Thursday, November 30, 2006

Adventures of the New Expat

Survived Day 1 at the university. My head ached at the end of the day because of all the things that needed to be done but at least I got through it. I nearly thought of backing out the night before. After all how does one say goodbye to the comfort of home and hello to total uncertainty?

When I got to NAIA my eyes were all puffy and red. I breezed through POEA (for a change) but waited 1.5 hours to get myself checked in at the malaysian air counter.Fortunately I met Jordi there, a spaniard who was on a business trip to Manila. We were standing in line together and since it was taking forever we ended up chatting. The first thing he told me was I didnt look like a Filipina maid. I know it sounds insulting at first but it's a reality for most Filipina travellers. tanggapin na natin na karamihan sa tin umaalis to work as DH and caregivers. at walang masama dun So I took it in stride and striked up a conversation with him. He was quite friendly and by the time we checked in, we were friends. I think it was knowing that there was someone who actually buys a telephone directory (yung yellow pages ha!) that made me feel at home with him. hehehe.

Inside the airport we joked around while going through immigration. True to form may blooper pa din ako. Pumila ako sa men's line ng security. hahaha. He treated me at the airport snackbar and we chatted some more. He travelled a lot so he was used to airport life.

I thought it was goodbye for us when it was already boarding coz we were seated 10 rows apart.It sounded so abrupt as I was just getting used to having a new friend.So I felt kinda sad but what can we do right? But since ms. friendship ako, nagpalipat ako ng chair sa tabi niya. Pakapalan ito ng face sa stewardess. So I moved. Jordi got my bag from my original seat and couldn't believe that I was able to carry that much weight. Nagpayoff din pala ang gym at weights.

We chatted the entire 3hrs 45minutes of the flight. Parang naglife history activity kami ng psych testing. hehehe. We compared notes on the common words in spanish and filipino, talked about tolkien and lord of the rings, watched the sunset from the plane and admired the clouds. It was fun. We had a lot of things in common both in interests and experiences. It was kind of way too coincidental that we met. Even our family backgrounds were almost similar. The Filipinos seating around us were curious I guess coz they kept giving us strange glances. Sabagay gwapo yung katabi ko eh.hahaha. I even got to drink beer on board the plane. We debated on which beer was better and how we both end up taking care of friends who end up dead drunk.I had a great time. But most of all, it kept my mind from the feeling of loneliness. And it gave me hope that I'd be okay in this strange country.

I hesistantly said goodbye to my new friend at the airport after the university driver came and picked me up. He offered to bring my bag to the car but my driver said it was okay. So Jordi left in a cab bound for KL and I went to my hotel at Equatorial bangi, a kingdom faraway. We promised to keep in touch. I hope so. I think that was the best plane ride ever of my life.

The next day was day 1 at work. Spent the morning figuring out my id cards, getting my passwords, and getting a phone installed in my room. I now have a local of my own! wow! my room is still bare except for a pc, a printer and my phone (which I installed myself) along with three books (persuasion by jane austen, The alchemist by paolo coelho, and an angel book courtesy of luis and byo) and a bunch of papers. The driver brought me to a local grocery in the afternoon to get my supplies of junkfood.

By the time I got home I was having a migraine. I think the spicy food for lunch did me in. Not to mention that I ate so late. Buti na lang ves and mommy called. I fell asleep and nearly didn't hear the call of my other friend Gautam. He and I met last July here so it was nice hearing from him again.

So what happens next for this adventurous lola?... search for a house. Two options-- live in campus (FREE) but live a hermit life or rent a place somewhere and figure out how to get here.

Have I told anyone that nottingham is right smack in the middle of a mountain in the middle of nowhere? Parang nasa bagiuo ako. at walang public.magaling!

Till the next adventure


Anonymous said...

O diba mare! Bait talaga ni Lord... he made sure na hindi ka malungkot sa byahe mo. Hay... What an adventure... :)


Kathleen said...

Uy, glad you arrived there safely. Wow, may gwapo ka pang naging friend. :)

update us with your adventures. :)
ingats lagi and good luck in everything ;p


Hazel said...

thanks thanks! nakakamiss pa din ang pinas but at least nagagawa ko pa ding tawanan ang mga kablooperan ko!

TeBaN said...

ang lakas ng appeal mo ateh. a spaniard!?! type mo!? lol. =) bow ako sayo. =)