We all look forward to August, the month when our sidewalks, street corners and markets overflow with fruits, the air redolent with the pungent-sweet smell of durian, marang, lanzones and mangosteen.
Kadayawan, a thanksgiving festival of abundant harvest, is a reflection of our multi-cultural heritage and how we came together as a people with one dream for a prosperous city. This is showcased in the events held within the whole month of August initiated by the city and the private sector.
In Magsaysay Park, authentic homes of 11 ethno linguistic groups in the city showcase not only their architecture but also their food, weaves, crafts and dances. The park has turned into a village that is not only educational but provides tourists with more information on our unique culture and heritage, as well.
One of the significant events this month is the Art Hunt, the first art event that brought together artists, art lovers and artisans at the Sanctuary, Greenhills in Maa. It was a rousing success, perhaps even beyond the expectations of its organizers, in the number of participating artists and the overwhelming number of art enthusiasts and the curious, who spent two days in the finely curated art space. This is not to mention the tills’ ringing and the beaming countenance of artists as artworks are wrapped.
There are all-you-can-eat fruit extravaganza in malls, an event that marks the abundance that we have.
All these things aside, August holds historical significance for us. In the 70’s, the nation saw the devastation wrought by the Plaza Miranda bombing shortly before the elections. In the 80’s, August was the month when charismatic political leader Senator Ninoy Aquino was shot at the tarmac of the Manila International Airport, giving impetus to the growing opposition that finally led to the downfall of the late Pres. Ferdinand Marcos. The rest, as the cliché goes, is history.
In this decade, we have lost former Interior Secretary Jess Robredo, a man who has shown that transparency in governance is possible and that a leader does not have to be feared to be obeyed.
This Kadayawan season, let us all partake of the merriment because soon, the “ber” months will come creeping.