Wednesday, March 11, 2009

M/V Doulos returns to Manila for the final time

It's been over two years since i've seen M/V Doulos docked at the South Pier. Last year, I was saddened by news that floated about the impending retirement of the vessel. Being the oldest ocean-going ship built in 1914, there was probably good reason why this was considered. But it's going to be a sorry loss for avid bookworms like me as this is also the largest floating bookstore in the world. So imagine my joy when I heard the M/V Doulos is visiting the country again and stopping by Manila for almost a month!It was sobering to find people braving the hot sunday afternoon sun to line up for a chance to buy books at more affordable prices. truth to tell, I wasn't that keen on most of the books onboard but rather, on the mugs and other items I'd like for keepsakes. aptly called "the United Nations on water", the ship has a crew made up of Christians of different nationalities, serving as volunteers and living up to the name, "doulos," which means servant in Greek, and living out its mission of bringing knowledge, help and hope.It's just sad that this would be the last time we'll be seeing this ship as it is scheduled to be decommissioned by 2010. I just hope that there will be another vessel to replace this one to carry on its very noble mission. So whether you're in search of inexpensive books or maybe just curious about this holdover from the Titanic era (imagine that!), please feel free to drop by to browse, to talk to the friendly crew, shop for books and CDs.Info: the M/V Doulos will be docked at the South Pier from March 6-30, 2009. Bookstore hours: Tue-Sat - 10.15am-7.15pm; Sunday - 1.15-7.15pm; Monday - closed. Admission is P10; kids under 16 are free of charge if they are accompanied by an adult.


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