The campus of the University of the Philippines in Diliman (Quezon City) is a special place for me. I consider it as my second "home campus" in my alma mater, the first one is my beloved UP Manila. Many of my happy memories were made in UPD (short-cut for UP Diliman). I can still remember the colorful lantern parades each year, doing research inside its well-stocked libraries, our final exam in walking and foundation of physical fitness, sitting by the sunken garden... Thus, I am quite familiar with the different areas of the campus. The UP campus in Diliman is a destination in itself, it is worth your travel time.
|The Cine Adarna of the UP Film Institute|
One Saturday last July 2011, I got a chance to visit again this interesting place. I accompanied a friend from Bulacan who attended a seminar. I got ample free time to explore again this campus while waiting for the seminar to end.
|Sunken Garden abuzz with activity|
This is the first time I visited this campus since I graduated last April 2011 in UP Manila. I explored the campus by foot. Walking is relaxing while in UP Diliman, there is ample shade and fresh air courtesy of the trees. I walked along the very memorable Academic Oval which is a popular venue for fun runs and practice area for cyclists. There was a running event that day, I got re-hydrated for free thanks to Pocari Sweat!
I walked the complete length of the academic oval thrice that morning. I stopped by memorable buildings and reminisced.
|Tree-lined Academic Oval of UPD|
Another fun thing to do, while at the Academic Oval area, is to sit on a bench or on the grass patches bordering the Sunken Garden and people watch. This activity is quite relaxing and interesting as well. You get to see different people of various ages and backgrounds enjoying the moment. Many are doing their exercise routine - walking, jogging, cycling. I smiled when I saw a family jogging together, bonding time at its best. This is an example of why UP is said to be a microcosm of the Philippine society. I am thankful that the verdant grounds of UP Diliman is open to everyone.
|Tapsi of Rodic's|
A visit to UP Diliman is not complete without eating at Rodic's. They are well known for their tapsi which means tapa (beef jerky), sinangag (fried rice) and itlog (fried egg). Their tapa looks like corn beef making it a good eat for kids and the elderly. Rodic's is one of the dining options at the Commercial Center of UPD. Typically Rodic's is full during lunch time, even so loyal customers are willing to wait a bit for a vacant table. Truly my lunch is complete with a good serving of tapsi plus extra rice and ice cold juice that day!
Later that afternoon, along with my friend, we visited the Bulwagan ng Dangal and the UP-Vargas Museum.
|All smiles at the steps of the UPD Main Library, Gonzales Hall|
Bulwagan ng Dangal (University Heritage Museum) is located at Gonzales Hall, the building that also houses the Main Library and the School of Library Science. Entrance is for free. There were two exhibits during my visit: Rizal at UP and Sulyap sa Baro at Sayà. Both exhibits were presented in celebration of the 103rd year of foundation of the University of the Philippines.
The Rizal at UP exhibit also part of the different activities that commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of our national hero, Jose Rizal. It showcases the different art objects depicting Rizal and photographs of buildings named after the hero that belongs to the cast collection of the university.
|Exhibits of the University Heritage Museum|
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the UPD College of Home Economics, the exhibit Sulyap sa Baro at Sayà displayed colorful and detailed pieces, materials, and paintings depicting the baro and sayà.
|UP-Vargas Museum facade|
We were fortunate that we got to see the exhibits before the museum closed that afternoon. There was still ample time left that afternoon, me and my friend then proceeded to the UP-Vargas Museum. Regular entrance fee is at Php 30.00 while UP students and alumni only pays Php 20.00 per person.
|Rizal Exhibit Poster|
There is also a Rizal-themed exhibit at the UP-Vargas Museum. The ground floor showcased Over Rizal: Monuments to a Hero. Various color and some black-and-white photographs of the monuments honoring Rizal was the highlight of the exhibit. The front ground and the basement of the museum is the staging ground of an art installation of placards with striking messages. The second floor of the museum houses the valuable paintings of the Vargas Collection, a must see exhibit. The Vargas Collection has a sampling of the works of as Juan Luna, Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo, Fernando Amorsolo, and other well known Filipino artists.
Rain poured as we left the campus aboard a jeepney at around 16:00. I am thankful for that one happy day spent at my second “home campus”. I hope an opportunity comes your way to visit and see the interesting and memorable UP campus in Diliman, Quezon City.