Simple Life

I was born in the northern part of the country, where people enjoy living in the peace and quiet of the valleys. The place is abundant with nature's gifts- air so fresh, trees so green. It is so simple a place that I often wonder how people survive in its mere simplicity. Jollibee, Mcdonalds and other fast-food chains are two-hour drive away. Cable channels are limited to the country's dominant networks, some HBO, Star Movies, basically a little over 20 channels. There is no Lifestyle Network, which means no Rachel Ray, Martha or Giada de Laurentiis.

Good thing though, two years ago, Internet came to town. My dad's one of the first customers of Smartbro, and now a convert to Digitel's DSL. Instead of sitting endlessly or watching the day pass you by, you can now surf and chat. But since this is a simple place with simple people, only a few has internet connection. People here can get by with their everyday lives, working at the municipal city hall, public schools, or even working in those small to medium scale enterprises owned by big timers. Pay is of course, negligible, but they live within their means. Those who are flamboyant are usually those who have relatives working at broad and sending moolah for extra expenditures.

Despite all that, what have always amused me is the fact that people continue to live their life and to love their life here in this small town in the northern part of the country. Without complaints. Yes I admit I'm always complaining of boredom, of not being able to eat chicken joy if I'm craving for it. But I think it's part of life's simplicity. That sometimes we have to embrace life's simpleness to be able to realize that we need not material things and to always keep up with the trend to just be fulfilled. Instead of chicken joy, I can eat turon, banana que, ginataan/pinaltaw and other yummy local treats.

Life can indeed be lived simply, just how my dad has enjoyed living here all his life. And I admire and love him simply for that. Tomorrow I will again leave this small town of ours (that is after a two-week vacation) and perhaps be back again in four months or so. I will continue to love this town's simplicity, this town where I grew up and spent half of my simple probinsyana life.

See you again in four months, Cagayan Valley. Back to Manila and then back to graduate student life.

Defining Happiness

How do you define happiness? What makes you happy? When do you know that you are happy?

See the pretty flowers above? I feel happy just by looking at it.

This is the part I hate the most when I'm taking a vacation. It gives me more time to think about even the most unthinkable of things. It gives me the energy to ruminate with just about whatever. Sometimes when I'm just sitting in a corner, the next thing I know, I'd be thinking and visualizing images in my mind. And just the other day, I was thinking of the notion of happiness, the ecstatic feeling, the euphoria.

It's a fact. People don't know how to recognize their feelings anymore. I thought more and more are becoming rocks and stones, unable to feel the magic of being happy. And yeah, sometimes, only sometimes, I'm becoming one of them.

Have you ever been in a dilemma wherein you're already there in the place you've longed for, but you don't know if that's exactly what you want to be in? That's where I am right now. I have always been dreaming, praying, of the things I want in life but at the end of the day, I really don't know if that's what I want. I hope I can just blame it on my hormones but no.

It's just the sad realities of life. This is what you get after curling up in bed and reading a book about young life crisis. It makes you ponder on your own young life. I can be shallow, I can be deep. That's why defining happiness is hard. But at the bottom of things, I just have one answer, happiness is with family and friends.

I know it's definitely hard to say for now that happiness is achieving something. But I still haven't achieved any. Just help me be happy and content with what I have now, and let our Boss up there do the rest. He's our Boss, He's my manager. Whatever is in store in the upcoming months, is up to Him.

Oh boy, I don't want this vacation to end. I have so many realizations but I don't have my own conclusions--- but are conclusions important afterall?

Think think think.

I envy the flowers, they have their own life. Their purpose maybe is to add beauty to earth's richness, and to work with bees and help in pollination. I hope life's as easy as that.

We can all be happy, happiness is with family and friends, or by looking at images that provoke or imbibe that certain emotion.

So how then would you define happiness?

Spending Winter Break at Home

I'm finally home for the winter break. I arrived last Thursday dawn, and flew to our Cagayan home with friends Friday morning. Managed to do all the works, pedicure, trip to the derma and dentist before having a grand vacation with the girls. YES I MISS HOME. Now back to vacation mode :) Reading a book on young life crisis, and boy oh boy, i can so relate. Will write about it one of these days. Ciao for now!