Saint Anne Church

Saint Anne Church in Taguig City

This 400 year old church was a survivor of war and calamities but still held its ground and now the center of Catholic Churches in Taguig City, Philippines.  The town celebrates it town fiesta every July  26.

centuries-old acacia tree within the church patio

The old acacia tree ( Samanea saman ) is a mute witness to the revolution of 1896 , the American occupation of the town , the Japanese atrocities during the war and the post war economic boom of the town.

collection of various church artifacts

The church had accumulated collection of priest vestments, books, baptismal record, old photographs, antique santos set in a museum.

Ms. Sandra Aguinaldo -program host ” I-Witness report “

Ms. Sandra AguinaldoI-Witness program host , segment writer and reporter featured this in ” Puno ng Kasaysayan” or ” Historical Trees” episode of the program aired last October 7 , 2008 early Tuesday morning on GMA kapuso channel 7.

In some instances , people within the community believed that there are unseen spirits living within these heritage trees. Cutting or hurting these trees  made some environmental group like tree huggers  a crusade that is worth emulating .

tree huggers with Ms. Sandra Aguinaldo

In a country plagued with selective amnesia especially in history and heritage  , where saving  heritage trees are not a priority of the government .   It is almost up to the communities where these trees lives to nurture and save these trees.

Bagyong Ondoy aftermath, a collector’s tale

Bagyong Ondoy (Typhoon Ketsana international code) is now considered as one of the worst rains and flooding which hit Metro Manila, Central Luzon and Southern Luzon. Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAG-ASA) Quezon city rain gauge measured 410.6 mm ( 16 inches) of rains that fell in the span of 9 hours!  The rainfall is equivalent to more than 1 month of rainfall for the month of September.

The last one recorded was June of 1967 with 341  mm of rainfall in a day. There are several stories of survival and how collectors manage to save one belongings or their collection.

A well-known Filipino director saved his precious Picasso paintings in a posh riverside subdivision while rampaging floodwaters reached the first level of his home. Another Filipino – Chinese collector managed to save his stamp collection by storing them on the 3rd floor of his home near Sienna College that was under several feet of floodwaters. A toy collector from Antipolo managed to salvage his entire toy collections by putting them in the attic several hours before his home was inundated by flood which reached second level of his home. Two stamp and curio dealers in Recto Manila collections were reached by floodwaters.

While several antique dealers from Ermita collection suffered water damage. These are just few of the harrowing tales of collectors saving their precious collections that have been part of their lives. But in this time of epic floods and countless people suffering, saving ones earthly belongings just came second to saving their precious lives.

An orchid and plant collector in Rolling Hills Resort and Orchard in Barangay Ugong, Valenzuela city suffered major damage in his collection.  Several days of rains and floods took a heavy toll in his collection. Several of his orchids were hit by fungus and floodwater dislodged many of his mounted orchids. I told this collector to quickly salvage most of his collections and try to immediately spray fungicide to his precious collections. After all plants needed to be saved.

Philippine stamp issued in 1943 with ” Baha”

1943, December 8. Semi-Postal.  Flood Relief Campaign (Baha).  Overprinted definitive issues.  Watermarked (curved wavy lines), Perf 13 x 13 1/2.  Bureau of Printing, Manila (overprint).  100/sheet, 10 x 10.

Floods and natural catastrophes are recorded in the annals of our nation’s history. A strong typhoon swept in November 1943 in the country.  A set of semi-postal  stamp series  was issued in December 1943 after  a strong typhoon caused massive flooding  in order to raise funds for the victims . Then Japanese sponsored republic with overprinted “ Baha” ( Flood)  was meant to raise additional revenue for the cash strapped government, the flood killed countless number of people and animals.

Issued December 8, 1943 which coincided with the second anniversary of the Great East Asia War (GEAWAR).  The official First Day Cover cachet commemorates this event instead of the flood relief campaign.  Due to strong protests from the public, particularly the stamp collectors, an appropriate FDC cachet was issued on December 22.  This cover is referred to as the Second First Day Cover of this issue.

Back then, people would barely write letters to their love ones since letters were heavily censored and the Japanese routinely opens letters to see any propaganda items being stored in the letters.

informal settlers within Kingspoint subdivision

Floods affected a lot of people especially those who lived near the creeks, rivers and flood plains. Informal settlers in various parts of the Metropolis also suffered a lot of losses.  examples are Bicol, Oro, Dupax, Alipio compound within Kingspoint subdivision in Barangay  Bagbag  , Novaliches in Quezon City . According to some of the old-timers in the place, this was the worst flood in recent memories.

Philippine National Red Cross sponsored relief operation

Residents of the subdivision, NGO groups like Philippine National Red Cross, Sagip Kapamilya, Kapuso, government and barangay had extended help to these informal settlers.

Although majority of these settlers do not pay monthly dues, taxes and sometimes post a security threat in surrounding villages.  Still a lot more of the residents in the informal communities are deeply entrench in the community, some are tricycle drivers, taxi drivers, ambulant vendor, security guards, lavanderas, barangay tanods, household helpers, carpenters among others.

Days after the great deluge, hope spring eternal to these communities which started to rebuilt from pieces of plywood, galvanized roof, with  the spirit of bayanihan still lives on…

Here is a simple checklist on what to with your collections during floods:

1.) Follow all emergency rules, guidelines by the National Disaster Coordinating Council -Philippines or Pambansang Tanggapan para sa Pagtugon ng Sakuna which is under the Philippine National Defense and office of the President.

2.)Try to store your collectibles especially cellulose based materials in cool, dry place as much as possible with even temperature ( air-conditioned room and temperature controlled environments ( with de-humidifier) for professional collections like those in Lopez Museum , Ortigas Gallery which had extensive collections of books, paper based materials, post cards, old photographs, paintings  ) quite expensive to maintain .  For flood prone areas , collectors placed their collections in 2nd floor or 3rd floor of their houses away from flood waters.

3.) Wear protective gear like face mask  and gloves .

4.) Document the extent of the damage -take photographs (old buildings, stamps, documents, paintings etc…) wait for the flood water to recede.

5.) Clean everything with diluted disinfectant  that got wet or had been soaked by flood water.

6.) Allow saturated materials to dry using natural ventilation. Avoid drying them under the hot tropical sun !  especially paintings , stamps and cellulose based materials.

7.) If they are from flood damaged stamps or soaked off SASE stamps from envelopes that were never used, they are still legal, however, it is a real hassle to put  glue these on envelopes whenever you want to send a letter.

8.) Try to use cotton gloves for pre-war stamps . Paper used before the war may be brittle.

9.) Paper that has been in equatorial  regions with heavy  rainy seasons are obvious but just as invidious is the long-term effect of micro-organisms introduced in a variety of ways but especially from personal handling, breathing on them and especially on stamps and banknotes , the effect of licking and  holding . Change of color in stamp is due to temperature , moist and humidity ( tropical stains) cellulose based materials are susceptible to these damage.

10.) Knowledge of inks used before is quite essential .

11.) Never try to attempt or  lift a wet  paper from the water by a corner. Always place the cover on a suitable sized  flat plate of glass before immersion and lift out using the glass. The cover can be dried and pressed between sheets of blotting paper in a ‘press’ including the glass plate. Use gloves at all times !

Jardin De Miramar

Jardin de Miramar is situated on a three-hectare property in San Jose Extension in hilly Antipolo, a quiet, genteel area. Little used now by the family, the property was converted into a garden-like venue for parties, and welcomed its first visitors this Christmas season- There is a special house called Casa Santa Clause which housed the vast collections of the owner Ms. Edna Del Rosario accumulated since the late 1990’s . Their were over 1,500 pieces of Santa collections from different parts of the world.

The family decided to convert the place into a party, event, venue place . The property was divided into different themed areas. The family decided to open the place to the public in 2006 and various movie outfit, television stations, morning shows , magazine , travel channels and BLOG sites had already featured the place.

Jardin de Miramar—as the place is called—hosts parties, receptions and other functions in its lush multi-level gardens landscaped by Tony Leano with stately royal palms and serenity waterfalls. Hammocks strung between tall trees tempt visitors to laze an afternoon away with a good book or a nap, lulled by the soothing sounds of water and the wind rustling through the trees.

Galleon replica

A unique feature is a 30-foot boat, reconstructed from an actual 50-year-old fishing boat used by the owner’s family in their deep sea fishing business- The Angelica was retired and some of its wood was used to build the “Noah’s Ark” in the Galera section of the garden, which also features a lighthouse, totem poles and a marine-themed metal sculpture by Eduardo  Castrillo. Dramatic lighting was done by renowned lighting designer Shoko Matsumoto, who also designed the Santa House.

House of Santa

The rest of the wood from the boat Angelica was used for the trellises, benches and other accents throughout the garden.

Behind the Santa house is an area called Intramuros, a mini version of Manila’s old walled city. Featuring adobe walls with an aged look, it is reminiscent of turn-of-the-century Spanish architecture.

This season—and anytime of the year—visit Santa and all his relatives at this very special venue, and put some ho-ho-ho into your life. Likewise enjoy the rest of the place and you’ll surely have a memorable day of your life!

Kingspoint Parish- Christ the King of the Universe Parish

This is the Kingspoint parish or more popularly known as Christ the King of the Universe Parish its feast day is celebrated every third sunday of November.

The parish since its beginnings  in the mid- 1970’s was under the jurisdiction of Parokya ng Pagkabuhay– (Resurrection of Our Lord Parish) Pagkabuhay road  ( Bagbag, Novaliches ) until early 2002 were it became an independent parish had a resident priest and a community center.

This parish had grown tremendously over the past 30 years , from a small chapel with barely a few dozen sitting capacity to several hundred  hosting several communities from Kingspoint subdivision and the adjacent areas.

The church underwent 3 major renovations in mid 1980’s , 1990’s  and 2000’s  on the same site .  The present day church belfry-  ground level also served as a small souvenir shop were religious items such as rosary, prayer booklets, mass cards are sold.

Mr. Ogie Alcasid and Micheal V.

Yaya and Angelina movie pictures courtesy of GMA films

The church served as a location on several television series in the past and most notably the ” Yaya and Angelina ” the spoiled brat movie starting Mr. Ogie Alcasid and Micheal V.  which was shown last September 23, 2009.

” Angelina the 7 year -old spoiled brat girl was ringing the bell tower ” in a portion of the movie .

Joining the cast are some of today’s most talented stars such as Iza Calzado, Aiko Melendez, Jomari Yllana, Leo Martinez, Roxanne Guinoo, Sheena Halili, Victor Aliwalas, Pekto Nacua and John Feir.

Meralco Management & Leadership Center Foundation

MMLDC is short for Meralco Management & Leadership Development Center located in  Kilometer 27 Sumulong Highway in Antipolo, Rizal province.

But to thousands of others that have benefited from its programs, there is so much more to the 10-hectare expanse.

MMLDC started as an internal training facility for the 6,000- plus workforce of Meralco, including contractors, partners and managers. The utility was then undergoing a spate of transformation coming out of the 1980s and 1990s.

Before , Meralco conducts  a lot of out-of-town training; practically every week we were doing team building, living out of our suitcases . Then the management decided to  set up our own center to make it more convenient for the employees and the participants.

Manuel L. Lopez tarpaulin

On August 9, 1999, MMLDC was formally established, with the Academic Hall as the first structure to be opened. By 2000, the buzz was out about the new training center, with people from other companies requesting to rent the venue for their own training activities.

group photo

Social responsibility
As an educational foundation, MLDC’s stated vision is to create a brighter future through institutions and individuals who manifest and promote social responsibility through its five advocacies: ethical leadership, quality management, technical excellence, environmental stewardship, and safety and wellness practices.
In 2006, the corporate training and academic services programs were beefed up to complement the teambuilding programs, considered the centers bread and butter.

The big compound had old mango trees with huge Platycerium grande, bromeliad, tillandsias , orchids mounted on living trees in landscaped garden setting.

There were a lot of exotic bird  collection like parrots, budgerigars , peacocks, pigeons . There is a (Anodorhynchus hyacinthinus), or Hyacinthine Macaw or Hyacinth Macaw which is reputed on e of the rarest bird in the world which is endangered in the wild .

author with a common green parrot

The Hyacinth Macaw is an endangered species due to over collection for the cage bird trade and habitat loss. Annual grass fires set by farmers can destroy nest trees, and regions previously inhabited by this macaw are now unsuitable due to cattle-ranching, forest destruction , pet trade etc…

There was a short bird show which was duly reserved for the visiting POS members . The captive parrots and their trainers entertained the visitors . At the end of the bird show – the handlers let the visitors handle the parrot.

The group also went to a small museum and a gift shop within the compound.

The foundation is ideal for social functions like seminars, filed trip, corporate parties etc…

tranvia replica

Contact information:

Location : Km 27 Sumulong Highway , Antipolo City , Rizal

Telephone  632-8111/696 -3051

Telefax 696-1027/26