Thursday, June 24, 2010

OFWs and Repatriation

This news here is sad.

I remember when I left for Dubai more than two years ago. Even before that, I told myself, I am not going to leave my country under a false name. I reasoned that it's the only thing that belongs to me and only ME and I don't want to leave it here.

But anyway, when I got there and got a job, and I have been counting a few months already, there is only one thing I worry about. When I finally got my working permit and residence visa, I was glad to be working legally. But I still worry about one thing. And I have seen this happen to a lot of OFWs. They die somewhere and their bodies could not be brought back here because of financial issues.

I guess I am a little lucky that I worked for an insurance company and my boss decided to get us Workmen's Compensation.

My room mates from Dubai knows that this was a big deal for me. I used to tell them to get it out of their pockets if their employer could not give. I constantly remind them to try to squeeze it in on their budget. But all I get from them is their thought; they think I am weird to be thinking about that at all. They say that it's a morbid thing to discuss in the first place.

But weird things happen wherever you are. And I didn't want to end up trapped not only in that box, but in a country that couldn't bring me home because I did not pre-book my airfare.

Repatriaton does not only cover your ticket when you accidentally landed in that box. It also shoulders your air ticket when you lost your job and couldn't go home. Try to check it with your insurance consultants though.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

You Might Also Like...

I was surfing for another news site on my feedly last night....

And here were the suggestions.

Isn't that strange?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Month I Would Not Miss

As early as this month, we Filipinos in Dubai begin to wonder and ask each other when this month would start. Although many times they could predict the month, they couldn't exactly tell you what day. That is because they base the start of the holy month upon the appearance of the moon. I was on my Reader this morning and I saw this. So, for this year, Ramadan would start exactly on August 11.

I checked my blog for entries. Last year, there were about only one for August and three for September. I did this to check what I was writing about. Back in 2008, I was had a few entries but nothing actually connected to the month. I guess it was out of fear that my site would get blocked if I say something that is that is not in accordance with their race, religion and culture.

What I remember from last year is that my job required me to do a lot of field work. So that meant that, while on the streets and in the bus, I couldn't drink, eat or even chew gum. You can't even light a cigarette on the street while waiting for a bus.

Fasting begins as soon as the sun rises and ends when the sun sets. After the sun sets comes the Iftar. Iftar means breaking the fast and this is the time that you can eat, drink, take a bath, smoke, amongst other things that I am not aware about at all. What I remember was I endured a 42-degree-Celcius day outside the office and it wasn't fun. There was even a time that I wanted to pee but couldn't because I have sweated all my body's water content. I drank almost a liter of water the moment I got home just to hydrate myself so I can pee.

I guess this month is the month I wouldn't miss when in Dubai. But, thinking about it, I had good times with friends celebrating Iftar. Restaurants have good offers during this month like big dinner servings or combo servings for a very good price.

August is one of the hottest months of the year in Dubai, and the season is one of the hardest events to celebrate. I just hope they will find the Iftar equally rewarding as it was for me.

The mosque above is in Ras Al Kaimah; taken during one of the very few road trips I made up north when I was in the country.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day

Best Dad


Some of the Pilipinas Got Talent 2010 finalists were at Wowowee yesterday.

Of course, they were asked to show their talents.

Have you noticed?

Almost all of them had new things. Ala Kim had a new magic set. Ruther did an impromptu, Ezra band sang another song. I am not sure of the Velasco Brothers which is fine because the routine is still cool. And of course, Markki! I never really like him as in cute-like-him... but oh, his Zombie version is really, really cool! I can forgive him for some off-keys, but, at least he is not mimicking someone else. Well, with this statement you have a hint of the next thing I am going to say.

Jovit. (You're good, but someone else is better.)

He was still with his "Faithfully" version. Of course, people loved him for that (except me). I talked about Jovit way before on my post here. But, I guess it would have been a real show-off if he did something else. It's about time, isn't it.

Then, the show last night: You Got It! It was just another mimicking, but last night, it was Bon Jovi's turn.

Indulge me for the rant....

I just think that what we might get out of Jovit is SSDD... same sh*t, different day... unless, he comes up with his own "Pyramid" soon.

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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Not Exactly Jasmine Trias'

Budoy(pouting): Ok, this will do... but only for now!

Brought to You by the Number 3

Remember Count von Count of Sesame Street? Well, this is not actually about him. It's just that I got a third thing that made me feel good yesterday. It even made me last through my homework last night since I think my brain maybe starting to slow down on a Friday. Does your brain slow down on a Friday?

Well, it was actually one thing that came from three people. It was a word of encouragement that I got from them. That's why I remembered Count von Count. Now, I contemplated about how they have been a part of my life and I was completely amazed that they came from different chapters. The first one comes from a long way back. He was a high school classmate, who eventually became my book chat-friend just a few years back; we never really hang out back then and was incommunicado all those years. The second one is a friend I met a few decades ago and happy to know that we are still here for each other. She's been supportive of whatever I do, but do not fail to remind me if I am going astray. She was the first who actually believe that I could write. The third one came from a total stranger, someone that I met about three weeks ago. Well, I'm not going to dwell on this. I just feel thankful that I have three people who believes in me. As my book chat-friend told me, now, you have three! And that is enough.

Alright, that's it for me, myself and I.

Let's go to Need for Speed. My favorite game series.

Need for Speed: Own The City. It's kinda embarrassing but I must admit that I have been playing this game on my since 2007(whew...! again the number 3, for 3 years). In fact, it's the only game on my PSP for a while now. And.... I haven't finished the game totally! By totally I mean, I've finished all the races, as in all of them, so technically, I own the city... but it's just that I couldn't find the last 3 crates scattered all over. Isn't it so effin' disgusting? Truth to tell, I think I've played the game about four times already [or maybe more] and never found all the crates. One shitty thing about this game though is that you can't start another game without deleting the previous. It sucks, right? What's the point of owning the Lamborghini if you can't find those three effin' crates? I know, kids, there is another NFS game... it's been out since 2008 and what's the title? Need for Speed what? I think I saw the game and didn't like the graphics. But I couldn't get it at that time since it wasn't out yet for PSPs. But, I didn't get it anyway when it was released. Anyway, is it possible that any one of you can map me out with the last three crates? I am not sure if they've been placed in only location or it varies from time to time. But if you can direct me, I would love to finish it.... just so that I can start all over again. Yeah, I'm playing it again for the Nth time... it's just that this time, I don't want to start over without totally finishing the game. Until it says below the screen 100%. Or maybe, there is something like "Congratulations!" waiting for me.

So, there goes today's post, brought to you by the number 3.

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Friday, June 18, 2010

Harvey's and Mine's

I think it was two days ago - or maybe it wasn't - that I dreamed about snakes. Yeah, not just one of them, nor two. There were a lot. I don't know what triggered that dream. It might be the vacant lot in front of our house that is now being filled up with soil. Or maybe it's something else.

I have had dreams about snakes. One of it was so many years back, but I remember because it was sort of funny, the snake being a colorful cartoon character. The next that I remember was probably a month back and couldn't come up with at least the scene, if not the story. Then this one. I was walking on a soily road (just like the filling material from the lot across our home) and was about to step on a snake when someone snatched it to keep it from biting me. He told me to take care because there are many snakes. And as I walked along the road, I saw people passed by me carrying snakes that as if they are catching them for some reason. I walked and then came across another snake I nearly stepped on. Nearly, because someone scooped it, looking as if he was really catching it as a prize for a game. Then, I continued to walk and then woke up. So, do you think the soil triggered the dream?

But whichever it may be, I just hope it's not like Harvey's dream. Shit! I really hope it's not like Harvey's. But is Harvey's dream real?

This is, I think, the third of the thirteen stories in this book; the shortest of the three. It was only ten pages, which is really quite a short story. But this is the scariest so far. Or... was it scary just because I had a dream about snakes?

Is it really true that if you talk about your dreams, they will never come true? Share your views on the comments below.

*This entry is cross-posted here.

Specks of Yesterday

Outlook for my mails. I used to check my Yahoo! and Google mails using Microsoft Outlook. But it all went out when I had to reformat. I knew it has something to do with the provider giving you the account name and pass key which I had when I was in Dubai. So, I called PLDT's customer support... the first was two days ago. The CSR who answered said it can be done, but my phone was set-up far from my computer (yeah, it's not wireless), so she told me to call using my Smart mobile number, which I did the other day. The CSR was kinda mocking; told me it can't be done, because they couldn't provide me with the name and the pass key. I guess I wasn't in the mood to mock her so I just ended the call. I called yesterday, she said it can be done; but only with outgoing mails. She tried to give help but I guess it really can't be done. But I have an idea. If you are also wanting to do this, just sit tight: I am going to try it first if it works and will share later. If it doesn't, then, good thing I didn't share it first. But, if you have this working on your computer, can you please let me know?

Bank code. One of my online activities is pushing me to create an account with PayPal. I activated an account with PayPal when I was in Dubai, but I don't really know where the problem lied (which I think includes me for not having to understand the process) and it just didn't allow me to add an account. I consider it a blessing in disguise though; not giving me the liberty to use it sparingly, which is rather tempting. I tried to edit the address but it won't. So, I created another account using my alternative e-mail and it worked. Then, the problem (again!) with adding another bank account. It is asking for a 9-digit bank code. First thing that came into my mind is call their customer service. Well, the branch people was actually urging me to use this new feature and give comment, which I haven't tried until this time. The CSR was very plain, no emotions. And he doesn't know the answer. I said that's fine and called another number. This time, the CSR gave me an 11-digit alpha set of numbers, telling me I could try to strike off the last 2 digits... TRY? We are talking about a bank account here and I am not going to TRY. So, I called my bank's branch. This time, they were confident with the numbers that they gave me. But hey, it's the swift code, lady. Buzz! Now is the time to google it. I didn't because I thought this information is not supposed to be easily available online for security purposes. I thought... and thought wrong. If in case you also need to know your bank code, visit this site here. Okay, I already have a bank code, but I still didn't add my bank account. I am just NOT ready for the charges!

Call center. I hate to admit it, but it's really hard to rely on one call call centers these days. It's not enough to call once. But, it even gets confusing the second time. And the third time did not even answer the issue. I should say I am a little embarrassed... coming from a call center years back. I guess the lesson for today is Google it before calling customer care.

Fruit Salad. My sister and I were watching TV last night. I was half-watching; I was online and doing my homework. She was eating Indian mangoes when she suddenly said: "Para na akong fruit salad neto. Papaya soap ang sabon ko, coco-vanilla ang lotion ko. (I feel like a fruit salad. I am using papaya soap and coco-vanilla lotion). And we both laughed. Not to mention she sometimes apply Virgin Coconut Oil on her hair. I really find this hilarious!

Online shop. I sold something from my online shop, that cool Pinoy Ako tote bag like that seventh pic on the right side (Sorry, that's left. Maybe I need a wrist band... )! YAY! I am mostly selling some of the books I'm done reading (some are really hard to let go, though). If you, too, find that bag cool, visit my online shop here.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Shoes Blues

It was a usual morning. I woke up and had breakfast and read my morning stuff. I was brushing my teeth when suddenly I started thinking about the opening of classes - which was yesterday. I think I still couldn't get over with the scene I saw yesterday while walking at my favorite place, the irrigation. The irrigation (for some who missed my post on this) is a stretch of concrete road that connects the highway into the town's national road. Many people and cars used this strip of road as a shortcut from the highway into town and vice versa. This is the place where I have been walking since March this year.

Yesterday, there were a lot of traffic on what used to be a deserted road for the last two months that I have been walking there. Bicycles, tricycles, cars, pick-up trucks passed by. But for the most, it's people. Some kids were alone - I am guessing they are either in their third grades or fourth - while some were in groups. That's good because they already have their set of friends. There were little children accompanied by one of their parents and you can still see some anxiety on their faces: first day jitters I can tell.

What gets me to think of this scene until this morning is that I am actually glad to see them rushing for school. If only I can come up to one of the parents so I can tell them that they are doing a good job in sending their kids to school during these hard times, I will. It was good to see these kids dressed up in their uniforms and making it to school. I saw some who were in slippers, but whatever, what is important is what they put into their heads and not what they put their feet on.
Image copied from this site
This, I guess is what led me to think about my first days in school. I was brushing my teeth when I thoughts started to come in (some of you I know, knows that I brush longer than anyone you know). I started to remember about college. My first day in college. I thought about my shoes as a college student. It took me a while to remember what they were called. I had the image in my mind, I know they were called loafers, but I couldn't remember the name. When it finally came to me, I googled for an image and found it hard. And as always, I found it at Facebook, check the fan page here. Yup, I am talking about the Haruta loafers. Oh, they were so in those days! I guess they don't have it in stocks here in the Philippines anymore, although they still sell it in Japan. The Facebook Fan Page actually links you to their website (in Japanese). Check out the website here.

Anyway, this reminded me of a quote I read months back:

I get the blues because I had no shoes
Until upon the street
I met a man who had no feet.
~ Harold Abbott

I guess this should remind us to always remember to count our blessings.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Pilipinas Got Entertainment

It is not like I have been religiously following the show "Pilipinas Got Talent 2010." But I think I wrote about it maybe twice already, meaning that it really caught my attention. You can see those entries here.

I wasn't able to watch the Saturday presentation either, because we were at a friend's house for a despedida dinner. The TV was tuned in and some of my friends sat and watch the finalists. On Sunday, I was half-watching, half-writing my blog when it started.

Well. I kinda lost interest because it was too commercialized for me. One of my questions is why do they have to perform and over again and to announce the winners in a different day. Well, of course, they were set to show their talents together with talents of ABS-CBN.

Anyway, of course Jovit won. Who wasn't expecting him not to. Maybe only I.

You know what my comment was when they announced the Final 3?
*picture grabbed from this site

"Ah ok... so again, the bottomline is ENTERTAINMENT."

I guess that's why Jovit is now being called ABS-CBN's newest blah blah... (sorry, I couldn't remember... or is it that my brain didn't want to?)

I couldn't help but compare it with TV 5's Talentadong Pinoy, which I didn't watch, too, all throughout, but heard that the guy who is very good at YO-YO won.

My choices were, of course, Alakim and the girl who could play the piano, violin and 16 other instruments. Ms. Kris Aquino was right when she told her somewhere in the semi-finals(?) that the reason why they chose her is that very few young ones nowadays are inclined to things like this and that she will serve as an inspiration to the youth out there and that if only the government (DepEd) should give more attention to this sector). I admired Kris for that statement, by the way.

These might not be the choices of many (it's obvious, what am I saying?!).

But this is definitely the talent that deserves the limelight. If they will be developed and enhanced through the help of ABS-CBN, the Filipinos will shine more than ever.


Because we have had talents like Ms. Lea Salonga, Arnel Pineda (step aside now, for Jovit is here... and I don't like you, really), and of course, Charice Pemepengco, and a lot others that made us Filipinos proud and well-known all over the world.

Then, there's Manny Pacquiao in the field of boxing, the Filipinos Rugby team who just won the Asian Championship, and a lot more.

This would have been another chance for us to be known in another fields. A chance to show that Filipinos do not only sing.

It would have been so nice to say five or six years from now, that Ala Kim is the first Filipino magician known worldwide, than hear a month or two from now, that Arnel Pineda was out of the band Journey, and Jovit is what, the host of Wowowee or is shooting a teleserye with Sarah Geronimo.

I believe that the Filipinos are far better than that.

Back in 1985

I was a freshman in college at that time.  I wasn't totally following this back then even though as a child, I remembered wanting to be an astronaut ( I guess we all once dreamed to be astronauts as children).  But I heard about the tragic news.  But it wasn't like the internet was already widely accessible those days, meaning that once you missed it on the news, chances are you won't be seeing it anymore unless there will be updates.

Here in the website, Letters of Note, this post  I am excited about going into space, is a letter from one of those people who was fortunately chosen to go into training and board the Space Shuttle Challenger.  They went into training back in 1985.  They made it, but sadly, the space shuttle Challenger exploded 73 seconds after take-off.

The Challenger Shuttle Crew
Back row, from left: mission specialist Ellison S. Onizuka, Teacher in Space Participant Sharon Christa McAuliffe, Payload Specialist Greg Jarvis and Mission specialist Judy Resnik.
Front row, from left: Pilot Mike Smith, Commander Dick Scobee, and Mission specialist Ron McNair.

Christa McAuliffe, the one who wrote the letter back in 1985 is in the picture together with the rest of the space shuttle crew.

For a story about the space shuttle Challenger, click here.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

As Time Permits

The weekend was wonderful.

I requested not to have assignments over the weekend because of reasons other than what happened this weekend. Things weren't definite by Wednesday and I understand because one of my friend's Dad was still finalize his bone scan schedule. If it falls on Saturday, then we might not have the chance for the despedida as time permits.

She came and will stay only for two weeks. Her dad was at the hospital for over a month now and was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer. We went for a visit Thursday and it was a crucial day because they were still at that time trying to convince him to go for bone scan. My friend was trying to convince him to go but to no avail. She wasn't there when we came. We talked to his father who was the one who told us himself that he's been 'staged.' I took this as a pretext. When I had the chance, I told him about what happened to me and what convinced me to go for CT scan. I told him that I share his conviction with chemotherapy, but not with bone scan. I told him that I opted for CT scan to know where I stand. I told him that six months from now, I need to know if I was improving and deteriorating and there is no way I'll know if I don't have a baseline.

It was Saturday morning when I got a text message from my friend. She told me that her dad went for the test and thanked me for convincing her dad. She said that he wouldn't have gone if not for me. I told her it was a good thing that WE convinced him. I didn't want to take credit for everything; but it's a good thing for me that I was able to do something this important.

Our friendship dates back to maybe late 1990's. She used to hang out at my video shop after her classes - she was studying back then. We lost connection after I closed down my shop and 2004 and we just heard from her dad that she went to Canada in 2007. We reconnected just this year through Facebook's wonderful algorithm which reconnects friendships lost throughout the years.

But, we didn't know that she was confirmed to come home had it not been from someone. What a small world! This someone is one of our friends; my sister's student in her aerobics classes who became good friends with us. We have been to some gimiks like night-outs and dinners and birthday celebrations for quite a while now, but we just learned that our friend from Canada used to live in one of her apartments, and our friend lived there for quite a while.

I am just so amazed at how this is indeed a small world we live in. I remember how Mitch Albom ended his book, "Five People I Met In Heaven," with something like: There are no random acts... We are all connected... You can no more separate one life from another than you can separate breeze from the wind... " (I knew this quote was from this book, but didn't memorize it... I got the complete quote here.) I still couldn't believe that I met a person she knows for a long time now and that this person has also become friends with us. You might find it trivial but for me, it's something to celebrate, really.

Last night before I slept, I thought about how wonderful life is. I am so happy that after all these years of not seeing each other and being separated for so many years, we were able to reconnect and be able to spend at least one night of dinner with our other friends. We all wished it could be longer but again, as time permits. She's leaving next week, and only time can tell when we can spend some time together again. But like our other friends, we know they are still there and we are just waiting for a time to be together again.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Two Villas and a Flat

This news here has been a few days old. But it still trigger some memories.

I arrived in Dubai November 2007 not knowing where I will be staying. Having met a good friend from first trip to Dubai back in April 2007, I trusted her to make arrangements for my accommodation.

I landed in a villa good for six but at that time, one was vacant. The pay was cheap and that works for me, being a newbie. The villa had several rooms which will always be a question for me. Those that I know were maybe around eight including our own. But I didn't really find out exactly how many rooms were there. Maybe I didn't care. Just as long as our room is alright, it didn't matter.

Living in a villa in Dubai is not really ideal. Villas are prone to inspection and possible closure since the living conditions in some of the many villas are not really good. But, as for me, I was perfectly okay with where we were at that time. It was a place in Al Qusais and I feel very comfortable living there. The place is quiet, laid back and away from the city rush and pollution. I used to joke my room mates and friends that I chose to live in a villa because there is place where I can hang and dry my towel. A joke that is somewhat very true for me. I like my towel to smell like some clothes dried in the sun.

I also remember telling my best friend back home that I would really prefer good company than a good place. That's speaking in terms of the fact that I was happy with the people I lived with for about a year and a half. I will always remember we had our happy hours from 9pm to 11 pm. This is the time where we start to arrive one by one and sometimes have the opportunity to eat dinner all together.

Then, it was time to move.

I ended up in another villa that is a much better place than the one I left. I didn't have much time to interact with my room mates here since we were all preoccupied with our own jobs and our working hours rarely allow us to some bonding moments.

My stay with these people were short-lived because our villa was raided by the 'baladiya' (Immigrations people and anyone from Dubai know what this means) and our water and electricity were cut off, forcing us to look for a place to move into right away. I had no qualms about it because this is part of their law. So, all of us spent that whole day looking for our own places, because we thought it would be best to look for places near our work to save some travel time to resting instead.

 But I didn't end up with a place near my workplace. Again, I choose to look for a place
where I could be tired yet have a good night's sleep than be five minutes away from my workplace and spend the whole night suffering from noisy, annoying room mates and house mates. I ended up with a friend's friend whom I didn't know at all at that time. She is a friend of the same friend who got the place for me when I first got to Dubai and I trust her judgments when it comes to these things. I ended up in a flat with her friend who is far more better than those two places I have. In fact, I used to describe the scenario like this: it's like you moved from the first floor of a hotel to a penthouse suite. Yes, far more better.

But again, my stay here at the flat was short-lived because I had to go home due to my medical condition. But I can say that given a choice, I will still choose to live in those two villas than the posh flat that I moved into. Villas give me a sense of home, no matter how far worse the conditions may be.

I wonder how it would be now for those people who live in villas. Back then, there was a law but it has been ignored for far too long. But now that there are more vacant flats that need to be occupied, they say this is the main reason why the Immigrations people are so eager to inspect. They need those flats to be occupied for economic reasons. But people stay in villas for economic reasons, too.

*The picture is the flat I lived in before I went home.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

On Dog Bites and Rites of Passage

I had a long walk this morning. I did an hour, for the first time, but I think I'm doing an hour when I attend my sister's aerobic classes. I think I might have overdid it though. My feet are in a little pain almost the whole day. But I should say it is kinda worth it. It must have been good. I enjoyed my music because there were less distractions (read: less dogs around). A stranger I know who lives at the entrance of the irrigation told me this morning that one of the dogs (probably he's the only dog) that scares people there has been poisoned - deliberately - by its owner. Lola said that the dog bit one person some time ago, prompting his owners to kill him. 

I remember when I was bitten by a dog. I can't remember exactly when. I think it was back in 1997, but I really can't be sure. The dog's owner kept him leashed at the backyard until the 14th day. I am not really sure if it was because of tradition or it is based on science. It was said that you have to keep the dog alive and observe it. If something happens errr... with me(?), we will have to get something from the dog's brain to heal me. But, I am here... and they killed the dog about three weeks after it bit me.


I was surfing the tv when I chanced upon a NatGeo show: Lonely Planet's Road Less Travelled. They went somewhere in China, in a place where the two remaining women with the traditional tattoo on their, well, it turned out, on their faces, live. Their faces are tattooed like in the middle and it was said that this is being done to women as a rite of passage. This is also to make them look less pleasing. For some reason, I didn't hear.

I, then remembered how I resent one thing in Dubai. Previous law requires people holding Visit Visas to exit to neighboring countries once their visa expire. Last May 2007, I had to exit and was booked to Kish Island, Iran. This would mean that ladies are required to wear their traditional woman's dress upon entering the Immigrations right there at the airport. Shelas and Abayas are provided which you can borrow for the rest of your stay. I have my own so I didn't have to. Mine was an improvised version, but I passed the Immigrations, so I passed with now issues. I remember some of my companions who brought their improvised shelas and abayas did not pass and had to settle for those available at the airport. I resent and I always felt violated whenever I am required to wear the shela and abaya, even if it is as improvised as what I wore. But what can we do, when in Rome, blah blah, blah. I guess I could say I am lucky that I only have to do this twice.

If not for this, though, the exit would have been just okay. In fact, I see it as a rite of passage in Dubai. My room mates (in Dubai) and I agreed that your Dubai experience is not as complete if you did not experience the stress, agony and excitement of 'exiting.'

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

All Those Violins

I am reading this book "Gomorrah," by Robert Saviano (you can find my comments here) and there is a part there I read yesterday which reminded me so much of what happened last November 23.

The Maguindanao Massacre happened the day I was operated that is why I will never forget that date. But even if it happened on other days, who would forget? We have seen much on t.v: the backhoe, the bodies, the pick-up, the car. Everything.

The book was about the other mafia in Italy. I was reading about the Camorra's weaponry and how their defense and security works not only for the clan, but also for the people who gives money to the clan - those drug users. They not only protect their empire but the people around them.

I guess it was the description of the weapons and how they work on their security that reminded me so much of the massacre. I guess all the spotlight was suddenly focused on the elections that's why updates and developments on the case hasn't been much on tv. I rarely see anything about the case for the past 2 or 3 months.

Will they ever show updates after this week? Well, the proclamation of our new president and vice president is due anytime this week. That's why I guess tv networks will now start looking for some juicy news to sensationalize. But I hope they would not forget to bring this case up again.

On other news, I kinda still keep track of some news from Dubai. Probably because I have made a few but worthwhile friendship there that I need to keep track of things that may or may not directly affect them.

Aside from updates with the Dubai Metro, nothing so far. But, I cannot help but notice the news about crimes. Mostly it's about prostitutes being hurt, if not killed, and of different races. But what caught my attention, too, is that the crimes are mostly in the Muraqqabat area. Well, I never wanted to live in that place when I stayed there. I had a few offers on moving there but I say NO right away. I never liked the place. Compared to Al Qusais which I began to love and never left until I came home. Anyway, I just think that the security people should be more vigilant in manning the streets of this community.

The Muraqqabat story is here.

Note: There is no wrong spelling on the subject. I just couldn't bear to write it.

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Sunday, June 6, 2010

A Break Did It... I Guess

I was going to talk about another thing that made my week busy last week but I just could not bring myself down to words. I got busy with a freelance job that kept me occupied during the week. Well, I guess like any job, the first week should be the toughest since you are still trying to adapt to the changes in your schedule and trying to get the feel of the job. I like the way it makes me feel more than anything else.

I asked not to get assignments over the weekend since I do not want anything that might happen on weekends get in the way of my work. If you think it should be the other way around, well, I hope that it won't be that way in the future. It is just too self-rewarding, if not in the monetary aspect.

Anyway, my sister and I got a text message before noon yesterday inviting us to see a movie. I haven't seen a movie for awhile now. I perfectly remember that it was July last year when I went with a friend to see "Transformers 2." It was memorable since that was the first and the last time that I ever went to see a movie in Dubai. That should have been the start of my monthly movie project if I didn't have to go home. But that is okay. I just wish that this will be the start of my monthly movie project again.

We went to see "Here Comes The Bride," with Angelica Panganiban, Eugene, Tuesday, and the rest of the guys. It was a funny movie although but it's not an entirely good movie for me. But I guess I needed to have a break from my monotonous life after all. I have been wanting to see this movie because I wanted to see Eugene act, but it's good to see that Tuesday also caught my attention. Well, there is no doubt about Angelica doing her role because I have always admired her for her Crissy self on NNNN. This girl Tuesday should also be given something better because I think she can still do more.

This break did it, I guess, because we laughed a little harder on some parts. Afterwards, we were off to the final night of our friend's aunt's wake. I really find it ironic that on these occasions, the tendency to reconnect with long lost friends and relatives is always high. Last night, I was able to reconnect with my high school classmate whom I haven't seen since graduation. We didn't belong to the same friend group, but we were classmates for the whole four years. We talked for almost the whole length of time that I was there. We talked about each of of our own lives and of course, I wasn't that surprised to find out that she heard of my condition.

I find it a little ironic that going to wakes give you the chance to bring back the old times with people you know. Most of the time, it was the fun times, when the reason why you went there in the first place is to convey your condolences to the ones left behind. Although I find it ironic, I don't see anything wrong with it at all.

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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Yet Another

In the middle of the week, a sad news came. One of the people that I look up to fighting cancer passed away. If you remember, I talked about a good friend's passing on this blog about a month ago. And now, yet another one went away. She's actually a very good friend's aunt and we have been in touch with her, too, ever since I came home, had the operation and all. It's always been sad to hear about death of someone, and it's there's always an extra note of sadness if it's someone you know and a dear one to someone you know.

It is hard to talk about this. I wanted to say more, but yet, I cannot seem to find the right words.

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Friday, June 4, 2010

It's The Feeling

Rebisco crackers: "Ang sarap ng filling mo."

The one with the lolo on the rocking chair and the kid. This ad is really very touching. Very few people are now banking on commercials based on value these days.

It's amazing how you could put values and recall in thirty seconds or less. They should do more ads like this.

Ang sarap ng feeling ko.

On the other hand, I can't recall that crackers ad where the kid tries to hypnotize his dad to give him the crackers. In other words, inuuto niya si Daddy.

I think it ran for a minute or more and I can't even recall the brand.

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