Are you a fan of museums? Me? Not much, except for art museums because I think of myself as an artist, though I don’t know a lot of artists of today. Let’s just say I like, but I’m not a fan, especially historical museums. Though I never minded going to the House of young Jose Rizal in Calamba, Laguna when a couple of friends planned out the whole day for Jan’s father’s birthday.
Back in school, my weakest subjects were Filipino (yes, the language) and History. I don’t know why but you can say that I’m not a patriot. I do love my country but not that kind of way. So if you ever meet me somewhere don’t ask me anything about the Philippines’ history. You may catch me googling the answer. Ha!
So, we went to the House of young Jose Rizal in Calamba Laguna, which is said to be his home from when he was born. It is turned into a museum-slash-shrine to honor the Philippine’s National Hero. It is no longer the original house because it burnt down and was only rebuilt but it is the original location. Though the house burned down, there was a lot of the original furniture that was saved.
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The newly rebuilt house of young Jose Rizal is painted green because, as explained by one of the tour guides, the meaning of Rizal in Spanish (Ricial) is the fields where wheat are cut while they are still green. Obviously, the family of Rizal was rich because the house was large and was fairly a mansion.
We got to see and learn a few things on how they lived before, like the dining area having a large fan that is being pushed by their servants. Or their toilets being holes in wooden seats with no proper drainage. Servants had to pick up the waste to throw out somewhere at the end of the day (I know, right?). A lot of the original furniture that was saved are potteries with intricate designs.
One of the things that intrigued me in the house was the wall with their genealogy. It’s kind of surprising how many brothers and sisters Jose Rizal had, but then again, during that time, it was probably just normal.
There is also a separate gallery for artwork dedicated for the shrine and a separate gallery for stuff that Jose Rizal used to own, like his clothes, his books, and even his sculptures. That’s when I learned that Jose Rizal was not just a writer and a hero but so much more and has done so much more than what I learned in school. But, hey, like I said, History is one of my weakest subjects.
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Visiting the House of young Jose Rizal made me somewhat think that I should learn more about my country (whenever I have the time *big sly smile*) and appreciate what our heroes have fought for during their time. The Philippines would not be the Philippines today if not for them after all.
Location: Calamba, Laguna