Monday, January 31, 2011
Image: Mother Dearest and I with my newly birthed baby brother.
As a birthday present to my Mother this year I was supposed to take her to Hong Kong. Certain circumstances have changed those plans, so we are spending her birthday on opposite ends of the world. Lame.
As compensation, I will share a little limerick she's passed down to me from my grandfather. It's pretty awesome.
Bakit malaki ang galit ni Bayag kay Uten?
Araw gabi'y magkasama, ayaw papasukin.
Sumagot si malditang Tilin,
Diyan ka na Bayag, magpa-bitin-bitin.
Sunday, January 30, 2011
Image: Moab, Utah. One of my photos chosen by the DIWYY ladies for their site.
Check out this travel site, Do It While You're Young, where a couple of my photos have been chosen to be featured as photo of the week. The site itself is geared towards young women (18-35), but their Resource Center is awesome regardless of whether you are a girl or a boy, young or old.
The ladies behind this site definitely know their stuff. They cover everything from teaching abroad to volunteering abroad to a site dedicated to photography as a form of diplomacy. The pictures for peace thing is true. I promise. The site is called Dog Meets World.
Check out their site if you're planning a trip. Check them out even if you aren't planning a trip, just to see what other travelers are up to these days. Pretty interesting stuff.
Friday, January 28, 2011
Image: A fishing boat somewhere in the demilitarized zone of Subic, Philippines.
Again, I haven't posted in a while. The following are a few of the reasons why:
- Someone plugged a 110V adapter into a 220V outlet, causing the modem to blow out. I want to say that it was liberating to be deprived of internet access, but it wasn't. It was mostly just annoying.
- Had to fulfill the duties of a best man at a wedding. I had no idea what I was doing, plus, I had to give a little toast/speech in Tagalog. This took quite a few brain cells. Beautiful ceremony.
- Scheming up a successful financial empire. Hopefully I will be a rich motherfucker soon and I can do whatever I want. Meaning, funding this insane, transient soul of mine. Also, cupcakes. Lots of cupcakes.
- Selling cigarettes to children. Calm down, they buy them for their parents. I hope.
- Trying to find a way to get to Singapore, which it turns out is pretty hard to do. At least for me. I blame island time. And rap.
- Making ice which it turns out I also find pretty difficult to do.
- Plucking duck feathers.
- Training for a marathon, which is most likely killing my lungs with all this third world smog.
- I recently discovered that I have relatives in Australia. Naturally, this spawned a few days of daydreaming of Sydney and Perth and all the marsupials in between.
- Poaching iguana eggs. Poaching as in boiling in hot water, not illegally hunting. At least, I don't think it's illegal to hunt iguana eggs.
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
I am very excited to present the very first installment of Wanderlust Wednesdays! Cue trumpet overture.
Kendall is one of the best friends anyone could ask for and we have traveled extensively together. We were roommates for just the first semester our freshman year in university and we have stayed buds ever since. I remember walking into the dorm at around 3AM (architecture students tend to keep strange schedules) nearly tripping on Kendall as he was sitting cross-legged on the floor fashioning a flag out of beer bottle caps. Like I said, one of the best friends anyone could ask for.
Saturday, January 1, 2011
Image: Lighting up the sky with colored fires for a prosperous new year.
Due to time zones I was fortunate enough to be one of the first in the world to kick off the new year. Really, I just find the whole concept of time zones mind-bogglingly awesome. Sometimes a little scary.
Anywho, as the previous year comes to an end and a new one begins, we are forced into a little introspection on the lives that we lead. Traveling and writing full-time, all I do is introspectize (adding wordsmithery to my long list of skills), so I don't think this post will be about self-reflection because frankly, this whole soul-searching thing is starting to get old. Nor will I be sharing my New Year's Resolutions, because well, most of them are just inappropriate. Rather, I think I will finally answer a very common question that I always try to avoid but ceaselessly gets thrown at me. Or, at least I will attempt to shed some light on aforementioned question.
I am going into my fourth month of living here in the Philippines and since my very first day here, everyone has been asking me how it is. How everything is. I never know where to begin. The Philippines is such a complicated country filled with complicated people doing complicated things. How do I distill a description of a place that makes me laugh and cry and love and hate all within one breath? How do I show you the moments that turn my outstretched arms into fists and back again? It's like asking me to fit forever in brevity. It's really fucking hard.
I have been reading a lot of Philippine literature and I have come across a writer who has so eloquently put into words the way in which my heart beats for this country and its people. I would like to share his words with you in an attempt to help you understand how everything is.
From Bienvenido Santos' The Miracle:
Disillusion has become our daily fare; betrayal a commonplace. A drought is come upon the land, the rivers of our beings are dry, the wells of our hearts are empty, and there is no sign of rain, only a dry wind in the cruel months. So we seek the flimsiest excuse to proclaim a miracle, a temporary distraction from the weariness and the dust; and a hope above the shame and the agony that lie all around us. We hold on to that hope that this, indeed, is the miracle at last, the promised glory and the surcease, the balm to wounds, the cure to festering flesh. We keep on holding to that faith and clinging to it, desperately, until the petals are proven to be just ordinary petals and the visions, mere hallucinations of a wandering mind. We turn away, but not too defeated to proclaim another miracle and still another.