Ex-journo on her hideaway and how Spotify became her best friend
It’s hard to predict the direction of a casual talk with Loren Legarda. Not considering her being an eloquent speaker, the Antique Representative and former journalist has more ways to keep the conversation going for hours even if your topic is just about the things she does to relax.
“Nature knows when the Diwata is out. Every time I’m here, the sun follows me. Wait, let me fix the blinds,” that’s what she said in the middle of our conversation one fine afternoon before Christmas.
Speaking from her residence in Makati, the lovely public servant, who is running again for senator in the 2022 elections, shared how busy her life has become serving her constituents in Antique while at the same time hopping from her home in Antique and their ancestral house is in Malabon.
But how does a busy Loren Legarda take a break? Or does she really take a time off?
She said she commune with nature. And it’s quite expected for someone who has been championing environmental causes and green development.
She enjoys the feeling of the wind blowing against her face while marveling at the beauty of mother nature. She wanders at her farm a lot while enjoying simple joys like listening to the birds chirping.
“My relaxation is in silence…listening to the wind, to the birds and the bees. It’s a cliché but that’s how I relax. Hindi man lang manuod ng Netflix, I don’t even know how to subscribe. But I have music on demand on Spotify,” the 61-year-old public servant told Manila Standard Life.
“Or sometimes I putter in the garden or sometimes I look at my fabrics then naaalala o yung mga alaga kong microenterprises. Mapapatrabaho nanaman ako,” she added in jest alluding to her friends in the weaving community who create native bags out of indigenous materials.
Music is also a big part of her idle time, that is if we can call it an idle time at all. She lists Barry Manilow, Bee Gees, Captain and Tennille, Kalapana, and Celine Dion as her usual companions.
“I love listening to ’70s and 90s music. That’s why when people ask me, who my best friends are, I tell them si Google, si Spotify, and si Wikipedia,” she said adding another set of topics to discuss.
“I love to Google, I love to research about gardens and greenhouses, and farms. Kapag wala akong alam about agriculture, I Google. But of course as a journalist. I vet. I don’t just believe or listen or ingest everything. I even check my Wikipedia,” Loren said.
Before dipping her toes into politics – a three-term senator and now a deputy speaker at the House of Representatives – Loren Legarda had a successful career as a broadcast journalist.
She began a career in journalism as a reporter for RPN. Later, she would move to ABS-CBN and became the co-anchor of the television newscast, The World Tonight with Angelo Castro, Jr.. She also became the host of the current affairs series, The Inside Story.
As a journalist, Loren earned the Gawad Cultural Center of the Philippines, Catholic Mass Media Hall of Fame, Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas Golden Dove Award, Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) from the Philippine Jaycees (1992), The Outstanding Women in the Nation’s Service (TOWNS) Award (1995), and the Benigno Aquino Award for Journalism (1995), among more than 30 awards.
‘That’s why I’m a stickler for accuracy. That’s my journalism school. You have to be accurate all the time,” she reiterated.
Loren regards her late grandfather Jose Bautista, who himself was a pillar of Philippine journalism, as her biggest influence as a newsperson.
“He valued news and whenever he would talk about news when I was a child, it would be gathering the truth and facts from events,” Loren recalled.
As an advocate of “spreading correct information,” Loren encourages people, especially netizens to check information sources.
“Anyone online is able to publish and share information, which can be manipulated to spread misinformation,” Loren said disagreeing to call misinformation fake news.
“Can we not call it fake news? Can we call it either disinformation or misinformation? Because news is news,” she asserted.
And while discussing how people spread misinformation online, Loren went back to the question about her relaxation and asked “why did we come to this? We are just talking about my relaxation?”
Goes to show that she can do so much more even on her idle time.