where’s home?

Somebody emailed and asked for this article, so thank you Google for having the actual news print on file. I think I lost my original unedited copy of this so good thing there’s an online newspaper version. It’s actually copyrighted by Inquirer because as soon as you submit it to YoungBlood, you get some $$$ and it’s theirs to keep forever.

Anyway, here it is transcribed:

Another night in Fukuoka, a night to be spent watching the waves break in the vast sea, and admiring the twilight engulfing the sky with colors and shadows.
I’ve been away from home for more than two months now, and still the vastness of the sky, the cool wind from the sea of Kyushu and the pale light from the stars provide me little comfort. Knowing there is still 10 weeks left before I will see the sunset from the shores of my own country deepens my sadness. I tell myself I am missing my home and wishing to go back.
But where is my home?
Is it in Romblon, where I lived until I was around 4 years old? Is my home there with my lola, who raised me and told me stories about their life during the war, and taught me nuggets of wisdom that sounded like vague puzzles when I was young? Is it somewhere there between the coconut trees and the beaten path leading to the river in the town where only the rich has electricity and watching a movie means sitting before a television set powered by batteries?
Or is it in the different boarding houses in Manila where my mom and I used to live after leaving my father, who gambled away my mother’s earnings and who came home late at night and beat her up? Is it in relatives’ houses in Las Pinas, Makati, Marikina, Bulacan and cavite who complained day in and day out about the rising costs of food and electricity and water and how some people living with their family weren’t contributing enough?
Is it in Cebu where I studied college, living on my own, learning to fend for myself, and loving the moon for being my constant companion and being the only sure thing in the world?
Is it in the shores of Dumaguete to where my brother was deported after he flunked several subjects and lived like a prince, getting monthly allowance while wasting his life away?
Is it in Bohol where my father took all of us one Christmas and brought us to a beach without checking if we had enough money to go back to the city, and so drenched by the rain, we had to wait for someone who would give us a free ride back to the hotel?
Is it on the ship where we spent one New Year going back from Romblon to Manila? Or is it on the bus where we spent one Christmas going back from Batangas to Makati?
Or is home in any of the countless hotels we stayed in as we went to different place? (No, we did not go to different place to look at interesting sites but because there was no other place we could stay for so long.)
So tell me, my moon, is home on the 11th floor of the office where I work until early morning and from where I take long cold walks to an empty room in yet another boarding house? Is it here in a foreign country where I have to learn neew technology and a new language, and wake up everyday to strange sounds and faces and places and culture?
My moon doesn’t answer. I think only the waves and the wind hear my musings. So tonight, I will sleep tight, and from tomorrow onwards, I will bring my home with me wherever I go.


good things get better, i know they do

Be merciful to me, O God, for men hotly pursue me;
   all day long they press their attack.
My slanderers pursue me all day long;
   many are attacking me in their pride.
When I am afraid,
   I will trust in you.
In God, whose word I praise,
   in God I trust; I will not be afraid.
   What can mortal man do to me?

Psalms 56:1-4

dear God,

and the plot thickens, people are spreading words against me to bring me down and mar my years of hard work, dedication, and commitment to the team. this is rather distressing but You know the truth and You know my heart. and soon it will come out that i did not do anything to purposely destroy something that i devoted my time to help build. their accusations will prove to be nothing but lies.

i am just human and powerless, i cannot fight this battle alone, but You are God and You know what is just and righteous. You know what’s best for me, redeem me Oh Lord from this pit and enlighten my detractors. may they be touched by the Holy Spirit and may they have an encounter with You that will enrich their lives, soften their heart and remove their hatred and biases.

in Jesus’ name, i pray.


“‘Cause good things get better I know they do
Yeah they do, I know they do
Good things get better for me and you
And that’s true, you know it’s true”

– keaton simons, “good things get better”


“Every human being on this earth is born with a tragedy, and it isn’t original sin. He’s born with the tragedy that he has to grow up. That he has to leave the nest, the security, and go out to do battle. He has to lose everything that is lovely and fight for a new loveliness of his own making, and it’s a tragedy. A lot of people don’t have the courage to do it.”
– Helen Hayes (1900 – 1993)

after this great tragedy of betrayal, of hearing bad words from the most unlikely people, and of being promised something then being let down with no explanation, i feel blindsided, like a train wreck. now i am left with pieces to pick up and debris to clean and throw to the trash.

i wish i can say: “i quit, this is too much for me to handle, i give up.” but then it’s not over until it’s over, and for me, sadly, or fortunately, depending on which half of the glass you want to look at, it’s not done yet.

i am now stranded halfway across the globe, all because i believed in something that vanished into thin air. i am now banished because i wanted to communicate and share how i felt. i am now labeled because i am misunderstood. will wonders ever cease? will tides ever turn? we’ll never know if we don’t stay until the curtains fall..

and so the show must go on,

true blood

“Never underestimate the power of blind faith. It can manifest itself in ways that bend the laws of physics or break them entirely.”

i’ve always thought that the best way to get to the bottom of things was to confront them. but if the other party refuses to, then it’s quite a dilemma. I have too much on my plate right now to deal with this. Dear God, please get this burden off me.

this terribly significant business of other people

“You fight your superficiality, your shallowness, so as to try to come at people without unreal expectations, without an overload of bias or hope or arrogance, as untanklike as you can be, sans cannon and machine guns and steel plating half a foot thick; you come at them unmenacingly on your own ten toes instead of tearing up the turf with your caterpillar treads, take them on with an open mind, as equals, man to man, as we used to say, and yet you never fail to get them wrong. You might as well have the brain of a tank. You get them wrong before you meet them, while you’re anticipating meeting them; you get them wrong while you’re with them; and then you go home to tell somebody else about the meeting and you get them all wrong again. Since the same generally goes for them with you, the whole thing is really a dazzling illusion empty of all perception, an astonishing farce of perception.

And yet what are we to do about this terribly significant business of other people, which gets bled of the significance we think it has and takes on instead a significance that is ludicrous, so ill-equipped are we all to envision one another’s interior workings and invisible aims? Is everyone to go off and lock the door and sit secluded like the lonely writers do, in a soundproof cell, summoning people out of words and then proposing that these word people are closer to the real thing than the real people that we mangle with our ignorance every day? The fact remains that getting people right is not what living is all about anyway. It’s getting them wrong that is living, getting them wrong and wrong and wrong and then, on careful reconsideration, getting them wrong again. That’s how we know we’re alive: we’re wrong. Maybe the best thing would be to forget being right or wrong about people and just go along for the ride. But if you can do that — well, lucky you.”

Philip Roth, American Pastoral

not all who wander are lost

and so it could have been a four day long weekend that i would spend somewhere i’ve never been.. or i could have wasted a day looking at last minute deals on vacation packages and just fly out of here.. or perhaps i could have joined a roadtrip to another city.. or a tour to the next island.. or a bike trip across trestles and lakes.. many things i could have done this weekend, but im choosing to just stay in place.. enjoy the vancouver sun and spend time packing my things for the nth time,

i’m leaving for home in less than two weeks, not the best time to get away from this city especially now that it’s all bright and sunny, and back home is grey and typhoon season. but who cares really? i miss my people, i miss my mom who loves me unconditionally, i miss my dogs who think i’m the greatest person on earth, i miss being me, speaking my own language, riding a jeepney, playing around with my brothers, debating about the world with my dad, catching up with old friends who chose to stay.. because in the end, its not about the number of stamps on your passport that counts, nor the amount of people you’ve talked to from all over the world, nor the different cultures you’ve immersed yourself into, in the end it all boils down to one thing… i belong to home, home is where my family is, and that is not here.

it’s times like these when i need quotes to remind me why i chose to wander.. and here are some of my favorite ones:

“Not all those who wander are lost.” – J. R. R. Tolkien

“Two roads diverged in a wood and I – I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference” – Robert Frost

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” – St. Augustine

“For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” – Henry Miller

“Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Travel Light: Own only what you can carry with you, know language, know countries, know people. Let your memory be your travel bag.” – Alexander Solzhenitsyn

“A ship in harbor is safe — but that is not what ships are built for.”
John A. Shedd,

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing” – Helen Keller

“I have found out that there ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them.” – Mark Twain

“If you are not living on the edge you are taking up too much room.” – Howard Jayne

“Look at the stars lighting up the sky: no one of them stays in the same place.” – Seneca

“Somewhere on your journey don’t forget to turn around and enjoy the view”

“Cover the earth, before it covers you.”


tis that season again, that time of the year when you start looking at the past n years of your life and reflect on why you are where you are and wonder if next year will be the same.

“There are some people who meet that somebody that they can never stop loving, no matter how hard they try. I wouldn’t expect you to understand that, or even believe it, but trust me, there are some love that don’t go away. And maybe that makes them crazy, but we should all be lucky to end up with that somebody who has a little of that insanity. Somebody who never lets go. Somebody who cherishes you forever.”- Ally McBeal-

brighter than sunshine

“in order to be happy now, I should own myself up to the possibility that I might one day be sad. I should accept the reality that there might not be anyone for me, at least I could get on with the rest of my life without having to think about that *missing* part.”

– the real cancun

before sunset

I needed an excuse to start a blog so I opened my diary and looked for an entry that I could use for inspiration. Here’s what I found:

Some people don’t know when to give up on things that don’t work anymore. They tend to hold on to something broken in the hopes that it might one day be magically fixed, like some miracle or fairy tale. While it’s not bad to dream, we must learn to put our two feet on the ground. What’s gone is gone, we must know when to move on and close the door, or else the other window might not open and we would end up suffocating on our own fears.

“They say it is always darkest before dawn. We will never fully appreciate the day unless we experience the night in all its darkness”

playing by heart

“i have no idea why you are so relentless particularly given the arsenal of defenses i’ve thrown at you. but no matter how hard i’ve tried to block out everything that you’ve said, the message has been received in a place inside me that i thought has died but it hasnt and that place inside of me is alive and well. i cant make any promises but id like to try and be with you”

-keenan (ryan phillippe) from the movie “playing by heart”