PH: National Museum of Natural History

Last month, I celebrated my birthday and I decided to finally check out the National Museum of Natural History. It is one of the three national museums found in Luneta Park, and its doors only opened last May 18 after a major renovation.

Back to travel posts! Last month, I celebrated my birthday and I decided to finally check out the NATIONAL MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY. It is one of the three national museums found in Luneta Park, and its doors only opened last May 18 after a major renovation.

We were expecting the crowd to be just small but lo and behold, there was a field trip even if it was on a Saturday. Also, the free entrance may have enticed more citizens to visit the place so there was a looooong line when we arrived before lunch. (Quick amusing story — a guy asked me about the long wait in line… and turned out that the lady with her is my colleague from our NCL office. Hello Ila!)

If you’re bringing a bag with you, take note that bags bigger than the size of a short bond paper is required to be deposited in their baggage counter.

Upon entering the museum, you will immediately see this iconic DNA Tree of Life structure in the courtyard. It houses an elevator which takes you directly from ground floor to 5th floor and vice-versa.

 

Before I continue with telling what you can see inside the museum, I was lucky enough that in the conference I attended last Sept 13, the organizer invited Architect Dominic Galicia and he gave a talk on “Reinventing the Museum Experience”.

During the whole talk, you can feel his passion for his craft. Some of the things he shared is how they had to search and see the old blueprints such as Toledo “drawings” dating back to 1930s. Even if part of the building may be old or damaged, he firmly believes that it can be reborn. He also mentioned how he wants to be faithful to the story that is why he wants to know the background of the building/s to be renovated.

He suggested to us to do the processional route of taking the elevator all the way to 5th floor then from there, visit each exhibit and go down each level until you return to ground floor… And that’s what my friends and I did!

 

All 5th floor exhibits were still under construction, but pretty interesting because these will be about biodiversity, geology, and life through time. We went down to 4th floor which showcased different types of forests in PH as well as the types of animals that one can find there.

 

 

 

I think it was on the 4th floor where we encountered these familiar names from one of our high school classes:

After going down the ramp that led us to 3rd floor, couldn’t help but capture these awesome details by the arch and one of the front doors of the museum:

In the same corridor where I took the photos above, Tomas Bernardo’s orchid paintings were mounted as a gallery.

A common orchid found throughout PH

 

Theme for 3rd floor seems to be aquatic / marine life — mangroves, beaches, life thousands of meters under the sea (or ocean).

 

Collared Kingfisher

Crown of Thorns — sea star with pungent, poisonous thorns

 

 

When we returned to the courtyard area, near the ramp, we noticed recreation of dinosaur bones!

One of the highlights for us is seeing the skeleton of Lolong, the world’s largest crocodile in captivity.

 

When we finished touring the last floor, we headed for lunch at Bugis Singapore Street Food. Sharing the food pics I took before closing this entry:

 

Aaand, that’s it. A geeky way to celebrate my birthday but I had fun anyway. Cheers to my late 20s time! 🙂

Mole Removal Procedure

This is not travel related but I figured that it might be helpful to others who are looking into mole removal procedures in PH, especially in Metro Manila. I searched for online forums regarding this topic but most are dated late 2000s to early 2010s, and did not mention any recommended doctor to do the procedure.

This is not travel related but I figured that it might be helpful to others who are looking into mole removal procedures in PH, especially in Metro Manila. I searched for online forums regarding this topic but most are dated late 2000s to early 2010s, and did not mention any recommended doctor to do the procedure.

In 2014, my mole on the lower lip line area was still at its original dot size, but fast forward to 2016, I noticed it getting bigger. Even my family noticed it so I decided to go to two different dermatologists accredited by my HMO. They had conflicting recommendations as Doctor A recommended shaving the mole while Doctor B wants me to undergo surgery (local anaesthesia). It didn’t really bother me at that time so I didn’t proceed with removing it.

And now come this year, I noticed that it significantly got bigger and now bulging at the lower lip line. So I did a new round of research and I found a reputable derma clinic in Makati. Doctor C recommended surgery but told me that my lower lip line will be altered — 100% chance. I paid the 800-pesos consultation fee and asked some more follow up questions via SMS, including if she had previous experience with same case as mine. That question was dodged… so I never came back.

I decided to ask our new family doctor for a reco on dermatologist. She gave me Got Doc Bib’s contact (Dr. Genevieve De Guzman of CHI Skin and Laser Clinic). So I went there and gave her the whole history of my journey. She said that my lower lip line will definitely be altered BUT if I go to a cosmetic surgeon, that concern should not be an issue. She recommended Doc Brian Ang and reassured me that all patients she referred to him were happy with the results of their procedure.

That same week, I visited Doc Brian in his Cardinal Santos Medical Center clinic. He took a quick look on my mole after I shared all details and then told me that I didn’t have to worry with my lower lip line. I felt 100% confident with him so we chose a date for the procedure right away.

On the day of the procedure, no tedious preparation. I just brought myself and the Philhealth docs required to waive OR fees.

When Doc Brian arrived, we went inside one of the OR rooms. The nurse assisting him told me that it will be a very quick procedure — about 10 minutes or less.

My eyes and nose were covered with a thick cloth so that I won’t get “blinded” by the bright lights used during the procedure. Doc Brian started with injecting anaesthesia in my lips. I remember feeling 3 pricks then my lips started to numb (and feel super thick haha). This was the only painful part in the whole procedure, but the pain level is bearable. Take note that surface of the lips are thin hence more sensitive to pressure and pain.

Indeed it was quick because after what felt like 10 minutes (or even less), I could feel that Doc Brian was already stitching the wound. After putting a bandage on my lower lip, Doc Brian told me that he was successful in removing the mole so there is zero chance for it to come back. But he recommended to still have it undergo biopsy just to confirm his assessment that it is non-cancerous.

 

A week after, I went back to his clinic so that he can remove the remaining stitches. He also informed me that the biopsy declared the mole to be non-cancerous and completely removed. He prescribed a tube of Dermatix for so that the scarring will be reduced and the procedure area will be softer.

Now, almost 4 months has passed since the my mole was removed so here’s a before-and-after illustration. 🙂

 

 

Hope this post is helpful to those who are looking into mole removal. 🙂