a row of about 8 apartment connected together. Each have a little backyard that was fence in with an 8 foot high cinder-blocks that gave us privacy. It serve as a shower and washing our cloths more less an outdoor laundry. The one that stayed with Mother was my Aunty.  All other relatives and suppose to be friends left Mother. My Father working overseas is suppose to be sending Mother money to support the family. It was rough going for us back then. I remember growing up hungry all the time. Even to this date. I still fill that hunger feeling. Its’ a feeling that do not go away.

Its’ a mystery to me during my childhood years I never ask or question my mother or aunt what my father do for a leaving. All I remember is we don’t have enough food on the table and the cloths I wear have holes in them that my Mother have sewn a patch to cover the tear. I still remember just like yesterday hearing laughter from classmate laughing at my pant patches as I walk to the front of the class chalk board were I’m suppose to write the alphabet. Which I never was good at academically.

I have a bumpy childhood and was accident prom. I spent bed ridden in a cast from chest to toe on an operation from a hip accident. Were I was hospitalize in Clark Air force in the Philippines. I must have spent 2 or 3 years in the hospital and the only person that ever visit me was my Mother. After I was healthy enough to walk and was sent home to Quezon City. Mother got the news she been waiting for. We’ll finally join our father in Forth Bragg N.C. So in 1958. I was 12 years old at that time when I meet my Father the second time.

Once we arrive and settled in Fayetteville, NC. Dad rented a 2 bedroom house close to Fort Bragg in Fillyaw Rd. off Yadkin Rd. I don’t know how we all fit in a two bedroom house but we did. We later move out of that place and move to a 3 bedroom wooden frame house off Camden Rd. to accommodate the growing family. The family finally bought 3 bedroom brick house with a garage which we don’t use in Dairy Dr. All this time, Mother was working as a helper. Cleaning house, anything to create an income to help out with fathers Military pay. Father was an E4 at that time and the pay was not enough to support the family.

It was in those days that I learned about my Fathers’ military career. Bits and pieces of it anyway. what I learned: He was a Bataan Death March Survivor during World War II. He was station in the DMZ in Korea. He went to the Vietnam War three times. And served in the Dominican War conflict.

When he is not fighting foreign wars. He work as an Architect to supplement his military income. He keep busy but his steady income comes from his Military pay. Which was not enough to cloth and feed the family. There are several building that he help design dotted around Fayetteville. That we know off but don’t know were they’re at.

Leaving with Father is leaving with him but not knowing him. He is a stranger in the house to me anyway. I always go to Mother for anything. Mother keep herself busy working. And it was only thru her effort and hard work that improve our financial standing. She was the one that acquired wealth for my father. She even started a Filipino Club first one in Fayetteville, NC. She also manage to send four of her children to College. She did this without complaining and did it with honest humble work. Since she do not have a driver license. She use the transit bus to go to work and ask people to drive her when she needed to go somewhere special. When I think of my Mothers’ accomplishment she did for us. I’m bless to have a very caring Mother. As for my Father, we were never close like I was with my Mother.

After graduating from High School  All the children went there separate ways. My older brother Jerone move on with his life and started his family and stayed in NC but in another city. The older sister Mary got a degree in Music after that married and leave with her husband in Washington State. Chris (Me) after finishing college went to Washington State work for a Blue Chip Company. My sister Ava after finishing college married a Doctor and leave in California and open her own dance studio. My youngest sister June finished college with a teaching degree and went back to school to get her Master in Education and is now teaching.

My Mother continued working and open a Children Day Care Center. It was very innovative at that time. It’s a first in Fayetteville.  When she past away in 1986. She left all her wealth to my father. She was buried and a simple headstone was use to commemorate her.

My father was at a loss when Mother past away. But a few years later, he re-married to a Filipina woman named Elizabeth. During this time. My sister Ava and her husband moved from California to Fayetteville. Her husband who is a doctor opened his practice. I also came back home from Texas to Fayetteville in 1999. Were my wife open her practice.

My sister Ava’s husband since opening there practice in Fayetteville 1995 became very busy and successful. My Fathers’ wife Elizabeth worked for her and then ask favor to hire her family members. Which my sister oblige. Since Elizabeth family are just getting started with their life. My Father let her stay in one of my Mothers’ property with no rent payment. It’s a humble 3 bedroom brick house with a single car garage. It’s not much but that’s were my Mother started her Day Care and a lot of the neighborhood children grew up in. It was my understanding since she is not paying rent. She will keep the property in tip top condition. That never happen. The house turn into despair needing a new roof, paint and heating and air condition system. This was upsetting to me because when I brought my wife with me to Fayetteville. We could use a house to live in and that would have been perfect for us. Its’ a good thing that my Sister and her husband is generous and let us stay in their house. Till we can get our own house. Which we eventually did.

My Father past away March 10, 2012. He been married to Elizabeth for 20 years since my Mother past away. When the will was read Elizabeth who was made the executor of my Fathers’ Estate. Was left with a house and all the money that my mother worked for. While the new wife is entitled to receive any benefit that my father may be entitled to being a Japanese POW. Reading the will there is about $3,000.000.00 dollars in the bank account not counting the real estate property.

(I want to say that this story may contain some truth but it is mostly false.)

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The 2nd Wife

My Father

After all the acknowledgement from relatives that I have never met and friends that had gather for my Fathers’ departure.  Its’ good to know that what he work for was not forgotten.  General MacArthur said  “Old Soldiers never die; they just fade away. And after 34 years in the military  like  General MacArthur.  He fade away his military career and start his life as a civilian.

You see I remember growing up with my father when he was in the military.  I never understood him.  It didn’t help when I’m growing up being influence by the Beatles and Woodstock.  And him fighting in Vietnam coming home to see me with long hair embracing the PEACE Movement and not supporting what he was fighting for.  If the shoe is turned around and  knowing a little about his career in the military. I would feel devastated to see one of my family against what I’m was fighting for.

We join our father in Forth Bragg NC in 1958.  Were he was assigned after coming back hone from the DMZ zone in Korea.  No sooner was he with us.  When he got the called to join the fighting in The Vietnam War. It is fortunate for us we have our Mother (Connie short for Conception) who raised us when father is fighting overseas.


I remember Mother have to work two sometimes three jobs to supplement my Fathers income. She work very hard depriving herself of personal luxury so we can attend College to improve our status in life. She was so happy when four of us completed College. She never complain. Even saddled with hard work. She has time to start the first Filipino Society in Fayetteville, NC. Thru hard times and good times Mother was there. She created wealth for my Father and introduce him to the civilian life which she know will come when he leaves the Service.  She made it all possible for my Father to enjoy the benefit of her hard work. When my mother past away. My father was so devastated. I remember him saying that he was suppose to go first. Maybe that has change my father’s behavior. It was later in his life after my Mothers past away that he say, “Don’t Worry be Happy” and also re-married to Florinda (Linda) second wife. Who do not know what my Father was like when the Family was growing up.


  The 5 Children:


Ele and Friend

Me and Rudy
























So after reading the Fayetteville Observer that read: (with their Permission granted)

After experiencing the dark evil of war, Jesus Rabano decidedto love life. Rabano, a retired Army master sergeant, died Sunday and was buried Thursday. He was 94.

Rabano survived the Bataan Death March, one of the worst atrocities in World War II. His wife, Florinda, said he became a happy person.

“He loved life,” she said. “Wherever we go, he befriends everybody.”  Mrs. Rabano said her husband told her about brutalities soldiers endured during the march in April 1942. He told her that of 250 soldiers in his group, only 100 survived.

During the 60-mile march, Japanese troops would randomly pick one of the soldiers and make him dig his own grave. They would then blindfold him, make him kneel and cut off his head, she said.

Rabano told his wife the soldiers were only given a ball of rice and a canteen of water for the trip. He believed he survived because he did not eat and drink it all immediately.

“He saved it,” she said. After the march, the soldiers who were still alive had to ride 30 more miles on a crowded train. “The boxcar was so airtight that some soldiers suffocated,” Mrs. Rabano said.

Rabano, who was in the famous Filipino Scouts unit, was released from a prisoner-of-war camp when the Philippines were liberated in 1943. He later served in the Korean and Vietnam wars.

Mrs. Rabano said her husband served in Fort Bragg’s 20th Engineer Battalion and helped build a bridge that was the longest in Vietnam at the time.

“He was so proud of his military service,” she said.

After retiring with more than 34 years in the Army, Rabano was a longtime civilian employee at Fort Bragg and became a leader in Fayetteville’s Filipino community. Mrs. Rabano said her husband was an architect who helped design a number of buildings in the area.

Mrs. Rabano said her husband’s two favorite sayings were “Don’t worry. Be happy,” and “Take it as it comes.”

“Those were the two things he always said to everybody, and to me, because I worry too much,” she said.

Rabano’s daughter, Esther Thompson, said she and the other children learned that their father’s strict ways prepared them for life.

“Don’t worry, Dad, we will be happy,” she said.

Another daughter, Eleanor McCroskey, said Rabano was a brave and courageous man.

“I salute you and I love you very much,” she said.

Mrs. Rabano said her husband was a survivor even during the last few days of his life.

“He was fighting for his life,” she said. “He wanted to live, but the Lord said it was time to come home.”

Staff writer Steve DeVane can be reached at or 486-3572.
                                                                                                                                    Father and Linda
After reading this article. I can say that yes. Linda the second wife heard this story from my father. But Linda did not experience the hardship that my Father my Mother experienced during World War II. The growing pains and the financial hardship involved raising 5 children while my father is fighting another WAR.
Looking back, I wish I could have learned more about my father. Knowing what I know about him. I’m very proud to be his Son. It’s to late to turn back the clock and it’s to late to Dance with my Father again. But it’s never to late to say I’m so proud to be his Son and proud to his contribution to the Country.
This is how I want to remember my Father.
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Top Chef Dinner with Railhouse BEER!

It’s not everyday you get invited for dinner with to find out that a “Top Chef” contestant will be cooking the food.  When I got a call, and was invited to have dinner at the “BlueMoon” downtown Fayetteville, NC.  My favorite place.  I can’t be more happier.  Yes! Yes! Of course I’ll be there.

Sunday 26, 2012 at the BlueMoon. I made sure to bring my camera with me also.  For those who are not familiar with the BlueMoon is


located in downtown Fayetteville, NC.  This an earlier picture taken in early part of   the day.

The Dinner was held in the evening.  Dinner Course for the Evening.

1st. Butter Lettuce Salad/ pickled Carolina Shrimp with Green Goddess dressing.

2nd. Poached Egg/creamy polenta, local greens and country sausage.

3rd. Fried Chicken n Fixins/crispy brussel sprouts, homemade hot sauce.

4th. Sweets/ Buttermilk Panna Cotta/clementine preserve’s, chocolate cake.

Business Card

Shrimp n Greens

Poached Egg

Fried Chicken n Fixing

Buttermilk Panna Cotta

OK! the food of course was fantastic.  The preparation was tense. I like tense and Lindsay did a fantastic job at it. I meet Lindsay about 4years ago when she cook for my Uncle at his house.  She was just getting into cooking and I did not think much of it that she has bigger exasperation for herself as a cook.  She was actually in a TV show from BRAVO “Top Chef”.  She got to the final three contestant but was voted out by another contestant. I think it can go either way. Her exposure on the show will certainly be a positive step for her in her career as a Top Chef.  Below is Lindsay doing her magic in the Kitchen.


Linsay doing her Magic

Lindsay glad that was done.

"Hi Five another successful meal."

BlueMoon Staff and Owner with Lindsay as Guest Chef

The dinner was FANTASTIC. Everybody was smiling. Thanks’ to Lindsay it was a memorable dinner. As it turn out, the evening was a double treat. There also was a Master Brewery from Aberdeen who brought the refreshments with them. I love micro BREE.

I sample some of the beers they brought with them. Pale Ale was first but the best one for the evening was the Brown Ale and like it so much that I bought a six pack all the guess bought some to. How it looks:)

Brwon Ale (Rail House Brewery)

I also talk to Mike who is the master Brewery for Rail House Brewery in Aberdeen.  Very nice guy, easy to talk to and gave me some tips if I want to make my own Beer. With him is his partner Brian E. who’s in charge of promotion.

Master Brewery (Rail House Brewery)

Brian E. Rail House Brewery

Well it was fun for me to eat and drink. Will do more of this. Don’t know if having a celebrity will be doing the cooking for the next time around. But overall worth it. By the way I took this picture with my Nikon 700D using a 24-75mm Lens/AF 2.5. I used no FLASH when taking this shot indoors and outdoors. Auto Program settings except for the Blue Moon that was taken in broad daylight. I used a Panasonic with that one. OK! Thanks for looking.

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Sunrise thru the Market House: Fayetteville NC

With a shift of the earth or something that I can’t explain. One can see the Sun Rise at the Downtown Market House in Fayetteville, NC. This phenomena happens twice a year. Once in January and in November.

I read about it on the Fayetteville Observer. But since I leave in town, I was not motivated enough to drag myself early in the morning and take pictures of it. Well this time, I decided to go downtown and take a picture of the Sunrise going thru Fayetteville Market House. I am so glad I did.

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Lunch! Japanese Style

When I was invited to have lunch with friends. I was thinking OK I’m hungry anyway. Didn’t expect it to be in a famous Restaurant that specialize in Tempura. I was game though. Glad I went. It was dellice!

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The Windy City: Chicago

In Chicago one day, Cloudy nothing new. But can’t leave the City with no pictures. So went to the main street. Doing what tourist would do and took some pictures. Glad I did:)




Face in a building.


The pictures change. Just caught this man sleeping.

On my way out.  Saw the Saxman playing some Jazz.  Chicago fantastic City.

Mr. SaxMan

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Asakusa, Japan

Asakusa, Japan. So awesome. Have a great day just mingling.

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Hong Kong

I always been wanting to go to Hong Kong. So when an opportunity came up. I went. Your only young once. Of course have to take my camera with me. What I find out quickly. This city is not camera friendly. Have several times approach by a security agent saying no pictures here.

Can’t understand why they feel that way. So I took some pictures where I can. Not sure I want to go back.

Hong Kong: Street Scene

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