How They Met my Father…

It was one of a kind experience that I had when I finaly walking down the road to my Father’s office. Deja vu would say that it was pretty much more of seeing Makati again in different perspective, with more vibrant, enthusiasm and ‘bang it on’ attitude. I got mixed emotions when I approached the same person in the lobby of the building, saw the familiar face made me wonder, will I carry this ‘out-of-the-box’ attitude when I go back home? Or is this just a facade of my entire experience in the program? Familiar faces of my father’s colleague saw me and even asked what I’m doing in the metro? When time came and had my face to face approach to my dad, all the not-so-good things were washed away like a river/stream that keeps on flowing. I really missed my dad, and I was really excited to met him, share stories of what I’m doing for the past few weeks and months, and basically, the beaming smile of my father when he saw made me moved – as if I am a survivor who went to a warzone :). I kept on talking with him in English and most of his colleagues would wonder, why would I speak in the English language whereas,I am in a bunch of Filipinos? (I kept apologising as well to my father for speaking in the language that is foreign to him). We had a nice lunch and even told him that if he got an opportunity to meet HHC, probably he’ll gonna find HHC pretty much the same as me(the difference? She’s British!), too chatty, having her own ‘me’ time, a random thinker, doing ‘out-of-the-box’ things-pretty much the same as what I’m doing. 🙂

 

He asked a lot of questions like:

  1. How do I get my food? – well basically, as part of the host home agreement, volunteers have their food from host homes, luckily, we are with a very accommodating host homes(all host homes are accommodating!), I told my father that in a particular meal, we have at least a variety of foods(e.g. Prawns, veg. and fish), which I find thankful for!
  2. How’s your A-S-T-H-M-A?- proudly( with flying colors and honour)that I told my father that I am no longer having my allergies and asthma attacks. So basically I am free to do what I want to do and eat whatever I want to eat! I even told him that HHC and I went for an almost 20 kms. Walk and he find it weird and crazy(as always they would find me weird for doing random things 🙂 ).
  3. Still up for 500 peso challenge? Basically, he also asked me how well I am in terms of my finances(he knows that I know how to handle my money 🙂 ), I told him, I’m okay, still up for the challenge of living with an ample amount of allowance that I am getting from the program.
  4. What are you doing? He asked this simple yet intriguing question. All I got to say is that- I a happy doing work in the community, living with an ample amount of resource/s that I have, walking to and from work, working with the barangays, and the local government.

 

Opportunity came in and I invited my counterparts (Steve and Katie) to met my father (good thing about having a beyond ‘counterpart’ relationship with someone is as if they are part of your family, just having a mini-reunion); establishing an honest-to goodness relationship is as good as having a nice cup of warm cafe americano-so good and therapeutic. :).

I know for a fact that my dad is not that fluent in the English language, yet, as much as possible he tried to speak with my counterparts, how are they doing, and how he wished to have a nice chat with them. My counterparts even invited him over a cup of coffee-yet he declined and I found it hilarious! He sent me messages that he wished he did not decline the invitation and had a pretty much nice chat with them (seeing how indecisive Filipinos are, makes me smile 🙂 ). I find i funny as well that my HHC even asked someone to take a photo of us with my father (she even mentioned that we are having a mini-reunion! 🙂 ).

After that not so usual encounter/meet up with my father, I told Katie(HHC) that seeing my father is like having a nice gift for my birthday, I couldn’t ask for more. 😀

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The Brits. Me and My Father. 😀

Chefs’ Wannabies

All soul’s day and all saints’ day are approaching very fast as fast as time goes by before we say goodbye.

 

Why do Filipinos Celebrate Holloween/all saints’ day/all souls’ day?

To make this explanation short, we (Filipinos) try to reminisce our departed love ones. In my fam, we always cook something for our departed love ones. We even share it to them, go to the cemetery and spend couple of hours or the day with them (as if they gonna talk and ask how are you sofie? 😀 ).

Out-of-the- box #……

Well, basically, our host home is very family oriented individuals, they have this ‘mini-reunion’ thing during family events like: a. Halloween b. christmas and c. new year. Here’s the catch! They prepared a lot of foods for the fam. (since they consider us as part of the fam, we are entitled to eat as much as we want to), we prepared pancit as well to share. Cooking seafood pancit was one of a kind experience for me. Cooking my fav dish made me proud (I also aknowlegde my HHC) and another step-up of the ‘adult’ ladder, like, hey mom/ hey dad! I know how to cook porridge and pancit! And soup! (aside from making Japanese Maki).^_^

We’ve got massive loads of banters, sodas (I had 4 bottles, and 3 for HHC), and meeting the expectation stuff along the way.

Meeting Expectations

I am not sure if I’ve been too offensive/rude with the fam, with my HHC (Katie) whenever I try to think and decide for myself. Am I being selfish? Being rude to the fam or my HHC? There were times that I can bear the thought of explaining to the public that I am not here (in Cabiao) to be a translator/interpreter of my British counterpart. I am here as volunteer as well. The only advantage I have is the local language- no more no less. When it was revealed to the fam that we are about to leave the community in 4 weeks, they kept on asking me if I’ll go to London as well and even work there. I kept on insisting that I’ll stay here (in Phil.) see my fam, find job or another volunteer progam, but not go to London, via my host home counterpart. Yes, we practically established the fact that our relationship is far beyond the surface of being ‘ host home counterparts’, it is pretty similar to a best of friend or an elder/younger sibling, settling in the other side of the globe. Definitely I’ll go to London, and might meet her, but not now. She can also go to my home (my parents to exact), in the future and not in a snap. It is as if, I am a gold digger/social climber waiting for someone to bail me out.

Down day on Saturdays

I may find myself rude to my counterpart if I gonna tell that I am not pissed off whenever someone would ask me questions which I already answered before. Is it about cultures? Or about our personal differences? I don’t know, perhaps, it is just about seeing things in different perspective/s, no more no less.