Category Archives: GOLDE LYONN

GOLDE LYONN: Davao Scenes – Rizal Park


OLD RIZAL PARK 2018… This time today, you will no longer recognize the new Rizal Park circa 2021. Three years ago, you can still sit around those concrete benches and flocks of doves will fly to you, asking for bread crumbs. Now they’re all gone when the Pandemic came and the Renovation came to remodel Rizal Park. After months of continuous 24-hour work on the park renovation, you won’t recognize it anymore. (Will post the new pictures here next week). There’s now a huge white roof over the park facing the small stage where public events were held in the past…. Even Dr Jose Rizal statue has a roof over his head…..

GOLDE LYONN: Davao Scenes – UCCP Church


If you’re a longtime member or church goer at Davao United Church of Christ of the Philippines (UCCP) church at corner Bonifacio and Legaspi streets, you’ll be amazed, naturally, at this beautifully-designed edifice.

Last week, I saw a FB picture of the church interior during this pandemic and was taken aback to see there were no more pews– those long benches– inside the church.

Then I realized church services or mass of all churches had been forbidden by the quarantine laws of the govt’s National Emergency…

Although other churches opened their doors to Sunday services with very limited seats, it seemed UCCP has adjusted well to the regular ONLINE church services every Sunday.

Even their church choir singing is being done on Zoom online.

As a regular choir member for 30 years, I wasn’t able to join this time because I can’t adjust to the digital way of singing alone on a phone camera— and later blend my Bass voice with my fellow singers………

To be frankly honest, I really missed the good old days when our UCCP church was an old rundown building, where we had yearly Choir Concerts every Holy Week and Christmas time singing George Handel’s “Messiah” under the baton of the late Paco Aseoche….

I also missed the old church hymns we sang, that were composed by Mozart, Beethoven and other famous composers…… All of these are gone now as new younger singers and younger choir directors no longer feel the soul of the old classical music of the old masters….

GOLDE LYONN: Davao Scenes – UM Bolton Street


If you’re a longtime Davao resident, you would be familiar with this street corner of Bolton and Bonifacio streets. This was my “home” in my college years of 1960s.

At right, you know that’s the six-storey Research Tower Building, the “tallest” building during those early years. Shown left is part of the old Gaisano building which closed in early 2000, I think. Good news is– it’s now under renovation and soon you’ll see a new modern Gaisano mall right in front of UM.

And beside Gaisano in the good old days, was the UM Broadcasting Network (UMBN) building which later housed Landbank—-which closed lately to move to a better place…….

Past memories of Landbank and UMBN—they were the first buildings to be attacked by UM student rioters in the early 70s, hurling molotov bombs (coke bottles with gasoline) that exploded later into a city-wide student riot, long before Manila started their own student riots,…..

Anyway, back to this picture : Bolton and Bonifacio streets were both disintegrating into ruts and pothole for years even after occasional asphalting…. Now, finally, you’ll see the CONCRETING of both streets. Have you seen this area lately?

GOLDE LYONN – Davao Scenes – New Davao Museum


If you happen to pass by Palma Gil street, you will see two new buildings to your right (if you’re coming from Ponciano) — first, the newly-finished Davao Tourism building just beside the road— and second, the new Davao Museum building, still under construction, just behind the new tourism building.

At first glance, the building looks like the outer skin of a Durian fruit, with its huge protruding spikes—or thorns? I don’t know whether I should be excited about this new museum building—since I was never excited anyway about the old museum at corner Magallanes Claveria sts (Pichon-CM Recto)…. I’m not so sure whether this new Davao museum will also show regular art exhibits of Davao art exhibits of Davao artists and their works. But to what kind of art that is, I don’t know….

GOLDE LYONN: Exciting Times for Davao City

After almost two years cooped up inside our apartment, following the “Stay Home” advice of city hall to avoid Covid infection, I’m getting used to this “house arrest” and the daily wearing of a surgical mask and face shield whenever I need to go out for groceries and supplies.

But every time I go out for occasional “long walks”— to keep physically fit — I can see the gradual transformation of Davao City into a modern city.

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If you have the chance to visit Claveria, you will no longer see those ugly electric posts with overhanging ugly “spaghetti”black wires.

They are ALL GONE…. All the electric wires were buried underground, a project that took more than a year to finish. Inner streets like Rizal, San Pedro, Barrio Obrero, Claveria, etc are all being bulldozed and turned into CONCRETE streets all over the city, can you believe that ?

You will be pleasantly surprised by what you will “discover’ what’s happening to this city. Claveria now looks almost like Ayala avenue in Makati with no electric posts.

With more new condos rising along this major Davao street, this will look like Ayala avenue by the end of 2022.

Modern high rise buildings can be seen rising like mushrooms along the widened JP Laurel Avenue at Bajada from Gaisano Mall all the way to Abreeza Ayala Mall— the changing Davao landscape will surprise visitors who knew Davao all these years… This will be topped by the start of construction of railways and terminal stations by next month at Carmen, Davao del Norte— the Davao Railway project that will start from Tagum connecting Carmen all the way to Digos, passing by Davao City near the Diversion Road.

Work continues on underground cable project - SUNSTAR

For people in their 70s like me, it’s amazing that this transformation of Davao into a big modern city is HAPPENING RIGHT NOW while we’re still alive and kicking.

We can all see all these happening before our eyes amidst this pandemic which is expected to start waning down by middle of next year….. All our children who are in college now, will benefit from the transformation of our city and the whole country by next year and the years to come.

These are exciting times for Davao.

These are exciting times for the Philippines….