Friday, July 20

Rizal Park

Earlier this week, we decided to do something "touristy", so we took the kids to a well known city park, Rizal Park. Numerous websites talk about how this is an excellent park with so many features, blah, blah, blah! We did read about a fun children's play area, so we asked our driver to take us to that part of the park. Well, he obviously had no idea what we were talking about, because he dropped us off near the waterfront (Manila Bay). We thought it would be fun to let the kids see the ocean, so we went ahead, got out of the van & walked over to the water. However, on our walk over there, we realized that this was probably not the tourist hot spot we'd been reading about. Unfortunately, I think it was actually a gathering area for the homeless community. When we finally got to the waterfront, we watched 2 huge rats the size of opossums racing around the heaps & mounds of trash piled on the shoreline. It was disgusting!! And, it was also terribly sad. There were people digging through that trash, hoping to find something salvagable. There were also fisherman hoping to catch their next meal in that nasty water. Once again, I realize how blessed I am!

After this very quick picture, we hightailed it outta there...

We decided to walk across the street to try another area of the park. (This park is HUGE! Think Central Park in NYC.) We were hoping that maybe we would run into the children's play area. After passing more homeless people, a little boy peeing on the sidewalk & a lady washing her face by a tree, we gave up. We asked a police officer if he could point us to the children's park, but he was VERY vague & was hard to understand. He mentioned something about "not disturbing the family". I asked him if we were disturbing a family & he said no. Then, he repeated it again. All I could make out was "do not disturb the family". I was so confused, hot, tired & just plain irritated by this point. I turned away from the police officer, looked at my friend, Julie, and said, "Just forget it!" I was ready to go! We walked to a central meeting point, while she called our driver to come pick us up in the van. While we were waiting for him, we finally ran across some friendly people who gave us very simple & clear directions to the children's play area. So, when our driver arrived, they explained to him how to get there. Ahhhh... now we're getting somewhere! We all got back in the cool, air conditioned van & he drove us far to the other side of the park where the huge children's play area was located!!

The kids had a great time. They were hot & sweaty already by the time we got there from all the walking we did earlier, but they enjoyed playing. We tried to make it all seem like an adventure... we were exploring the park. So, that evening, after I put the kids to bed, I overheard Samuel telling his siblings, "I really had fun on our adventure today. Did you guys like our adventure?" That made it all worth it!


Stephanie said...

Cute pictures! It looks like that part of the park is fun!

Jenn said...

Adventure is right!!!! Blessed is right!!! Here is to you for having the courage to show your children how others live!