Monday, October 30, 2006

POEA Nightmares

Been trying to get my employment pass to malaysia for the past two weeks but the nightmare called poea has been the bane of my adventures. A friend of mine once remarked that I havent seen beaurocratic red tape until I've gone through POEA. I thought LTO was the worse. Wala pala sa kalingkingan. Rude guards, changing rules (that keeps on changing on the whim of anyone), staff who do not bother to give you information that is right and a hotline that only accepts your calls at night. Twice I've been to POEA and twice I've come home empty handed. The first time I arrived at 7:45 only to find out that the office process only 30 papers for direct hirees in a day (last time i went they called 40 people). So two days later I decided to come in at 6am. I got in the office and waited for the registration list to come out. I told myself na if someone gets ahead of me pa ewan ko na lang. But it appears that the "Ewan ko na lang" took place for at 7:55 am I suddenly found out that they changed the venue of the line. I ran to the new venue and found myself fighting for the last two slots. Haay. Two hours later by some miracle I was called (i thought I was going to be called in the afternoon) only to find out another "line" was waiting upstairs. When I finally got to talk to the lady in window 6 (the start of the registration) I was told that I wasnt supposed to be there because my papers were not yet complete. As much as I wanted to scream my heart out and say "TSEHHHHH" I decided to just let it be. It was useless to argue with these people.

I do respect the process and I admire the tenacity of these workers to work in such a stressful environment. But at least sana show the people some respect. The domestic helpers were continuesly maligned and mistreated in line. Some guards would even shout at them. One time an argument ensued betweeen one applicant and the security supervisor. The security guy screamed at her and said "Magreklamo ka sa taas!!!" How rude! I don't think people who bring in millions of dollars in remitances every year, the people who virtually saved our country from total bankcruptcy should be treated that way.

How sad it is that in our own country we couldn't even treat our OFWs with enough dignity. How sad it is that the very agency that's supposed to take care of these heroes is the one who treats them like shit. Pano pa kaya sa ibang bansa? How do we tell other countries to treat our workers with respect when our very own couldn't even treat them with kindness?

My friend once remarked that the POEA just takes your money. Sad to say, I have to agree. Ang masakit dun, they take your money na, they treat you like shit pa.

I pity our country.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Thoughts on a Friday

On our way home from midnight dinner at something fishy, I accidentally lost my carpark pass inside my car.Technically it was not lost--it went in a tiny slit on the dashboard and disappeared inside the insides of my car. ouch!blooper. The guards had a hard time fathoming what happened and though it was a hassle they were really kind enough to just laugh at it. Of course I had to pay the lost parking fee but at least Luis and I got out of there after 10 minutes. That was almost 3am! Pao and Lou were already outside waiting for us. Usually I'd get so bad tripped when bloopers happen but last night, I just found myself laughing. I guess the lack of sleep and my aching back proved to be more tedious than losing a carpark pass. Blooper magnet talaga ata ako!

Eating at something fishy has somehow become a new tradition for me. For four times now we've been going there to eat after playing badminton at Greenpark. And last night Luis asked if we could eat again there. We had some really hard games and gutom na gutom na kami after. So despite my aching puson and tired body, we trekked to something fishy along with lou and pao. There we met up with Byo who went out on an extended lunch break.

Ella and I would often kid each other that I'm the perpetual fifth wheel since I'm the odd one out to Lou and Pao and Luis and Byo. But okay lang. They don't make me feel uncomfy naman. We're even planning a lunch out at Le Ching soon. Hmm... makahanap nga ng date!

I've laughed a lot and I've cried a whole lot over the past few days.. Call me crazy but I think it captures what life is all about.. Sometimes, there are tears, sometimes there are laughters.. And there are days when things just go with the flow.

chikara my tiny kitten is dying. she got run over by a car early this morning. =(

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Settling Scores

Why did things end up the way they are? I don't really know. Things were never really settled and I have no idea how to answer the question of where do we go now. I may appear nonchallant but it doesnt mean I don't hurt. It hurts like hell but I am trying to go on as best as I can. Life has to go on because no matter what I do or don't do, life will continue to go on.

Things are pretty hectic now with my departure. I try not to think of goodbyes. I used to want a big despedida party but now I don't feel like having one. I think I'd rather just fade in the sunset. No goodbyes. I don't want to get emotional I guess. Too much stress and I'm scared that if I get too emotional, my platelets will end up crashing. Last night the accident in the kitchen scared me back to reality. The bleeding would not stop and it finally jolted me back to the truth that my platelets are not normal again.

Two things I learned last night-- dignity and decorum. To maintain dignity is a gift you give yourself--I made a promise once and I found myself at a crossroad of whether to defend myself or keep the promise. I chose the latter. The only way I could defend myself was if I break the promise and I couldn't do that. As long as I breathe, I will not stop keeping that promise.(and i still believe you kept yours)

And always maintain graciousness. No matter what happens, decorum is important.

I am not perfect and I do apologize if I hurt anyone. I apologize if I could not be the better friend I was hoped to be. I apologize to the people who got entangled and I apologize to the ones that hurt the most.

But I will stand by my truth. Perhaps in the end that's all I've got. If I am believed then thank you. But if not, I understand.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Start of A New Chapter

I'm leaving soon. Sooner than I can imagine. Today it finally hit me that in a month's time I will be gone. My pass came through today. Sabi nga ni ella "totoo na talaga ito".

I have a month to say goodbye. Not too many people know about my departure yet. I'm sure many will be shocked. I've tried to keep the news as private as I can for the past few weeks. I guess I figured if I don't talk about it much, it would'nt sound so real yet. But now that reality has finally caught up with me, I have to finally face the truth that by christmas, I will be leaving an old life and saying hello to a totally new one.

How do you do say goodbye to everyone you've met and grew up with? How do you say goodbye to 29 years of bittersweet memories? I have absolutely no idea.

Ton asked me last saturday if I had any ill feelings towards anyone. I laughed and told her I don't. Seriously I would rather dwell on the good memories now. I only have a few weeks left. I don't want to ruin it with what Cha termed as "noise."

My HS barkada is planning a despedida for me and aries next week. We used to be ten all in all. When Aries and I leave in November the barkada will be cut down to 5. Beth is already in the US, Flo is in Singapore while Maybelle has long been MIA. P10 is truly spreading its wings.

I'm playing in my last badminton tournament this saturday. I'll be playing ladies doubles with Kei. After saturday, I don't know when I will get to play again competitively. I wish I could have one more tourney with Luis at mixed doubles (my most succesful partnership to date) but I don't think we'll have the opportunity to do so.

Change they say is for the better. I truly hope so.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Where you belong

An early morning conversation with cha via text got me thinking about where we both belong these days. I guess you could say we both have something in common. We're neither here nor completely there yet. Cha, for her part at least will finally get to "get there" on monday when she leaves for California. And though I will miss her terribly, I really am happy for my kumare/cubicle/bitching partner. We started out as classmates and accidentaly cubiclemates. Turned out we worshipped the same demigod in "Aragorn" and thus our mini altar inside our tiny cubicle/smokey mountain gilid was sealed for life. When cha moved out last June, our cubicle was never the same again. Now, my kumare is leaving for good. And I already miss her.

Belonging somewhere is every person's dream. I told cha how I kind of feel that I am in limbo these days--neither completely here nor completely there. Maybe this is part of the process of change I guess. Change can be really stressful. But change will always be for the better. I hope.

Sometimes I feel lost and I can't help but think of what I am getting myself into. And I wonder if I am making the right choice. I hope so.

I just thank God that I still have some sane friends who keep me from going totally nuts.