Paths to Peace

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Arvin J. Giva

SS 550 – Intro to Soc. Sci.

March 17, 2012

A Reflection on the Street Names of Zamboanga City

Every day, I ride on my motorcycle in going to work and as well as going home. There are times that I pass through the city proper for a joy ride and unwind a little after the heavy school work. The historical landmarks of this Asia’s Latin City are just too good to see and give me an ambiance of the past.

The first route which I take is La Purisima Street then passing through the heart of the city where shopping malls can be found. Then passing through Guardia National going to Paceo del Mar then Fort Pilar. I don’t know what barangay these places belong but one thing I always notice, the street names. NS Valderosa St., Mayor Jaldon St., Pilar St., JS Alano St., Tomas Claudio and many others. I even ask colleagues of mine in Grade School if they know about the street names. But they can’t give any information to me.

So I went to library. I ask the librarian and brought me to the section where she gave me a book about the Mayors of Zamboanga. The book answered my questions. I was able to find the names which I saw as street names. Some of them were Mayors and Governors before of this city. I also discovered their contribution to our place before.

As I left the library, I felt guilt. As a native Zamboagueño, and a Sibika at Kultura teacher, I am unaware of the information behind these street names. I even wonder if postman, who are expert in finding the address of the mail, is knowledgeable about the information behind these street names.

I remember a line from the theme song of Department of Tourism entitled Biyahe Tayo which is “Huwag Maging Dayuhan sa Sariling Bayan’, which clearly mean that we should visit and be informed of the background and history of our own place.

My reflection in this experience on street names is that, I see myself as one who is ignorant of the history of my native land....
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