Friday, November 17, 2006

Day 2 : Museum and Church Visits

It's my 2nd day in Malolos. This day's itinerary include museum and church visits. My guide of the day was Albert Aguilar, a local artist.

Visiting Barasoain Church

First stop was the historical Barasoain Church. This was my 2nd time to visit the church (the first time was in 2000). I went inside the church and got the usual feeling of being safe inside. One of the structures that really interests me among Spanish-built churches is the elevated podium where the friars in the early days made their homilies. Coming from a place which churches were built after the Spanish era, I always imagine how would it feel like to listen to sermons from the priest who is on that podium. I only saw these scenes on films and television.

Altar of Barasoain Church

We went to see the Diocesan Museum of Malolos. But to my little dismay, it was closed for "re-decorating" the exhibits in preparation for the Christmas showcase. Anyway, I saw this interactive museum in 2000. But I wanted to see it again. Hmm, maybe next time...

Next stop was the Casa Real. Just a walking distance from Barasoain Church is the museum intended to recognize the women of Malolos. The exhibit showcases the properties and dresses worn by Malolos women in the early times. The ground floor exhibits were that of old furnitures and fixtures that women used. It also featured the old traditional dresses by the leaders of the Club of Women, as well as mural painting of General Valeriano Weyler and the women of Malolos. These women asked Weyler to grant them permission to open a night school where learning Spanish. On exhibit was the old printing press machine also, probably used as printing machine especially during the propaganda days. The second floor featured the first women who made it to the top in their own fields. Recognizable names were Corazon Cojuangco-Aquino as the First Woman President and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as the First Woman Vice President.

Traditional dresses of Malolos women

Upon my insistence, we visited again the Immaculate Conception Malolos Cathedral. I was told earlier about the Kalayaan Tree. There I saw the tree that stood witness to the historic events in the area. I wanted to have enough time inside the church, but it was closed not until 5pm that day. Anyway, I just observed the devotees offering prayers. I observed that many Bulakenyos are very pious Catholic people. I have observed pious Catholics in my place, but I noticed how they paid respect to the images of Christ and Mama Mary. They were very devoted to their faith.

Malolos Cathedral

Albert then showed me to the rows of old houses of Malolos. Some are beautifully maintained. One of this is the house that MERALCO uses now as office. But some were not properly maintained. I even saw that houses are already for sale. I just hope that the owners of these will keep and maintain the structure of these houses, as these are living testimonies to the glorious and historical years of Malolos.

Old Houses of Malolos

From there, we visited the Provincial Capitol of Bulacan. I see the design of the building as very Hispanic. And I was so happy to see singkaban being built at the entrance of the building. This is in preparation for the Christmas season. I was told that those were the works of Mang Kiko.

We circled the plaza area just infront of the Provincial Capitol. I noticed that the plaza is frequented by students. I was informed that it is because Bulacan State University is just around the corner.

Bulacan Provincial Capitol Building

We rested early for the day.

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