Wednesday, December 26, 2007

OhBER

Nakakatuwang isipin na sa Pilipinas pagsapit ni "BER" andiyang nagmamadali ang mga tao. Anong bang meron ? Pasko na daw, pag tumingin ka sa kalendaryo teka September pa lang ! Pero makikita mong nagsisimula ng magdekorasyon ng bahay, mamili ng mga pang regalo sa kanilang sangkatutak na inaanak, sa mga kaibigan, kamag-anak at pamilya. Eto kaya ang dahilang kung bakit September pa lang eh nagkrismas shopping na :D ! Tuwing sasapit ang pasko laging naming naalala ang conversation ng aking ka officemate noon sa aming Sales Manager na Expat (na asawa ko na ngayon). Hindi puedeng hindi namin pag usapan sa bahay dahil hannggang ngayon eh puzzled pa rin ang aking mister.

Eto ang kanilang conversation :

Sales Manager : What are you doing Jocy (secretary) ? Did I disturb you ?

Secretary : Oh no ! hi Bernard, it's almost Christmas! (naglilista ng mga kakailanganin sa Christmas Decorations at Christmas Party at mga pang regalo sa mga kliyente).

Sales Manager : What are you talking about ? We are on the month of September! We still have 3 months to go before Christmas !

Secretary : You know it's Filipino traditions. When you go to malls you will see they are already starting to decorate specially where you live.

Eh kasi naman si mister dating nakatira sa isang Condo sa Makati. Hay naku, ayon nga at hindi nagkamali si sekretary. Laking gulat ng aking mister, paano ba naman sumapit lang si BER aba at sa opis namin nag iisip na kung paano ang dekorasyong gagawin. Tanong nya sa akin bakit daw pag September eh Krismas na sa atin ? Naku, hindi ko tuloy alam kung ano ang isasagot ko sa kanya, basta ang sinabi ko na lang sa kanya kasi nga pag September iba na ang simoy ng hangin. Isa itong simbolo at tradisyon ng aming kinagisnang kultura. Pero ang totoo kahit ako hindi ko maintindihan, kung bakit nga ba natin itinuturing ang pagdating ni BER eh Krismas na. Kasi naman kahit saan man tingnan sa apat ng sulok ng mundo ang krismas ay sineselebreyt tuwing Disyembre lang. Sa atin September pa lang, Krismas na ! Kayo ba meron ba kayong idea kung bakit ? Hanggang ngayon isa pa rin sa aking itong palaisipan...Syempre naman nag research na ako pero hindi pa rin ako kuntento sa mga kasagutan ! Kayo ba matutulungan nyo ba ako ? Ganun paman, ang Pasko sa atin ay walang kapantay !


Check this out ! The Giant Lantern Festival 2006 in Pampanga.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Happy Holidays to all !

The French Version



The English Version


HAVE A JOYFUL AND PEACEFUL CHRISTMAS TO ALL !!!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Plain housewife ?

I know that I've been absent for a long time but I have a valid reason to be. Sorry for not updating. I've been into one of my difficult moments these past weeks. I was thinking why do things go wrong when everything's almost perfect ? We're almost done with our kitchen renovation suddenly my son got sick. At first, I thought it was just a simple cough and colds. I gave him necessary medications but it wasn't enough when he complained that his stomach was painful. I again presumed that it was just his muscle aching. Call it a mother's instinct, I hurriedly then called the pediatrician with no hesitation. Told her about my son and he's hurt somewhere in the stomach when he coughs. The doctor was good enough to accept us on that same day at 6PM. I went to her clinic then she asked me to do an x-ray right away to make sure of her diagnosis of pneumonia. The X-ray result came and my son suffers from pulmonary infection or commonly known as pneumonia (doctor was right). The X-ray doctor told us that he needs to have a strong medication to fight against it. Then we went back to the clinic to see the doctor with the X-ray results. She gave my son lots of medicine to take. He stayed at home for 1 week and no schooling for another one week until he gets completely healed. We both had sleepless nights. I needed to sleep beside him because he had crisis in the middle of the night. His right pulmon was aching and I cannot do anything about it. All I can do was to put my hand on his right pulmon and massage it. Held him in my arms to assure that everything will going to be alright. If only I have a magic wand to take away the pain, I would have done it. He couldn't sleep and no appetite at all for a week. Imagine the fear I had. I don't mind being tired but I just wanted to make him feel better and was hoping that Mayumi will not be infected too. Good thing, my daughter stays well and healthy. After that episode I was released, my son is finally one hundred percent okay. At any point and all along I have the fear of plunging in into another event again. It serves me right, he went back to school Monday and Tuesday, that Tuesday afternoon he unfortunately catched Conjunctivitis and was constipated...my poor little boy he's not yet finished with these series of sickness ! So he stayed again for another week. Finally, he's better now...much better ! That's just about the life's slopes. What is important is how we would be able to face and overcome them without "panicking"...easy to tell when we all don't sail on the same boat, right ? After those horrible weeks, I am back in circulation....I also would like to take this chance to thank PMN for inviting me to join the group. I will soon post for parenting please bear with me I am working on it.

Anyway, I don't normally post a forwarded email ( I did once because it was worth to share) now this caught my attention. I would really wanted to share this to all mothers and mothers to be. This could also be applied to men....I guess, for single fathers :D ! After what we have been through mothers, we should be proud to be called a plain housewife !

A COMMITMENT By Tingting Cojuangco
Sunday, December 02 2007 (www.philstar.com)

I get mixed feelings of anger, exasperation and comic relief whenever I ask a woman, “Do you work?” and she answers, “I am only a housewife.” Only? There are not enough hours in a day for any housewife!

Watching game shows, I notice the host’s standard line for personal interviews includes “What does your mother do?” And the instant reply that follows has become an equally standard line… “She is a plain housewife.” Now, that daughter’s response just irks me. Poor mom. And until this writing, it never dawned on me that being a housewife was simple, basic… and plain. So…

What does a housewife do? She wakes up earlier than her husband and children to fix the day’s lunch boxes. She toasts the bread in a microwave she (possibly) bought from her own salary. She may be in curlers just like in the American TV comedies. I hope not, because I think it’s terrible to see a woman in curlers sitting before her husband (unless you’re Lucille Ball) when, during courtship, she was blow-drying her hair every other day!

A housewife has to be like an octopus. While toasting the bread she’s getting the rice boiled and a can of pork and beans and a meat dish from last night’s dinner into Tupperware for her children’s lunch. She runs to the stove to check the bacon she is frying to make a sandwich. Sometimes she lays on a coat of butter and sugar — for energy — and she’ll consume her children’s leftovers!

Forward thinker, nights before school days, Mommy lays out her children’s uniform on a chair with shoes and socks ready to just slip on because it’s difficult to wake her little girls and boys who dress half-asleep. Clothes on standby make her job easier. I did that! For the sake of love and dressing up my girls to look coordinated.

* * * * * * * * * * *

The children come down the stairs holding the banister. One is crying because he can’t find his toothbrush; the other missing his notebook after doing last night’s assignment and where do you think it might be? “What did we do last night?” Even her memory has to be awake at 6 a.m.

Disastrous! She runs up to look for that math notebook and the bacon gets burned. The children organized at the breakfast nook say they want crackers, too. She tells her children, “Put coco jam on the crackers. Okay, eat your cornflakes now… Drink your milk… Take your vitamins… There’s the school bus… Hurry!! Give mom a kiss… Remember me?”

Whew! Lock the door… Thank God that’s over… Up to the bedroom, and your husband’s staring. “Darling…?” Guess what? He wants to make love. And you feel like it’s lunch time already after hard labor at the kitchen when it’s just 6:30 a.m. If you don’t give in he’ll look for it outside. Didn’t Fr. Padre say that? I hope I don’t smell like bacon and Spam…

“Oh gosh, it’s late — 7:15!!” You take a shower… brush your teeth to discover the toothpaste cap is missing and look for it under the sink… one minute… two minutes… three minutes… and you have to put on your makeup. The mascara’s too thick. You forgot your sunscreen. Your hair’s soaking wet. A horn toots while you’re getting dressed. It’s your husband rushing to drop you off at work.

* * * * * * * * * * *

At work you punch in at 8:30 a.m. late again… Well, there’s overtime and you’ll make up anyway for your lost salary after 5 p.m. At 6 p.m. you go to the supermarket to buy fruits and milk… Good thing you went to the market Saturday; that should take care of the whole week’s fresh and refrigerated food for dinners. Did I give the maid the week’s menu? Yes, I did… But what happened to Yaya Melissa? She didn’t came home from the province last night…

Yaya Melissa had to help her Nanay in the field, Tatay was running a temperature so Koyang harvested the palay and laid them out on the road to dry. She and her mother put the dried palay inside sacks the whole day… Nanay’s been awake since 4 a.m. and it’s now 2 p.m. She must rest a bit from the day’s heat, while Melissa watches over her younger sister. It’s time for Nanay to buy the medicine in town for Tatay; buy a plastic drum in the market for accumulating the water from the shallow well for washing the dishes, for cooking and for bathing.

She passes by the market to check palay prices and buy tuyo, kamatis, ampalaya and carne… Takes a pedicab home by 5 p.m — early enough to burn the wood that’s a little wet from the rains so it takes her five tries. Nevertheless she must cook dinner. There’s a knock at the door. Oh, those NPA’s again asking for food. It’s the third time this month. I’m tired of cooking for them… and they’re eating up my family’s share. This time I’ll send them away… That takes a lot of courage. But she does send them off. They hardly have enough for five children. Their neighbors have seven and eight because there isn’t a TV set in the barangay. No electricity! And it’s dark by 6:30 p.m. But her neighbor’s advantage is a lot of hands working the field. Thank God for children!

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Being a housewife is not as plain or uneventful as it may seem. On the contrary, housewives are superwomen of sorts. They work from dawn to dusk and do a lot of problem solving.

Helping the children with school assignments can be cumbersome; therefore, keeping abreast with the fast-phased high-tech learning styles she must do. I remember every time my mom taught me she’d raise her voice and I’d cry. Since then — Grade 4 — I have had a tutor whom I abused. Studying with a pillow on my desk, I lay my head on it, or played jackstones while studying and eating apples and more apples. I have never shrugged aside the offer of tutorial classes, which explains professors’ or Roland’s visits.

* * * * * * * * * * *

Yes, yes. Multi-tasking is a game that a housewife can very well handle. Like a tiny ant carrying a luminous beetle. Her excellent ability for organization comes handy as she segregates the contents of the laundry bin that needs soaking first and a washing machine at once, if she is lucky enough to own one. In between pants and T-shirts she sweet-talks the Meralco and NAWASA collectors for another monthly payment extension. Not to mention she has also a number of pahulugan to negotiate.

If she can get the kids to take their afternoon nap, she hurries to hang-dry the laundered clothes. Has she estimated the drying and collecting time before the sun sets at six? Of course, by then she has strived to make the living room and bedroom floors sparkle with the best quick-shine floor polish she could purchase from the neighborhood store. One last activity is beautifying herself before her husband comes home from work.

* * * * * * * * * * *

I forgot to add: a housewife acts as referee, too: separating fighting siblings before bedtime. And then she acts as guidance counselor with motherly words of wisdom for her children to live by.

The remaining hours of the night are spent tidying the dining room and the sink before she dives into bed to listen to a husband unburden his woes of the day as she lies awake hoping he’ll give her a most cherished prize for the day’s job well done: a goodnight kiss.

Now, what does your mother do? P L E N T Y !!!