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World March Blog
8 October 2009

From Manila!!

Hello Friends,

We have been in Manila for two days and feel like a real Hollywood movie star!

We have gone from sleeping in a converted train carrige of a Sydney youth hostel (These Australians are a bit alternative!) to be received in full regalia by the Filipinos.

At the airport and in the days that followed we had buses escorted by two police cars in front and behind, incredible! Then we understood why. Manila is one of the most congested cities in the world and without a police escort that makes you jump the queues (even going against traffic, which is scary) you do not move!

However here the reception has been truly fantastic, more so because the week before our arrival there was a mega-typhoon here that caused a lot of damage, no internet access, Manila completely blocked, so these Filipinos have been really great!

We met the mayor who gave us the Keys to Manila.  We made a little march in the city in which among others marched none other than the Philippine army without weapons of course!  And then the great event in a sports hall, where we were given a mandala of peace complete with words for peace to take to all countries where we go… oh well give us something, a sign, to bring the rest of the world. . I feel a bit like a messenger and it feels very nice … except that the suitcase is bursting :)

And the final treat yesterday in a stadium 4 hours from Manila. 9000 students made the biggest symbol of peace in the world; students from all the schools in the province.  Watch the video because it is truly unique!

And soon we depart for Nepal, 24 hours flying through UAE, do not ask me why, but it is!!

Hugs and kisses for you all!

Francesca

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