I was never a history buff in school.  In fact, history was one of my worst subjects. I learned early on that one of my greatest weaknesses was memorizing dates and names.  It even extended to Chemistry (memorizing the different elements and their properties) and Math (memorizing the different laws and symbols).  I did do well in Biology though, probably because with the names came pictures of life.

First Boy Scouts of the Philippines Monument, Tacloban City, Leyte

Hence it is ironic that I am now in the tourism industry which emphasizes on the telling of the history of the Philippines.. not just of history, with all the names and dates, but also of the landmarks and structures man has built all over the country to commemorate and/or give honor to heroes, icons and events.

Nuestra Senyora de Salvacion, Tiwi, Albay - said to have played a miraculous role during the WWII Japanese Occupation

And so it has come to pass.. As much as I disliked history then, I have learned to like and even love it now. Back then I was always on the receiving end of a monotonously droning voice going on and on about something that didn’t even concern me; but now I am the one telling the stories. I am the one researching and unearthing information, in pursuit of that one moment in time when the world was changed forever.

Cagsawa Ruins - what remained of the old church in Legazpi, Albay when Mt. Mayon (partly covered by clouds in the back) erupted in 1846, spewing rocks and lava and burying hundreds of parishioners within its walls, parishioners who believed that the church would be spared.

Some people read up on churches (the Philippines has hundreds of these) while others familiarize themselves in eras (Spanish Time, Japanese Occupation) and yet others prefer to talk about people (Ferdinand Marcos, Cory Aquino).  When I travel, it doesn’t matter what category it is, I just try to preserve any of these sights on film, because wherever we go, there are always stories to tell.

Quezon National Forest Park, Quezon Province - a protected forest decreed by then President Ferdinand Marcos in 1969, which lines the Old Zigzag Road of the national highway

Of course, we cannot photograph everything especially when we are in moving vehicles.  The best way to get everything down on hard copy is to actually go and visit these places and spend a few days immersing and familiarizing ourselves with the scenes, the culture and the people.

See you in some of our future travels!

Published by Bukidlife

A journaler - someone who writes in a journal.

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