Friday, March 8, 2013

Davao - Then and Now

It's Araw ng Davao once again. I feel the need to be at least in one event and blog about it as my simple way of paying tribute to the city that has become my home for 28 years. We came to Davao from Zamboanga City in 1985 and Davao was so different then. No malls, no traffic.

One of the events I was keen on going to was the Davao Then and Now photo exhibit staged by Museo Dabawenyo at the SM Annex. I'm a big nostalgia fan so it was no-brainer why it was on top of my list. Last Saturday, I found myself at SM Ecoland and immediately headed to their new annex wing. The exhibit featured around 20-25 old Davao City photos and little trivia about the edifices. It celebrates the journey of our city to become the premier city in Mindanao and a melting pot of different cultures. Davao City's rise to fame was definitely NOT an overnight success. The exhibit is one way to let the younger Dabawenyos learn and appreciate our history. 
It was a rather simple exhibit, I even had difficulty looking for it. The pictures were blown up but I think it would have been better by adding more photos. There are a lot of good material from Davao of the Past FB page. Also, I noticed two staff from the city tourism office (because of their IDs) who just stood at the registration table and fiddled with their phones. Maybe I looked local hence nobody bothered to interact with me and have a little chit-chat and perhaps give more information. Isn't that what they're supposed to do? Now as a communication person, I give premium when people from the government go out of their way to mingle with common, everyday people. What if I were a local tourist? I would certainly welcome learning something new about Davao during my visit. I wonder if I were a foreigner if the staff would get off from their seats and talk to me.  

Here are some of the photos I took, pardon the low quality because I only had to make do with my cam phone that day. 

What can I do? They gave me my college diploma! :)
Anyway, I salute the city government for including the exhibit in their activity lineup. That in the midst of the noise and revelries, they have not allowed our rich past be forgotten. Davao Then and Now will run from March 1-16, 2013. You can use the entrance near Starbucks and you'll find it easily, unlike me who took the   back door. :)

Want more images of old Davao? At the bottom of this post are some from the Davao of the Past FB page, photos are not mine. It's worth your time visiting this FB page, you will learn a lot and be amazed how our city looked like before. The albums are also organized. Kudos to the owner of the account. 

Happy 76th birthday Davao and to all residents, young and old, of this land of promise! :) 

Before People's Park, there was PTA in Ponciano 
Before taxis arrived in Davao, there was the PU. If I remember correctly, Dowtown to Lanang is about 35-40 pesos back in the 80s. hehehe No aircon and no meter by the way.
The AC Jeep!!!
Araw ng Davao circa 1960s. I wasn't born yet!
Davao Insular Hotel now Waterfront Insular. These are the huts facing the sea.
Do you remember their calesa and animal topiaries? 
Relax and see a movie - there was Eagle, Odeon, Lyric and Queens!

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