Archive for the ‘Trips, Visits, and Explorations’ Category

This is not a bike review. This is my first hand account of being a beginner biker: from how I ended up loving the chains and sprockets, and the people who had common interests in living a lifestyle of our own. 

I consider myself as a jack of all trades, and yes, probably, really must be a master of none. I explore anything I can, try to grasp a thing or two to experience how it is, and then just like that, I am all good and over with it. It’s either I decide to stay in a hobby or call it quits, and earn experience points along the way, and be satisfied by the feeling that I know the do’s and don’ts in case I stumble upon the same thing in the near future.

But recently, there’s one thing that got me captivated. Something I thought I’d never be able to do. Something I thought was just a simple hobby, which turned out to be more than just that. It’s a lifestyle. It’s what keeps you… rolling. Biking.

Yes, although I don’t consider myself a hardcore guy when it comes to biking, because come on! I am a very stingy person and we only got our gear from thrift shops where common pickers flock for the oldies but goodies stuff.

A few months ago, I got to know a person by the name of Wally Contento. The name may ring a bell to you. He’s known in the biking circle as someone who likes to collect and restore classic bike models, and rides them in a very cool fashion. My friend actually caught a picture of him riding his Mini Cooper cruiser while wearing a fedora, a pair of alfombras and a 70s inspired polo shirt. That friend of mine actually wondered how on earth Wally was able to ride in with so much class and appear to be without even dropping a single sweat.

Wally, to the musically inclined, used to be the lead man of the band Stella Ruiz. And when given the chance, we would jam in his place like good old men that we are, and fly away with his music. I could write about his awesome Beatles collection at home, but it would veer us away from biking, lol.

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Here is Wally’s 1960s Huffy Cruiser, US made.

Back when we were still office-mates, Wally would always bring his restored pieces in the office, and never spend a single centavo on his way to and from our office building. His bikes were head turners, and we always get that “wow” look whenever we ride with him. I managed to engage him in a chitchat and I told him that I was also planning on buying a bike for myself for economic purposes. Without any hesitation, he told me to come with them to this place, and they would help me buy my own piece.

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One of the bike shops in Bangkal, Makati city. Unless with a trained eye, you’ll never know what treasures are hidden within the pile of old bike frames, tires, etc.,.

And there we went to a Malvar Steet, in Barangay Bangkal, Makati City. It was my first time to go there, and my eyes were up for a surprise. The entire street was filled with bikes — all kinds of bikes, ranging from foldies, fixies, mountain, cruisers, single speeds, you name it, they have it! Most of them are second hand’s, however, but who cares?

So I went there, on a cab, while Wally and Paulo, another office mate who rides a fixie, introduced me to the shop owners. A few seconds after the niceties, they were already like men on a mission. Their eyes roamed just about every where looking for a nice piece. They told me they weren’t looking for anything specific, but they always say “I’ll know what I’, looking for when I see it.”

Where I was there left in the middle. It’s like a kid left in a car shop, wondering what else to do aside from be astounded by the volume of frames and tires and sprockets surrounding me. I only got out of trance when Wally told me “ano, pili na!”. I was shy to admit that I actually didn’t know what to pick, and how to pick what’s best for me, when they were out there, looking like expert buyers already, trying to pull out any frame that catches their eyes, anything that looks interesting. I had zero knowledge about bikes, and during that day, I was hoping they’d guide me on how to pick for myself, but they just let me there alone as they were busy trying to find their own ‘treasure’. So I decided to pick a folding bike, thinking that I could bring it inside the office, and it’s light and easy to handle. My qualifications for buying sound like so mediocre compared to their standards.

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This was the first project I bought – a Japanese surplus Jeep Wrangler folding bike.

Polding, the name I gave my first ever bike, was old, but it could still have a few miles in its belt. I told myself I would invest a few hundred bucks to have it restored and make it look and work as if it’s brand new. I spent P2.5k for the old model, but replaced some parts, did some tweaking and adjustments, to bring it to its optimum appearance and hopefully, performance. The entire project cost me some P6k more or less.

We’re fond of naming our bikes in a funny way. Wally has the name Tirso, for one of his cruiser bikes. Tirso Cruise… get it? 🙂 Paulo, on the other hand has Temmie, for his black fixie. Temmie-for “itim”. We got a lot of TVJ influence going in within the group. Blame these two old timers for that. Lorenzo, another biker has his bike named Benzo. And for my foldie, is Polding… it’s a giveaway. Polding bisikleta, come on!

From then on, I realized that biking isn’t just a simple hobby. It becomes your lifestyle. It’s like owning an upgradable toy but with its practical uses. You get to love your piece the more you try to restore it, and add more and newer pieces in it. And for some reason, you would not mind shelling out a few hundred bucks here and there just to make your bike look and feel good when riding, when you used to hold on to your bucks like it’s the end of the world. The local bikers call that “upgraditis“, derived from the word “upgrade” and the commonly heard medical suffix “-itis”. Some bikers consider unnecessary upgrading as a mild addiction.

Unfortunately after about two months, Polding got stolen. After all I’ve spent trying to upgrade the bike, someone took it from our own apartment compound in broad daylight, when I fell asleep and forgot to chainlock it. It was such a bummer and I hope whoever stole it never got a good use of Polding and sell it to feed his vices.

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This was the last picture of Pol a few days after it got stolen. That backdrop is the old Escolta, btw.

So, I bought a second folding bike, cost me just about the same amount including the upgrades. I still have it at home and was using it to go to work, or elsewhere whenever I choose. It even got inside a hotel!

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Tim. Short for Itim. My second folding bike.

Me and my biker friends call ourselves the “Chain Gang”, first coined when we rode together one morning before sunrise, looking for some place to have our “lunch” (we work graveyard’s shift), and our office-mates would see us like we’re funny thugs wannabe in the middle of the street. It was cheesy and hilarious, nonetheless. It’s a group of friendly people who ride different types of bikes. The group is not exclusive for just one bike type. We embrace diversity. The group has a foldie, a couple of fixies and cruisers, a mountain bike, and now, I have a mini velo to add to our group.

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Meet Biki. Short for Biki Velo. It’s a Alterna mini velo with 6-speed shifters. My third project.

As Chain Gang, we would go riding anywhere within the Metro, from the Circuit, Makati to as far as the SM Mall of Asia. Again, we are not hard core cyclists, so we just ride for fun and leisure, MoA is already a far location for us. But our favorite spot where we ride to is the Old Manila. From Binondo, to Intramuros, Escolta, Rizal Park, the Paco Cemetery, to that secluded, still to be developed portion behind PICC – we call it the Echo Beach, after Wally discovered that an echo is created when you stomp your feet or shout from the center of the circle. After the ride, we feed ourselves with food from Binondo or in Malate’s famous Erra’s Ramen House. Or whenever hunger strikes, we stop over and eat at any carinderia we find.

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This “Echo Beach” is really the Paseo Palisoc Circle. It is located behind the Tanghalang Franciso Balagtas and The Coconut Palace, and is a part of the development under the NCCA, or the National Center for Culture and the Arts.

I used to just think of buying a bike for its economic uses. To save money and time going to and from the office. Also, it improves your health, and mind, as you remove yourself from the stress and hassle of the daily commuter’s traffic and ride on two wheels powered by your own two feet. These are given.

But little did I know, it would introduce me to a different world that I’ve never expected to see myself in back in the day. I used to wonder why bike shops are opened in about every barangay in my city, until I realized that the biking community in the Metro is that huge. It took me a while to get used to riding in the middle of the Manila traffic, but once you get the hang of it, it’s not as horrific and terrifying as you thought it would be. Unless you’re going to find yourself pedaling in the middle of EDSA where deadly buses don’t even respect their fellow drivers, what more is it for a biker like me? You develop your self discipline and be a defensive biker on the road, and greet with a smile or a friendly wave of a hand a fellow biker that you pass by.

I swear I could write a lot more stuff about biking as a hobby, but I have yet a lot to explore about it. When you’ve got a ton of support from your friends and workmates, when you ride with people who share the same interests as you do, when you meet and greet and find new friends along the way, biking will always be just riding like a breeze.

***UPDATE (February 28, 2017): Thanks to Wally, again, I have explored and expanded my network more and participated as the official photographer for their bike group, the Baywalk Beach Cruisers (BBC) during the PhilBike Expo 2016 . Click the link to see the photos.

I also got to know Mr. John Bercic, a Canadian national who has put up a bike business here in the Philippines, the PhatKatBikes. He and Wally are both members of BBC. I met him at the PhilBike Expo and we ventured on a tie-up project. He invited me to create a vlog for his PhatKatz Flipflops. Here’s the vid. Hopefully, he opens the market in the PH right away.

It also was an honor to have joined him and the BBC in the outreach program that they did for the kids at Hospicio De San Jose, in the City of Manila. Please click the link to see the photos.

Here’s my gf’s vlog. I’d like to give a shoutout to my girlfriend, Bae, (Yes, that’s a part of her legal name, not just an endearment), who helped me with the project. Bae is also a blogger, and a vlogger, and together, we have created a few travel vlogs, in her page, The Bae Blogs. I hope you guys enjoy the video:

Here’s a link to my FB Album featuring Polding and Friends:
Polding and Friends and Bicki and Friends.

Check out my Bangkal album, too. 🙂

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Pardon me if I tried hard to make the title sound as politically correct as possible. Hurting religious feelings in my country might have me end up in jail, you know. This entry by the way, to explain the redundancy, is all about my online posts about Pope Francis and his visit in the Philippines. I collated all of them and put it here.

I must say, I am blessed for having part of the two of the biggest events for the Catholic Church in a span of two weeks. A week before the Pope’s visit, I was lucky to witness the Translacion De Nazareno. I thought of putting balance to my ideas about the Creator, that I decided to watch the movie The Theory of Everything, in the hopes of having Stephen Hawking and his theories bring me back into my agnostic and pragmatic self.

And knowing who I am based on my previous posts (kindly refer to the articles: Atheism According to Red Tani : a Blunder of Biblical Proportions, and My Lenten Reflection , I couldn’t still fathom how The Pontiff made me do all these.

The failed trip to his mass at the Manila Cathedral forced me to just wait at the corner of Roxas Blvd. and Quirino Ave. for his motorcade; but I still failed to have a glimpse of him because he was on-board the enclosed van and not on the Pope Mobile due to the rain.

I waited there for more than an hour and I had an idea of how it feels to be in there, along with the crowd, media personnel and other photographers who are all excited to see just even his face for a brief moment as his motorcade passed by. It was thrilling, and fascinating at the same time.

A couple of days after, me and other volunteers got a special access to be as near as we can get for his concluding mass at the Quirino Grandstand. The experience is really different when you’re in there, versus the feeling that you have when you watch the Papal activities on TV. Both of which are solemn and holy, of course. To see Pope Francis that close is definitely priceless.

It is an awesome experience overall. This is one of the most memorable events in my life, a bucket list worthy of an event.

As Morgan Freeman said in the the movie Bruce Almighty “If you want to see a miracle, be the miracle.” Well, guys, Pope Francis has done it during his visit. I am really thankful to have been a part of this momentous event.

My Facebook Status: January 19  –  

“We Survived 15+ hours while at the concluding mass of ‪#‎PopeFrancisPH‬ at the Quirino Grandstand, I only had one single pack of Graham crackers and small shots of water to drink for my fuel – while having the most difficult time in my volunteering experience in finding the way around the Rizal Park to get in with the call time as early 3AM and having entered the are only at 630AM (and yeah, the mass started at around 3PM; and ushering thousands of overly eager pilgrims and guarding the Blessed Sacrament; and standing under the monsoon rains for more than 7 hours while at it. But if you ask me if it was all worth it? I’d answer YES in a heartbeat.”

And as I was reposting a GMA Network Online article, I added:

“I really have to give it to this guy. I only saw snippets of his homily in Tacloban. And then a few clips showing how the Taclobanons prepared for him. That is one big display of resilience and faith. Amidst the threatening strong winds and rains by Typhoon ‪#‎Amang‬, The Pope did not fail to give the Yolanda Survivors HOPE.

I hope he lands back safe to Manila.

And then some ninja sliced some onions nearby. ‪#‎PopeFrancisPH.”

And this, for a Manila Bulletin article online by Reina Reyes :

May he be the catalyst for our social healing. I hope my fellow Filipinos use this momentum to change how we behave as a nation. From the way that the Filipinos showed their discipline (as it appears on all news cameras, but being with them in the grandstand is entirely another story), to how both believers and non-believers of the Catholic Church showed respect, admiration, and fascination to The Pope. This religious euphoria may stay with us and leave once The Pope goes back to Vatican, but let’s not end it there.”

“I don’t believe in God, but I want to believe in Pope Francis. I want to believe that he is sincere and genuinely open to dialogue, reform, and accountability. I want to believe that he has the necessary political astuteness and goodwill to usher in structural and spiritual reform in the Curia, if not throughout the Church. I want to believe that it is possible to change a fossilized dysfunctional organizational culture in the course of a lifetime. Because then, maybe-just maybe-it can be done here, too.” – Reina Reyes, The Francis effect : An atheist takes a no-biased, non-deified look at the rockstar pontiff the Catholic Church is in love with.

Go check the videos and read the one I did below this first one:

#PapalVisit2015
#PopeFrancisPH

Visit more photos here at :

The Papal Visit 2015 Experience

More pictures here: Traslacion De Nazareno 2015

 

I also want to share to you these amazing works by none other than Mr. Fung Yu:

http://www.360journals.com/360/Nazarene/2015/nazarene2015.html

And a commentary about Traslacion by Sir. Xiao Chua:

A lot of things may be said about this festival. Most of them I do not want to touch and discuss anymore.

One thing is for sure for me. The devotees of the Black Nazarene showed their force of faith. A combination of beauty in chaos, solemnity, resilience, that have spanned decades in practice.

What it did for me? It satisfied my curiosity. I went there not as a devout Catholic (for I am not a devout Catholic). I came there as an observer, and a fascinated one I was.

As much as I would want to give an explanation and my comment as to how this undoubtedly unique Filipino festival is being held, I can only give you pictures and let them answer your questions for me.

As what my colleague Berniemack Arellano, the man behind Habagat Central had put it, it had a “Gradual increase, a bursting climax at the Poon Nazareno, and then a sudden drop of energy towards solemnity, then cleaning up the mess. It is an interesting anthropological study to look at on the procession’s nature opposing that of Cebu’s solemn and lengthy foot and fluvial procession.”

It was surreal. We waited from 8am at the balcony of the National Museum, and people were already walking to and fro the Andas, incessantly. We were lucky enough to be allowed to have our station there as it offered the best vantage point that day. The Padre Burgos Street was so full of human activities. We had at least a couple of short snacks, one full lunch, and a few combined bottles and glasses of energy drink, coffee, water and soda before we saw the head of the Andas at around 1pm.

And then that beautiful chaotic moment came. You can’t help but have goosebumps, as people wave their white towels, clap their hands, shout their faith. Some devotees are climbing up the Andas with full fervor and determination to at least touch a part of the image, but some were even luckier to kiss the cross, or touch the face of the Jesus Nazareno.

When the Andas reached the part of the street where I was directly standing at, time seemed to have stopped. I was staring at the Andas, and it captivated me for an ample number of seconds before I realized that I am holding my camera and had to shoot photos.

True enough, as what the broadcasts have mentioned in the previous years, I saw how solemn the rear part of the Traslacion is compared to the very chaotic scene at the front where the rope pulling the Andas is being held by the devotees. For almost an hour, you will see what seems to be a complete disorder and confusion. Ocassionally you could hear the devotees shouting “Viva! Viva!” as if doing a warcry to rally their spirits whenever they get tired. And everytime the Hijos atop the Andas blow their whistle three times as their signal, a wave of devotees from the back run straight toward the Andas like a mini stampede to push it forward.

And then right after, when the Andas has already moved forth, you’ll see a few meters back from the Andas, the females, young and old, together with some elder males, and children who could not be in front due to their frail physical conditions, are praying together. And it was magical. The Andas will bring your adrenaline out, and then leave you there just like that and will make you wonder just how on earth did that kind of silence follow the rowdy crowd in front? Imagine watching a firework display that just goes out just when you are about hyped up and ready for the finale – but in a good, solemn way.

The entire Traslacion covered the streets from the Finance Rd, going straight to Padre Burgos, and it took almost two long hours before it reached the part of the City Hall. Kudos to the MMDA street sweepers for their good job of making sure that the streets where the Traslacion is passing through are kept clean after.

I always tell myself that I am an agnostic. Probably because that is what is convenient for me. But at that moment, when I was witnessing with my very own eyes the devotion of my fellow Filipinos, I told myself that this is the best time to go out of my comfort zone, feel the vibe and savor the moment where one’s strongest faith is displayed. A spiritual pat on the back, if you may.

Call it what you want. A miracle. Fanaticism. Display of faith. Craziness. For me, it was just surreal. I cannot judge the people who do the “Panata sa Nazareno”. Neither can I say that being in there made me a little bit more holy. But I have satiated my curiosity. And I think I’m good with that.

Some even say the event itself is over-hyped by the media? Now, that’s another story. You’ve got to experience it for yourself. 🙂

#Traslacion
#Nazareno2015
#HeritagePH

Personally, #selfiEscolta is, yes, one significant hashtag. I got the chance to be a part of this ‘huge’ project, work with very brilliant, talented and committed young and old people alike who share the same passion and love for heritage. Here’s a shout out to the following groups who coordinated with the Heritage Conservation Society – Youth in making this event successful:

ESCOLTA REVIVAL MOVEMENT: Escolta Commercial Association Inc.; Heritage Conservation Society-Youth; 98B COLLABoratory; International Council for Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS). (You may check their profiles on Facebook for more details)

This event foretold in my previous blog :  I can say, working at the ground control and getting in charge of all the activities happening at Escolta Street during that day is one of the most fulfilling and satisfying moments of me being involved in public service and heritage advocacy – no matter how tiring it was. The last time I have been in charge of a big event like this is when I became the head of the Organizing Committee of our High School Alumni Homecoming, in November 2011. I remember posting a blog a few years ago about the things that I want to do in life.  My Daydreaming entry, which I published exactly two years ago, says how much I wanted this:

This was during one of my early solo visits in Intramuros years ago. I used to sport long hair back then. 🙂

Join a force that cultivates peace, people empowerment, anything for the good. I’ve done some ‘kawang gawa’ in the past and I think I got addicted to it. But I never want to belong to any radical activist group. I’d like to have Kara’s job (I so envy her!), but I fear that too much curiosity with the people from that profession, of being a rebel for a cause, would cause me to have my thoughts inclined to the ‘dark side’ so to speak.

Be a Tourist Guide. I am a Carlos Celdran fan. Well, at least of his job. I used to fantasize about me guiding the tourists of Intramuros and Fort Bonifacio, while I share with them the stories behind the history of the place. I am a Rizal fan, and for some reason, I only want to be a tourist guide for Fort Santiago, Intramuros, and Luneta. Sure, I would like to be a tourist guide all over the country, but if given a chance to choose, I’d choose the places that I’ve mentioned.”

I don’t know if I subconsciously made the Law of Attraction work for me and let the Universe conspire with all my desires, or maybe it’s really destined to be, but becoming a member of HCS-Y is definitely gave me the chance to get closer to my daydream. 🙂

So what actually is #selfiEscolta? I won’t be posting more of my own pictures now aside from these two. Instead, I will ask you to search the net using the hashtag #selfiEscolta and discover on your own how netizens participated.  🙂

The filtered image of the tram brings back the old glory of Escolta

The tram used to have its regular route passing along Calle Escolta during the street’s golden years.

The vintage Buick adds to the nostalgic feel of the event

This vintage Buick is such a camwhore. 😀

 

One of the most memorable photos of the night. That feeling of being there as a fan, and as part of the organizers of the event that they have participated at the same time is worth more than any talent fee for me – another reason why I do stuff like this pro bono, aside from the fact that you are doing this ‪#‎forloveofheritage‬. A lot of new and upcoming performers participated in the event as well. Franchize also hyped up the crowd with his rap skills last night. I grew up listening to the songs of these Tres Marias: Bayang, Cooky and the legendary Lolita Carbon. Man, that period when they were playing their set kind of gave a second wind to my already tired body after being in charge of the ground control for more than 15 hours. Makes you feel like just closing your eyes and absorb the good, relaxing, nostalgic music.

 

However, since all you will see are #selfiEscolta pictures only all over the internet, I decided to post here, you guessed it right – vids. Credits to the respective news networks and advertisers that shot their videos featuring Escolta that I have collated. Videos. Para maiba naman. 🙂

Feaures on News Networks: 

1. 24 Oras: Vintage items, tampok sa Saturday Flea Market sa Escolta / Mar 9, 2013

2. State of the Nation March 28, 2014

3. Escolta Paandar May 15, 2014

4. Travel Thursday: Bringing Escolta Back To Its Former Glory, Solar News June 19, 2014

5. State of the Nation Paandar / Jun 27, 2014 (announcement that the event is postponed)

6. State of the Nation Paandar / July 5, 2014

Also, here is a music video from the up and coming singer, Quest, which was also shot mostly in Escolta:

Lastly, TV Ads! 🙂

Coffee-Mate 2014

AMA w/ Daniel Padilla 2014… err… okaaay. 🙂

Coke w/ Nikki Gil 2009 — this is just classic.

Penshoppe 2009

We promised that this is not going to be the last. We have only touched the tip of the iceberg. To revive Escolta and the rest of Manila, a lot of work still needs to be done. It will take a lot of volunteer efforts, led by people with the burning passion and desire to see the Queen of Manila’s Streets rise again.

The tour was held on April 6, 2014

This blog has been long overdue. I keep telling myself since the very moment that I joined the Heritage Conservation Society Youth, that I would be blogging all the trips and activities that I will be participating in. Two months passed and this will only be my first entry. 🙂 

More pictures available in this FB album:

HCS-Y Heritage Tour: The Santos-Andres House in Antipolo

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The family members of Roman Santos, who originally lived in Navotas build their home in 1917. The heirs of Don Roman Santos decided to have the house literally transferred to Antipolo City. 

I got the chance to join this exclusive trip again. Thanks to my friends in the Heritage Conservation Society Youth. If there are inanimate creations that I could fall in love with, this house has got to be one of them. 🙂 #HCSY #fortheloveofheritage

According to Sir Vic Roman Santos, this “santo” has two heads. The other one depicts a sad and a face in pain

 

I wonder how elegant you’d feel if you did a number one in here?

And here are some of the treats that Sir Vic Roman-Santos shared to us: 

***

Sir Roman Santos points at the kid’s name tag as he tells the story of one of his family members who share the same name as the kid’s – Joaquin.

I spoke to a local from the area selling beverages and lunch meals at the campsite. He told me about the origin of the name “Batulao”.

Legend has it that long ago, the mountain seemed to always suffer from wildfires during the Lenten Season, and everynight, people would see lights from the mountain tops that do not seem to be man-made. Hence, the place was named after the two words “bato” and “ilaw”, and in the course of decades, the locals start calling it Batulao.

So what’s so special about it? This is my very first climb! We completed climbing 12 peaks – a group of 3 first-timers including myself, and Paul Reazon, who has climbed around 11 mountains already served as our guide. (Congratulations to all of us for reaching the summit for the first time!) Man, I now start to appreciate how hard my mom had gone through during those times that she climbed with her friends and co-teachers. Again, I will never get tired of saying this, but my mom is already 65. 😀

Although Mt. Batulao is considered a climb best conducted for beginners like me, an extreme sports activity like this is all about mind-over-matter. Your legs would cramp, you’d feel like you’d want to back out, but then again, whenever you see the scenery on top of each peak – all your worries and stress just go away. 🙂 Just make sure that you’re well prepared and packed with fluids and trekking food and goodies to lessen your stress and make you appreciate the experience more.

A great start for me. Hopefully there would be more opportunities to climb more mountains and enjoy the view up there. 🙂

I tried to take as much photos as I could, just so that you can also enjoy the view. 🙂

**PS: Thanks to Sir Eric and his wife, Ma’am Rosalinda for the ride to Batangas and back home. ^_^

We went to Tagaytay after enduring the long trek. And had these for ourselves as the reward. 😀

More pictures here:

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10152409948054719.1073741886.828824718&type=1&l=3b52c4ee6f

Share our taxes. Wag ‘nyo naman solohin. Pera namin yan.

#abolishporkbarrel
#millionpeoplemarch
#scrapPork

———–

Click on this to view photos:

1 Million People March

Tax ng Ina Nyo!

I was there. I joined the ranks of the Teachers’ Dignity Coalition, which my mom is a member of during the march early in the morning, from Liwasang Bonifacio to the Centennial Clock in Luneta where all the other groups converged.

I can say, the crowd was composed of people from all walks of life. Only a portion of it came from the Party List members, the labor unions and other ‘militant’ groups who are usual participants of protests. But unlike the so-so, ordinary protest that you see regularly from the news, like 60-70% of the crowd here came from the middle class – friends, families, colleagues from work, yung mga tisoy at tisay, mga makikinis ang sakong, at alam mong kumakayod at sumasahod nang maayos para sa pamilya. There were even foreigners who joined in the march. Even the pets joined in! 🙂 

Given the unpredictable weather condition of the day, the PNP still estimated that the crowd that participated reached around 100 thousand.

If you are one of those who think that the people who joined here are only wasting their time, then you are totally mistaken. It was an event participated by very sensible individuals. You would hear talks from every corner from small groups of people composed of professionals, some are even coming from the elite sector, discussing how disgusted they are about the system of corruption which is the main cause of why a hundred thousands of people answered a simple Facebook event invitation. We are one in saying that we are sick and tired of all the pork barrel bullshit and the corruption that it brings to the country!

For those who were not able to attend but wanted to, you do not need to worry. I believe that there will be more of this. The succeeding reactions may not be done in the streets anymore, but I am pretty sure this will lead into the change that we have always wanted to happen. 

I believe in the reforms and I have faith in the people that demand the abolition of the Pork Barrel System. I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t, would I, among the hundred thousand others?