they have started to close the roads
For this day, I planned on renewing my Philippine driver's license which was yet to expire 4 months from now but since I was anticipating that I would not be able to go back to Philippines within the next 4 months, I thought I'd renew it in advance. My brother had no classes and said he'd accompany me. So we got in to the car and when we reached our village's gate, we were stopped by the guards and told us that the roads were already closed.
Darn! We left the house too late! We should have gone in the morning!
Once a year, there is a one Monday that the President of the Philippines makes a speech reporting about what was done last year and what was to come for the next. This is what we call the President's "State of the Nation Address" (SONA).
policemen getting ready to make a human barricade right in front of our village's gate to keep off the demonstrators
This event is held at the National Congress building. Our village is (fortunately?unfornately?) just a few meters from it. During SONA, a part of the road is closed to traffic and this closure starts exactly right in front of our village. I remember this event started when I was in highschool, and back then they have not considered suspending classes during SONA and this created a whole lot of inconvenience going home for most people, as there was no public transport available. I had to walk from school going home then and it was a good 5 kilometers distance. Anyhow, the organizers know better now so besides suspending classes, there is also now the strategic barricading of that part of the road a few meters before the Congress building in order to keep the demonstrators/rallyists from getting close to the building.
there's media present
Well, it is quite a usual thing here, you know, people marching in the streets to voice out their opposition against the government. Sadly, this is our concept of democracy here -- rule of the mob. I am not going to deny that my country is one of the countries with a very bad political situation. Corruption is rampant. Politicians are more concerned of how to find faults at each other in order to bring themselves up, they do not respect the President. I don't really get this, how can the people trust the government, when even the leaders who run it don't even support each other? They are only concerned of their own welfare, on how to get more power and get richer. But they are already rich in the first place! What more could they want? And so don't be surprised if the government runs more like showbusiness.
there ya go: vandalism
The two could actually be interchangeable, we have actors becoming legislators who need to hire a legal adviser to explain the legislation to them and on the other hand, we have politicians who are endorsing beauty products, liquors and yes, even detergents thru billboards, print and TV ads. Ok, so there's really something wrong that could really tick you off as a citizen. However, I also do not understand what those activists who oppose the government do to express their thoughts: they go on the streets to picket and to vandalize public property. Now, what would vandalism do to help change the government? By doing this, they are even just adding more to government expenses making it even more harder for an already poor economy we have.
Yes, I'm ranting, please excuse me.
my bro and I decided to just walk
Anyways, let me shift back to me and my brother's aim to go out. I was thinking of backing out by then but I realized that it was a very rare happening that I and my brother would be going out with just the two of us. I don't even remember the last time we went out that it was just the two of us, perhaps that was even the first time. So we decided to leave the car at the guard house, walked, crossed the street and took the taxi, only to find out that I won't be allowed to renew my driver's license because they only allowed renewals for at most 2 months in advance. But it was ok, I had accomplished a more important aim. My brother and I went shopping and it was nice to spend some time with him. We're 7 years apart and it had not been easy to bridge that generation gap before. I've seen my brother from being a baby to a teenager and now to becoming a man.
And I smile, as I see that he's getting there.