Sunday, August 25, 2013

Silent Killers

We live in a busy world.

Yes, and we are used to it like no other beings in this world.

In fact, we are never aware how our earth rotating in its axis has changed, and we are being killed silently by elements both seen and unseen. They may be seen, but they are ignored. Sad part is that what once ignored has become a part of the system we lived up to this day, and it is very alarming.

It is not bad to remind ourselves sometimes that we inhale clouds of pollutants, chemicals, and dusts every time we go outside, when we are on our way to school, to the city, to the very place we study, work, and play. Oftentimes, we step out of our place, enjoy ourselves in fancy fast-food restaurants, eat whatever we want, and then say, "We deserve this." Well, we deserve a good life, but are we responsible enough to at least have some knowledge about the things we are eating? Nowadays, what we more care about is how these food taste, and we tend to ignore how they were made and what they are made of.

So, it would not be impossible when time will come that people perish at the age of 40.

We are acting like they are nothing. The world has dragged us all along here. The world has blinded us to a lot of things which made us busy like machines. I wonder if we even care. I don't know, because unusual things have been normal to us.

We are being killed silently, and we can be victims of these seemingly invisible crimes, as well as suspects to our own ending. These killers have been busy with their works, and here we are, busy with our own worlds, too.

***

Please don't tell me that I'm worrying so much and that I'm not enjoying life. This is just a friendly reminder, guys. Enjoy yourselves.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Dugo

Pag-ibig ang nagpapatakbo
Nitong dugong nananalaytay
Ngunit itong pag-ibig ay pilit hinihigop
Ng mundong puno ng karahasan,
Ng taong puno ng kataksilan at
Ng makinaryang puno ng kasakiman-
Unti-unting natutuyot at
Unti-unting nauubos.
Ngunit, habang nandiyan pa sila:
Pamilya at kaibigan,
Nakakausap at nakikinig,
Inspirasyon at tagahanga,
Itong dugong nananalaytay
Ay patuloy na dadaloy at dadalisay
At ang puso’y titibok at aawit
Ng pag-ibig na dudurog
Sa sakit, poot at hinanakit
Sa gutom, pagkauhaw at pagkapagal.
Pag-ibig ang siyang dugo
Ng pusong puno ng pag-ibig.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Paglalayag

Paglalayag ng Bansang Pilipinas

Libong taon na ang nagdaan nang ang bangkang ating sinasakyan 
ay nagsimulang maglayag. 
Libo-libong alon na ang humaspas ngunit nandito pa rin tayo,
malayang naglalayag. 
Ilang kapitan na rin ang namuno upang sa gayon ay magkaroon pa tayo 
ng mas matibay pang pagkakaisa at pagkakabuklod-buklod. 
Ngunit bakit kaya mayroon pa rin sila
na pilit kinakamkam
ang pagkaing sapat lang para sa ating lahat. 
Bakit sa kabila ng mga turong ating ikinintal at isinapuso sa ating pagkatao
para lang di na mawala pa ay ngayo’y pilit binubura para sa sariling kapakanan,
pilit niyuyurakan ang pagkatao nang sa gayon ay umangat sa mga kasama?
Hindi ba nasa iisang bangka tayo?
At ang balanse ay mahalaga upang tayo ay umusad
at muling sikatan ng araw?
Ano ba ang dapat nating gawin upang gumaan naman ang pasanin
nitong bangkang ating sinasakyan?

Monday, August 12, 2013

Anak, Puwede Bang Makisilong Muna

Bumabagyo at ayon sa PAG-ASA, signal number 3 pa rin daw kami. Kagabi lang, ok pa ang lagay ng panahon; hindi pa malakas ang ulan ngunit halatang makulimlim ang kalangitan. Kagabi kasi, marami ang nagrereklamo kung bakit wala naman daw ulan pero signal number 3. Sabi ko naman, madaling araw siguro darating.

Paggising ko ay malakas na ang ulan. Sunod sunod ang pagkulog at tila pumipiyok itong earphone ko dahil sa lakas (all-Backstreet ang pinapatugtog). May kuryente pa at nakapagFacebook pa nga ako. Confirmed ngang wala nang pasok. Buti nalang hindi brownout kasi walang dumating ni isang text mula sa mga kakilala ko.

Ilang minuto pa ay na-enjoy ko pang magTwitter. Na-edit ko pa yung tumplate nitong blog ko at nakapagrehistro pa sa Disqus (Tinanggal ko lang din sapagkat mabagal ang internet, saka nalang siguro). Tinanggal ko na si Intensedebate kasi hindi masyadong compact tignan at hindi kayang magsync sa Blogger ko.

10:30 a.m.

Nagparamdam na ang tiyan ko. Tanging tubig lang ang pwedeng inumin kayahindi ko natiis na hindi lumabas upang bumili ng tinapay at palaman. Nawala nang tuluyan ang kuryente kaya hindi na ako nagbalak pang bumili ng maluluto. Nag hirap pala talaga ng di-kuryente lang ang gamit sa bahay. Kapag brownout na, gutom ang abot mo.

Kahit malakas ang hangin, hindi ako nagdala ng payong man lang o jacket. Sa pagkabalat-kalabaw kong ito, walang talab ang lamig. Di kalaunan ay narating ko ang store, inabot ang bayad at dali-daling umalis.

Pagdating ko sa bungad ay may isang matandang nanginginig sa lamig. Wala si kuya guard kaya nahiya sigurong buksan ang bakal na gate nitong boarding house na tinitirhan ko.

"Anak, puwede bang makisilong muna," sabi ng matanda.

"Oo naman ho, lo," sabay bukas sa gate.

Pinaupo ko siya sa sofa. (May sofa sa first floor, upuan ng mga bisita at ni kuya guard)

"Saan po kayo galing?"

"May pinuntahan lang ako diyan, anak."

"Bakit po mag-isa kayo, may bagyo po ngayon."

"Delikado po sa labas," dagdag ko.

Ginaw na ginaw siya at medyo basa na ang kanyang damit. Sa sobrang alala ko ay dali-dali akong umakyat upang kumuha ng tuyong damit. Kumatok ako sa kabilang kuwarto upang makahingi ng kape. Gusto ko sanang matulog pero sinamahan ko nalang si lolo.

"Saan po kayo nakatira at ano po pala ang pangalan ninyo?" habang inaabot ang kape at damit.

"Rene, anak. Pasensya na sa abala. Bigla ko kasing naisip na bisitahin yung anak ko diyan sa kabilang kanto kaso wala ata sila."

"Ganun po ba? Baka hindi lang kayo narinig."

At sa nalaman ko, naging mala-Maalaala Mo Kaya ang naisip ko. Bigla kong naalala yung mga teleserye na itinakwil ng mga anak yung tatay o nanay nila. Hindi naman malayo kasi na mangyari sa totoong buhay, sabi ko sa sarili ko.

Bago pa man tuluyang lumamig ang kape ay hinayaan ko munang ubusin ni lolo ang iniinom nito. Baka kapag nagtanong pa ako, humaba lang ang usapan.

Nakalimutan kong may tinapay pala ako sa taas. Inalok ko siya ngunit tumanggi at hindi ko na pinilit pa.

Humina ang ulan at nagpasya na siyang umalis.

"San na po kayo pupunta lo?"

"Uuwi na siguro ako sa amin."

"Lo, subukan kaya ulit nating puntahan yung bahay ng anak niyo. Baka hindi lang po kayo narinig o napansin sa lakas ng ulan."

Napilitang umoo si lolo Rene kasunod ng akbay ko sa kanya. Itinuro niya ang daan at ramdam kong nagbabakasakali rin siya.

Pilit iwinawasiwas ng hangin ang aming payong kaya binilisan namin ang paglalakad. Pagkarating sa lugar ay agad-agad kong kinatok ang pintuan ng bahay. Walang sumagot at wala rin akong narinig na ingay sa loob. Sinubukan kong muli at nilakasan nang biglang may mga yapak sa sahig.

"Ano po iyon?" sabi ng mama katabi ang isang bata.

Napasarap ata ang tulog nila at mistulang kagigising lang nila. (Hindi kaya nagising ko sila?)

"Si lolo Rene po."

Nakita ng mama at ng bata ang matanda sa likuran ko. Nagulat sila. Pinapasok kami at niyakap ng kanyang apo si lolo.

Kinuwento ko ang nangyari sa matanda.

"Kami ang bumibisita sa kanya kasi ayaw naming bumyahe pa siya. Alam mo na, mahina na ang kanilang katawan."

Gumaan ang pakiramdam ko. Akala ko kasi, may hindi maganda sa relasyon ng mag-anak kay lolo Rene. 'Yun pala, gusto lang talaga ni lolo na surpresahin ang apo at ang kanyang anak.

Hindi nagtagal ay nagpaalam na rin ako.
***

photo from Shootandpost.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Gilas Pilipinas and Philippine Basketball

Gilas Pilipinas
I do not play basketball, but I love this game so much.

As a child, basketball was nothing. I see my kuya wear his jersey and play basketball on different courts, but it did not ever interest me. Later, when I was already in Isabela, friends introduced the game to me and the basic rules which I consider harder to understand than the lessons in school. I played several times, but I was not really into it; my height being the biggest hindrance.

The last time I played it, as far as I can remember, was last May with the youth in our church. I was challenged, and I agreed, not because I couldn't say no but because I want to enjoy the time.

Today, our own Gilas has even made me love and appreciate the game more. It was in the 70s when we were topping basketball in Asia and even playing in the World Championships. However, as years passed, we were outlasted by our counterparts. We declined, but the good thing is, we never let go. Filipinos embraced the game since the beginning, and we never lose hope seeing our country regain its lost glory. August 10, 2013 is now recorded in the Philippine timeline as the Philippine team made it to the FIBA Asia Final Four, defeated South Korea on the way, and reached the championship match against an undefeated Iranian team.

But no matter what happens on the finals -winning, of course, will put the icing on the cake, we're now qualified to the 2014 FIBA World Cup which will be held in Spain. Yes, after years of hoping and trials, we made it again.

Maybe it's too early yet to celebrate, but I am now assuming the Philippines will defend Iran today. It is not impossible for us to achieve this feat. We can, and we will do it on our own court with the support of our whole crowd.

Thank you Gilas, coach Chot and everyone who deserves this credit.  You made us prouder Filipino fans. You placed Philippine Basketball on the pedestal. Mabuhay!

"It’s The Heart Of The Filipino." -Marcus Douthit, national team
***

Photo is lifted from the Smart Gilas Pilipinas 2.0 Facebook page.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Eggs

It was a pleasant morning and there's just a lot of things to do. My cousin Vincent called me to accompany him. 

We went to their kalapaw and enjoyed the lovely view of Karayan Laud (a river). We sat under a damurtis [camachile] and exchanged some jokes.

The weather became hotter so we tried to roam in their kalapaw. We saw that there were ripe sineguelas already. He climbed and gathered some of them. The kalapaw was unorganized, but it is a decent nipa hut good for resting. So we stayed there until we got bored and decided to go back to the sitio.

As we followed the trail we made earlier, we noticed a small camachile tree and a nest on its center. We got curious and pulled the nest. There were eggs on it - five white maya eggs. As much as we wanted to bring them home, we left them on the lower part of the tree so we can easily get them the second time. We hurried home for lunch.

I ate at Tita Sinang, again. I enjoyed eating with their company. I used to eat there when I'm too lazy to go to our house. Mother would always expect that when I did not go home for lunch, I previously had it from another house. Well, I don't feel any shyness or doubt when they offer me lunches or even dinners. That's not in my vocabulary BEFORE.

After lunch, we rested and went back to check the eggs. We frolicked on the bed of the river and even kicked our feet on the sand. Excited as we were, we jumped into the tree to get the egg, bring them home and boast them to our friends.

Then...

Friday, August 2, 2013

How Do I Feel Being Filipino

For me, being Filipino is loving my country and my people. It does not need a lot of explanation.

I do not need to describe how I look just to say I belong to the Malayan race, that my blood is that of the great heroes of this country, and that I know how to speak Tagalog and Ilocano, my region's language. They are but a shallow definition of what being Filipino is and what a Filipino should know.

I know that a lot of you would disagree if I, in your place would define your being Filipino, and I am sure if not all, some would strongly disagree if I say Filipinos are more regionalistic than nationalistic. But, regardless of our indifference and personal choice, our being Filipino is a blessing. We were born in a beautiful country, and we are given a very diverse and rich culture.

Honestly, at the end of the day, one does not take anything I mentioned above to be Filipino because being one is felt in the heart. It is in our every joy and sorrow. It is in our very core. It is a part of our existence people cannot just take from us.