Friday, February 24, 2012

Ang Panublion / Roxas City Museum

Its across the street from the side of the city hall – where I took that shot from. What can you say about the picture? Interesting? Imposing? Intruiging? Inviting? Mausoleum? Well, it was once a water tank and the city was wise enough to have converted it into a museum. But the “beauty” stops there. Maybe its still a work in progress as many museums are. I entered…

It’s a rather small place compared to many museums around the country, but good enough – the building was a water tank in the first place. But this would still have been fantastic if the “contents” had more real value as to heritage and culture. The few things and pictures on display are nothing but a Roxas Family ‘achievement display’ not really about the town of Capiz and its beginnings. I fished my camera to snap a few photos so I could show you how wanting a museum this was BUT as I took the second photo, the caretaker came running and pushed my hand saying cameras are not allowed. Oh okay… as if...

As if there is anything that should not be or cannot be photographed. What, the bulletin-board-like collage of a few pictures and paragraphs about Mar Roxas and his roots? Sus, I can even get 10 times more information than that from the web! What, the Filipiniana gown? What, that rusting wartime helmet and water-canteen? What? What cannot be photographed? The “outstanding Capicenos”? The “carros” used on a holy week procession? The bulletin boards in the middle of the floor area?! Ho humm, here is another “museum” that just haphazardly picks whatever they have heard about big and real museums, then copy them to become their rules. Ah I don’t want to repeat what I already said in many other stories. Example: you cannot take photographs of the mounted butterflies at Jumalon Museum because the flash affects the already decaying ‘material’ of the insects’ colorful wings. Same story with the ancient artifacts at the Baclayon Church Museum. Now Panublion… what’s your reason, aber?!

The last thing you want to happen if you have a museum is to be unheard by the populace. And tourists’ taking pictures of your museum is a dead sure free advertising of your little whatever. So it should be positive. Like tourists should be happily satisfied about the reasons behind your rules. Imagine, the caretaker whacked my hand as I took that photograph as he was implementing a rule BUT could not even answer when I asked what “panublion” means! He instead pointed me to another plastic-wrapped illustration board that details the ‘schedules and rules’ of this place – which I did not see earlier because it is placed at almost floor level, the upper tip of which was just about my crotch area. Hmm, maybe they intended for that board to be read by stray cats and dogs?! Maybe! But I took a pic of it just the same, regardless of what the caretaker was saying.

Reading the “daily times and schedules” just gave me more things to ponder in disbelief than anything else. They take 1.5 to 2 hour lunch breaks! And they are closed at such days when everyone has free time to visit a museum - holidays. At least, on this aspect, they're just like all other museums in this country, right?!

Well, as I said above, the beauty of this museum stops right before you enter!


  1. This a rather old story. The Museum is now in new management and rest assured that it is now totally different from what you have seen years ago. Much improved, better service, changing exhibits, and no noon break Monday-Saturday operations.

  2. Pls drop by Ang Panublion's facebook page:

    And you can take as many photos as you want.. minus the flash :-)

  3. Hi!
    We would love to invite you to visit and see the museum once again. Ang Panublion Museum is now under the management of United Capizenos Foundation Inc - One Capiz Foundation, same foundation who facilitates the Capiztahan Festival every April of the year. We also allow visitors to take photographs without flash and we are open on holidays. If Sunday is only your free time, you can arrange a special visit ahead of time!
    Hope to see you here!
    Happy trippin'!