Yesterday, the Philippines as a nation celebrated our country's birthday,the regaining of freedom deprived by the long colonial rule of the Spaniards in the country. This proclamation of Philippine Independence occurred on June 12, 1898 with the public reading of the Act of the Declaration of Independence by the assemblage of military chiefs and various towns representatives,led by General Emilio Aguinaldo at his ancestral home in Kawit (former Cavite-Viejo), Cavite.
Like how our country's independence was proclaimed 113 years ago, the Independence Day activities yesterday were intended to commemorate in close fashion the said proclamation of sovereignty. Commencing at the same Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite, President Noynoy Aquino led the unfurling of the Philippine National Flag with a simultaneous flag - raising throughout the historical sites in the country.
At around 4 o'clock in the afternoon, there was a well-attended Parada ng Kalayaan (Parade of Freedom)which kicked off at the Quirino Grandstand in Rizal Park led also by President Noynoy with some dignitaries and the general public.
Because this year's Independence Day fell on a Sunday and our family went to Church as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints or LDS Church, we weren't able to attend any of the Independence Day activities. I hope that did not make us less nationalistic because in our hearts and minds, we truly value this important event, one that gave us freedoms we are enjoying today.
So, as and by way of my own celebration of Independence Day, I remembered this picture taken at the balcony of the Foreign Correspondent Club (FCC) restaurant in Phnom Penh,Cambodia in 2009.
The FCC is in a three storey colonial style building and opened in the early nineties. From its balcony on the second floor, I have spotted the Philippine National Flag unfurled among several flags along Tonle Sap. I instinctively have that urge of wanting to take a picture.
Silently, seeing the Pambansang Watawat ng Pilipinas in a foreign country made me feel proud of being a Filipino and helped me to remember the virtues of equality, fraternity, peace, truth, justice,patriotism and valor, respectively symbolizes by the white triangle,the blue field and the red field. The sun symbolizes unity, freedom and People's Democracy. While the eight rays of the sun stand for eight provinces (Manila, Cavite, Bulacan, Pampanga, Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, Laguna, and Batangas) to revolt against the Spanish colonizers. The three stars symbolize Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.