During the early part of his exile in Dapitan, Rizal lived at the commandant’s residence. With his prize from the Manila Lottery and his earnings as a farmer and a merchant, he bought a piece of land near the shore of Talisay near Dapitan. On this land, he built three houses- all made of bamboo, wood, and nipa. The first house which was square in shape was his home. The second house was the living quarters of his pupils. And the third house was the barn where he kept his chickens. The second house had eight sides, while the third had six sides.
In a latter to his friend, Ferdinand Blumentritt, on December 19, 1893, Rizal described his peaceful life in Dapitan.
"I shall tell you how we lived here. I have three houses-one square, another hexagonal, and the third octagonal. All these houses are made of bamboo, wood, and nipa. I live in the square house, together with my mother, my sister, Trinidad, and my nephew. In the octagonal house live some young boys who are my pupils. The hexagonal house is my barn where I keep my chickens.
"From my house, I hear the murmur of a clear brook which comes from the high rocks. I see the seashore where I keep two boats, which are called barotos here.
"I have many fruit trees, such as mangoes, lanzones, guayabanos, baluno, nangka, etc. I have rabbits, dogs, cats, and other animals.
"I rise early in the morning-at five-visit my plants, feed the chickens, awaken my people, and prepare our breakfast. At half-past seven, we eat our breakfast, which consists of tea, bread, cheese, sweets, and other things.
"After breakfast, I treat the poor patients who come to my house. Then I dress and go to Dapitan in my baroto. I am busy the whole morning, attending to my patients in town.
"At noon, I return home to Talisay for lunch. Then, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., I am busy as a teacher. I teach the young boys.
"I spend the rest of the afternoon in farming. My pupils help me in watering the plants, pruning the fruits, and planting many kinds of trees. We stop at 6:00 p.m. for the Angelus
"I spend the night reading and writing."
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U.S. President Bush, center, is accompanied by Mayor Lito Atienza, during a wreath laying ceremony at Rizal Monument in Manila, the Philippines, Saturday, Oct. 18, 2003. President Bush will address the National Congress and meet with Philippines President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo before continuing with his Asia tour. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) read more
Philippine Marine honor guards stand at attention while US President George W. Bush pays his respects in front of the monument of Philippine national hero Jose Rizal during a wreath laying ceremony in Manila (AFP/Jay Directo) read more
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