Ferdinand Magellan is the Portuguese explorer who would land in Cebu, one of the islands comprising the archipelago that would later be known as the Philippines, “discovering” it for the king of Spain.
The world knows him as an explorer, first to circumnavigate the earth and proving that the world is round. He didn’t actually finish the expedition because he died in Mactan, Cebu. Or did he?
Antonio Pigafetta, his expedition’s chronicler, says the body was never found. What an interestering premise for an alternate historical thriller! I should write this someday.
I digress. So, Magellan was also an inventor. What here in this stolen shot looks like a kettle with a fancy ceramic handlebar and cover holder is actually the world’s first portalet prototype.
Yes, that is a portable toilet, created by the “discoverer” of the Philippines. Could he have made it on his way to our shores? I forget how many expeditions he took ever. Maybe the voyage to Asia was his first and, you know, it’s hard to hold it in the middle of the seas.
I now find it ironic that we are a country with a ubiquitous “Bawal umihi dito” on public walls.
I did say stolen shot, because taking photos is forbidden inside the Metropolitan Museum of Manila, where I went to check out the Philippine maps exhibit. I apologise but I was so awed by this trivia. I hope if ever they stumble upon this post that they do not ask me to remove the photo.