Sunday, August 31, 2008


Lately, I am noticing myself so uninspired and just trying to exist. My creativity seems like caught in a quagmire of everyday life. At times, I felt trapped in a tragedy of middle class America which include working, paying your bills, looking forward to weekends and retirement then die. You can add getting married, having children, living in suburbia, and owning 2 cars. I know lots of people will be happy to have that life. I should not be complaining. At least, I have a job, a home and good husband.

For last couple of weeks, I have been dreaming of Philippines. Well, not exactly Philippines but everything seems like Philippines. I was listening one Saturday to Rick Steves, the travel guru in National Public Radio. In that particular program, he and his Italian guest were discussing about Sicily. That night I had a dream that I was on a bus trip in Sicily but the surroundings looked like we were in Cubao with its dilapidated shanties, sari-sari store, young coconut (buko) stand and a McDonald's. The only Italians in my dream were the policemen eating pasta at McDonald's. Then, the other night I dreamt of trying to catch a bus to go somewhere I don't remember. In my dream, I was outside Garden Village, the place where I grew up, and then this big camper bus driven by an American woman stopped and let me on. There, I found my sister and our school bus seatmate back when we were in elementary. Through the bus windows, I could see mountains like the ones in Rocky Mountain National Park. The woman drove a short distance and when we got to Phase 3 of Garden Village, she stopped and asked us to get out. Then, I realized, we did not really need to hitch-hike because I have a car and I can drive. Then I woke up feeling relieved.

I probably miss the Philippines. But what is there for me? Probably nothing! Most of the time I romanticize living in the Philippines. The thought of white sand beaches, coconut and mango trees, tropical fruits, sampaguita, warm rainy days and Filipino foods is enough for me to feel homesick. After eleven years, I, sometimes, forget the reality of living in the Philippines -- pollution in Manila, difficulty in landing a job, poverty, government corruption, traffic, etc. Friends and family from home tell me repeatedly how lucky I am to be here and that I am in a greener pasture. I feel lucky and I try not to take what I have for granted. However, inside of me, there is this urge to do more and to learn more. Of what? I don't know. The sad thing is I don't know myself. Did I lose myself in this quagmire called middle-class America?

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