Dia del Libro in Makati

24 April 2016

Thank god for technology and the way it alerts us to events that might be up our alley and lets us decide whether to go or not. That was what I instantly thought of when I found out about Dia del Libro organized by Instituto Cervantes in partnership with the National Book Development Board (NBDB), Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino, WTA Architecture and Design Studio, and the Intellectual Property Office in the Philippines, among others.

Wore my fun. wire ring custom-made by Ana because I was sure it was going to be a fun Saturday!
Dia del Libro is held annually every April 23 it is an important day in the world of literature. My friend (and my boyfriend Miah's former classmate) Boj informed us that they used to hold it in Kalaw, but this year they held the event in Ayala Triangle Gardens.
In Spain where Dia del Libro started, the 23rd of April is St. George’s Day, a day when men and women exchange roses and books. April 23 is also the day two of the world’s greatest authors, Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare, died. Thus, UNESCO declared April 23 as “World Book and Copyright Day.” 
In the Philippines, April is the birth month of the great classic Filipino poet, Francisco “Balagtas” Baltazar, the man behind the epic poem Florante at Laura. To honor him, the National Commission on Culture and the Arts declared April as National Literature Month. 
I was so overwhelmed with all the things happening around me that I didn't get to take a lot of photos!

My favorite part of this event was probably the Book Stop, a pop-up library.

A project of the WTA Architecture and Design Studio, the non-profit mobile library aims to bring the books directly to the readers and encourage the development of a community of book lovers. The long-term goal, according to one of Book Stop’s architect designers, Manolo Guanzon, is to eventually set up permanent Book Stops in open public spaces. 
A three- by four-meter space, the Book Stop will be open at the Ayala Triangle for two weeks before moving to Intramuros, Manila, for another two weeks. The other places where the Book Stop will be set up are yet to be announced.
It is said that the Book Stop at the Ayala Triangle has more than 500 titles gathered from private donations. Anyone can get one book by giving another book in exchange to replenish the Book Stop’s shelves. I didn't bring any books to exchange as my unwanted pile of books are in my aunt's house in Malinta in my attempt to clear some space in my room but I keep buying new books anyway so this exercise is futile so I wasn't able to get any, but I saw a lot of vintage books that would be interesting additions to my shelves!


Attendees were also given a chance to have their shirt printed with quotations or designs from Filipino-authored books that won the 34th National Book Awards. The shirt-printing booth was paired with a henna tattoo/ face paint station where book lovers were treated to lit-inspired body art and calligraphy. We wanted to have shirts made but seeing as how we arrived at almost 2PM, the line was already too long and they couldn't accommodate us anymore. Oh well.

Other activities for the day were poetry recitals, dance performances, plays, jazz concert, rewriting of the classic book Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes by hand (to be participated in by 500 volunteers)...

... and puppet show for children.
I flitted from one booth to another, taking stock of the books available in each booth and manually computing my budget in my head.


I HAD A COPY OF THIS BOOK BEFORE!
But I lost it in a fire back in 2001 *sniff*
I didn't get it, but if I saw One Boy Too Many I would've gotten that for sure.
It was hot and humid but we made sure we were hydrated and wore weather-appropriate clothing.
My The Beat of My Own Drum long top from the Oxygen x Billboard collection paired with gray couture shorts (also from Oxygen, bought five years ago) and tie-up sandals from SM Parisian proved ideal.
I REALLY wanted to get this but I couldn't reconcile the P704 price tag (P563.70 after the 20% discount) with the paperback version. Or maybe I was just being stingy because I've already spent more than P4,000 this month on books alone. Yeah, probably the latter.
Book purchases were supposed to come with a free rose but the stalls where we bought our books from proved to be popular and ran out of roses early, but we got a Spanish poem for free.

And look, she also gave me a paper rose. ♡ 
We didn't stay long because we also went to the 26th Street Bistro after to give the gift of light, but it was such a unique date/ experience and we had a great time!

Our book haul: Trese for him and Eliza Victoria's Wounded Little Gods and Project 17 for me.
As what Miah told me yesterday, he wasn't a big book-buyer before and this is all my influence on him. (Did you know that he also bought a lot of new clothes and shoes in a span of a month? He's turning into a shopaholic!) I hope I am not being a bad influence, but I'm happy that he is dipping his toes into and sharing my interests in the same way that he has expanded my views and my world. #cheese


Happy Dia del Libro, everyone!

P.S: It's also the book birthday of Once Upon a Sticky Note today! Happy first anniversary, Nate and Tanya!

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