ELSEWHERE in the Philippines, the early 1890's was a period of comparative calm. The boisterous propaganda movement in Europe had died down, as one by one the expatriates gave up the fruitless battle for reforms. Rizal had come home to set up La Liga Filipina, only to be deported to Dapitan where he would spend the years preceding the Revolution in scientific and amorous pursuits.
In Kalookan, the calm was deceptive. Like the wind before the storm, the Katipunan was, in this little-known town, gathering strength of gale proportions, preparing to blow off the country's back three centuries of humiliation.
The Katipunan was founded in Tondo on July 7, 1892, the night following Rizal's deportation to Dapitan. It was also in Tondo that its secrecy was betrayed before it was ready to fight.
No matter what is said of Bonifacio's precipitate action in Balintawak, it was in fact preceded by four long years of secret preparation. To hide the activities of a big and ever growing society like the Katipunan for such a lenght of time required not only more than ordinary leadership but one that could inspire loyalty of the first order.
It was in Kalookan, more than in Tondo, that Bonifacio found such loyalty.
He was betrayed by a pious woman of Tondo. A naive little woman of Kalookan -made brave by love of her man and her country - would rally her townmates behind him when he had no choice but to plunge himself into unequal combat.