Saturday, December 6, 2008

Ordinary Days

When we were young, we found it boring to wake up for another usual day. Nothing to do, no gimmicks, no assignment, no work or even play. Just simply a lazy day. But today, when you are working and study at the same time, that ordinary lazy day become a luxury. And I reward myself again with that kind of luxury.

Yesterday, I was supposedly attending my Macroeconomics class for my graduate studies but I requested my sister to help me washed my clothes instead. We were having simple joyful moments. Exchanging our different experiences and outdoor adventures. Planning for our next gigz with family and even plans for life. It's funny to think that we still do the washing until now even here in Davao. I really like to wash clothes and she too. When we were kids, we altogether happily washed our clothes at our "poso" (mechanical water pump). Yup, life really took us further but those simple things will surely give us joy and will make us feel the essence of being a human.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Another Wonderful Day!

I woke up around 6.30 in the morning and eventhough I must be early at school, I still spent some time meditating and enjoying the serenity the morning has to offer. Again, I was late at school by 15 minutes and the three girls were somehow became irritated of my late presence. Peace girls. ;-) I immediately proceed to the faculty room to get the necessary papers for their competition. It was locked so I have to return to the guard's post to get the key and another same route. It was already so disturbing to call Manong Nante to drive us going to DCWD Training Center instead we rode on a non-aircon Holiday taxi going to Madapo Hills. The orientation already started and there were still few schools who were waited to arrive so it's not that shameful anymore. But still it must not be the attitude. We must always come on time.

There we were participating the 5th Pi-che Chemistry Olympiad. It was the first time of Davao Christian High School I think to join such competition. Sharmain, Keisha and Charisse represented the reputable school. I told the girls to pray before the competition. And they did. That's how Davao Christian being separated from other schools, instilling to the students thegood Christian values.

...(my throat is not ok right now, I have to leave). Must continue next time.

Guesting at ABS-CBN's DXAB 1296,
signing papers for BOR meeting,

What a wonderful day!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Facing with the same Questions

Gee** (I like to write “gosh” but it’s corny to read!) but things seem coming back. “What is happening to me?” is the same question I am asking to myself for six years now. Headless chicken may I, but I can’t help myself thinking of what I am going to do with my life.

And it’s not really a joke. Being confronted by this very crucial question, it really disturbs me a lot. My work is affected. My relationship with my friends is affected. My attitude towards anything is affected. My life is affected. I am already 25 and I thought that things are gonna be okay; got a job, having graduate studies, been adventuring to new places and meeting new people, nice family and simple home. It seems everything is at good hands. What else can I ask for?

Well, the mystery lies in there. It seems that I wanted more, higher, bigger something. What is that something? When I was reading post in my simple six-year old journal, I already asked and even answered this question since then. What I noticed is that my answers are changing. New things came along and boom!... my mind changed. I am referring to the decision of what to do; my goal, my purpose, my life ahead!

Am I too insecure with my life? Am I neglecting my blessings that our dear Lord has given to me? Am I too ambitious? Or am I simply stupid?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Water and Sanitation for Life’s Preservation

Water is life. This is a very important fact that most of the young generations neglect today. We all know it is. Can you think of situations where we can survive without using water? I bet you can’t because water is the basic element, a vital necessity of life. It is our lifeline that baths us and feeds us. We don’t have to be told how important water is to our existence. It is the very essence of life.

As life becomes more complex, water becomes more important than ever before. Everyday, it plays different roles to sustain our needs. We use water as we cook, as we wash our clothes, as we take our baths, as we clean any surface and most significantly as we drink to nourish ourselves.

However, water also has a life of its own- a life which when affected by us, changes its course of action. Nowadays, we are abusing this “life.” It is getting scarce, being contaminated and usually being wasted in not so important entities. It seems that we do not deem water great enough to regard it with care.

In the onslaught of industrial development and rapid population increase, this is exerting greater demand on water resources of the country. With a population of about 90 million and still growing, fast pace urbanization and industrialization reduce quality of Philippine waters. These economic activities decrease the number of bodies of water by the depletion of forests that protects the watersheds. If we have a lot of people it means that more people are consuming water for their food, and other necessities.

Along with clean water, one vital factor to consider in preserving this precious life of ours is proper sanitation. Inadequate sanitation is another serious problem that our country faces today such as lack of toilets among poor residents, scarce water supply, and contaminated ground water sources. Making use of unsanitary open pit toilets in country areas, public toilets that are not maintained or used properly because of lack of water are common practices in the Philippines.

Our country struggles to meet the water supply and to provide adequate sanitation. Children are dying because of water-borne diseases. There are millions of people suffering not because they want to, but because they have no choice about it. We have become hostages of our own actions. As water is important support to life, it is also the easiest carrier of different diseases like cholera, diarrhea, typhoid, hepatitis and the like. Untreated wastewater affects our health by spreading disease-causing bacteria and viruses, making water unfit for drinking and recreational use, threatening biodiversity and deteriorates overall the quality of life.

Some people have gotten used to the thought that water is always there so why brother using it wisely? With all this bone-tickling problems, we must be alarmed as early as now for the reasons that might eventually seize it away from us. We are slowly losing the important thing that helps us to survive. There are no other culprits for this excruciating phenomenon that we all abhor but we humans ourselves. It is pretty obvious and we don’t have to calculate its devastating effects. Studies have been conducted to determine it. The statistics prove it. Have we ever thought of how we could live in this pathetic situation?

To preserve life, clean water is needed. There are still ways to preserve this precious gift from our Creator. We can still make difference. As we are the destroyers of our water, we must also be its nurse. I strongly believe that we can still overcome it. We still have plenty of opportunities to improve this lamentable situation of water and sanitation in our country. We are endowed with natural resources, including water and I strongly believe in our capabilities in looking for ways to solve this.

First of all, government intervention is of great importance. As the most powerful organization in the country, it can make a big difference. Enacting laws in protecting our watersheds, setting standards for good water quality in water systems in the country, providing decent jobs to our people so that our people will have decent homes and as we all know a decent home has adequate sanitation. We can alleviate poverty through better health and sanitation conditions. Provision of facilities to enhance better sanitation should be done. Subsidize on these things if possible. Improving sanitation is known to have significant beneficial impact on health both on households and across communities. Waste management should be strictly imposed. Ambitious as it is but as I see it, it is a must. We need strong political will in implementing all of these in collaboration with different sectors of society.

Along with this is a massive information campaign to our fellow Filipinos. Both young and old must be properly educated about on how we can help in conserving water and in attaining clean environment. We must prepare our people in taking part of this enormous task.

Most importantly, we must put all of these into action. We must do our own part as responsible citizens. We do not have to be our country’s legislators to solve this problem. As ordinary citizens, we still have big roles in achieving a better society. Every person can plant trees so that we can have more trees which contribute a lot to the supply of clean water. We must start applying sanitary measures in our homes. We must be responsible in throwing our wastes in proper places to avoid pollution. Keeping our zone clean can help improve our confidence in doing such good service to our fellow citizens. We should make it a habit to turn off unused taps, moderate our use of water around the house such as shortening shower time and turning off the faucet when brushing your teeth, reuse water that could still be used, and fix leaking faucets. If all of us conserve water in our own simple ways, our little efforts would sum up and would make a large impact concerning the preservation of our water.

Our simple actions affect the whole society. We must know how to conserve for the next generations which are yet to come. We must wake up, do something for all the sustenance water had given, is giving and will be giving to us. Let us help our world conserve this life-giving necessity. After all, water and sanitation lead us to full, healthy, and productive life.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I don't know but I like to deviate in some of my daily routines... For 2nd week now, I always come to school late... very late actually. At my DTR, my time ins are usually almost 10 o'clock. And I tell you, I really have no regrets in all of those. And I don't want to think also that I violated the school rules and I know that students should NOT do the same.

The primary reason is that I make it a reward to myself. For more than a year already, I usually wake up very early, without breakfast, going to school and facilitate the first period. I already neglected what is Davao City at morning. Though our salaries will be automatically deducted with every minute late, I rather not to calculate the cost monetarily.

Due to the changes of facilitating schedules in 2nd half of the school year, I am assigned now to facilitate the last period of the morning subjects.. MATH 4. Because of this, I indulged myself of staying at bed as late as 8 o'clock in the morning! I tried not to rush every morning and of course to take my breakfast already. I usually eat at Blue Carabao in Obrero. Aside from proximity of this place in my bhaus and at my workplace, the food here is simply very very good! I really like theri rice and breakfast meals. Enjoy their longanisa, corned beef, scrambled egg, fried chicken and the one tht you should not miss (even at breakfast) their soup!

I like walking under the mild heat of the sun in the morning... It really refreshes me. I learn to appreciate more the bustling city of Davao at these hours. People riding at jeepneys, taxis, or their own cars going to work. When I arrived at school, I noticed that I feel more "ganado" to do my work...checking of papers and reading! ;-)

Sometimes, (in my opinion only) it's good to deviate in your usual routine to make life more colorful. Breaking your usual daily schedules will make you realize that life is that not tiring at all. We must also learn to see the other side of this beautiful world.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


The first quarter of the school-year 2008-2009 has just ended. Just like my fellow teachers, I am excited for this another 9 months of tough work ahead. Another year of molding young minds and influencing their personalities.

When I was hired in Davao Christian high School July last year, I was to teach only economics to fourth year high school students since I applied for that position. During the middle of the school year, the English teacher resigned and the job should be filled immediately. To solve it, our 1st year social studies teacher was asked to assume the job since she is really an English teacher. The problem then was passed to the social studies group. It’s in the middle of the school year and even for a reputable school like Davao Christian, hiring teachers is not that easy. Our coordinator asked me if I’m willing to teach Philippine history. All I can remember is that I hesitantly said yes. It was a total risk since I’m not an secondary education degree holder.

The job was not that easy. For a school adopting a parallel independent learning system wherein your three classes are conducted simultaneously, you must be very creative, time-efficient and adventurous in your class. Throughout the remaining five months, I discovered new things, new ideas, and new hopes in this ill-rotten country. For the past five months, I thoroughly enjoyed my job.

I discovered great ideas from my 13 year-old students. I tried to convince them that we are lucky enough to have our freedom when we were born. Though we are already free today, there are still a lot of things to fight for in this country. I asked them, “What revolution are you going to fight for the Philippines today?” It is really gratifying to hear hopeful things from them. One student answered, “My revolution as a student will be for the aid of children who need education. Education is important to the lives of the Filipinos. It is primarily a training of one’s intellect and capacity to conduct his/her own self properly.” This answer struck me because I think it is an important thing to pay attention. Many of our political leaders pride themselves as product of the best universities in the country, yet these are the same politicians who face different trials and charges of fraud, corruption and controversies in the government. Does this mean our academic institutions failed to guard the morality of the Filipinos?

Around 40% of my students answered they are going to fight against graft and corruption in the government. It’s impressive since they are aware of the most pressing problem in our society today. It is also a very sad thing to know that as young as they are it is already the situation they observed in the country. Is this how obvious the problem in the Philippine society today or are we beginning to accept the notion that the government should always be corrupt?

Whenever somebody asks me, “What is your job?” I will proudly answer I’m a teacher, a high school teacher. “What subjects are you handling?” I am also proud to say I’m teaching economics and history… Philippine history. Some of the reactions are sometimes insulting but I don’t have to defend and elaborate my reasons to them. Deep within, I know that there are more valuable reasons why history is important. It’s more than just the historic past. It’s more than those dead people and significant dates and unforgettable places. It’s about investigating and evaluating historical events to determine the relevance of past to the current situation of Philippine society. It’s all about understanding why our society today is the way it is.

This summer, I taught enrichment classes in math. My students always asked if I have plans of going abroad so that I can earn a better salary to have a good life… I throw the question back to them, “Why should I?” I already have a life here. I’m working in a Christian community, living in a beautiful, prosperous and peaceful city, working with individuals who are looking forward for the goodness of everybody, I got friends from all over, I enjoy the food and weather here, I love the places to visit and I love to stretch the minds of young Filipinos… Though of course problems arise (that is actually rising wherever you are in the world) but as of now, I’m living a happy life. But I would like to quote the very reason I have to that question from my fourth year student. The final question in their final exam was that: “Do you think that it is appropriate for the students from developing countries like the Philippines, to stay in Industrially Advanced Countries (IAC) to work and build careers? Support your answer.”

Marie Go answered, “No, because if these students – who have no doubt graduated college and high literacy/educational status – work in Industrially Advanced Countries, they would be leaving their nation to the mercy of incompetent, uneducated, unskilled people. If they render/sell their skills to other developed nations, those nations will keep on growing economically, while their own nation will suffer and lag behind.

All these students want high-paying jobs, they must first realize that if they sacrifice enough for their motherland, they will help the economy rise, and pretty soon they’ll have the high-salary jobs they so desperately want. Not only that, but they’ll be helping millions of fellow citizens, and the country too.”

I never thought teaching is this meaningful endeavor. Every time I read the answers and hear the gratitude of my students for what they have learned, I can’t measure it with money and not even utils (in economics, the unit of measurement for satisfaction)… It’s priceless.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Amazing Grace!

I turned 25 years old two weeks ago. And it was a wonderful week long celebration! I really thanked GOD for the life HE has given me. It is really amazing to live this life.. Experiences, emotions, places, family, friends, food, technologies, etc... Out of nowhere, we were born and given a chance to exist. Incredible! Though I was not able to celebrate it as it should have be, I'm still very thankful to GOD for the people He has given in my life! Thank you..., thank you..., thank you...! ;-)

Last week, our community was asked to join the SingOlympics '08 of the Singles for Christ Davao Chapter. There are four events, Acoustic Band, Acapella, Pop Dance and GAG. I volunteered to join the acapella. We met last monday(june 26). Knowing each other, simple voice lessons, and familiarizing the song. Mam Anne was our organizer. The following night, Mam Anne was not around and we're not that close first with the group members. I just lead a bit for guidance so that everyone will not be bored. And everybody participated well and bro yak2x showed his talent in teaching music. He was really amazing.. He knows how to make a voicing with that song. By the way we chose "Stand Up for Love" by Destiny's Child as our piece. The song itself is very very good. We begun assigning members as tenor, base and soprano. On the following night, alto was added. The competition was just 3 nights away and we're not done yet. We were even not able to memorize the song still. But the group was hopeful and still cooperated. We revised some parts and bro yak2x really showed his prowess in interpreting and arranging songs. He strictly examine our voices and tones. He's able to notice such minute mistakes, the flats and the sharps! Thursday, we decided that our attire would be different dresses representing different professions and it just fit for an inspirational song like "Stand up for Love." Friday, we're worried a bit since we still have our CLP so our practiced was delayed for 3 hours. Though it was late as 10 in the evening we still had our practice, this time at MTS. We finished everything - the voicing, the choreography, the facial expressions - as late as 1 in the morning! And it is not good for the singers to stay late as that in an open area. The coldness will just ruin your voice. Though tired, we had fun practicing and the warmness of the company of each other.

Finally, Saturday came (and that was actually yesterday)! We had agreed that we are going to meet at NCCC Mall. But since I got a little probs enrolling at the graduate school, I proceeded directly to Philippine Women's College of Davao. It was my first time to be there and I like the school. It is one of the oldest academic institutions in Davao City. It turned 55 years old this year.
The venue was very small, very far from what I expected. Our group still had our practice since we arrived there early. Some of us became nervous already and forgot our lines and tunes. But the power of prayer is very strong that GOD guide us always. We familiarized the stage and had our dress rehearsals. We got excited and tensed as the program started. We were the second group to present in acapella and the crowd became silent as we started to sing. Due to the rehearsals we've made at the venue itself, we found ourselves comfortably singing our piece. I was able to have the presence of mind that time and was able to remember all the notes, all the entrance, timing and the lyrics. Our costume was just so fantastic and portrayed and essence of the song. Moises impressed the audience with his military suit. I wore the ever boring longsleeves with tie ha ha ha ha ha! Anton was flashy with his red fireman suit. There's a teacher and an office girl. Ate Jam - the lead singer- was fabulous in her Muslim dress. Shane wore the white gown of doctors while Cielo was very chic in her green casual dress. Cianne was so cool in an Avril Lavigne outfit. And our conductor was hip in his polo shirt with a tube and a working hat. You know what person he's portraying. I saw an eager and somehow convinced audience. After almost five minutes of their silence, the crowd burst into happiness and clap their hands loudly at a longtime. We were so happy that we are able to perform and present it well. The happiness is immeasurable... The gratitude is uplifting... The grace is amazing!

We won the competition!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Summer Pahabol!

Today we really had a great time unwinding from the hustle and bustle city life. Camiguin may be calcelled but we spent the day just like a real summer escapade.

The outing was unique... We're only seven but hei... we exclusively occupy the place. It's a good thing there is a nice place to relax and enjoy in my neighboorhood. Totally kapitbahay! Ha ha ha ha ha. The place used to be our playground then and now it is converted into a resthouse by a prominent family here in Tagum who bought the area. They are all doctors and since they're always busy, they allow people to use their pool and the place as a whole. Of course, it is with pay. But hei, it is very affordable for a place like that and the good thing is... it is exclusive!

Mam Jocy, Mam Grace, Dom Ong and Peter Y arrived from Davao around 11 o'clock in the morning. Danica and his brother followed in just few minutes since they lived here in Tagum. We had little Videoke concert as Dom Ong was very eager to sing. Lunch followed and I called my sister and Tatay to join us. The food were too simple... grilled Barilison, "bam-i" (LOL!), lechon manok, Buko Salad (I personally got the buko from our only coconut tree... Ha ha ha ha ha), "nilung-ag na Kamote at Saging", watermelon and bread. That was also a partial celebration of my upcoming twenteen-2* birthday!(LOLz!).

After that, we sang again and hei Danica has a very soft voice. It's very comforting to hear. And it's pool time. The shower was cool that will really make you stay in there.The pool is just a medium size swimming pool. It is very refreshing to view and bathe in it since it is surrounded by colorful ornamental and flowering plants, palm trees, and citrus trees. It is really a relaxing atmosphere since it's not crowded. Calm, quiet and refreshing... The manmade waterfalls at the other end of the pool adds drama to the awesome scenery. We really had a great afternoon... Chatting, swimming and eating!

We then headed to Danica's house just a tricycle ride from our's. Their garden was so cool since it is situated in their roof top. Fresh wind blew but it was actually an indication of a heavy rain coming. We then took our sumptuous early dinner since the visitors were still having respective affairs this evening. It was a perfect treat for a body exhausted with fun and swimming. Heavy rain really poured and we waited untill it calmed down and we thanked the host and go home.

It was really a fantastic day! For those who did not enjoy their summer vacation yet, you can still make it. Eventhough how simple it is as long as you're having fun and relieved... Your summer is not pale anymore!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Great Events!

Too long since the last post... It's been for ages already but so many things happened actually that kept me busy.

First was that, I had my first graduation ceremony at Davao Christian High. It was a simple program and it was very touching to see my students closing their high school years.

The seniors night followed on the next day. It was held at the famous Waterfront Insular Hotel in Lanang. I like the setting though the hall did not impress me much. Very plain arrangement and decoration. The carpet saved the looks of the place. It was thick and fashionable. I was amazed seeing the students dressed in their very stylistic gowns and tux. I gave a short speech as an advice for them as they are going to face a new chapter in their lives. The guys of course wanted to have a drink.. and who else that was so eager for it. Paolo Tan of course... he ordered Bloody Mary for both of us at the bar of the hotel. There was a band and the guys danced! Just imagine the scene. Well, they deserved such celebration. We then hop the city looking for a place for more celebration and we found Gabbie's place. Drunk and happy, we then check-in at Sequoia Inn, the 15 of us. It was a memorable night.

After a very tiring but a very rewarding job, the teachers had an outing at Wow Kiss Beach Resort at Sta. Maria, Davao del Sur. It's my first time to have fellowship with them outside the school. We stayed there for two days and I was really having fun with the sea and the shore. Shore, because I was the the shoreline early morning on our second day there because I can't afford to see that such awesome scenery will be destructed by the trashes caused by the heavy rains during the previous night. It was a worthy job!

Thank GOD that HE gave me this very rare opportunity to teach summer classes at Davao Christian High. I teach Math to the incoming freshmen and those who fail in Intermediate Algebra. Wooooow.... It was a tough job. It's really difficult to teach Math! Anyway, I learned a lot from their attitudes. How to handle them and how to deal with them.

So... three more days to go and the summer class will going to end. Hopefully, I can have my vacation next week.

So that's it! A summer well spent so far! ;-)

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The clash!

I have just been to my student's residence in Monteverde St., attending his 17th birthday. The food were tempting and yes! Delicious. We drink green label 15 years - unfortunately, I forgot the brand, Baileys and Novelino red wine. The group really had fun since most of them were girls and first timers! Ha ha ha ha ha ha. They really have a posh house - believe it or not - with elivator and well furnished rooms and places. And I really like his bedroom - very spacious and comfortable with big plasma Samsung TV and Wi-Fi. The comfort room has transparent bath corner. Everything is well organized.

Late afternoon yesterday, we played paintball at MTS untill evening and the heavy rain poured just after we played. We have no choice but to run going to Penong's under the pouring water from the sky to have a dinner. We were so wet but we really had fun. Our meal was sumptuos as it was served with hot soup and unlimited rice. Plus a good service, it was the best treat with a very cold and wet weather.

I experienced and enjoyed these comfortable and yeah, expensive lifestyle when I start teaching at one of the exclusive high schools here in Davao. Growing up in a poor family and community, I really experienced culture shock at first since I can't really believe that they are that rich - literally. Talking about their vacations abroad, eating at the high end restaurants, wearing those "branded" clothes and using those latest gadgets made me realized that there is really a world like this in the Philippines.

Before I was hired as an Economics teacher, I worked at the NGO for a research regarding the impacts of the Filipino overseas workers to the lives of their families here in Davao. There I witnessed the different social status of the Filipinos and encountered so many people. Some will simply reject us thinking that we were impostors and may rob them. Some were very warm hoping that we can greatly help uplift their very sad situations.

Two worlds apart. I am still thinking why did GOD put me in this school. Maybe to give me some chance to witness the life of comfort for I grew up in a bit deprived community. Or maybe to be a connection for between this two differnt worlds since many of my students don't give a damn of what's happening outside their very palatial world. Whatever the reason may be, I enjoyed teaching at Davao Christian for I was able to experience the real Christian community. I felt the worth as human being. To teach, to influence and to mold young minds. Awaken them about the realities and ironies of this world which they were very eager to learn. Helping them discover the person they are ought to be.

I am living between this two contrasting worlds and it is very difficult to be clashed sometimes. The challenge is to lessen the gap of this two distant worlds. And I know it's not easy - and I think the emmissary for both worlds must rise!