Category Archives: Philippines


About 3 years ago the Philippines was hit by a terrible typhoon (you can read about an old blog I wrote about that here) that brought about the most flood water that I have ever experienced in my life. The streets were so deep in flood water that rescuers had to use boats to get to the top of houses where most of the residents stayed and waited. Our whole house was totally submerged. Unprepared, we weren’t able to save anything but the lives of the ones who were currently in the house when the flood waters came.

It’s now happening again. No typhoon this time, but the torrential downpour and the unending rainfall has accumulated more rain water than the previous typhoon that besieged my country… and painfully my family.

It’s agonizing to be so far away, safe, dry, and comfortable when I know my family has to sleep in somebody else’s bed, if they even sleep at all with the rains still falling. I feel so helpless.

I know they are safe, everyone’s accounted for. The house and everything else that were flooded are just material things that can be replaced or fixed.  I just wish I could be there for my family; to hold their hands for strength, to make the family whole in facing yet another wrinkle.

I just take comfort in the fact that my family is resilient and strong in both spirit and faith. Nothing fazes them and I know that this too will be just another trial that they will overcome.

Happy Halloween!!!

We didn’t use to celebrate Halloween in the Philippines, but being an adaptable country and influenced by western cultures, the holiday has slowly been introduced into our yearly traditions. Now, parents can dress their kids up and bring them to work to go trick or treating in the office or malls; some villages and subdivisions close streets to accommodate the drove of kids going house to house for sweets; some schools hold parties where kids can come in their costumes for some fun; and not to forget the costume parties everywhere.

Halloween is a time for fun and merriment, but ultimately the eve of October 31st into November 1st is a day to remember our dead. November 1st is All Saints Day, while November 2nd is All Souls’ Day. It is during these days that we go to the cemeteries to visit and pray for our dearly departed loved ones. It’s fun too because it sometimes turns into a family reunion.

“Undas” or All Saints’ Day (borrowed from the net, thanks to Google)

So again for another year I will be praying for them from my part of the world. They will all hear me in heaven anyway.


Passport renewal…

Every weekend we make it a point to plan stuff that would include the babies, well, we try to as much as we can anyway. Today is one of those days that we failed.

We had to leave the babies to have our Philippine passports renewed at the Philippine-Canadian Centre of Manitoba. An appointment we CANNOT miss because if we don’t do this now, we would have to fly all the way to Toronto to have them renewed. Good thing the Philippine Consulate General of Toronto is having an outreach program here in Winnipeg so all Filipinos who needs to have their passports renewed can have it done during the 3 days that they are here.

Filipinos make up 6% of Winnipeg’s total population and is considered the fastest growing minority group. That’s about 38,155 Pinoys in Winnipeg alone, so imagine if even 1/10th of that went to PCCM to have their passports renewed! Well, I don’t think it was that much, but it was still a lot that it took us 4 hours to finish everything. But at least it’s over and done with. Only thing is we can’t go anywhere for 3 months coz we don’t have our passports yet. Oh well, I guess that’s more time spending with the babies then.

Pinoy Nga Naman…

Dahil lagi nalang kasi ang mga nami-miss ko sa bayan ko ang naiisip ko kaya lalo akong nalulungkot sa aking pagkalayo. Ano naman kaya kung ang mga hindi ko nami-miss ang pagtuonan ko ng pansin…

Dito sa Winnipeg, maliliit ang kalsada, pero and tinatawag nilang “traffic” ay ang ilang minuto kang usad pagong sa daan. Sa Pilipinas, ang “traffic” ay ilang oras kang hindi gumagalaw sa edsa. Para ka makarating sa patutunguhan mo, ilang minuto ka pang makakatulog sa kotse o sa bus at sa pag gising mo andun ka pa din.

Kahit noong hindi pa ako nakakarating dito sa Canada, ayoko nang lumalabas ng kwarto dahil sa tindi ng init sa labas. Ano pa kaya ngayong sanay na ako sa lamig. Baka pag umuwi ako malusaw na ako sa init.

Pag bumabyahe kme sa kalsada dito, tinitignan ko mga tambutso ng mga sasakyan. Umuusok sila dahil malamig sa labas at mainit ang binubuga ng tambutso. Pero wala akong nakitang sasakyan na maitim ang usok. Sa Pilipinas, kahit siguro tanggalin mo lahat ng mga pribadong sasakyan sa kalsada, mausok pa din dahil sa mga bus, jeep at fx na puro itim ang binubuga ng tambutso. Parang walang silbi ang “no smoke belching campaign” na inilabas ng gobyerno ilang taon na ang nakalipas dahil mas madami pa ring smoke belcher sa hindi.

At hindi lang maduming hangin ang problema natin, kung titingin ka sa paligid, parang isang malaking basurahan ang kalsada natin. Ang mga sapa at estero, barado na! Kaya naman tayo na o-ondoy e dahil wala nang madaluyan ang tubig!

At ang malaking ipinagtataka kong talaga ay bakit ba ang mga Pilipino pag nangibang bansa na ay parang mga anghel na hindi marunong lumabag sa batas? Bakit sa Pilipinas pag may nakita kang “Bawal magtapon ng basura dito” mas maraming mga naka tambak dito? Pag may nakita kang “Bawal tumawid, nakamamatay” parang nadodokleng ang mga pinoy at sige pa din ang tawid? Pero sa ibang bansa, di nila kayang hindi sumunod sa batas, mapa trapiko pa to o kahit sa pila sa mall, ang babait!

Baka nga pag ganito na ang nakasulat sumunod na mga Pinoy…

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Vizconde Massacred

I was reading all these stuff about the Vizconde massacre and Webb being aquitted on Facebook that it got me curious. Thought this case was closed already?

Well, since we don’t have TFC or any of the Filipino channels on our cable, I searched the web for some answers. And there it was, the case has yet to be solved coz apparently, Webb and the gang has been aquitted!

I don’t know what to say or feel about this. I wanted to keep an open mind about it but having been in highschool when the massacre happened to a girl who graduated from the same school I went to and not that much older than I was, was really disturbing for my young mind. And now, the people we all thought did the deed has been set free. That would say so much about our justice system.

Ok, so let’s say it really wasn’t him, what now? After 15 years, the Vizconde family still hasn’t found justice. How will the police ever start looking for the right people to put behind bars? How will they even prove it now when there’s no more semen sample for a DNA test and no credible witnesses? The family has been put to so much grief already, when will it end?

It’s just so sad…

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