APEC or Bust!
Photo update (above) just passed on by email buddy and Pinoy architect Teyob. Funny! click on image to enlarge.
This is no ordinary bus! (above photo from Wikipedia) It's reserved for APEC (Angry Protesters Encouraging Chaos)! No wonder the world's eye is again dilated for Australia from the 7th to the 9th of September. Yep, it's that APEC summit again with all the world's top honchos all set yet for another eyeballing and exotic indulgence. Good luck to them, I mean the world leaders. It's like wishing the English soccer team a successful tour sans the hooliganistic soccer fans who stubbornly refuse to be left out of the picture. Thus APEC brings in foreign protesters too and the trail of turmoil caused by them.
Security forces in Australia haven't been so much nervous and excited since the Sydney 2000 Olympics. Looking like mysterious androids, they will be all armed to the teeth in anticipation of terrorist threats and violent expressions of freedom of speech.
This summit on the surface seems actually good for the Australian economy, i.e. more jobs for security guys, more jobs for crane-operators who installed concrete street barriers, cyclone fences, canine-handlers, sign painters, etc. The list goes on.
Hang on, how much is my adopted country spending for the bouncers of this megaparty? You won't believe this..a whopping $169 million! What? Err..wait, let me pick up my jaws from the floor. Yes, that much and how much are they spending for food, lodging and transport? Beats me but now I know what APEC protesters are fuming about aside from lack of backpacker rooms all booked out for third world leaders!;-)
It's no picnic though, Sydneysiders are encouraged to stay home. People, they say, get off from our main thoroughfares or get stuck in traffic. Don't you dare interrupt convoys snaking through our big towns and cities. We're hosts so let the big boys play in terra nullus. Empty streets are preferred. This also reminds me of those recent Oz visitors--the American Chopper guys who had fun climbing the bridge (except Mikey;-). Only this time APEC guys shall be greeted by Australian choppers, all fitted with hi-tech gadgets to discourage troublemakers. (I took a photo of one them doing practice maneuvers over Sydney Harbour Bridge yesterday. It was father's day in Australia and those hovering metal insects worried us a bit as they were flying too low. Even Luna Park's famous face I thought was a bit terrified (photo below using a little Photoshop trick. Oi, that's me there with my boys.)
Rooty what? Rooty Hill! It's a small suburb in Sydney's west where most Filipinos have taken roots. Right smack in the middle of this quiet town is Holiday Inn where a so-called Global Filipinos Conference will take place. Some Filipinos here are excited for there was a plan to have GMA visit Rooty Hill. But to their dismay Australian security forces have rejected the plan.
Too much trouble they say, but how can not a President choose where she wants to go? Come on Madam, put your little foot down for heaven's sake! You're not in Netherlands!;-) Look at Georgie, he's bringing with him a massive entourage of 650 men and women and they can crash wherever they want. He's also bringing in lots of vehicles that will burn rubber on Sydney's roads except the ones leading to Rooty Hill. If Oz were Iraq, would Rooty be Basra? Anyway I'm glad M7 expressway will be less busy. From where I live, I'm just 7 houses away from this major esquenita, I can even see the traffic lights from my window.
Anyway while inside Luna Park (above photo) there was a skywriter who got busy for a religious group hellbent to draw attention of huge Father's Day crowd down below. Pilot finished job almost running out of steam after spelling words "Jesus=Hope". Cool, now we're not worried by this APEC summit;-)
By the way, later that evening after Luna Park we visited APO Jim Paredes in Blacktown Hospital. Did you know he almost died of dengue just a few days after arriving from Manila? Must be Australia's first dengue case. Why, even doctors can't pronounce it properly. Den-gue as in barbecue; LOL!
Lydia, his wife, had never been so worried in her life. His blood platelets level went down to 10! Real panic! 80 would have been considered very life-threatening in Manila hospitals mind you.
Jim is now out of danger. Just received an email from him saying he's home and resting. Poor guy is still very weak after that harrowing experience.
Good luck Jim. Friends and relatives did pray hard for you and we're all so glad you're much better now.
There is hope, afterall, giving another meaning to that APEC acronym..
Apo Paredes Escapes Catastrophe!