Monday, 28 April 2008


While Zak was in school today, I managed to get hold of his digital camera. I uploaded onto my camputer 305 images that he took in less than a week. I deleted half of them and saved the rest.

He took just ONE of me -
ONE of his daddy's reflection -

and the rest are of his toys - but mostly of HIMSELF.

I think he needs more memory cards.

Friday, 25 April 2008


Lately, Zak has been asking me about God.

How does God make the sun? How does God make the rain? Why does God kill people?

I must have failed all my science subjects in school because when I explained to him about hydrogen and helium, I wasn't able to convince him. He thought I was talking nonsense! And when I told him that rain comes from dark heavy clouds, he looked at me like a) i was going to lose my mind, b) i was losing my mind, c) i've just lost my mind, or d) believable but not convincing.

So when he asked me why God kills people? Whooh! I thought well, this is the only way I could impress my son. Because you know, I was brought up in a staunchly Catholic family and educated in a Catholic school, so why not make full use of what I learned from the many dogmatic people who influenced my views of religion? Spirit? Soul? Heaven? Ashes to ashes? Temple of the soul? Well, it is time indeed to teach my son the wonders of Catholic faith.

Well, darling, God doesn't really kill people. He just snuffs out peoples lives because sometimes, I think he has a cruel compulsion. Like sending out floods and earthquakes, plague and war, you know, the usual stuff.

I don't really think he heard me say this. He was fast asleep. But even if he were awake, he would have laughed and said, Oh mummy! YOU'RE SO CLEVER!

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Britain's Got Talent! I mean, this Filipino's Got Talent!

Last night, Madonna Decena, a Filipino singer, went on Britain's Got Talent. Wowww! You should watch her performance and see why Britain gave her a standing ovation.

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Tag 8:20

This is from Shiela, and I am tagging 8 bloggers listed at the end of this post.

Remove one (1) question from below and add in your personal question to make it a total of 20 questions. Then, tag eight (8) people in your list. List them out at the end of this post.

1. At what age did you marry?

2. What color do you like most?

Nothing in particular. It's PINK i can't stand with!

3. Have you ever shoplifted?

Unfortunately, no. I missed the thrill, I know.

4. Where is the place that you want to go the most?

Switzerland or Surigao. Either will do.

5. Which part of you that you hate the most?

Physically? My wild & frizzy hair.

6.My question: What is money to you?

A necessary evil.

7. What are you afraid to lose the most?

Baby photos of my children.

8. If you win $1 million, what would you do?

Jump, clap hands, scream??

9. What do you loved the most last year (2007)?

Family birthdays. Always, always fun.

10. List out 3 good points of the person who tagged you:

1) She doesn't forget her Visayan roots; 2) She has extensive shopping skills! (I wish I had that energy!); 3) She's a committed blogger despite her working hours.

11. How do you cope with boredom?

I devour books.

12. Till now, what is the moment that you regret the most?

Leaving my eyeglasses on a table. Lewis grabbed and played with it. It now sits awkwardly on my nose and every 2 seconds I get cross-eyed.

13. Which type of person do you hate the most?

Someone who wears sunglasses at night.

14. What is your ambition?

Short term: To learn to ski and swim, although not in the same place at once. Long term: To be a professional liar.

15. If you had one wish what would you wish for?

That Sabang Beach would be clean for me to swim one day.

16. How did you celebrate new year?

Quietly, at home, with all of my husband's side of the family. And because it was very quiet, I didn't realise I ate too much cheese and pineapple that I puked everywhere. Then the whole family wasn't quiet anymore.

17. It is already 2008, do you have a new year’s resolution?

To forget about cheese and pineapple.

18. What do you look forward to in 2008?

That whoever I tagged these questions with would be more serious and honest in their answers.

19. If your life is a song, what title best fit it?

Ako ay Pilipino. Hehe.

20. What "special power" would you like to have.

The power to hear the thoughts of every Filipino woman I meet in Europe.

I am tagging the people behind these blogs:

Mythos Land Wanderer
Intelektwal Interkors
Captured Moments
My Hide-away
Hip n cool momma
A Pinay in England

Saturday, 12 April 2008

Sing Me Your Song Again, Daddy

I stumbled upon this video when I searched for Filipino artists on Youtube. It's a heartwarming song and I couldn't help but shed a tear when I listened and sang along with it. My kids who were eating wondered why I became emotional.
I didn't want to tell them that you know what, you're so lucky; your parents love you to bits. That's all they know. And anyway, at this stage in their lives, they don't need to know how I wanted to have this song sang during my wedding but couldn't because the father who walked down the aisle with me wasn't the daddy I spent the first 18 years of my life with. He was my father alright, but he wasn't the one who carried me on his shoulders when I couldn't manage to cross the slippy muddy path. He wasn't the one who kissed my grazed knees better. He wasn't the one who tucked me in bed and kissed me good night. He wasn't the one who waited outside the gate after my first day in school. He was my father but never a father to me when I was growing up.

And yet, I missed him.

He was there when I first fell in love. He was there on my 18th birthday. He was there on my graduation day. He was there when I was about to marry the man who is my husband now. He was there to quiz K how suitable he would be to be my husband. He was there first when I gave birth to my first-born, and when K and I signed the birth certificate barely 12 hours after Zak was born, he declared, 'You are parents now.' The irony of that statement didn't escape me but I appreciated his concern for his longed-for 'western' grandson.
My father died barely a year after I left him to settle here in England. I never said goodbye to him because I thought I would see him again. When I left in his house the last bits of stuff from my house, I didn't say goodbye. I couldn't bear to look in his eyes because deep in my heart, I knew that he was sad. We didn't have a chance to sit down and talk why things happened the way they did. We just accepted them. He suffered a stroke and that was one reason why I didn't want to discuss it with him.
I never said anything to my sisters and brothers about how I feel about Papa. But I hope that as they read this, and as they listen to this song, they'll understand that I am thankful, because in the last years of Papa's life, he tried to be a father to me.
And for that, I loved him, and longed for the songs that he never got the chance to sing to me.

Thursday, 10 April 2008

Rich AND happy

I would just like to build on what I posted previously, re Rich but not happy. Joy said that 'wealth is just a state of mind'. Does it mean that I might be financially wretched and my bank balance might be zero, yet I could still be happy?

Up to what level can money make one happy or unhappy?

If you live and work in Europe, or any other place for that matter, and if you work hard and spend your income wisely, you can have a comfortable lifestyle.

You may or may not enjoy your job. You may love or hate fashion and the shopping that goes with it. You may tolerate or abhor materialism, but the fact is, you have money.

So, you have money, but you don't enjoy your job.
You have money, but your family life is compromised because of the time you spend away from home.
You have money, but you hate fashion. After all, why would you let some dim witted willowy character dictate your style and the colour of your mug? Who cares if your kitchen is still in the 1960s time line. You have money. That's all that matters.

Or does it?

So. In an ideal world, it would be 'nice' to have

  • a great job
  • a happy family life
  • a fantastic social life, and, why not throw in
  • cool neighbours as well
  • while living in a posh neighbourhood.


Remember Nicole Kidman's The Stepford Wives?

There's always a snag at the end.

Tuesday, 8 April 2008

Rich but not happy

Would you like to be rich and unhappy, or poor but happy? Check out this news item from the BBC.

"After 30 years of unprecedented economic growth, the British are
richer, healthier - but no happier than in 1973.
The latest Social Trends, the annual survey on the state of the nation from the Office for National Statistics, looks at how Britain has changed over the last few decades.
It shows that household income has gone up by 60%, and household wealth has more than doubled, in the past twenty years. .."

read the rest of the article here.

Saturday, 5 April 2008

The bike race that was only a bike and never a race

(I would like to apologise now that the photos are out of focus as these were done on a point and shoot basis. I was still doing a mummy job while recording their movements, with Grandad on hand ready to pick up fallen bikes, or boys. My heart was on my mouth; my eyes were on my finger tips. No animals nor bikes were harmed in this documentation.)


on your bikes...



aahh! gerrup!

*sigh* never mind bike...

we'll try again soon.

Thursday, 3 April 2008

What's the matter with these Filipinos. 2 0f 2

I don't know how other Filipino communities in Britain work but I must say that the one near me is just so riddled with questions and misunderstanding.
It's very much a little Philippines, where little politics and bureacracy is still the order of the day.
After two years, there is still no system, and yet it has been claimed that the community is being run the Filipino way because the members are Filipinos. Rubbish! If they want to do Philippine politics, they might as well go back to the Philippines.
The community here is all about officers. Officers' meeting, officers' plans, officers' decisions, officers' whatever. Bloody officers! The byelaws were drafted by officers, approved by officers, and then the officers started collecting 'fees' from members. WHY the officers/members divide?
What do these people know about running a community? Yes, they were officers in their classrooms back in the Philippines but that doesn't make them experts in managing over a hundred of hard-headed Tagalog-yapping individuals who always point out without a hint of sarcasm that they're here because they have the bloody skills of wiping old people's bottoms. Not like you, Petra, hahaha, you're only here in England because you married a bloody old man with deep pockets.
Now, these people started the community out of bayanihan spirit. Well done. That's very commendable. It's purpose is set out on marble slab that the community will foster Filipino friendship and culture and represent the members if they problems with their garbage disposal, immigration status, leaky faucets, and gossipy kababayans.
I don't know about you, but if I have problems with my immigration status? I ask for an immigration lawyer. Problems with my rubbish bins? I call the council and ask for the Waste and Recycling department. Problems with my leaky faucet? Of course, I will call a plumber -- not some organisation that doesn't even know what a member is.
Oh, and the gossipy kababayan? Well, we'll talk about that later.

A tractor or not a tractor: that is the question

Bang in the middle of my residential area is a dam, with 3 football pitches, a playground, and a picnic area. We are fortunate in that we live at the edge of this park and our windows overlook the dam.

So this morning, I took Lew out for a walk. The sky is dull but the temperature is fresher than it has ever been (8c). Lew was particularly interested with just one sound coming from the middle of the picnic area: the tractor that cuts the grass.

After a while, I got fed up standing there watching an old boy driving his toy tractor while showing off to the little child strapped in his buggy. Lew wanted to walk but I couldn't let him run off in case he decides to chase the tractor.
Or is that how you call this machine thing?

more photos here.

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