This actually happened to me. It was such a traumatic experience; so much so that for 37 years, I’ve shared this with only a select few. I finally had the courage to talk about it last August 2017 at the Assumption College Alumnae Triennial Reunion in New York where I was one of the guest speakers. I was asked to talk about my life, how I got to where I am today, and who were the “angels or wings” that helped me along the way, and how I managed to stay airborne.
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Filipinos traditionally observe the Salubong through a dawn procession that ends in front of the church, with the statues of Jesus and Mary 'meeting' on Easter
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On the morning of October 26, 2015 some 700 indigenous peoples from Mindanao arrived at the University of the Philippines in Diliman to a rousing welcome from a huge crowd of supporters. Wearing their native costumes, the Lumad people were in a caravan called “Manilakbayan” that had traveled from Surigao City to Eastern Visayas and then had crossed over to Luzon to highlight their call to stop human rights violations in various Lumad communities.
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The fortnightly broadside magazine of the Philippine Propaganda Movement in Spain “La Solidaridad” was edited by Marcelo H del Pilar, 1889-1892. The magazine was anti-friar, but it carried news about the Philippines, such as some articles on the Spanish Cortes’ deliberations regarding the “Ultramar,” the colonies outside of Spain, e.g., Las Islas Filipinas. It also published political treatises by Ferdinand Blumentritt, Jose Rizal, Mariano Ponce, Graciano Lopez Jaena and others.
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In an historic faceoff, a Tausug headcloth dialogues with a Mondrian abstraction at the Asian Art Museum’s “GORGEOUS” show. The exhibition showcasing exceptional artworks from the collections of Asian Art Museum and SFMOMA, challenges preconceptions of what constitutes “gorgeous.”
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As one of the few American freelancers in the Philippines, I thought it was my duty to get down there and work. I got myself onto a C-130 military cargo plane and flew from Manila to Zamboanga, crowded into the hull with 150 soldiers leaning on their rifles. When we landed, I hitched a ride in the back of a rumbling military jeep and was dropped off at the hotel where some local journalists were waiting in the lobby.
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My husband has invited three Filipino coworkers and their wives to dinner. That means we will be eight people total. I have been prepping and cooking for two days. Butternut squash bisque. Grilled salmon. Baby bok choy. Sesame honey chicken wings. Roasted eggplant and tomatoes. Steamed rice. Chocolate cake. Mango bars. Tea and coffee.
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I recently found myself preparing for a ceremony that’s mandatory prior to building a house in the Philippines. Our contractor and architect gave me a list of prerequisites—the most propitious day and hour to break ground, a white-feathered native chicken to be slaughtered as a peace-offering, and a shovel for the first ceremonial dig.
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So much has happened since Miguel Lopez de Legazpi established the Spanish City of Manila on June 24, 1571. We’ve witnessed how the Philippines’ capital transformed from the celebrated “Pearl of the Orient” into a lost city marred by war. And it was all downhill from there.
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First, yellowing pictures and old news clippings from the 1920s and 1930s were passed from hand to eager hand. One photograph showed nattily dressed Filipinos coaxing wooden yoyos of all sizes into creative twists and spins. In another, the young Shirley Temple, sausage curls and all, looked up at Albert Viernes, a Filipino, doing the “Cat’s Cradle” with his yoyo.
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August 21, 1983 will be forever remembered as the day Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino, Jr. was assassinated. But something else happened on August 21 twelve years prior to Ninoy's martyrdom -- the Plaza Miranda bombing in 1971. The tragedy was likewise a defining moment in Philippine history because it gave then-President Ferdinand Marcos reason to declare martial law.
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World War II was quickly coming to an end. Manila was a jungle of wreckage. Office buildings, churches, homes, hotels, factories and docks lay in ruin. In other parts of the country, people poked through similar scenes of destruction, looking for food or belongings or the remains of family members killed by either the retreating Japanese or the bombardment of the advancing Americans.
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