Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Also, I missed the episode number 80 - yung umalis si Innocencia sa bahay ni Marimar because she got caught conniving with Sergio, sneaking Cruzita out to meet her father against Marimar's orders. Kasi, nasa Abu Dhabi kami - super pila and watched Eat Bulaga at the national theater - naku separate post on our ordeal/adventure. Watch this space!
If anyone can email me a copy of the episode, I'll create a blog on it - firstname.lastname@example.org
More Marimar recaps soon!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Marimar Episode 53 - The one where Sergio Meets Bella
Bella greets Leonor warmly. Cruzita tells everyone that her mom is beautiful and she is beautiful like her mom. Marimar exclaims, "Well, that's my baby" and everyone is happy to welcome the new arrivals. They all go inside the house. Fulgoso arrives complete with studded leather paw bracelets and a new accent, "Hey Yo! Wazzup?" Inay Leonor exclaims, "Ang guwapo ni Fulgoso!"
Angelika arrives at Villa Santibanez and the staff welcome her at the main entrance. Monica kisses her friend and asks, "Kumusta ka na? Nagputa ka ba sa Statue of Liberty?" (How are you? Did you go to the Statue of Liberty?)
Angelika replies in her usual sharp tone, "Alam mo Monica, nakakatuwa ka talaga, kasi hanggang ngayon, tanga ka pa rin. Nasa New York and Statue of Liberty. Sa Paris ako galing!" (You know Monica, you are so amusing. Until now, you are such an idiot. The Statue of Liberty's in New York city, I came from Paris!)
Monica changes the subject and asks about Renato. Immediately Angelika's face turns somber.
Antonio is in the office chatting on the phone with someone. Sergio walks in and he cuts his conversation. Sergio teases him whether he'd been talking to Georgia. Antonio tells him Georgia is old news, this is another lady. Sergio couldn't quite believe how quickly his friend changes from one relationship to another and asks him whether he's serious or not. Antonio tells him he's just a single guy enjoying himself which is quite normal. Sergio cautions him to be careful, "Baka mapikot ka." (Get involved in a shot-gun wedding.) Antonio replies he is quite careful. He further suggests introducing Sergio to a couple of his model friends. Sergio reminds him that he's a married man. Antonio cuts him and tells him that he is aware that his friend is married, in fact he's been saying that for four years.
"Four years, four months, eight days..." Sergio sighs, obviously aware of how long it has been since he and Marimar had been apart.
Angelika is now in serious, woman-in-grave-suffering-mode and replies to everyone, "Parating na." He's coming. An ambulance arrives and Renato in a straight-jacket is escorted outside the van. He appears crazy telling the medics that he doesn't want to be there.
We see a new character in the story (Marvin Agustin). He seems suave, confident and successful as he arrives at a board meeting. The smooth-talker sits and waits along with the others for the arrival of Gustavo Aldama's heiress.
Renato is indeed crazy and Angelika instructs her staff to put him inside and give him his medication so he remains calm. She tells the crowd of staff and friends that Renato had been quite stressed when they left for Paris. It has gotten worse and now he is completely lunatic. She continues to emote that she has done everything she can for him, even consulted specialists in Paris. Nicandro comments, "Grabe naman ang nangyari. Kawawa naman pala si Sir Renato."
The slick board member appears to be getting impatient from waiting. He inquires, "Sino ba yang Bella Aldama na iyan? 2 p.m. na! Darating pa ba?" (Who is this Bella Aldama? It's two p.m.! Is she still coming?) Just then, Bella arrives. She immediately quites the board by telling them straight and particularly addressing the young maverick, "Kung nagmamadali kayong umalis, hindi ko kayo pipigilan. Bukas ang pinto para sa inyo. You may leave anytime you want." (If you want to leave, I cannot stop you. The door is open.) Despite the invitation, the young man indicates with a smile that he wants to stay.
Antonio is watching some staff fix a vehicle and does some improvised dance steps to amuse himself. Unknown to him, Sergio is looking from a distance and is laughing at his dance moves.
The young businessman inquires, "Ikaw ba ang anak ni Gustavo Aldama?" (Are you the daughter of Gustavo Aldama?)
"The one and only." Bella confirms. She also adds, "Naisip ko na limang taon din naman kayo naghintay kaya what's wrong with an hour di ba?" (I thought you've all waited for me for the last five years, so what's wrong with an hour, right?" Seeing no other protests from the group, she calls for them to begin, "Let's start the meeting."
Sergio is now laughing loudly and Arturo notices him. He tells his gay friend that one of the reasons he likes him is his way of making him laugh. Sergio admits that he is reminded of one other person who does that to him, make him laugh...one person who makes him truly happy. It's Marimar. She is full of innocence and her face shines with every possibilities open to the world.
In another part of Manila we see a different Marimar. She is stern and her face now has an authority and stiffness that wasn't there before. The group present their proposals to her and she knows that they want the matters presented to be resolved as quickly but she tells them she wants to go over everything first before she gives her approval.
Sergio is still reminiscing life with Marimar as Arturo patiently listens. The handsome racer shares how Marimar's face is so transparent. You'd instatly know when she is happy, angry or worried. She doesn't have any pretenses.
Back at the boardroom, Marimar calls for another meeting as some protest that these proposals are given by people they know and deal with regularly. She cuts them short telling them that yes, they do know these people but she doesn't. So she has the right to get to know them and give her final approval. Having no other objection she sets the date for their next meeting and ends the current one. Getting up, she makes for the door.
Sergio admits that Marimar is like a child and he likes the fact that she was totally dependent on him. He liked to be needed by Marimar, like back then.
Rodolfo, the suave, slick, businessman runs for the door so he can get it for Bella. She tells him, "May kamay ako, kaya kong magbukas ng pinto." (I have hands, I can open doors.)
Rodolfo introduces himself, "Rodolfo San Gines." (Sangines? San Ines? Kaka-ines? San Hines? San Jines?... dunno the spelling, sorry) and adds, "But you can call me, Rodolfo."
Marimar tells him as he holds the door for her, "You can call me, Miss Aldama." and leaves.
Sergio still daydreams about his wife telling Arturo that Marimar is, "ibang-iba sa lahat ng mga babae."
Rodolfo seems to be thinking the same thing as Sergio, considering Bella as different from the many girls he dates. He invites her to a masquerade ball he himself organised for his family's business. Bella checks with her secretary and Rowena tells her that she already has something scheduled. Rodolfo is not deterred, telling her that he is going to send an invite anyway, just in case she changes her mind.
Esperanza is at home and is updating Bella about the applicants she's been interviewing all morning but is sorry that she hasn't found a suitable one to look after Cruzita. A maid comes in an ushers a new applicant, it is Corazon! When Esperanza asks her name, she replies, "Corazon Osmena."
Angelika meets the entire Villa Santibanez staff. She tells them, "Si Renato ay isa nang baliw. Pero hindi ito hadlang para lumago ang Villa Santibanez. Mula ngayon, ako na ang tatayong presidente ng Villa Santibanez. Susundin ninyo lahat ng ipag-uutos ko. Ang sinumang hindi sumunod, malalagot." (Renato is now crazy. But this is no reason why Villa Santibanez should stop from prospering. From now on, I am the president of Villa Santibanez and my word is law. Those who do not follow will suffer the consequences.)
Antonio is excited about a masquerade ball he is attending. It is a good chance to meet girls as well as promote their company. He encourages Sergio to come along with him. "Ano date mo ako? Para ka ng si Arturo!" (What, me come with you? Am I your date? Have you gone gay like Arturo?)
Esperanza and Marimar are together and the elder Aldama asks her niece how her first day at work had gone. Marimar replies that it all went well except for her high heels which she still needs a lot of getting used to. She asks for Cruzita and she finds her daughter with her new nanny, it is Corazon! Marimar is happy to see her old friend and she hugs her warmly. Corazon is surprised but happy to see Marimar doing rather well and looking as pretty as ever. Marimar asks Esperanza if she can have a private word with Corazon. Her aunt agreed and took Cruzita to play elsewhere.
Antonio perseveres in inviting Sergio to accompany him to the ball. He tells his boss that it's the perfect opportunity to introduce their company to the rich and influential people. Sergio finally gives in and agrees to come with him.
Corazon comments that Cruzita is very pretty and sweet child. Marimar tells Corazon that her name is now Bella. When Corazon asks why she changed her name, which is so much nicer than her new one, Marimar tells her she did it to forget about her past, especially, "para makalimutan ang panloloko sa akin ni Sergio." (to forget about how Sergio had made a fool of her.)
Corazon is surprised at Marimar's evident anger towards Sergio and tells her he didn't fool her. But Marimar is closed to reason. She just asks Corazon to keep this a secret from Cruzita, the identity of her father. She makes Corazon promise never to tell Cruzita about who her father is. Corazon is confused but she agrees.
Marimar and Cruzita are playing outside. Esperanza and Innocencia look on. Esperanza observes that despite her niece's education and life in America, "Di pa rin siya tuluyang nagbago." (She hasn't completely changed.) Esperanza can see that her niece's kind nature is inherent.
The game Marimar and Cruzita play is similar to Sergio and Marimar's game - covering their faces and changing it from sad to happy to goofy. Innocencia adds, "Pinatungan niya ang bihis at anyo pero pag kasama niya ang mga mahal niya sa buhay, siya pa rin si Marimar." (She added a new layer of clothing and appearances but underneath it all, when she is with her loved ones, she is still Marimar.)
Meanwhile, the girls are back in swimsuit mode in Villa Santibanez as Angelika and Monica lounge by the pool. Angelika exclaims how she missed being home. Monica is still shocked at Renato's condition and probes her friend to tell her what happened. Angelika admits she's planned it well before their left for Paris.
We flashback to a doctor Angelika met four years earlier, a Dr Castillo who had been experimenting on illicit drugs. These have been banned as they are quite lethal. Small doses can cause hallucinations and memory loss. She bribed him so she can get her hands on some of the medication he invented so she can give it to Renato and make him go crazy.
At first, she gave him small doses along with his drinks or food. Slowly she increased the dosage until he started showing signs of paranoia. He now has hallucinations and talks to 'people' only he sees. Angelika gives a triumphant smile, "Sa wakas, nagbunga na rin ang matagal kong hinintay. Wala na siya sa sarili niyang pag-iisip. Isa na siyang 'krung-krung'!" Both Angelika and Monica laugh. The former offers her friend some juice but Monica declines, telling her friend she may be the next one to go crazy. Angelika banters back that her friend can never go crazy because, "wala ka namang utak eh!" Monica agrees,"Ay oo nga ano!" and both women continue to enjoy each other's company.
Rodolfo gives Bella an invite to his masquerade ball. He tells her that his father wants very much to meet her. He is quite old, a sickly man these days, and would be happy to finally meet Bella Aldama. Bella stops him by saying, "I get it, emotional blackmail?" and Rodolfo laughs. He flirtily replies, "Whatever works" but quickly adds and in a serious manner that his family would be pleased "if Bella can come, please."
It is the masquerade ball and guests are already there and having fun. Antonio and Sergio arrive sleek in their tuxedos. Sergio immediately complains, "Wala akong kakilala dito at di mo sinabing costume party pala ito. Tingnan mo, mukha akong waiter!" (I don't know anyone here and you didn't warn me this is going to be a costume party. Look at me, I look like the waiter!)
Antonio tells him to relax. He's quite used to social events like this and was quite the party animal at some time. Sergio tells Antonio that he has changed a lot since he got married. Resigned to his fate for the evening, Sergio goes around and says, "I need a drink." Alcohol would be quite appropriate for this. A waiter passes by and he grabs a glass of wine. Antonio sees some friends and goes off to greet them leaving Sergio sulking alone.
Bella gets made-up as she gets ready for the masquerade ball. Cruzita comes to her room and asks her where she's going. She tells her daughter that she's going to a party but assures her that she'll be back as soon as possible. Cruzita asks whether she could wait up for her but Bella tells her it would be quite late. Her daughter prods if she can instead sleep in her mom's bed and to this Marimar acquieces.
Back at the ball, a lady approaches Sergio asking him whether he is the racer and the handsome man admits that it is him indeed. The woman exclaims, "I'm a big fan" and asks him why he's not wearing a mask. He blandly replies that he's got nothing to hide. She introduces herself and continue to flirts with Sergio by asking him, "Totoo ba ang saying na basta driver, sweet lover?" Sergio gets a bit irritated but smiles and tells her, "I don't know but I think you should ask my wife." The lady feels like she's been slapped, "Wife? You're married." "Yes," he confirms, "excuse me," and leaves the woman in shock.
Nicandro, Perfect and Angelika take Renato to the bodega and Nicandro ties him up in chains in his hands and feet. Angelika orders Nicandro to make sure the chains are all securely locked. Angelika and Perfecta look down on the lunatic Renato who asked Angelika for mercy. Angelika coldly replies, "Naawa ka ba sa akin noong sinasaktan mo ako? Sa wakas nakaganti na rin ako." (Did you give me mercy when you were hurting me? I've finally gotten my revenge.)
She orders the two, "Ikandado ang bodega at kahit anong gawing sigaw ng baliw kong asawa, walang papansin sa kanya." (Lock the store room and whatever racket my crazy husband is making, no one is to pay him any mind) To Renato she sweetly says, "Bye honey, be a good boy."
Sergio is quite bored at the ball and tells Antonio that he wants to leave. Antonio begs him to stay, "Diyan ka lang, wag mo kong iiwanan."
From a short distance the girl flirting with him joins her friends. They ask her whether she got his number and she pouts as she reveals that she did not, as he is already married.
Sergio avoided the crowds on the ground floor and decided to be moody and sulk upstairs where he has a good view of the ball downstairs.
Marimar arrives and waits to be announced. An usher goes off to find Rodolfo.
Rodolfo is busy greeting guests, going around, making sure everyone is having a great time. Antonio introduces himself to the host who greets their group warmly. The usher comes to tell him his guest has arrived and he follows him.
Cruzita doesn't want to sleep. She wants to wait for her mommy to return. Corazon tells her to sleep now so she won't have any eye-bags (baggy eyes). Cruzita declares she doesn't want to have eye-bags then quickly asks Corazon what they are. Corazon laughs realising Cruzita is so much like Marimar. Cruzita asks her nanny whether she knew her mommy even then and she tells her ward that she's been friends with Marimar for a long time. Cruzita lights up. The little girl asks, if she knew Marimar since then, it is possible she also knows her father. Corazon stalls and tries to evade the question telling her that it's time to sleep. But Cruzita persists that she wants to know about her daddy. Corazon advises the little girl to ask her mom instead. Cruzita shares her wish with Corazon, "Sana someday, makilala ko na ang daddy ko."
Sergio is being stalked by the same girl who introduced herself to him. Rodolfo meets Bella as she enters the ball. He sees her and exclaims, "Wow, you're beautiful. You've made my evening complete." Marimar smiles and allows Rodolfo to accompany her to the stage. She wears a mask and waits to be presented.
Rodolfo calls everyone's attention and thanks them for coming to the ball. He presents to everyone the ball's guest of honor, Miss Bella Aldama. Marimar removes her mask and so does everyone. The guests clap and Sergio is dumbstruck. He couldn't believe who he is seeing. Rodolfo and Bella get down the stage and go round the ballroom to meet the other guests. Bella smiles and shakes everyones hands. She kisses many of them in the cheeks. She freezes for a few seconds when she hears a familiar voice scream, "Marimar!" She turns and sees Sergio above the ballroom. Their eyes meet and recognition sparks. She blinks and turns away, preparing to leave. Sergio runs down the stairs and catches up with her.
Sergio, "Marimar! Anong nangyari sa iyo?"
Bella, "I'm sorry pero nagkakamali ka. I'm Bella Aldama. I'm not Marimar."
Sergio insists, "Marimar!"
Bella, "Please don't make a scene. I don't know you and again, I'm not Marimar."
Bella is conscious of the many eyes watching them. Sergio is oblivious to the crowd, his eyes only on his wife. Rodolfo intervenes. "Bella what's going on? Who's this guy ba?"
Sergio is persistent, "Ako si Sergio, ako ang asawa niya."
Apologies to those who visit my blog for regular updates. I will try to post all of them this week but do bear with me. I am swamped in Marimar madness and my notes are all over the place!
Thanks for the emails of appreciation. I too enjoy posting them for you...
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Been neglecting this blog as I got caught up with blogging about the Philippine remake of a Mexican soap, "Marimar" but I must drop a few lines about recent meanderings of my attention.
John Lloyd Cruz looks like Sam Milby
This is not a compliment! I saw him in Wowowee I think last month when he hosted the shaky game shown for a couple of days and the first thing that I said to myself seeing my "crush" is "WTF?!" He looks like a metro-sexual! So Sam Milby-ish in appearance and look at the rumours about that guy's sexual orientation eh?!
OK he's still good looking and looked very neat but hello, he's got G-A-Y spelled out all over him (not that there's anything wrong with that - Seinfeld) but well it doesn't suit him at all, IMHO.
Where's the slightly curly, scruffy, BOY-ish look? The operative word here is BOY - lalaki, man, heterosexual, male. I was just so disappointed. I mean, what the heck is Miss Liz Uy doing to the guy? Bading na bading na ang dating nya, porma and all and please stop making him diet...I want the pudgy boy-next-door, natural hair idol I love! Stop cloning him into another Piolo/Sam look-alike as it is not him. JLC if you do read my blog, I love you and have always admired you in how you tackle your roles but the fashionista look, drop it, por favor! Parang awa mo na. Kinikilabutan ako sa halip na kiligin sa iyo.
Paolo Ballesteros, Beautiful in Zaido
On the one hand, here's a guy who's been rumoured to be gay. In fact he's been getting jibes at some da-barkads in the nootime show of our life, EB, that he is one. But he is truly admirable in choosing this role in Zaido, proving many that he is man enough and comfortable in his own skin to don an almost female-ish costume.
Kagandahan sha, reminiscent of a younger Melanie Marquez...why not?! Go Paolo, you are truly exploring the limits of your acting dimensions and for that you are 100% man!
Just one question: Kailangan ba talaga ganon ang project ng voice mo sa role? Male Japanese anime characters are terribly beautiful to women-like features but keep a male speaking voice.
The Eid Al Fitr
Ramadan had passed these parts with a very quiet and laid-back month of fasting and doing good. It culminated in a 3-day holiday for Eid just last week and our home played host to friends and family who wanted to escape the noise and traffic jams of Dubai or Abu Dhabi and relax in green and provincial Al Ain. Thanks to the Hilaos: Dan, Espie, Dave, Gelo and Dean complete with diminutive yaya Ging-ging for keeping our friendship in tact despite the distance and the hectic lives we lead. Thanks to J, Jim and Tatin for coming over and spending some quality time with the family.
When all is said and done, family and true friends are the ones left stading by your side when you fall. Eid Mubarak!
Thursday, August 30, 2007
I've tried to put in the correct phrase or word, however in some cases, the semantics becomes muddled. But it is such a funny read - despite being quite long - so enjoy!.
We' ve been friends for a long time ago (for a long time). We come from the same alma mother (alma mater). Actually, our paths crossed one time on another (one time or another). But it's only now that I gave him a second look. I realized that beauty is in the eyes. (beauty is in the eyes of the beholder) The pulpbits (heartbeat?) of my heart went fast, really fast. Cute pala siya.
And then, he came over with me (came over). He said, "I hope you don't mine (mind). Can I get your number?"
Nag-worry ako. What if he doesn't give it back? He explained naman na it's so we could keep intact (keep in-touch) daw. Sabi ko, connect me if i'm wrong (correct me...) but are you asking me ouch? (out)
Nabigla siya. Sagot niya, "Aren't they obviously?! " (Isn't it obvious)
Aba! Parang siya pa ang galit! Persona ingrata!!! (persona non grata) Ang kapal niya! I cried buckles of tears. (buckets of tears)
Na-guilty yata siya. Sabi niya, isipin mo na lang na this is a blessing in the sky (blessing in disguise) . Irregardless (regardless) daw of his feelings, we'll go ouch (out) na rin.
Now, we're so in love. Mute and epidemic na ang past. (moot and endemic?) Thanks God (thank God) we swallowed our fried. (pride) Kasi, I'm 33 na and I'm running our time. (running out of time)
After 2 weeks, he plopped the question. (popped) "Will you marriage me?" (marry)
I'm in a state of shocked. (shock) Kasi mantakin mo, when it rains, it's four! (it pours)
This is true good to be true. (too good to be true) So siyempre, I said yes. Love is a many splendor. (love is a many splendored thing)
Pero nung inaayos ko na ang aming kasal, everything swell to pieces. (fell to pieces)
Nag-di-dinner kami noon nang biglang sa harap ng aming table, may babaeng humirit ng, "Well, well, well. Look do we have here." (Look who do we have here)
What the fuss! (What's the fuss) The nerd ng babaeng yon! (the nerve) She said they were still on. So I told her, whatever is that, cut me some slacks! (whatever it is, cut me some slack) I didn't want this to get our hand (get out of hand) kaya I had to sip it in the bud. (nip it in the bud) She accused me of steeling (stealing) her boyfriend. Ats if! (As if) I don't want to portrait (portray) the role of the other woman. Gosh, tell me to the marines! (tell it to the marines) I told her, "please, mine your own business!" (mind your own..) Who would we believe her anyway? (Who would believe her anyway)
Dahil it's not my problem anymore but her problem anymore, (it's not my problem anymore but her's) tumigil na rin siya ng panggugulo. Everything is coming up daisies. (coming up roses) I'm so happy. Even my boyfriend said liketwice (likewise). He's so supportive. Sabi niya, "Look at is this way. She's our of our lives." (Look at it this way; she's out of our lives)
Kaya advise ko sa inyo - take the risk. You can never can tell. (you never can tell) Just burn the bridge when you get there. (just cross the ....) Life is shorts. (Life is short) If you make a mistake, we'll just pray for the internal and external repose of your soul. I second emotion. (this is overkill!!! - more like just pray; I second the motion)
AT MAY PART TWO PA! IT'S MORE THAN ENOUGH AT IT IS! HAHAHAHA!!!
I thought Jay's ex-girlfriend was really out of our lives. But heaven only goes (...only knows) that I was wrong. Kakakasal pa lang namin nun when Jay received a uninamous text. (anonymous) "Meet me at the clinic".
I had a stinking feeling in my butt. (sinking feeling) I told him not to go. It might in danger him. (endanger) Pero sabi niya, ok lang daw because life is what we make. (...what we make of it) Tumahimik lang ako. Sabi niya, "Penny for you talks." (a penny for your thoughts) But I didn't know what to say. Beggars can't be losers. (...can't be chosers)
Isa pa, worried talaga ako na baka yung girl yun. Jay said, "Can't got your tongue" (cat got your tongue) I tried to smile at him. Kahit di ako nagsalita, actions speak louder than works, di ba? (...speaks louder than words)
Be that as is may, (...as it may) umalis pa rin siya. I was out of the loophole. (out of the loop) After a few hours, I called him on his cellphone. But my calls fell on Jeff's ears. (fell on deaf ears) Lalo akong nag-worry kasi I didn't even know Jeff. It's like, I don't know him and Adam! (...know him from Adam) Sabi na nga ba di na dapat umalis si Jay. That's what I'm talking about it. (that's what I'm talking about)
So I tried calling some friends who will help me find Jay. That's what friends are four (...are for) naman di ba? But I just faced a blank mall. (...a blank wall) I had to do this alone. Nag-taxi na lang ako. Pero ang mahal na pala ng plug down rate. (flagged-down)
When I got to the clinic, the security was really buffed up. Di basta-basta makakapasok. So I said, 'I beg your cordon. (...your pardon) I'm patient. (I'm a patient? I'm impatient?) It's my favorite virtue nga e.' Nagduda yata yung isang guard. Hinawakan ako sa arm. The nerd! (the nerve, unless he really is a nerd!) I shouted, 'Don't touch me not!' (Don't touch me) Buti na lang the other guards were nice and said, 'Come on, let's join us.' (Come join us)
When I went inside, parang I've been there, done there. (...been there, done that) Nung walang nakatingin, nag-explore ako. Nakarating ako sa top floor and I had a bird's IQ (bird's eye view) of the clinic. I could not explain it but I was drawn to a room on the floor. Siguro Divine Intermission na yun. (divine intervention) Parang may narinig akong umuungol. I was thorn. (torn) Di ko alam kung aalis ba ako o papasukin ko.
It made me stick in the stomach (sick in....) to think that Jay and his ex-girlfriend were there.I tried to tell myself to slower my expectations. (lower my...) But to tell with it! (to hell...) I had to strike while the iron is not. (...while the iron is hot) I had to hear the truth from the corpse's mouth. (..the horse's mouth) I barraged in. (barged) O my gas! (My Gosh) Si Jay, naka-strap sa operating table, parang genie pig (guinea...) sa isang nakakatakot na experiment. He was on the cutting edge. (on the brink of being cut? the edge of the cutting table?) He was bleeding. At ang doctor na nagpapahirap sa kanya, ang ex-girlfriend niya at ang bago nitong boyfriend, ang nurse na si Walter. Doon ko napatunayang blood is thicker than Walter. (...thicker than water)
Guess watch? (what) Di ko alam kung paano ko nagawa pero I was able to search and rescue Jay. (this is correct but sounds like a military op) Siguro adrenaline brush (adrenaline rush) na yun. Now, he's recovering. Nag-sorry siya na hindi siya nakinig sa akin. I know it's a better pill to swallow your pride so it's forgive and forget me
not. All swell that end swell. I know we should kiss and put on makeup. (there's just too many here: it's a bitter pill to swallow; better swallow your pride; forgive and forget; all's well that ends well; kiss and makeup)
Ang ex-girlfriend naman niya at si Walter, nakakulong na. Detention is really better than cure. So the moral of the lesson is: if symptoms persist, insult your doctor. (prevention is better than the cure; if symptoms persist, consult your doctor)
Better read up on English expressions and don't be caught saying something similar to the above!
Monday, July 16, 2007
But here are my comments to these shows that I watch.
1. Mas realistic ang dialogues ng Kapuso kesa ng Kapamilya. Masyadong madrama na ang mga linya like in MSKM na hindi naman ganyan mag-usap ang mga normal na tao. Pati sina Piolo at Claudine sa Walang Kapalit, sobrang OA mag-usap...parang hindi natural. Halatang acting...may minemoryang script. Sa kapuso, natural ang dating mga mga dialog, kahit pa sinabing drama si Bakekang, makaka-relate ka sa dialogues nila, as in may puso ang dating, hindi pilit.
2. Daming commercials ng ABS while GMA Pinoy TV dire-diretso. Minsan nauubos na oras ko kakahintay matapos ang napakahabang advisory ng ABS...I'm a subscriber to both here abroad. Kakainis ang haba ng commercials, parang 'mukhang pera' ang dating ng ABS kesa GMA. OO nga, mukhang maraming pera ang station pero kasi mukhang marami silang pinagkakaperahan...hmmmm, Meralco bills nyo ba tumaas kakapanood ng TV shows ng ABS? hehehehe joke joke
3. Ang tagal ng development ng story lines ng Dos kesa ng Siete. Imagine nyo na lang ang mga eksena ni Eli at Jackie, sa totoong buhay ba, ganyan kayo mag-usap ng taong mahal mo naman?! Parang pinipiga talaga bawat eksena to the point na parang tanga na ang audience...kakasubaybay sa pangyayaring alam mo naman kung saan hahantong. In fairness sa Asian Treasure, nagalit si Gabriella nang malaman nyang ang isang kilala nyang kaaway, si Socrates, ay tunay nya palang ama....but friends, it took the same episode for her to forgive and make up with the man. Eh yung sa MSKM na ubos ang isang episode halos sa sulat na binabasa ni Celine na galing kay JB? Man! OK senti at maganda yung liham pero namaaaaaaaan!!!
4. Wowowee may be doing well in ratings this time around over Eat Bulaga but I still find Willie's hosting a bit rough. Hindi nakakatawa eh. There was this episode where a child contestant had a really shrill voice. Tapos tuloy nya pa ring tini-tease ang bata. He's acting like OK na sige na, letting the child believe na hindi na nya patutugtugin yung parang basag na sound effects tapos sesenyas sha sa soundman na i-play ulit. Tama ba yon? To poke fun at the expense of a little girl, na trauma na ata yung bata. Tapos yung papasok sha at yuyuko-yuko sa camera to show what? the legs, underwear, singit of the dancers? tama ba yon? Tapos in many cases, he clearly has shown favoritisms on contestants tapos he tries to make them win over those who aren't his fave. And the prizes, mas malaki talaga binibigay ng Eat Bulaga kasi may home partner pa sila who get the same prize as the studio contestant. I find Bentong is being taken advantage of, while in Eat Bulaga ang mga side-kicks nila, in fairness umaangat ang roles. Mas masaya pa rin talaga panoorin ang EB kesa Wowowee.
5. Kakaunti nga ang talents ng GMA than ABS but that works out better for these talents who are given a variety of breaks in singing, dancing, hosting and acting - nagiging all around sila. I still think that ABS has more pa-cute celebs, more flash on the surface and nothing to offer deep down, mga 15 seconds of fame talents than Kapuso. Sa ABS kapag hindi ka bata, makinis, toned to the bone, hindi ka yata mabibigyan ng chance or second chance unless isa kang Sharon Cuneta or Dolphy...I also sense that Kapuso talents are happier, more down to earth and really genuine than the latest offings from the sarimanok network.
6. GMA shows have variety and capture Pinoy audiences without trying to be too hard at it. The KiliTV shows help us forget our worries for a while, the super heroics of Captain Barbel, Darna, Super Twins, etc. make us contine to hope for and believe while the dramas make us feel. ABS has a few shows like that too. But many appear to be too streamlined na parang super fabricated na, super made-up, hindi na talaga natural ang dating. Even the kids in Going Bulilit look too old in their acting and stage presence (projections)...wala na yung innocence ng Ang TV days!
7. I like watching both stations but somehow I end up watching more GMA than ABS. It is not because I don't like ABS, sinusubaybayan ko pa rin ang bumababang ratings na Rounin, it's just that GMA has more to offer. Enjoy ako sa mga Sine Totoo ni Howie Severino at mga documentaries at opinionated shows like the Reporter's Notebook and Palaban. Makatotohanan ang nilalarawan ng Sidetrip at educational ang 100% Pinoy. I also like At Home Ka Dito pero more kasi dahil sa featured celebrities at pagiging sweet ni Charlene. I watch Homeboy kahit na paulit-ulit lately na si Dennis Padilla ang isa sa mga guests dahil gusto kong mag-host si Boy. Just as I find the triumvirate of Janice, Gelli and Carmina refreshing and candid. Pero hindi nakakatawa ang Aalog-alog, unlike Bahay Mo Ba 'To?
8. Ang paawa effect at paiyak-iyak ni Willie will never cover up the fact that he's a failed husband and father. Joey De Leon and Vic Sotto may have several mistakes in the past but both have owned up to it, with the masa continuing to accept them for who they are. These two do not wear pretencious masks to sheild their "other" personas from the public eye. Mayabang si Joey? Aba dapat lang - he's a solid writer, artist, actor, singer, host, comedian and has proven that in the many years he's been in the business. Upstarts may have their day but only time will tell if they too can last the rigors and challenges of a daily variety gameshow.
Personal opinion lang po ito. Pansin nyo rin ba?
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
And the results are in....!
Guys Think You're Easy to Be With... But Not Easy
You're definitely a flirt - and a good one.
But you also know that you shouldn't make a move on any cute guy who passes by.
You save your seductive moves for someone who already knows the real you.
That way, your sex appeal is just part of the whole package.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
In the beginning, we noticed some strange little things like the sound of the typewriter being used upstairs when nobody was even there! My dad had converted part of the second floor into an office and he had his desk set-up with this old, bulky typewriter on the side of the table. Nobody save for my parents were ever allowed near this table and the file cabinets that held important documents. We were all scolded if we ever played near the “office” so everyone kept well away. However on some days, there would be someone typing on that enormous typewriter – when my dad was in his office, my older brothers were still in school and everyone was in the den or the living room watching TV. Being a tropical country, most home dwellers would stay on the ground floor where it is cooler. At first my grandmother suspected it to be just the cats, playing on dad’s desk. But as kids, we couldn’t imagine cats to be so clever as to type on a machine that needed quite some strength to push the keys off and make that distinct “imprinting” sound: the tap, tap, tap of a typewriter. Later on we'd hear laughter like children at play, only the kids back then were just Alvin and I and we'd be asleep when stranger childlike laughter would fill our home.
Then there is the imaginary friend that my younger brother, Alvin has. He talks to them and he described them as small, as tall as he is, and that there is more than one that he plays with. Being children, I too had an imaginary friend I named ‘Petunia’ whom I so convincingly created and pretended to be real that my brother had even inherited her. But for all her fun and laughter that she brought to us, Petunia was definitely make-believe. Unlike the new friends my brother has...they were real!
He liked playing in the bathroom that joins my parents and our bedrooms. Until now, he’s well over-30 my brother liked doing things that involved water – be it washing his car, washing dishes, cleaning the bathroom or washing his maongs (jeans). So often in the day when its summer or there’s no school to go to, he’d be up there splashing and laughing and talking to himself. Everyone thought it was just normal. Mom was more worried of him accidentally slipping or putting his head into the huge pail of water and drown than for anything else. However he started to develop huge pimple-like breakouts on his skin. Like an inverted pimple where you don’t see the ‘eye’ these lumps started to grow on his legs and arms, his chest and all over his body. My parents were desperate for a cure! We’ve been everywhere: his pediatrician (he was only about 3 or 4 years old then); Chong Hua Hospital (which is considered the best medical care in Cebu back then); even quack doctors and herbolarios (traditional medicine men or healers that uses herbs and oils). One of these herbolarios used a candle that he lets drip onto a basin of water. The shape of a small man formed. In Filipino, we call these “duendes” (fairies or elves). He suggested to perform some form of ritual to be rid of them but my parents refused, disbelieving the man. All forms of medicines and ointments have already been used on my brother at this point and my parents were desperate for a cure although, they wouldn’t want to succumb to killing a chicken and spilling its blood type of ritual, yet.
The worst of the strange events happened after Valentines’ Day in the early 80’s. My parents are members of socio-civic organisations like my dad is a member of Kiwanis Club while my mom was a member of the Cebu Jaycees. That V-day, mom held a party for her fellow Jaycees in our home. Dad also invited some Belgian guests from work and other close friends. It was a fun night and I was even allowed to join the party handing out party favours to the women and asking everyone to sign in this huge cardboard heart that served as a guestbook. Guests enjoyed the night and stayed on until the wee hours, laughing and having fun. We we’re all shocked by what we saw the very next day!
The long bar situated under the staircase was ransacked. Bottles appeared to have been melted out of shape! This was no ordinary melting as there was no sign of any burn or charring. The swinging cowboy door was pulled out of its hinges and being secured by huge bolts, it looked like only someone really strong could have done it. My parents were baffled. The last of the guests left at about 4:00 am. There was just my parents and some elder family members left who did a quick clean-up of the party leftovers and went to bed, deciding to do the rest of the cleaning the following day. We all woke up at around 9:00 am and still in pajamas, we all heard the scream of our ‘house help’ (maid) who had been up since 7:00 but had only been through the living room for the first time. She’d had breakfast and cooked breakfast for the family, she was off to the sala (living room) to clean up the rest of the previous night’s party mess when she saw the bar in this state. We all ran to her aid, thinking she’d been hurt but she just pointed at the bar and was shivering in fear.
My parents even called the police and they came, took some pictures and interviewed the adults about the night. Yet the puzzle remains unsolved. Nothing was taken, nothing was lost. No one was really hurt save for the poor wine and alcohol bottles that have been re-shaped out of their original state and the swinging door that has been pulled off its hinges.
A friend who claimed to be a “seer” of sorts explained to my mom that the duendes were upset about all the noise and ruckus of the party that they destroyed all the alcohol and wine so that people would stay sober and not make such disturbing noises. Also she added that my brother, Alvin can see them too and has been playing with them. They like him so much (being so cute and chubby back then; see our picture below...) that when at play, many of these duendes would pinch him, thus the unexplained and incurable lump-like pimple-like outbreaks on his arms and legs and chest. These duendes lived in the huge acacia tree that stands near the wall that is to our bedroom and the shared bathroom.
We haven’t really noticed it but perhaps due to a previous typhoon and heavy rainfall, the branches of the acacia tree had fallen and leaned towards the wall, and a huge branch has settled near the window of the bathroom. This had enabled to “others”, these paranormal creatures to venture into our bathroom where they met the cute Alvin and made friends. Eventually, some had ventured more and more into the house and have played with the typewriter, in the rooms upstairs and even downstairs where on a really dusty day, we’d see small footprints on furniture where the dust had seemed to settle. At first we thought they we’re the cats or dogs’ footprints but looked too human in shape and yet too small to be ever mine or my brother’s the only children in the house. These footprints were also on odd places where no human child could ever reach or even canine and feline pets would have difficulty reaching.
With this revelation, my parents have decided to move homes. Thus saying goodbye to Escario Extension, we moved to V. Luna, into a 5-door apartment where we occupied one unit and my grandmother opened a convenient store. Alvin's "pimples" misteriously just all disappeared and got miraculously cured.
More on Cebu life stories on my next blog.
Just an added thing, which may be of interest: I asked my brother how they looked like, his so-called duende friends and he described them as looking like gnomes but not fat, more like hobbits in their build. Slim, like 3 year old pre-schoolers in height, they har pointed ears, wore pointy hats and costumes like those of a gnome...but not at fat or heavy. They also looked younger, not the old bearded faces of gnomes. Below is a picture of a gnome and a hobbit - you just have to combine the bits together to get an idea of how the duendes may have looked like to my brother and why he liked playing with them in the bathroom.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Alvin went to St. Francis of Assisi, near the Redemptorist Church as a Nursery student and I went to the Colegio de la Inmaculada Concepcion in Cebu. We lived in a huge seven-bedroom house in Escario Extension that had some other “creatures” living in it too! My first hand experience into the paranormal, indeed!
I was Grade 2 under Madame Dotillos. She was a petite but stern pregnant woman who despite her size managed to keep us all in our best behaviors. I had friends named Erika, Marie Blanche Regual, Lara Briones, Frances Dawn Reynes, Judy Halili and Carmenchu Seno. There was also this little girl, a classmate of ours who had a red mole on her nose like what you’d imagine Rudolf would have. I remember her name was Ethel and she had really curly hair. She sat to my right in our class picture. I think the girl’s name who sat on my left was Carmela. I can no longer recall her surname. Among the boys I would only recall Jeffrey Manalaysay and Jonathan Alino. See our class picture below.
I remember I used to go home with Blanche in their arts and crafts souvenir store where I’d eat lunch with her and her younger siblings. Her mom runs the shop and they stayed there with her. I brought lunch with me, packed in a plastic container with a table napkin and cutleries. Sometimes, I would go to Erika’s house. I don’t know if classes extended until the afternoons or perhaps on some days we had classes till the afternoon and other days no, because one time I sneaked out of Tia Meding’s eye. Tia Meding is actually my grandmother’s cousin who was a soltera (unmarried till old age) and lived with us. She was quite a good cook and also helped in marketing and picking us kids from school. I liked testing how independent I’ve become so one time, when she was already waiting for me to collect me from school; I escaped and took the jeepney home on my own. The fare then was 35 centavos from my school to our home and it’s the same price for an 8oz bottle of Coca Cola. My ‘baon’ (cash for Recess) was 1 peso and I had packed sandwiches, fruit juices and water as well as an occasional lunch packet with me. Poor Tia Meding arrived home in breathless panic only to find me already in my home clothes and getting ready for my afternoon nap!
Grade 3 was in the same school, mostly with the same classmates and our class adviser then was Miss Fe Susaya who I will not forget because she said she used to be so insecured about her large owl-like eyes when her father told her that she is lucky to have such beautiful eyes, so she must not feel bad instead be proud of what she has. More or less I still kept the same friends with a new best friend: Maria Milagros Llarranaga who had two small brothers, Paco and Emmanuel. They lived in Cebu but holidayed in Spain where they originally came from and I remembered Mimi as this new student in a new school and befriended her. We easily got along and were inseparable in the third grade. We also had a much older classmate whose name escapes me now. She played with us but she was sort of the one who knows much about love. She’s had a boyfriend! Also she’s already had menstruation and we were all asking her all sorts of questions about that! I had my first admirer in the third grade and his family owned a guitar factory in Cebu. Our class even went there for a field trip but sadly, I had forgotten his name. Pictures of Grade III section White – in our school uniforms and our Christmas party, below:
Next blog, remember I said I had first-hand experience in the paranormal? Well details will be posted next time :-) Also more of CIC memories....
I also saw a bulletin post in Friendster asking about past teachers and so this has prompted me to travel back into my memories and recall the many mentors that have helped mould me into the learner that I am today.
Kindergarten was in Bacolod City at the St. Rose of Lima school. I’ve had several teachers from Kinder to Preparatory but the one name that stuck is Sister Lina. She was really sweet and kind to a very young me. Many of my classmates then had bladder problems, wetting their uniforms and getting all messy and whiny, but I remembered her to be just as caring to the bad ones as to the good ones – fair and stern when required, our only punishment when bad is to go to sleep.
I cannot remember any of my classmates now, except for Louie Reyes who had an older brother Bonnell Reyes and a younger sister Maria Reyes. They were our neighbors and my and my younger brother Alvin’s playmates. Since Maria and Alvin are the same age – toddlers at 2, Louie and I would pretend to play house and the two would be our children. Their mother, Tita Norie Reyes was a good friend of my mom. They moved to Connecticut after about a year and we’ve lost track of them then.
Grade school was a mix of private and public schools that also took us to another city. I studied Grade 1 in Colegio de la Inmaculada Concepcion in Mandaue City. I have forgotten all the names of my teachers in the first grade. I was more involved in watching the latest anime outing on TV like Voltes V, Candy-Candy, Ron-Ron and the Flower Angels, Mekanda Robots, Glendaizer, Daimos and their contemporaries. But one teacher really stuck – despite me forgetting her name. I got sick with measles during the fourth grading period and the final exams. Of course being only in the first grade, this was really no big deal. I could still move on to the second grade despite missing the finals. However I was in the running for the honor students in my class and so my teacher took all my exams to our home and I had the chance to take them and keep my standing. I completed the first grade as third honor overall. My parents were so proud and mom came up on stage to pin my ribbon as third honor. I had barely recovered from my “tigdas” (measles) then and looked really thin and pale in the camera.
(more next post...)
While I’m getting a headache from the constant temperature changes; the Library where I’m stationed is air-conditioner cold and when I get to pick up my daughter from her school at noon, it will be like 49 degrees, desert-summer hot! Heading back to my desk after lunch, I feel like an old candle at my wick’s end, melted to the last of my still standing wax. However, lately, I suspect my headache also springs from reading the projects and going through folders of the three sections that I teach this semester.
When once a student I’d give my project to my teachers well in advance of the deadline, my students seem to start working on theirs only ON the deadline. Folders and portfolios were also a big deal. They represented the bulk of your work for the entire semester. These folders represented you! The neater, more complete and with high scores they are, the more you feel good about yourself and what you have achieved. Somehow you take pride in what you have accomplished and take painstaking measure to ensure that you submit a portfolio that is not only complete but perhaps shows a bit more and beyond what the teacher has expected. Not in these parts of the globe.
I’ve received folders that have melted and wrinkled under the heat of the sun, left for hours in students’ cars instead of being taken with them to their classes. I’ve seen folder filed higgledy piggledy with papers facing the back or upside down as well as right side up. There have been portfolios with nothing in them save for a few tasks the student has remembered to file. There were even some who photocopied their classmates’ tasks, not even bothering to change or erase the original names and pass it as their own!
Of course there are the good projects and portfolios as well, but these are few and far between. The mediocres and sub standard ones rules the very few who really take an effort to pass with flying colors.
Perhaps it is the culture of being part of a community, a tribe, than being recognized as one. Perhaps it is the laid back way of the desert dwellers where a passing grade is often good enough. Why sweat it out some more when I already passed, claimed several of my students who were happy with projects graded in 70’s and 80’s when they could have re-done it and got perhaps 90’s or even the perfect 100. “No thanks, too troublesome” like Shikamaru, a favorite character in the anime Naruto would often say.
For now that have passed and that’s what matters. No need to shine, no reason to step up. It is still a communal attitude that rules here and though I take comfort in the relative lax attitudes of my students, I often wonder how they will become as future bosses, leaders and law-makers of their country. Would this laxness prevail or would they slowly grow out of it as they grow older? I’ve been to government offices here where employees work like cogs on a wheel. On the other hand, I’ve also been to quite a few where employees get to drink tea every few hours.
So there’s this pull at the opposite ends of the socio-eco-cultural spectrum that makes up this foster-homeland that I’ve lived in for the past 13 years. With so many cultures in the population each with a different kind of work ethic, the locals are at odds which way to go. Would we preserve the communal and traditional way where one celebrates the glory of a tribe and not go beyond that? Or would we better take the individual and train him to be at par with the many other expatriates that clamor for the same job post locals have access to? How else would you justify hiring a local over an "expat" (expatriate), one who works like a cog and takes pride in his initiative and ambitious drive against the former who is happy to have worked off a few things for today and leaves the rest tomorrow, Inshallah “God willing”, to be handled tomorrow?
Most of my students smirk or give funny, uncomfortable faces when I tell them they must work harder because later on they will be their country’s pillars. They might think of me as some kind of a lunatic with all the drilling I push them: “File your work properly; you are after all college students, NOT kindergarten.” Or the more often sarcastic query I make, “What, you left your folder at home?! How will it ever get completed there?”
I go back to my own memories of first year college when being a green horn in my country’s state university, I had to prove myself to my professors, peers and the thousands who have gone before me that I too am worthy to be in a state university, perhaps there was even the small hope that I would best so many of the others, yet.
With a sigh I submit my final grades to the course coordinator. It’s been lean this semester and though I tell myself that I really should get used to it, having been teaching to the same bunch of first year intakes since 1999, I still wonder whether the rantings and lessons I’ve instilled in my students would ever take root. Or will I be forgotten by the next academic year, passed on as that strict Filipino teacher in the Library who made students do a lot of difficult things. I keep praying for the roots.
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Mariin niyang pinisil (He pinches hard the tomato)
Baong kamatis sa plastic (His lunch in plastic)
Marahan naman ibinuntong-hininga (Slowly he sighs)
Problema sa buhay (His problems in life)
Pahirap nang pahirap (‘Tis getting much harder )
Buhay at kabuhayan (Living and life)
Palaki nang palaki (‘Tis getting much wider)
Agwat ng aba at mayaman (The gap between rich and poor)
Umabot na nga (Till it has reached)
Sa kamatis na lang na ulam (This tomato for his viand)
Minsa’y napapalitan (That gets alternated with)
Asin, kape o asukal (Salt, coffee or sugar)
Parang kay dilim na ng kinabukasan (Seems that the future grows dim)
Paghihirap sa buhay di na mawakasan (Hardships never end)
Kahit magbanat ng buto sa maghapon (Despite a day’s hard labor)
Sa pobreng buhay parang di na makaahon (Poverty seems insurmountable)
Kamatis at asin (Tomatoes and salt)
sa malamig na kanin (With cold rice)
Pantawid gutom sa maghapong pasanin (Appeases the hunger of a day’s work)
Trabahong pambili lang din (That pays wages enough)
Bukas... ng kamatis, asin, kanin (for some more tomatoes, tomorrow)
Despite the promise of hope from the newly elected leaders of my country, life never changes much for the common "tao". The "masa" or people who live, breathe and make up the 80 million that is Filipino in my beautiful 7,107 islands that is Philippines.
I write this poem above with English translation (for my non-Tagalog visitors) as a tribute to the workers, the urban poor, the farmers, the many Filipinos who work from before sunrise until after the sun has set and end up only making enough for the next day.
Despite reports from the GMA Administration that money is coming into the country - brought more by the growing number of overseas contract workers than by any socio-economic changes of the current government - money is not trickling down to the poorest of the poor, the grassroots "masa", the common "tao".
My country is still poor and they get poorer each day despite the hardwork they put in. Imagine a family picking up garbage from as early as 5:00 am until dusk only to earn just enough for tomorrow's meal. That is not fair. No one who works that hard should ever live like that. But how does it get addressed by my country's leaders? They who have enough food on their table, stored in their pantries and kept fresh in their fridges? In mocking irony, these politicians dare to go on diets and enroll in gym classes to keep fit in the midst of all the poor who have nothing but a sorry plate of cold rice, maybe a tomato, salt or sugar to eat?
'Tis indeed woeful to the highest level.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Here's a picture of me on my 5th birthday. It's about 3 or 4 in the afternoon. I've just been woken up from my afternoon nap and gotten dressed in this pink cotton dress, my new birthday frock. A week before I've just gotten a haircut so my "bob" is fairly new. I don't know about my rolled-up knee-high socks but I'm not very happy looking in this picture.
Sunday, May 13, 2007
I would dare to equate mother with love for the love of a mother for her child is the kind of love that is unconditional, never-ending, constant and true. From our earliest hours on this planet, someone had been a mother to us; cared for our helpless beings; made sure we were fed; clothed; cleaned and more than that; loved. I believe human babies grow not just out of being well looked after, but more so out of being loved – the countless kisses, hugs and caresses we got in infancy – often many of us do not even remember. Yet mothers of all generation continue to cuddle, hug, kiss, caress their young, not allowing even a spec of dust to touch their baby’s skin or a moment that their eyes would stray from their young. It is indeed love at first sight and one that will last beyond our mortal beings.
I have been quite lucky to have felt the love of more than just one mother. Since birth, I have been cared-for and loved by four or five incredible women of three generations. My mother gave me life and fed me her milk from my early days. Luzviminda of the fair skin and the beautiful singing voice, she too would lull me to sleep. In the first few hours of my birth Lucia ran to the central market to buy me my very first clothes as “mamang”, a working mother with two other children, had not been quite prepared for my arrival. Mommy Lucy would also through the years provide a steady stream of love and encouragement that would keep me strong in my sometimes serious but much more often mundane trials. Not having a daughter of her own, she considered me hers. Felisa, my maternal great-grandmother also had a hand at bringing me up. The healer in the family, she would provide relief from the aches and pains of my childhood and being a woman of strength, she provided the stability and routine of my early years. Lola Peling in her patadjong and kimona would brew the most fragrant coffee each morning while spewing out words of wisdom to a queue of uncles and aunts who have come from the barrios in search of better fortune in the city. She is my role model for kindness and integrity.
Then there are the two Concepcions, the senior is my maternal grandmother and the junior is my Mommy Connie whom I call “magma”. Although my grandmother, I call her “nanay Conching” because she is the mother of my childhood. The woman who made sure I ate, took my bath, said my prayers; the one who stayed up at nights when I was sick and the one I ran to when I had any fears or pain in my body. Magma is the mother of my heart. She provided for me from when I was three; took me in as one of her own from that time and molded me into the person I am today. She is the voice in my head and my other role model for kindness and strength. She is also my spiritual teacher. She like Lola Peling taught me to share no matter what little I have to those who have none. She ingrained in me to help, just help and not expect for anything in return. She and my nanay Conching taught me to love, just love and not expect to be loved back. Because to deny help or love especially to those who need it is like denying sunshine or rain to mankind.
God has angels to do his work on earth. Many of them are called mothers.
To my mothers: mamang and lola Peling who are now with God and to nanay Conching, mommy Lucy and magma: I love you, happy mother’s day.
Sunday, April 29, 2007
The first ever 16-year old genius, who graduated summa cum laude from UP, in her speech challenged the youth like her to take the road less travelled, the choice of working and living in the Philippines; against the growing trend of leaving the country for greener pastures. Good luck.
Here in the UAE, government agencies have been set up as mandated by the President to ensure that all graduates find jobs at the end of their college or highschool year. About four agencies now look after the training, job placement and support of all the UAE's youth to ensure that they are on track in their career and live as productive professional and citizens of their country.
As I listed to a recently concluded forum on Emiratisation, I wonder when my very our government would make moves to ensure jobs for million of Filipino graduates; when will my own government set up agencies that would welcome back professionals working abroad into the country and ensure that they share the skills and the expertise learned abroad with their fellowmen in return for job opportunities back home.
See there is something very different from a Filipino trying to make a living and a life from an Emirati. The Emirati has a government that truly supports its youth. I on the one hand, has a country that exports even our native aborigines, the Aetas, as electricians in Saudi Arabia and Australia.
Nevermind that my country's rulers are corrupt. Nevermind that every Filipino household is getting poorer and poorer if not for the OFW families that help make ends meet. Nevermind young blood like Mikaela calling for the youth to give the Philippines a chance. Arroyo and her cronies have done nothing to encourage Filipinos to go work back home, worse, she's made more Filipinos leave the country. It is afterall healthy for the economy that more dollars are coming in.
I sit there in the Emiratisation forum thinking in 5 - 10 years, these local Emiratis, with the full support of their own government, will eventually get the jobs that we Filipinos once had claim on. Since they will be the priority for vacant jobs, where will all these Filipinos, on visit visas in Dubai and the rest of the Emirates find employment? My own country, currently ruled by Gloria Arroyo must put measures to ensure that workers coming home get some form of support, so they are able to integrate back into the labour market. OCW coopratives and projects that would encourage more and more to opt for a life back home, as millions actually long to do.
But like everything else, it must come from the top down. There must be mandate from the highest governing body - the President. And as I see Aetas being trainned and shipped off to foreign lands, I get a bitter taste in my stomach that whatever it is I longed for will never truly be.
Life indeed is tough so we truly need lots of luck in order to make it.
Wednesday, April 04, 2007
With a smile that’s like heaven
You look at me and my heart leaps
Happy and nervous at the same time
A face of beauty
That could rival that of Helen’s
Your friendship means so much
I’m afraid you’ll never be mine
My heart’s full of love
Meant for no one else but you
I stare blindly into the darkness
Wishing that you knew
A friend I may be
One who’ll always be so
But more than that, I would love
To love you openly, freely, true.
If only you knew, that I love you.
Al Ain, UAE
in my computer while Barry, my Canadian colleague, is playing Bubbles
4th April 2007
Naisip ko lang while driving
Pwede kayang song? Gusto ko si Bamboo kakanta....
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
From their earliest shows with Chiqui Hollman-Yulo and Debraliz Velasote in RPN 9 they rivalled Channel 7's Student Canteen. They even managed to "pirate" the two female hosts of said rival show; Helen Vela and Connie Reyes. For a short while, Plinky Recto and Ces Quesada shared hosting parts with the trio and later, Christine Jacob and Rio Diaz became their muses.
Now, it is a whole gang of individual shapes, personalities and sizes - contributing to the pot that is filled with memories and fun, indeed their line in Tagalog says it all, "ito ang tanghalian ng inyong buhay" (this is the lunch of your life)! Who could forget seeing little Aiza strut the duckie walk in Little Miss Philippines or the many loves found and lost and found anew by 'bossing' Vic; the romantic marriage of Senator Tito to enigmatic Helen Gamboa and seeing their children especially Ciara who is now host of the same show grow up before our very eyes? Joey's own children Kempee and Chenee also made memorable appearances along with Daria Ramirez and now, Kempee joins in hosting segments of the show. The same goes for Vic's children Oyo Boy and Danica.
Last week, Vic even showed excerpts of Danica's wedding to Mark Pingris. And it was but proper having had the entire Philippines see him from that 'tikling' singer fronting then VST band to the 'bossing' that he is now. His courtship and marriage to Miss D (Dina Bonnevie) was shown in Eat Bulaga, their painful married woes and the many other loves that followed were all visible in the show - if not consciously so - then it was shared as normally as anyone who goes through lifes many journeys. And we watched, perhaps judged, but continued to watch the comedy and the drama that is Eat Bulaga because we know everyone by heart. We know them and have owned them as one of us, maybe we know they live more comfortable lives, go to more lovely homes, drive fancier cars, have assistants and servants at their beck and call - but we know their strengths, their weaknesses, their errors, we have been through the happiest and saddest moments of their lives with them; cried their sorrows, laughed their joy, even created jokes along with them, we have expressions, one-liners, banters that have come from them, popularised by them and shared with them.
My daughter is starting to dance the "itaktak mo" and watches Bulagaan along with me and my husband. The lunch of our life is being passed on to the next generation.
Sunday, March 11, 2007
OK so maybe the aetas are tired of living the hard life in the mountains and perhaps want to try living in what we may call as "civilised" environment. But exporting our natives is somewhat going too far.
It's bad enough that our own youth are leaving the country immediately after the first sign of opportunity and professionals seeking greener pastures abroad due to lack of similar opportunities in our own beloved Philippines but to send out these native aetas, who may be leaving their homes because:
a) they're being threatened by military exercises/activities or may be caught in the crossfire of military and "revolutionary" forces;
b) there's nothing left of home to speak of what with cutting all the trees and changing all the forest lands into malls and "subdivisions";
c) they've been given "hot-air filled promises" from the current government that they will have better lives earning dollars abroad and would be able to help their families;
Our natives should be given a huge tract of land to call their own, protected by our government from any form of intrusion or invasion so that they continue to cultivate and pass on the culture that is uniquely theirs and part of our roots as a people. Being the original natives of the land we now know as Philippines, aetas should get special treatment from all of us. They are after all the original owners of the islands we now all inhabit.
Just like the Inuit who Canada gave out a large area of land for them to live free as they are, keeping their unique culture and ways for other "civilised" societies and cultures to see....and those native American Indians who have conservation sites and sacred burial grounds intact and protected by US law...we ought to, in the least be doing the same for our aetas - NOT train them to be electricians abroad!!!
We've really been abusing our aborigines for a long, long time; depriving them of their land, destroying their natural habitat, at some point during the US military bases in Clark and Subic, American forces using them as target-practice, in the all-so-innocent-excuse that they (the soldiers) thought they were wild boars(!); and now this, exporting them as overseas contract workers.
Isn't it enough that one in every family of five has an OCW member that we have to include our aborigines to the list? What next? Kankanaey head-hunters as hairdressers in Kuwait? How about the T'bolis as entertainers? oh, oh and yes, let's use the aetas as domestic helpers and let them send dollars back home so we can declare that the Philippine economy is sound, stable and on the rise....
God, how far does this government think they can go and continue to exploit everyone and still have the gall to say, it's been a successful administration?!?!? Successful for whom?
Enough already! Do we keep into office leadership that would even sell the remaining pieces of culture for a few pieces of silver? When is enough, enough? Where do we draw the line and say, "that's it, we've had it!" When?
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
we stared at each other for a time
he with all the years etched on his face
all those lines each with a story to tell
i'd like to come closer
and speak to him, touch his beard
feel his face and know the story of each line
share the memories hidden in each aged fold
but i turned away
to go because i've not the courage
neither the daring nor the wit to go near him
couldn't stay and stare, just stare forever
yet i regret
for i'll never see the man again
on the morrow he is going back home
his own land across the sea, far away
perhaps i will
go and visit him one day
when i've saved up enough to travel
and find him in this famous French museum
his was truly
the friendliest face i've ever seen
painted oil on canvas, measured 37 by 43
how i wish, i knew his name.
(found this written on tissue paper with Jollibee logo - must be pre-Jollibee Philcoa days though, more like Jollibee SM or Pantranco, late 80s or early 90s, before 1992)
where am i going?
the fire in me's burnt out
what am i doing?
life's passed me by
I am but one
one life gone, wasted
I've done none
sad, lonely, bitter
i feel my pain
i only wish i could
live life over again
started writing in BRI's office
continued at AS 101, UP Diliman
while waiting for my TCG to be issued.
BRI - Business Relations International, a PR firm in Manila.
UP - University of the Philippines
TCG - True Copy of Grades
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
Thursday, February 22, 2007
Oldest because when the PRO of Beach Hotel (now Beach Rotana) picked me off the Abu Dhabi International Airport that fateful day of February 7th 1994 and brought me to the hotel’s accommodation, hers was one of the first four faces I saw when the elevator opened to my room’s floor. This building is where the posh Liwa Center now stands. We used to say, backside old TV building to the taxi drivers to get home from a night of disco-dancing.
We were a trio – May, Marley and me (Mary Ann) – all from UP but at different times; no wonder we never met! We liked wearing the same things as we bought/shopped together. Same leggings with that yellow and white flowery pattern, same jumper – only different sizes: small, medium and large!
She’s the sweetest yet sometimes, human that she is, she can also feel a bit low. There was this one time that everyone in the flat (eight of us, all girls, shared a flat of four room; two girls per room) we all thought she’d died! She didn’t come out of her room – not even to eat, drink or pee! We offered here flowers, food, sweets – right at her door so she would no longer feel bad, sad, depressed. I guess it worked for the next day she was her usual self again.
May is always loyal. When I look back through all the years, she and I have so many pictures together – girls’ night out, desert trips, swims, eating out, parties, etc. and of all the people I know, May is the only one who can sleep on the elevator! When she is sleepy, she can really turn off quickly that one time, we were on an elevator and she had fallen asleep somewhere between the first three floors. When we got to our stop, I think it was the 14th floor, we had to wake her up!
May loves to eat and we enjoy eating – at home, at KFC – we even took the KFC challenge of “all-you-can-eat” chicken from 12:00 noon till 3:00 pm. We once took our lunch break at KFC and for 35 Dirhams, ate all the chicken we can possibly gobble for less than an hour. We got back to work fully stuffed! We often set beach BBQ gatherings with the old staff, and it is also a good chance to meet the new staff of Beach Rotana. May also has a weakness for sweets – chocolates especially the nutty ones. Unfortunately, her skin allergy would break out and she has to control herself not to indulge her sweet tooth so much.
She’s quite picky of who she goes out with. She’s got to know the guy first – before she commits but once she does, she gives her all to the relationship; often only to cause her a painful loss. And yet she’s very matured and graceful about her love life that she’s remained positive about it and looks forward to the real one. We all wish she does indeed find Mr. Right this time – perhaps in her new “country”.
May is very sweet and loving. She really shows you if she likes you by being there for you – she’s the type of friend who will brush aside your shortcomings, even condone your actions (in love) so long as you are happy. No criticisms; she will take you for whoever you are, whatever you are, just tell her the truth.
I’ve known for a fact that when my life seemed to have been going through hell, she was almost the only friend I had left, (and Dennis) one thing though, May is such a bad liar that when you want her to keep something secret; she may be able to sincerely keep it secret until someone interrogates her or catches her off-guard. Then she will, albeit inadvertently, spill all the juice.
She’s very hardworking and takes her job seriously. May’s got a strict and rigid work ethics that she can never be corrupted nor would she succumb to fraudulent means. I think because her integrity in what she does had always been impeccable she’s quite an asset to any organization she’s involved with.
She’s very poised and quite a true Filipina “Maria Clara” in her ways, and yet there is that touch of naughtiness and sense of adventure in her that adds spunk and spice to her personality. She can drink or smoke or go out with the girls and party but to a certain extent. For friendship’s sake, she will go out with you, wherever that may be. One complaint is that she dresses up too slowly! Often she would be the last to take the shower and the last one to finish getting ready for work. We’d have to forego the bus ride and just take the taxi because the bus has already left! If you’ve seen her wear her stockings (stockings are standard hotel wear), you’d know what I mean! Normal people would wear it like socks, put a leg in, pull it up and that’s that. May on the one hand would start at the toe, make sure there are no creases and slowly, in a sort of circular way work through her feet, till the ankles. Then she’d check if the fit is alright and slowly work her way up to her legs and thighs. Watching her makes me feel so tired and sleepy. Thank God she’s not 5’11“ or someone taller! It would take forever!
This same femininity also shows in how she throws a bowling ball. Oh yes it is a strike alright but you’ve got to watch the ball roll ever so slowly towards the pins that if I were one of the pins, I’d just drop dead from the long wait. This is probably why she hits a strike ever so often – the pins die of boredom. Believe me, you can go pee, buy a can of Coke from the vending machine and even re-tie your shoelaces from the time she throws the ball till it reaches the pins.
Yet, May’s got great empathy and compassion for people. She’s also very spiritual and I guess it’s one aspect of her where she draws her strength and aura of confidence from. Her family is very important to her – her parents, her siblings and even her growing number of nieces and nephews. She’s got this great capacity to love and share – and my one wish for her is that she finds that one man truly worthy of her because of all people I know and love in this parts of the world, Melinda is one great woman any man would be proud to claim her as his life’s mate.
Despite the years and the many life decisions that have seemed to keep us further and further apart – before we just lived separately in different flats as we changed jobs, then we lived in different Emirates, now it will be countries apart. But still whenever we find a rare moment to get together – the bond is there, no need to even make an effort – you just know that this is one person is truly your friend and will laugh at your jokes and antics, cry at your woes and soothe you with a loving word or understanding nod.
She had always been happy for the small or large accomplishments I’ve made – always proud of me that ours is a friendship that never stifled one’s being, nor was it too emotionally demanding that one tends to take time out just to breathe. No, it was like a sisterhood, a strong bond that only blood can better – she is after all one that I consider family here in the UAE.
I’ve been so lucky with how my life turned out here in the UAE but I feel that I am truly twice blessed because I have one true friend in May. She is my companion when we worked together – flatmate, lunchmate, locker chatter, cigs-smoking mate, drinking and party mate - I remember one time, we just got back from church one Sunday. We still lived near the Mazda Khadim showroom then. We got off near the Coop – our only mall in Abu Dhabi way back then, and decided to walk home. This roundabout at the Tourist Club Area was just being constructed – so this road was still closed to motorists and many bricks and construction equipment were lying about. We used this area as a shortcut away from the zooming cars – towards home when suddenly this boy of about 12 or 13 came up from behind her and cupped her boobs!!! She froze in terror and shock whilst I was so angry and was trying to look for a good sized rock I can hurl at the pervert juvenile! The boy even attempted to masturbate, the nerve! But he soon ran away when he saw me throw bricks at him – one did get him quite squarely on the shoulder so that was sweet revenge on such a traumatic incident! Once in an elevator, this Arab asshole of a man was harassing her! I think I bursted out with invectives I couldn’t repeat to my daughter’s ears. So our personalities were sort of the perfect opposites that mixed well – I liked telling stories, May liked listening to them. I’m quite loud, May’s the silent type. She’s my captured audience for the many punch lines, absurd stories and even corny jokes that I have. She’s also got a passion for reading which we both share together.
I may have been good at a past life for God to grace me with a friend like May. She’s one person who – despite her own problems, when she hears a good tale would take time and enjoy the story. She’s optimistic about her life and that shows – as she now takes on a challenge. I know she will come through as the winner.
Just as she paved the way for many Filipinos to be part of Rotana, she’s now paving the way for all of us in Canada – Go ahead May, get there first and later, we will follow the path you’ve made. I’m sad to see you go but I’m also happy that you’ve finally decided to spread your wings and test your strength. You go girl! With Internet and Email, surely our friendship will remain in touch and updated….after all, even here we’ve seldom met and kept in touch mostly through emails. It shouldn’t be so hard. Perhaps we too can come visit you there (hint, wink!)
So many memories to cram them up in so few lines. I’ve been going through old photos and I smile at how many friends we’ve made together and separately that I enjoy sharing mine with you as much as you seem to never forget to include me in yours. That’s what friends should be – to continue sharing the joys and sorrows of friends – and to build up stronger bonds, and continue to make other friends….just like what Azura in Barbie Fairytopia said, “strangers are friends we have not yet met.” Indeed this is true. And although friends we’ve met and love dearly may go away and be far from us, the bonds of friendship that ties us to one another shall never cease to exist. We will find each other through life’s road and in time, may even journey together like we did back then.
And I’m glad to have met you – as you have truly enriched my life, gladdened my heart, uplifted my spirits, and added new wisdom to my being. Thank you May for your friendship – I will not say goodbye because to true friends – there is ever only “take care”, I’ll miss you but I will be with you – when you need me, just sent me a return air ticket! If you need some money, ipangunugutang kita! Pag nadapa ka, deadma lang ako sabay kunyari di tayo magkakilala…..pero pag umiyak ka na….asahan mong aabutan kita ng tissue…baka kasi lumobo yung barang sipon sa ilong mo, wa poise!
My dearest Melinda, Mayo, Nogee…magtotorot ang mga kamag anak nyo sa Cabanatuan. Masarap nga pala ang longganisa nila doon….at alam kong hanggang ngayon, may utang pa rin sa iyo yung diver na ex BF mo dun sa Cebu kaya…sige na, punta ka nang Canada – I really look forward to an email or a envelope that would read…
Melinda Bernabe Nogoy and Mr. Good-looking, Loving, Gentleman Canadian invites you to their wedding….
Yun lang talaga pero marami pa pero wala nang time basta amin na lang yon!!! I love you May, always. And I wish you bigger and better things in your next country of habitation. 私は愛し、逃す