Lumad: The Old trees of the mountains.

“I  grew up saving my people. If we help each other, no matter what happens, we will never feel alone and the good things we have done will live even if we die.”
The soil’s given to us but it’s not in our hands to ruin it. The Nature can live without a man but a man cannot leave without it.

We divide our land equally for people who needs it, leaving trees on the mountains as our protection and forests as our boutique. It’s where plant and take our food, clean water, and medicines.   

If they take these all away then they will take away our lives.

Datu Matanem Monico, 78, Bagobo Tribe

What makes you stupid?

“Forget about your age, live life, think like a child once again.”

 

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When I watched animated films, there’s only simple stories leaving me clear lessons with very strong impacts. 

For once, it makes me feel like I’m a child again. 

A blank canvas only awaiting to be painted with new ideas. 
  
As the movie starts, I didn’t have to be critical. There are no actors to be judged by their performances and characters in real life to compare. There are no rules. I only sit back, wait and watch for each creative, entertaining and powerful parts that makes people become genuine about their emotions once again like the old times. 

 

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Why is that?

Sometimes intelligence makes us stupid. 

Shall we dance?

No chair occupied except for mine. 

My idealistic mom’s gay brother who was almost the same age as I  borrowed a classic beautiful black dress from his friends and a nice pair of shoes.

I had my hair curled and tied up,unusual but I had my first make up and I felt different. I looked beautiful that night.

But no one ever asked me to dance.

The program was almost over and I never stood up out of my chair atleast once. I decided to go to the restroom to think.

I felt like I didn’t even exist.

I heard people knocked on the door. It was my uncle calling me. Asking me to come out. He said someone wants to dance with me. Maybe he will ask me to dance with him to make me feel better. I opened the door.

I heard my name from the host asking me to come forward on the dance floor.

I was nervous. It was the first time it happened. I didn’t know what was going on.

I stepped in and saw a man standing and waiting for me in the middle of the dancefloor.

It was my father.

  

It sounded like a drama from the movies but I didn’t have time to think of that. My tears came rushing on my cheeks.  I was always a tough kid, but this time I cried. Not because I was sad, embarrassed, or worried but because I was happy.

Everything was blurry, except for the melody and the man dancing with me. It was late in the evening and it was raining but he made it however to give me my first dance.

I hugged him as if I’m never letting him go, knowing that the time is limited for us and the next few minutes he’s going to be back to his family.

Everything just turned into the most beautiful night of my life.

I made everybody cry that night that the next day I was no longer the invisible person they never knew.

Although I didn’t have those memories like everyone has, I remember everything because they were all remarkable memories that can’t be taken for granted.


My father’s far away from being perfect, but he was my hero that night.

What’s yours? 

The Man from New Delhi.

“The world is for who?”

I arrived in Singapore at 1am today. I was exhausted and sleepy. I went to the immigration and forgot to sign the white card. My head obviously was not working at the moment. I went back to the man at immigration and he started asking me questions, like the tone of his voice was angry and cold.

I have been traveling back and forth to Singapore and yet, I was asked to go the immigration office. Earlier, in front of me was a Filipino transsexual. They asked him questions then sent to the office.

As I entered the room, there were 2 Filipinos and 2 Indians and me. The other Indian was sitting next to me. He looked very kind, shy and nervous. He was wearing a neat jacket and hair was properly brushed like a classic man made him look more neat. Unlike me, he was more exhausted because he came from New Delhi and I overheard he had to take two(or more)flights from New Delhi because there was no direct flight to Singapore. I didn’t mean to eves drop but it’s because a man entered the room sent by the immigration officers brought a paper to the Indian who was just sitting beside me and told him:

“I’m sorry but you have to go back to New Delhi.”

He was exhausted made him feel like his head was floating and I can see the feeling of embarassment, disappointment, and rejection on his face all at the same time.

I was sad that I couldn’t do anything for him.

“You have to take a flight first at 9pm because you have to take the same airline that brought you here.” 

“Why…(couldn’t pick the right word because he wasn’t that prepared in speaking up for himself maybe because he had all the crazy thoughts inside his head ) can’t I enter here?” with a tone of a voice that crumbled my heart.
“I can’t tell you the you the reason because I was just sent by the immigration officers.” he didn’t look neither happy or sad, perhaps because he’s got to take out his emotions when he has to do his job.

All the other two Filipinos were also left hanging there and were asked to tell their employer to write a letter for them until I was escorted to finally enter Singapore.

I got back at the apartment and I was still thinking about the man from New Delhi. I am already laying down on a comfortable bed and I know he’s still at the airport waiting, exhausted, disappointed waiting for his 9pm flight that will take him to few airports first before he finally can go back to his home. Or maybe he doesn’t even want to come back home anymore because of what happened.

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I didn’t know the whole story, the immigration reasons why he wasn’t allowed to enter but it didn’t feel right.

We help people who doesn’t need help, sympathized people who doesn’t need sympathy, let people-who are taking things for granted-in and invite people to see a world only those who can afford to see.

What happen to humanity? What will happen to us if we all didn’t have money anymore? Maybe it will be better. Then we will realized being real human when everything is gone.

The beautiful woman.

“She had a world of her own, but she was never alone.”

 
I  looked at my reflection and always felt insecure. I’m skinny, I wish I had better proportions, my feet looked like a ginger. I wished I could dance, had pointy nose, had lighter skin, not satisfied about so many things? I didn’t know what I had. 

Just like you, I’m far away from being perfect. I got tired hiding my blemishes, my scars, my veins on my skin, didn’t realized they were actually beauty in disguise. 

I was unaware about what I have because I kept looking for something I was never meant to have.

Like a swan walking with the ducks, didn’t know I wasn’t ugly, I was just different.

I wake up every morning being back to the same old me then become an illusion at night when I know for a fact that I’ve been living in a world where no one’s perfect.

I stopped adding up to that illusion, because I realized, the more I tried to fool myself, the more people will fall to that trap. 

I will never discover what my personal legend if I’m trying to create another person that I am not.

You too are capable of turning those scars into beauty that people would be interested to know more about you and your story. 

There’s no need to hide.

You don’t have to change something about yourself to look beautiful, all you have to do is to embrace yourself, including your imperfections. 

That’s beautiful. 

Gently ranting. 

  I know that all of us are conscious about the slow process of everything here in Philippines. The unnecessary queues just because you had to pay the bill, deposit money to your account, send money, pay the travel tax, check-in your luggage, the traffic, seriously. 
How much time do we have to waste for these things?

I’m glad to know we are all conscious and yet we never really created an action. We complain but we never suggested solutions. So much manpower and no one really thinks of a bigger solution. No initiative. Always depending on what’s just asked.

Meralco terminated my contract yesterday and since I was asleep I wasn’t informed and someone signed for me allowing them to take my meter. I went to complain because it’s a mistake and they just told me to wait until five days because that’s how long it takes to process all the documents needed. Five days to wait until I can have back my electricity.

Unfortunately, this is happening. How come they need documents when they just had them from the previous contract? Why dues everything has to be so complicated even in the end they are going to give me a new one anyway?

The super expensive electricity takes 5 days to process before I can have it reconnected.
Apartments with ridiculous SOP’s, whose owners gets visitors like they are prisoners, that even if they personally allow their visitors,  they won’t listen to them and can’t  break the SOP because the visitor left its ID. 
Company employees accepting complains but never really thought of suggesting their big bosses things that can reduce complains. Just same cycle, doing their job, not thinking of bigger solutions. 

Hair stylists not listening carefully to what their client is saying, so they know how they can satisfy their clients to be with them long-term.

Taking time chatting, spending so much hours doing a simple job, walking slow, moving slow while some people have to deal with it even if they are running late because they don’t want to disrespect.

The traffic that’s getting worst and worst.

The super slow internet that make things slower and spend more time waiting, paying for not so “unlimited” promos, not providing decent internet and empty batteries, more energy consumed when you haven’t even able to open a single article.

Philippines is a paradise. Let’s give justice to that. I know we can do better than this. Let’s save time and make things easy for all of us. Use your voice, your creativity and your passionate love for life.  

We can make a difference. 

I wish we all work together, not just talking about it but never really put actions. 

Don’t be scared to use your common sense. 

Let me share you a story about a farmer.

“One windy day, the farmer decided to tie his hat with a string around his neck to prevent his hat getting carried by the wind.

The hat flew out but remained up high.

He realized he can actually make something fly. 

He took out longer string and created a stable shape that can take the direction of the wind and fly higher.

The first time it was rotating but he kept trying. Tried to check which ones making it heavy, which ones needed to change until he found the right balance. And not so long the thing started to fly. 

It was still and higher than he expected. 

A king found out they could use such thing for winning the war and so they created more of them but with their own versions. 

It also didn’t just reach the skies, win the war, but it reached me when I was a kid until this present generation.

I made my own version of a kite and I didn’t know where I got the idea, where it came from but I was able to create one.


No Etiquette.

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“This is a daughter of a cheating husband and a mistress.”

At first, I was jealous of my sister for living together with our dad and her mother. But when we finally become mature enough to talk, she’s actually not as lucky as I thought she was. Everyday her parents are fighting, arguing about the small things and always ended up on the same old story my father did to her mother.

When I came to search for my father, I was too young to think about the trouble I was about to bring to their family. All I had in mind was to meet him. I didn’t know it was such a wild fantasy. I was too young but I had to force myself to understand everything. I understand that I had to leave because I am just going to make their lives more miserable, especially my siblings while I was there.

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taken from google

I don’t want to think I am a mistake because I was a choice. I might be a good or a bad news, depends on which perspective you look.

My mother left me to my grandmother and never showed up for a long time and suddenly she comes home with her family. No explanation, she just took me from my grandmother then one day, she left again with her family because of some mature problems. I was left with so many questions because there are already too much problems unfixed and deserved more attention so I think they expected me to just accept whatever is just happening.  I was curious as a child. They have to tell me what’s going on.

My bottom line here is that.

We’re all fucked up. From that moment my father decided to cheat on her wife, everything’s fucked.

Who do you think suffers the most?

The wife, their children, my mother, myself, it’s an unending domino effect.

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I just had a fight with my mother and it was never my intention to hurt her with the words I’ve told her. It’s not right to do that to parents but I don’t know why it always had to end up having an argument. But I want to let her in, and when I say I let her in, I tell her how I exactly feel, all those feelings left unaided, all those questions left unanswered and she gets really furious. I don’t know why she should feel the worst instead of answering it in a motherly way.  She pushes me away.

She’s says, she’s never going to beg for me to love her.

Okay. 

I never really ask her to beg for love because I’ve always loved her.

Women are not entertainment and children are not just some sort of prizes you can either choose to keep or give away.

It’s not easy to feel sorry for the decisions I’m not the one who made. 

 

It’s hard to watch a wife cry because I was born, a mother who gets angry because I ask questions, to watch my siblings gets confused of what they should do with those unending arguments and, to feel sorry for a man who couldn’t fix the things that’s already broken.

 

I could either choose to hate or love what happened because I was born.

You don’t gamble with the devil. You don’t play dice with fate. You have to respect yourself and be brave enough to face your responsibilities. There are no excuse your such actions.

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A cheating husband and mistresses or the other way around, who supports this kind of game has no etiquette. 

The two firemen.

There are two fire men who went to quench a fire near the ocean. After the fire has been extinguished, they both went to the ocean to wash themselves.
One of them had a charcoal on his face while the other had a clean face. 
Which fireman do you think will wash his face first?
Answer:

The one who had a clean face. Why? 
It’s because when he saw the dirt on the other man’s face, he washed his face right away because he assumed he had it on his face as well. 

And when the other man saw him washed his face, he also did the same.

Writing an article.

  

  
I kept my eyes focused on the details and carefully stepped on the rocks. I couldn’t see both side views of the trail because I was scared to fall. After few minutes, my feet started moving like it had a life of its own. Finally I gained little confidence and was able to look at a wider vision yet there were parts that’s still blurry. I tried to be fast but my heart was pounding. My legs were trembling but I kept them strong before it loses its momentum.
  
The wind blows and each time it passed, it was getting stronger. The rain poured and the darkness was about to swallow the golden rays of the sun. My body was still eager to get up there to the top. There was no more turning back.
The moment I was waiting for arrived and I had to take my chance and walked as many steps as I could until I get to the holy top. My heart kept pounding still. The higher the inclination the faster my heart beat. I had no control of myself anymore and can just fall at any moment. There was fear and excitement, clarity and confusion but I just let myself go. I surrendered my fate to the wind and let it take me to the current.
Almost there.
Grasses were crawling towards my direction asking me to grab on to them in order not to fall. 
   

 Finally, I reached the apex. 
I’m on the summit.
I could see everything.
The fear vanished.
Everything’s clear. 
I gaze the moon and the thousands of glitters enfolding the whole world. 
It was magical. 
There was no need of words.  
My heart stopped beating for a second. 
The happiness was coming from another dimension. 
I was able to think everything so clear. 
It was powerful enough that it fully captivated my heart. 
The night got deeper, the stars had to go to sleep. 
I woke up with the warmth of sunrise. 
A new day shall arise.
I found myself smiling like I just dreamt of a paradise and will keep dreaming while I was there on the top. 
I got down carefully and this time with respect to the soul of the world and with pride inside my heart. 
I thought about doing it again but next time it will be with another paradise.

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The best thing when nothing’s left.

 

photo by @shutterkissed(Gerard Del Mundo)
  
When I’m walking along the streets, I often ask myself, 

“Am I supposed to feel bad about people living along the streets or to people who are living with a lot of money because they could never clear their mind?” 


I don’t know. 

Sometimes I feel like I’m obliged to feel for people, and I don’t know what it is that even if I have nothing myself, I have the urge to give help. I try to turn my back but it hurts my soul. 

Do you know the difference between people who have a lot of money and people who are begging in the streets? 

People who are wealthy pretend they are happy while the beggars along the streets pretend they are sad.

(What an irony.)

Now what’s the best thing you can have when nothing’s left with you? 

You’re free to go without worrying about the things you left behind, you are more connected to your soul from things that really make you happy, for the purpose you are meant to live, the sensitivity for people’s genuine happiness and sufferings and to find the real treasure that’s meant for you.