Wednesday, August 06, 2008

International AIDS Conference 2008 in Mexico

i'm in mexico right now primarily to see my mom and to help her give her presentation on the philippine experience on the topic of "travel restrictions on people living with HIV: going against the grain of human rights and public health". it's been an interesting experience as i move around people with HIV/AIDS and to see the human face of the disease. i have only attended two panel discussions, one which was my mom's and the other with malou marin of ACHIEVE on the topic "mobile populations and globalization." the panel is composed of around six people who relates their experiences whether as part of government, civil society, international organization or person living with HIV/AIDS.

the venue is in the heart of mexico at the banamex which is a big exhibition center next to a horse race track. the global village where most of the exhibits are situated is in the middle of the race track. it's also the registration area. with an expected attendance of 25,000 people, the tent was only half the size of the session halls where the main events took place.


secondly, i'm on vacation!

so far, i have only seen the city. on my first night here, i already saw the zona rosa which translated is the red light district.

we are staying in the nh centro historico hotel. as the name suggests, it's the historical center of mexico where the "templo mayor" used to be behind the palacio nacional. you can still see the ruins of the aztecs. i have yet to see it as mama doesn't have time and it's a pity to go on my own.

i was also quite touched when i kept urging my mom to go out and see some touristic sites. she said "i only came here to see you and mama mary". she was crying last night as she was so thankful that i could make it. i am so thankful too. and she keeps reminding me that she's not as young as me and even in my youth, i got so tired yesterday i slept the day off.

so, hopefully, when her conference ends, we can see some sites.


even if i'm on vacation, my email isn't. hehe. so, i still receive requests for things to do in the filipino community. this time i ask before accepting responsibilities so that it's clear. i like my life uncluttered and i'm trying not to expend myself at the cost of my health and my sanity. life is good and i want to keep it that way. simple and sweet.

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