Advantages of Being born in a third-world country

team building exercises @Hidden Valley Paradise

Last month’s election gave me the heeby jeebies and I released a huge sigh of relief because FINALLY, my newsfeed calmed down after the raging and wars of opinion from left to right. It led me to the path of unfollowing friends and I did not really wanted to do it but I had to. Too much exposure to the toxic opinions and hateful bashing is not good for my soul and I rather not hear or read the outpour of cry for change and the desperation to be heard. Because quiet frankly I had a beef to solve on my own without other people fuelling my desire for change. CHANGE. huh. Big word.

One night I was riding a jeepney from the intersections of Mabolo and I saw a beggar couple wandering the streets. The man was blind so his wife was the one dragging him around to pawn for spare coins from private cars. Ultimately I was thinking they were risking their lives crossing the streets, braving the heat to beg for money in order to live and here I am discontented of the life I’ve been living. The kind of life a regular Filipino can be granted. A living condition wherein there’s no progress and convenience was only afforded to a few. I should be thankful for more. I’m reminded to be grateful for what I have because others will be happier with a lot less.

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So, why am I sulking you ask? The same sentiments can be found with each and every Filipino you will ask. All clamours for change. We are fed up. We are sick and tired of the useless government oppression, of corruption, of the slow and long lines in LTO, NSO and every other government office we try to put ourselves into. I won’t be going political here. But you can find (I believe you can read more fb posts) that if you’re a kabayan you know what I mean and you will agree. More often than not, you can find me together with my colleagues discussing about the socio-economic status of our country (with popcorn in one hand, metaphorically) and with utmost worry we cower about the huge disfunction taking place right before us. The most important question that leaves us is this:

Why do each and every Filipino still have to live below standards when we can do better?

 

Like President Rody Duterte said “There’s so much trouble in this country”. Indeed and in fact. But you know what? Before going to a darker shade of the issue, I want to recount the good things we Filipinos have before us and to remind ourselves. Actually no. we must embody this in our minds how good it is to be proud of our heritage. So, on to my list!

 

  1. Filipinos are one of the most resilient race you can ever encounter. We eat calamities for breakfast. Floods here, earthquakes there and you will find the all-out smiles of people walking on the mocha-latte flooded streets while they lost their houses. I assure you Pinoys will find something to laugh about no matter the situation.

  2. We are creative thinkers. And I reckon between the bashing-mentality  and the colloquialism of some, Pinoys especially the social media users can verily curate a sense of humor among anything or anyone making them viral and trending. Though I believe some are out of line. I just wish that we use it in a more productive manner rather than use it as a deadly weapon .
  3. We are a paradise destination! God that’s huge! I find our pastor’s word amusing when he said the Philippines is a very very beautiful country only just take the Filipino out of the equation. There is so much potential but we have to dig deeper.
  4. You can put us in a box and expect that box to get improvised. In every sticky situation you might find us, there’s always something we can think about to make the most out of it.
  5. We are used to dealing with worse situations and we will survive. Just imagine the suffocation induced + pollution when riding a jeepney. I think foreigners won’t last a month with this kind as a daily mode of transportation but we still put up with it.
  6. There’s so many documentations and requirements wherever you go but guess what? it makes us all more prepared and equipped.
  7. We get out of our way to help strangers. Filipinos are foreigner-friendly. No doubt about that. We will offer our own bedrooms for guests to sleep in and we’d gladly take the couch.
  8. Because we are so used to being so poor, we don’t mind getting by with less.
  9. We are impromptu improvisers. I mean, look everywhere. Poverty can make you creative.

We know we can. We can be better people. For God’s sake we empower and serve other countries with our skills and abilities and gifts. Sadly, we are the only country training our people to leave our own premise to guarantee a better life for our families. We send workforces (OFW) to serve and make other nations. And I speak strongly in behalf of the ofws about our silent sufferings and pain. In the absence of a true welcome and that homey feeling. I know because I used to be one of them.

I’m not ashamed of my heritage but sometimes I scratch my head because some people choose to live small when there’s more to life. The struggle is endless, heck even first world people have first world problems! But I can only account for my deprived heritage to be the reason for my resiliency. Ti’s I learned:

” The grass is not greener on the other side of the fence. The grass is greener where you water it.”

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2 Comments

  1. Hi, I work in a hospital in the UK and we have quite a few Philippino nurses here. Just to say that they show all the qualities you describe and more. They work hard and are caring towards patients better than some of our ‘home grown’ staff. Most of them are working to send money back home. Just to let you know that I agree with your evaluation and give you my respect.

    Liked by 1 person

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