Dining by music and lanterns

On a drizzly evening in March, we ventured out to attend an event that promised to be an enlightening experience.

Let me give you the premise: This is an excerpt from Walk This Way, a blog intended to ‘change the way you look at Manila’

In February of 1945, the City of Manila was completely destroyed in a battle between the United States Armed Forces and the Japanese Imperial Army. An estimated 120,000 people were lost and our beloved City of Manila was never the same again.’

Days before the experience, after having made reservations, we were encouraged to bring picnic baskets as we would be dining under the stars and eventually lighting lanterns.

So we trudged on to Manila, the old Manila, the center of Manila, where cobble-stone roads and quaint houses  reminiscent of the early part of the 20th century brought us back in time, if only in spirit.

After a few wrong turns and a detour, because the rains were not helping, we found the gates to La Castellana, a beautiful venue were countless dinners, wedding receptions and events such as the Transitio were held.

Transitio 1945 (18)

We dined to big band music, sampled a great spread as you can see below, with a cool bottle of red wine and great company. Carlos Celdran, of course, could do no better as the perfect host, doing a tour of Manila at the start of the program just before sundown, and making sure everybody was having a good time.

Transitio 1945 (9)

Transitio 1945 (13)

Transitio 1945 (14)

The night ended magically with the lighting of the lanterns. This in itself would have been great, it turned more exciting since the rains were dampening the fun. As soon as the stars came out, we ran to the courtyard of the Manila Cathedral like little school girls and lit up.

Transitio 1945 (20)

At first it was a struggle, but one by one the lanterns were taking flight, bring our wishes, prayers and dreams into the cool night sky.

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