DAYS OF LITERATURE: Rizal City (except from 2XXX)

As a tribute to Dr. Jose Rizal, Manual to Lyf will be featuring some of my writing inspired by his life and his works. Most of them are work in progress while some ar archived from past years of writing radomly but still have this Jose Rizal feel. And I will be doing this the whole month as my contribution for the 150th birth anniversary of our National Hero. MABUHAY SI DR. JOSE RIZAL!

Rizal City
(excerpt from my "upcoming" novel 2XXX)

The lights from the Manila Tower illuminates the district together with the old Neon and LED lights of the new Vegas of the East, along with Macau and Sentosa, Rizal City is both exemplifies and denounce the teachings and values of the hero the city was named after. In the middle of man-made reclaimed island city is the controversial monument of Dr. Jose Rizal which  rivaled the original Rizal Park, or Luneta. The monument though bigger than the other is surrounded by places of sin. A Casino on the East, a floating hotel in the south which is rumored to be the haven of forbidden lovers and prostitutes. And at the west where Rizal is facing is a glass pyramid like in Louvre, which is also a controversial structure which led to a lot of conspiracy theories connecting to groups such as the masons. And finally in the north is Manila's finest sightseeing spot that is the Manila tower. Rizal City is indeed a image of a progressive as there is no sight of poverty or discrimination. Though seen as the dream city detached from Metro Manila but connected by the Great Maynilad Bridge and the LRT 8 Underwater Train. 

Originally planned to be just a simple artificial island city but investors demanded more. Skyscrapers, shopping malls such as SM Rizal City and Robinsons Nueva Intramuros, and a theme park called Manila Star Park. Air traffic is still remains at NAIA but thanks to the LRT 6 connected to LRT 8 provides easy access.

The statue of Rizal posing facing west and trying to face eastward like his stance when he was shot XXX years ago, but not a face of anger but with a odd combination of confusion and eureka. The artist defended that his work reflects Rizal when he is thinking. And unlike in Luneta, the statue stands alone and is illuminated by spotlights at night and a fountain around him. The almost extinct Rizalista group would revere the monument as a mecca and sometime perform baptism rituals on the fountain and thus forcing to impose tighter security for the park and the whole city.

Philip and Anderson drove into the elite city which requires an exclusive access using the National ID system. Philip just only got his first at age 16 and quite hesitant that it would not be accepted. 

"To get in Rizal City is a rite of passage here? "Asked Anderson while driving through Quirino Avenue to Roxas Boulevard. "Yes it is, and even with an ID, there is no assurance that we can get in, I just got this last year" Philip replied "But how can you get in? You're an American, and getting a expat ID takes time". 

"Trust me, you don't know how influential ANIMA is, and  how far we can go for the vision" Anderson proudly said. Arriving now at the access road to the Great Maynilad Bridge to the city. Coming across the checkpoint for identification and car X ray, Anderson stick out his head out the window and exclaimed "Boss, ANIMA RIZAL" The guard seems to know what Anderson mean and pulled a pen which have a scanner. Anderson then put out his palm to be scanned and it was clear and before continuing the drive he whispered something to the guard which was replied with a nod and a smile. Philip then was puzzled what Anderson said to the guard which 
made him grin. Also the fact that they were not asked any ID which is a strict requirement inside the city.

"Can you tell me what is the password?" he asked.

"It was not a password, I just told him that he is doing a great job" Anderson replied

"You're lying, it so obvious but I also can't believe that they let us in without asking for our IDs... I 
mean, none of my friends has been here because of the security but you just showed you hand ans whispered something and thats it?"he questioned.

"Well, even I am an American we look up to Rizal as one of the best intellectuals of all time along with the Greek philosphers Plato, Aristotle .... and great leaders like Gandhi and Obama,"he explained and continued to drive into the heart of the city and passed by the monument of Dr. Jose Rizal.

*2XXX is a novel by FPJ Jr about a college student and a secret agent  looking for the answers about his past and his abilities. Set in the future Philippines, showcases the changes and innovation the world has become after undetermined years.*

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