24 (Fri) August 2018
at Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila
-Pasay, Manila, Philippines-
It is upon us: the Fourth Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Parliamentarian Forum on Global Health – Thursday to Friday. Enhancing the Role of Parliamentarians in Securing Sustainable Financing and Strengthening Legal Frameworks for Universal Health Coverage. HLE (Health Law & Ethics) trusted yet again with organizing the high-level, high-profile, high-stakes event (see most recently 8.232 Sukiyaki) – so we (KH + KF) must be doing things right. It could make us or break us this year, being in Manila, including the first day at WPRO, all eyes on us.
I think it made us.
On Day Two, we arranged for a field visit to the Province of Bataan to highlight local governance for health promotion and local service delivery networks.
We also framed lunch as a demonstration of healthy diet and responsible consumption, also to emphasize the importance of hand-washing.
The setup was a modified boodle fight. Based on my prior experience (see 9.181 Mapa Tofu), our esteemed parliamentarians were provided with utensils and napkins from the outset.
Not easy to make a healthy meal out of Filipino food – doubters rolled their eyed and declared that I was doomed to fail – but I devised a simple menu comprising baked salmon with mango salsa, grilled chicken with soy glaze, steamed vegetables, steamed brown rice, fresh mangoes and papayas, fresh coconut juice and water. The only iffy bits were the shrimp paste – high in salt, but the meal needed a bit of flavor – and the lechon – actually not so bad if sticking to the lean cuts.
Back in Manila for dinner. Alas, an otherwise unremarkable hotel buffet, but hopefully the lunch made up for it – at least in character.