0530 wake up and I am off on the first launch – to a breakfast radio show at the Manila Broadcasting Corporation. The streets of Manila are filled with joggers and exercise dancers at this time of the morning. 20 minutes on the air is a good start to my day. When the interviewer asks me what people can do to help – I do not talk about changing light bulbs, I talk of revolution.
All our boat are in the water and just about to leave the marina when I return and hail over the Avon. I jump in with a group of photographers heading out to document a clean up and sampling exercise in Manila Bay. I think the yacht club is called ‘Fragrant Harbour’ possibly named after the durian fruit. The zodiacs have nets on poles and are collecting rubbish floating on the water surrounding a shanty town to the north of Manilla – the samples are frightening, some awful things wrapped up in plastic bags. It is taken ashore and audited. But Manila bay looks cleaner than I have ever seen – but that may be due to the seasonal easterly winds that are pushing the plastic out to sea.
The Solar Generation leave their coffee stand and visit the Rainbow Warrior. They leap on board with bundles of energy and excitement – photos are taken, we compress – get closer together. In the midst of my tour with them a TV station arrives and wires me for sound for a few questions on the bridge. On the forecastle I tell the story of Dave the Dolphin – one of the girls tell me that if she was younger she might believe it true. Dong returns to show his son around the boat, he joins in the pictures. It has been an honour to sail with this extraordinarily talented yet humble poet and Pinoy rock musician.
Then as the light of another day begins to fade, I wave the solar generation good bye and then jump into a boat and drive Dong and his son to shore. We make it to the closing ceremony together, to take the microphone one last time and give thanks. Just four words I have to offer in closing. “I love the Filipinos”.
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