Bottoms up: 100-yr-old hails beer as her elixir | Inquirer News
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Bottoms up: 100-yr-old hails beer as her elixir

By: - Correspondent / @carlagomezINQ
/ 12:39 AM April 05, 2014

MANILA Flor shows her favorite beverage during her 100th birthday celebration on March 31. She gave away cans of beer during her party. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

BACOLOD CITY—Centenarian Manila Rodriguez Flor has been repeatedly asked about her secret to longevity. She just smiles and replies, “A bottle of beer.”

Some may think it’s a joke, but indeed Manila loves her Pilsen, which she drinks with her lunch and dinner. Soda or juice? She would just shake her head at the offer. But beer? She would smile and nod.


Her daughter, Celia, a former councilor of Bacolod City, attests that her mother also eats better.


“She has been drinking beer since her early years,” Celia says. “Her parents were beer drinkers. She could drink half a case in one sitting with her sisters.”

At 100, Manila doesn’t have any maintenance medicine, is mobile and can hear well. She has a very sharp memory and has been wearing the same eyeglasses since the 1990s, Celia says.

In July last year, Manila hurt her hip bone from a bad fall. Doctors placed a steel plate in the bone.

“Her doctor said her heartbeat was stronger than his. Her brain showed minimal deterioration compared to those in their late 60s and 70s, and after three weeks, she walked again,” Celia says.

A native of Sagay City, Manila looked like a beauty queen in her younger years. Her sisters used to tease her that she was “Miss Sagay.”

After she graduated from high school, Rodolfo Flor Sr., a native of Cauayan town, asked for her hand in marriage. They were wed in 1935 and had 10 children.


Her husband worked as a deputy of former Negros Occidental Gov. Valeriano Gatuslao and was also in the logging business. She stayed at home to take care of the children.

One of her children died early, while two others were in their 50s when they passed away in 1995 and in 2005.

Her eldest son, Candido, is a lawyer. Lily is a nurse based in Michigan. Corazon is in New York. Rodolfo Jr. is a civil engineer while Marinela is a nurse. Ana May works at the Sugar Regulatory Administration while Celia is a development worker.

In 1975, Manila’s husband died of prostate cancer.

Despite the loss, she maintained a positive disposition. Aside from beer, Manila loves to play mah-jongg and smoke tobacco.

“She fights it out when she knows she is right. She told us to speak out when we think we have a reason to,” Celia says.

And she adds that her mother is vain, too: She wouldn’t leave the house without any makeup on.

On her 90th birthday in 2004, Manila told her guests: “I am inviting all of you to my 100th birthday, that is, if you are still alive.” So on March 31, the family held a party to celebrate it, four days after her actual birth date while waiting for her two grandchildren to arrive from Manila.

During her birthday party at the L’Fisher Hotel in Bacolod City, her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren were around. Even her four younger sisters and their children came.

“Unfortunately, most of her mah-jongg mates and beer drinking mates are no longer alive,” Celia says.

Her giveaways to guests? Cans of beer.

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And when asked what could be her birthday wish, she replied: “To live longer.”

TAGS: beer, beverage, Centenarian, Health, Lifestyle

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