Where there is more heaven than elsewhere (paying respect to Gagalangin)


Gagalangin is in Tondo — as in Gagalangin, Tondo, Manila. But its residents behave as though it is not. It is thinly separated by the unimposing Pritil bridge from the more trouble-prone Tondo of Bangkusay, Vitas, and Moriones, but the residents pretend it is a world away.

Ask a Gagalangin lass where she lives, and she is unlikely to mention Tondo, lest it scare away prospective suitors less fearless and fist-happy than Fernando Poe, Jr.

Kaming mga taga Gagalangin, the old guards say proudly, are respectful and respected.

Taga-rito si Dolphy, King of Comedy, they would tell the uninformed, and proceed to point to where his old house once stood in Sunog Apog. If you had more time to listen, they would probably whisper that Dolphy wanted sorely to marry the mother of his first batch of children, except the family of the woman thought he’d be good for nothing. “Big mistake, huge,” they’d probably interject, with a “tsk, tsk.”

Ganun din si Tirso Cruz, great band leader, and his famous offsprings. Same with Perla Bautista, Tony Santos, Ricky Belmonte, Gina Pareno. Award-winning movie stars.

Pitoy and Virgie Moreno. Renato Constantino. Atang de la Rama and Amado Hernandez. Armando Malay. Rolando Tinio. Teodoro Agoncillo. Francisco Buencamino, Jr. Vicente del Fierro. Icons of letters and the arts.

They all grew up there, these gentle and genteel people.

It was where I was born and grew up, too. I’d call it the “Gagalangin of my affections,” except it is already taken.

Continue reading “Where there is more heaven than elsewhere (paying respect to Gagalangin)”


Class pictures



As promised, we are posting two more class pictures of Batch ’78 that we recently got hold of. The first one is the II-4 class, under Mr. Calip; and the second is the III-1 class, under Mrs. Mercedes Huan. Both of these class advisers, incidentally, were our former English teachers.

The members of the III-13 class have been featured here.

May we enjoin all batchmates to send in their own class pics in earlier year levels? It would be great to save them for posterity.

Our email address is: ldhs78[at]gmail[dot]com.