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Loren Legarda’s three options

By Ronald Constantino

RETIRING BUT – By 2019, Loren Legarda will be retiring as senator, having served for two consecutive terms (12 years). But it does not mean she’s really retiring from public service…or from leading a fruitful private life.

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At a recent gathering of Loren’s media friends, she enumerated three options.

1. Accept a cabinet post (Department of Social Welfare and Development). Or co-chair with President Duterte the Climate Change Commission.

2. Run for Congresswoman of Antique, as urged by her “kababayan.” Loren traces her roots to Antique where a great grandfather served as governor decades back.

3. Take a break from government service and have more time to relax, to smell the flowers. Have a lovelife, perhaps?

Loren’s single.

She asked the opinion of her guests and they were one in saying: Accept the DSWD post.

FRIENDS, FRIENDS, FRIENDS – What a lovely time (lunch at Gloria Maris in Greenhills) we spent to celebrate her 58th birthday. Of course, Mother Lily (Monteverde) was around, an ardent Loren friend and supporter from way back. The Regal producer promised to help Loren if and when she becomes DSWD secretary. With Mother Lily were daughter Roselle and granddaughter Brigitte (taking up medicine in Australia).

Media friends in attendance were Ricky Lo, Lolit Solis, Nestor Cuartero, Mario Dumaual, Aster Amoyo, Jojo Gabinete, Cris Belen, Shirley Pizarro, and this columnist.

Aster told Loren the kamagong saplings she gave her 10 years ago are now full grown trees. Bro. Nestor seconded Aster, saying the trees she gave him are now bearing fruits. Well, the kamias seedling from Loren planted in front of our house is now heavy with fruits, given free to neighbors and passersby.

Ricky mentioned marriage as a possibility when she’s no longer senator in 2019, “Para naman mas colorful ang buhay mo.” To which naughty Lolit asked: “bakit Loren, may L ka pa ba?”

Loren replied, “Of course Lolit, dalawa ang L ko” (meaning Loren and Legarda).

COVER GIRL – Senator Legarda came out on the covers of two magazines, Panorama (Sunday supplement of Manila Bulletin) and People Asia, both giving justice to Loren’s beautiful face, “walang retoke.”

The Panorama piece wrote how Loren is “singlehandedly steering the direction of Philippine arts and culture.”

Indeed, as senator and media practitioner, Loren is a crusader for the preservation and development of Filipino culture, working for the establishment of the country’s very first Department of Culture.

Loren is perhaps the most hardworking senator, also focused on ecology, education, health, women, and children.