We saw Mikey Bustos strolling around Tuguegarao City on September 11 through Facebook Live. Little did we know that the international internet star has roots from the City- and he is very proud of it.
Mikey was born in Toronto, Canada in June 23, 1981 with Filipino parents. His mother’s side, he said, are all from Tuguegarao.
He first tasted his fame when he wowed the Canadian Idol judges in 2003. Though not winning the competition, Mikey still pursued his dream to be an entertainer, until Youtube happened.
‘I love Tuguegarao’
The internet star admitted he does not frequent in his home city but described it as “amazing and lovable.” He said only came here several times but it was one of the most unforgettable moments he ever had.
“Everyone sometimes forgets that it’s important to come back to your roots. And also to be one with with nature. All my mom’s side grew up here in Tuguegarao in the house in Arellano street before we migrated to Canada. I love Tuguegarao. Cagayan Valley is amazing,” Mikey told Forum in an interview before his flight back to Manila, adding that he is actually to buy properties and has assessed a farm in Solana town during his visit.
In that night in September 11, he strolled alone at the middle of night at the streets of Balzain, wandering and exploring how the night life in Tuguegarao is. His experience, he said, was more than what he expected.
It was not normal for a celebrity to go out alone, especially at night. In the live video, some people are dropping by because they have seen his live video, or some would say “hi” because they know him. It wasn’t safe. But for him, it was.
“I felt safe. I’ve always been doing that. When I go to places, I kind of go out and have an adventure. I know and sometimes it’s not dangerous. I’ve done it in Mexico, Cuba, other countries. But in Tuguegarao, I don’t know why, I don’t know what possessed me to go out,” he said.
“It was Sunday, it’s a holiday today so people are making tambay ang going to night clubs and have fun and I wanted to experience how’s nightlife in Tuguegarao. I didn’t think that it’s not safe,” he added.
Asked about his experience of the hot climate in the city, Mikey exclaimed. “It’s super hot! Because the first I came here, it was so hot. I was just like I have to fans blowing up to me and my sweat is sweating.” He, however, said that he got used to it after a while.
The Mystical Dwendes
Mikey has a bigger reason to come back to Tuguegarao- the dwendes in the Chesa tree in his aunt’s house in Arellano street.
Mikey said he had been trying to go into Philippine show business for many years. After Canadian Idol in 2003, he hooked up with a management that will try to get him to showbiz.
He came to the Philippines three times trying to get a contract and was trying to perform on TV- on ABS-CBN and GMA- as a singer. “But nothing happens. The management dropped me. So I said, ‘you know what, I’m quitting show business.”
Mikey said before going back to Canada, he spent some time in Tuguegarao first.
“My tita said, there’s a duwende house over there at the chesa tree. So when I’m tired collecting these flowers, I said, you know what, I’m gonna give this to the duwende and I said; “Dwende, this is for you. If you guys are real, please, I have one request. Help me to become an entertainer and to become an entertainer in the Philippines. And I will tell everyone about you guys. And I went to Canada,” Mikey said.
After that offering, Mikey said, blessings came. “And in 2011, after that dwende encounter, Youtube happened.”
By the end of the year, Mikey came back again from Canada to shoot for the Chicharon ni Mang Juan commercial and that’s where he officially did entertainment in the Philippines- on TV and on the internet.
From then on, Mikey will never miss visiting the dwendes in the Chesa tree and give them “alay.”
“In fact, just now, before my flight, I gave them candies,” Mikey said, smiling. Raymon Dullana/TNF