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History Made Alive
Back when I was still in School, I always get bored during History class. I couldn’t get myself to memorize dates, places and persons of long ago. In fact, History or Social Studies is way below my fave subjects that I may have missed many sessions during those times. However, I realized that History is fascinating when the right person is the one telling it.
I was fortunate to have joined a historical tour organized by the Career Executive Service Board (CESB) to Cavite. The tour was aptly titled “ CAVITE: Aguinaldo’s Strategic Victories and Bonifacio’s Tragic Martyrdom”. My view on history had a 180-degree turn around. I have to give credit to History Professor Bernard Karganilla of UP Manila who slowly brought to life the events which led to the declaration of Independence on June 12, 1896 while we are in the bus going to Cavite. He told us the story of the struggles of the Katipuneros not only in Cavite but of all the eight provinces who really fought against the Spaniards for independence. He related to us what happened in the historic Magdalo-Magdiwang Meeting, the Tejeros Covention and the trial of the Bonifacio Brothers at Maragondon.
The one-day tour included a visit to the Binakayan Monument, Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, 13 Martyrs Monument in Cavite City, Tejeros Convention Center in Rosario, Casa Hacienda in Naic, Maragondon where Bonifacio was court-martialed and lastly at Geronimo Berenguer de los Reyes (GBR) Museum at Jalavera, Gen. Trias. The museum contains photographs that chronicled the country’s glorious past and the struggles for Philippine independence.
It was an enjoyable and reflective day. It made me appreciate the freedom that we have today and the cost that it has entailed to our heroes. Literally, blood, sweat and tears of our heroes were invested so that we can live a life of “freedom”.
Reliving history brought a crushing realization. Our heroes died in vain with all the corruption and anomalies that is happening all around. Maybe, we need to bring our leaders to this historical tour, hoping against hope that it will bring their nationalism back.