Saturday, June 25, 2011

Lakbay Jose Rizal @ 150 | The Dark Side of the Project

Doing the Lakbay Rizal @ 150 is fun and very fulfilling so far. I've learned a lot and enjoyed the trail in Calamba, Manila and Antipolo. As of now, I had my passport stamped with 12 sites already (but BULLSH*T, it should've been 14 already).

I just came from Malolos and Pampanga just a few hours ago. I was hoping to get my 13th and 14th stamp there, unfortunately both the Malolos City Hall and Pampanga Provincial Capitol know nothing about this DOT/NHI project.

I developed the following Lakbay BULLSH*TS from my Malolos and Pampanga misadventure:

Lakbay BULLSH*T #1 - What stamp?

What do you mean you don't know the stamp? DOT placed your office on the passport (they should've at least informed you about this), knowing nothing about this project is a BIG non sense.

Lakbay BULLSH*T #2 - Where is the stamp?

Since they don't know anything about the Lakbay Rizal @150 Project, we don't know where to get the stamp. The people in Malolos City Hall directed us to tourism office, to mayor's office, to Casa Real (pinagpasa-pasahan kami). The stamp should be at the guard post, but there's no guard post (an important building with no guard? whatda?)

Malolos City Hall
Pampanga Provincial Capitol

Lakbay BULLSH*T #3 - Sorry we're closed

No way! We were not told that your office is closed on weekends. In the first place, it is written CLEARLY on the Rizal Passport that the stamp should be at the guard post (we assumed that the guard post is open 24/7), but there was NO guard post.  

Also, last June 18 when we visited Jose Rizal's house at Calamba, they did not allow us to enter the house. They said that they were preparing for PNoy's arrival for the event on the following day (sana man lang may abiso sila na iko-close nila ang bahay for that day). I saw a group of children, around 7-8 years of age, also denied from entering the house (I saw the feeling of heart break in their faces). Good thing they stamped our passports, kung hindi baka nag-wala ako doon.  

Lakbay BULLSH*T #4 - You're on the wrong site

Another misinformation in the Rizal Passport is the location of the Universidad de Santo Tomas Stamp in Intramuros. It is written there that the stamp should be in the Maestranza guard house. I walked and searched for that guard house for almost an hour, but I found no stamp site around Maestranza area in Intramuros. When I got inside the Fort Santiago, they have the UST stamp there. (O di ba, pinagod ka muna sa Maestranza)

lost in Maestranza area
Lakbay BULLSH*T #5 - Poor little traveler

My story is just a minor bullsh*t . Those who traveled from far far province/island of the country surely experienced the greater BULLSHIT. A lady at the Malolos City Hall told us that there was a traveler from Mindanao who wished to get the Malolos Stamp also experienced the BULLSHITS listed above (for me, that's one BIGGER BULLSH*T). His time and his effort, all were wasted.


Calling calling DOT, I mean no harm to your Rizal@150 Project, I actually love it, but the misadventure I just experienced was a big turn off. All I want is improvement and better info dissemination, particularly to every stamp sites. I am expecting the organizer's attention and I hope you'll do something about this.     



  1. Hindi ata well calibrated ang mga taga Dept of tourism about Lakbay Jose Rizal @ 150 . kakalungkot naman

  2. bullsh*t nga. what do you expect from our grand government?

  3. ouch di coordinated ang mga sites.
    relax lang brader, ang puso hehe

  4. nakakalungkot naman ng sinapit nyo.. sana maayos na yan... :)

  5. mainitin din ulo ko sa mga ganyan. mababa tolerance ko sa tatanga-tanga..

  6. hi!dapat sana try ko din to kaso yan nga din kinakatakot ko...sana hindi mangyari yan sa mindanao part ng lakbay jose rizal mo.mas mahirap yun!

  7. Nakakalungkot naman ito na nakakawalang-gana :( sana may gawin ang DOT about this. Dapat may mga notice na silang pinapadala at materials bago mag-launch ng isang campaign. Di biro ang dumayo ha

  8. that said, it's always good to call ahead the local tourism office or the venue listed para di naman masayang ang oras

  9. Carlo Francis BaileJuly 4, 2011 at 9:26 PM

    Hi Ivan! Did you find the NHI marker along Sto. Nino Street in Malolos City? The stamp area is situated near the said marker on the Kamestizuhan District of Malolos. I hope you can get to know more of Malolos City in your next visit, I'll be glad to be a guide and to be of help.

  10. Clearly, there is no proper coordination among these agencies. Sayang ang pagod ng mga travelers...tsk tsk tsk.DOT wake up!

  11. Ryan Sebastian, Department of TourismJuly 13, 2011 at 6:04 PM

    Mabuhay po!

    We already sent feedback to Mr. Ivan Lakwatsero regarding the sites and how we addressed his concerns.

    The Lakbay Jose Rizal@150 is an inter-agency project where we work together with various agencies and local government units.

    Please be assured that we have addressed the concerns already so that no similar incidents will happen again. Pasensya na po kayo.

    For Malolos: We were informed by our partner Malolos Tourism Office that the new stamp site will be the Casa Real de Malolos (Open Daily except Mondays 8 am to 5 pm)

    For the OLD UST site: the new stamp site will be the guard post of the Banco Filipino Building in the vicinity. Intramuros Administration also posted notices to inform the public of the new stamp site.

    Mr. Ivan Henares of Heritage Conservation SOciety also contacted the Pampanga Provincial Tourism Office. The Ninoy Aquino Center Building within the Capitol complex will still be the stamp site for the San Fernando Train Station.

    The new sites will be included in the next printing of the passport/ brochure. We have also updated the entries regarding the stamp sites in the Lakbay Jose Rizal@150 found in Pakivisit na rin po for updates.

    Again, our apologies po and please be assured that we will continue to work together to make the pilgrimage to Rizal sites a worthy activity to honor our national hero...



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