Originally, the plan was to go get my medical clearance at Ortigas, have my second visit at The Orchard Road for my pratta then head home. But sister told me when I came home about the National Museum being opened and how can I say no?! That's like one in "N Things to do before I die list"! So I slept around 10 (because I was too lazy to go to bed) and set my alarm around 4. I would be in that museum before everyone else comes and I am sure it would be a blast!
So I was all cheery when I laid my head on my pillow thinking how fine it would be for tomorrow. I'm currently scrimping on expenses but this has to be under the category of 'Extremely Important'. I just hope the museum don't let us pay 500php each or we'd go home hungry.
This is just mere 2 hours -------
Okay, I overslept. I woke up around 6 but my head was still complaining of lack of sleep. But no matter! Let's just look at the bright side! Maybe the doctor is already there when I arrive so all I needed to do is to hurry up my morning rituals.
Aha! I was right! I was only held up in the clinic around 30 minutes, rode the MRT which wasn't free anymore, but appreciated the small mass of people. Then I walked off to LRT where it was more crowdy, but better this than jeep.
Pervert alert -------------
Imagine what I looked like. Sweaty, hair in a bun with a huge bag on my right shoulder, another tote bag slung on the other where the envelopes of my xrays showing, none of my cleavage was out and my jeans aren't hugging my legs. I shouldn't be attracting anyone in this get up. But this pervert still found a way to piss the hell out of me by breathing heavily on my neck; and to think he's a ruler away from me! Grr.
To verify what he was doing and not just my imagination, I discreetly looked at the door at my back where I noticed him to jerk a little in surprise but he immediately resumed composure, with his face in glee that I acknowledged his pathetic attempt. I looked back at my window pouting, thinking if he's a bit closer to me he'd surely get a rib broken by my elbow.
He continued what he was doing while I simply tried to look nonchalant, and was surprised that the small hairs on my neck was cooperating by not looking like as if I'm tickled and was as dead as it can be. The train operator then said 'U.N.' and realizing my stop, I gave my best practiced 'Whatever' look and strutted my way out of the station.
I hate KFC ----------
I still have a mild case of coughing and I know I shouldn't be drinking cold drinks but as a treat for being an educated person back in the train where I could clearly have made a scene, I decided I would like to have my Krushers Mixed Berries. Ahh. Everything is fine and dandy with Mixed Berries. How can you go wrong? The taste of fruit and bits of berries are so good together I can't imagine ordering anything else. Ahh. Mixed Berries. So when it was my turn at the counter, I gave my best smile and said, "1 Mixed berries please!', with my mouth watering.
She also smiled at me and said: "Mam, it's already phased out."
I was like "What the hell?!"
Ooohh a rally! Goody! --------
I could not remember where the museum was at but based on the guards I've asked they've simply said that I go straight ahead then do a right turn. I am now slurping my not so satisfying Krushers Oreo. I didn't like to disappoint the one at the counter, and it is really a long walk so I went on with it even if the feeling of euphoria isn't there anymore. Oh well.
Half of my cold drink I was still all smiles until I realized how long this walk is going to be. I can't still find the end of this lengthy street and oh wait, what is that? A, a...rally?
I didn't exactly lived my life in Manila nor was I ever in the UBelt so I have no idea what a rally looks like in real life. I've seen one from afar but never this close--- and my roadblock too! Where am I going to walk now? Look, those police are scary, what if when I passed a riot comes up? What if they pick me up and asked me what I was doing there?! No one would believe I'm going to a museum! How can they? I looked all haggard carrying un-museumy stuff and I'm in the middle of it!
There is no way out of this so I decided to walk through them instead, but with my head down low, no eye contact. I'm too young to go to jail I keep on saying in my head. My heart was beating so fast, seeing that these are the most number of police I have ever seen in my life and I began to think of my ex-officemate who is a member of such groups, I'm just not sure if this was it. But if worse comes to worst, I might call him for backup.
As I was nearing the edge, where an invisible line separated the rallying group to the armed policemen, suddenly, everything was in slow motion. I didn't know if it was relief that nothing bad happened or this just looked surreal. Either way, I should be glad no one would know how I ended there anyway.
This is exactly why I hate asking for directions -----------
So after my heart-throbbing moment, I reached Roxas Boulevard. I asked another guard again where the museum is and was disappointed that he didn't know. He called a woman vendor who said the instructions like as if I'm a moron who can't understand left and right (well she's sort of right but it's annoying when it's rubbed on to you) WHICH caught the attention of a guy who was stupid enough to yell "She's lost? She's lost?" to everyone in sight. Though not obvious, I can feel my blood rushing to my cheeks in embarrasment and a probable predicament I won't let anyone do--- to be snatched. We all know the golden rule of the streets, "never let anyone know you don't know". So I went to walk in a hurry, hoping no one was following.
I got it wrong, so what? ---------------
I called my family where they are currently at and they were still on the way. After asking another guy, this time a photographer in the grounds of Luneta, he told me to go straight and do a right turn, which I did and found a building that looked like a museum, though something tells me it isn't. I was opting to come in but I decided to wait for them instead, until my eyes caught our van. I called them telling I was already at the museum and they just passed me. Later on when they came, they were all laughing at me for my mistake. I was waiting outside the National Historic Institute, not at the National Museum. Bummer.
Yey Museum!!! ----------------
It was probably 11 when we arrived. The girl on the register just informed us to leave our bags and cameras, have one of us sign on the logbook and no entrance fee yey! It was supposed to be 100php each but because today's Independence Day, no fees!
We got in not knowing where to start. First floor had nothing to see so we went upstairs for our first galleries, the shipwreck collection. All four of us spread out to look on our own. It wasn't 5 minutes later that I was pissed. Some girl is posing for her boyfriend on the cannons. I thought we weren't allowed picture taking!!! Then there's wise guy too, who was using the best of his flash on the preserved remains of lizards and snakes. That, argh!!! We are given free passes and this is what they give back to the museum?!
Then there are the noisy kids. They are all over the place, someone even leaned heavily on the grasshopper case that it tipped a bit. I gasped loudly it caught the kid's attention that he moved away from it in fear. And a lot of them museum goers are touching everything. This group upstairs where they kept contemporary paintings, kept on poking the canvas like as if it's a normal poster! The nerve of these obnoxious beings! They should be kept out of this musuem this instant! They're lucky I'm not a curator or I will surely evict everyone out who misbehaves.
Anyways, enough of the ranting.
All floors in terms of collection is okay, but not that grand as I assumed. I was hoping to see Spoliarium but it wasn't there and some collections are by far, redundant. One type of plate is repetitively showcased and have taken at least 1/8 of a gallery's space, some AVPs aren't working and some badly needs redecoration to add to the feel. I think the best gallery was the one on the 3rd I think, where they keep ethnic collections, from Luzon to Mindanao, even house replicas and swords and costumes. I also enjoyed the small gallery of urns and coffins and if I can only be given a chance to take photos, this gallery has got to be on the top of my list simply because of the ethereal feel. Then there's the contemporary paintings. If we weren't hungry I could stay there all day staring at those haunting paintings I can still vividly recall.
Who knows what they let you see for the rest of the year, but I think some of those collections are replaced some time or another and I would love to see those too! Maybe get back there sometime with a guide, or just with a fee. Surely there would be less obnoxious people by then.