And if you've too busy lately to catch up with the latest Philippine news, never fear, because we're here! In this post (and in future posts), we've curated reports of currents events that we believe you should be aware of. Some of these might be familiar to you already; others, we hope, will bring a much-needed smile to your face. So without further ado, here you have them.
Traffic Advisory for the APEC Economic Leaders Meeting 2015
As you know, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Economic Leaders' Meeting — or "APEC" for short — will be held in the Philippines next week. To be exact, it will be at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City, and will run from November 17 to 20.
But what you probably don't know is the extent to which Filipinos will accommodate events like these. Just like they did with Pope Francis early this year, the APEC meeting will coincide with a metro-wide holiday. This is to assure both safety and convenience for all 21 visiting leaders of the APEC. Looking at it another way, though, it means the city dwellers (barring workaholics) will have a much-needed weeklong break!
Putin, Widodo to skip APEC
On a more sobering note, however, it seems two leaders will not be attending the APEC after all: Russian President Vladimir Putin and Indonesian President Jokowi Widodo.
Putin will send Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in his place, while Widodo's Vice President Jusuf Kalla will do the same on behalf of the Indonesian President.
According to Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, Putin made the decision because Medvedev already planned to attend several meetings in the region. However, the decision also came after the day Philippine security officials insisted that the President be moved to a hotel near the APEC venue, since the other leaders will be staying in hotels in Makati and Pasay. Putin was originally supposed to check in a hotel along EDSA-Shaw Boulevard.
Meanwhile, Widodo's absence will be due to "things in Jakarta that need some of his attention," according to Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Laura del Rosario. Earlier, the Indonesian President also cancelled a visit to the United States due to a haze issue.
As of this writing, they're the only delegates confirmed to skip the APEC meeting.
Philippine Indie Film "Heneral Luna" Gets Lauded in the Los Angeles Times
After becoming both a critical and commercial success in the Philippines, the film "Heneral Luna" set its sights overseas. Specifically, it debuted on November 6 in 40 cities across the United States.
Judging by the review in the Los Angeles Times, "Heneral Luna" had more or less the same reception in America.
The aforementioned publication summed it up as "an overtly biased campaign" for the eponymous general, who was regarded as the most brilliant leader during the Filipino-American War, which took place near the end of the 19th century.
However, the publication went on to praise lead actor John Arcilla's performance, and remarked that director Jerrold Tarog had "an unapologetically mainstream approach to this melding of fact and dramatic conjecture."
According to the film's makers, "Heneral Luna" will be the Philippines' official entry to the "Best Foreign Language Film" category in the upcoming 2016 Academy Awards.
Filipino Seafarers Attempt World Record
To celebrate the 55th anniversary of the Associated Marine Officer's and Seamen's Union of the Philippines (AMOSUP), 2,276 seafarers formed what they hope will be considered the largest human ship wheel on the grounds of the SM Mall of Asia (MoA).
As of this writing, the Guinness Book of World Records has not yet confirmed the success of the attempt.
"Smart" Homes Soon to Be a Reality in the Philippines
The idea of "smart" homes may have been around since the early 20th century, when electricity and related technologies were advancing at a rapid pace. However, it's only recently when this technology gained footing in the Philippines.
In Twin Oaks Place, for instance, the building is built on the Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) network. The building is located in the emerging Greenfield District in Mandaluyong City.
The FTTH network will allow high-speed Internet connection, built-in quadplay services and IP phone screens for unit owners to view visitors, among other things. Also, doors have electronic locks, lights can be programmed to conserve energy, and air conditioning can be turned on even before entering each unit. Looks like your dream hi-tech home will be literally around the corner soon!
So there you have it for the latest, must-read news. With all the negative press surrounding the Philippines lately, we need reminders every now and then that the country is the beautiful land it's hyped up to be. Again, thank you for reading and checking the links, and we hope to see you next time!