Hindi Dapat Ikahiya ang mga Trabahong Housekeeper, Domestic Helper at Caregiver sa Abroad

Hindi Dapat Ikahiya Ang Mga

Trabahong Housekeeper, Domestic Helper at Caregiver sa Abroad

Ni Apolinario Villalobos

 

Hindi dapat mahiya ang mga titulado o professional o mga galing sa mayamang pamilya sa Pilipinas na naging housekeeper sa ibang bansa dahil ang kaalaman nila sa pagsalita ng Ingles at pag-asikaso ng bahay upang maging maayos, pati pagluto ng iba’t ibang pagkain ang tama at angkop na kaalaman sa trabahong nabanggit. Bago naging sikat ang mga Pilipino sa pag-asikaso ng mga elders at pag-manage ng mga bahay at gardens sa Amerika, ang palaging hinahanap ng mga kliyente ay mga Britons o British. Sila ang mga kinukuha bilang “mayordomo”, “butler” at “nanny” dahil mga edukado sila.

 

Sa Amerika, ang mga anak ng mayayamanng business moguls ay nagtatrabaho bilang receptionists, food attendants, dishwashers, hotel staff, at iba pa, pagtuntong nila sa edad na 18 taon. Ang mga nabanggit din ang ginagawa ng mga artista sa Amerika na nagsisimula pa lang, kung wala silang available na assignment.

 

Ang pamilya ng mag-asawang artistang Pilipino na sina Eddie Guttierez at Annabel Rama ay nagtinda ng mga kaldero sa Amerika, mamahaling klase nga lang. Nagtiyaga silang kumatok sa mga bahay upang mag-alok ng kanilang mga paninda….at hindi nila ikinahiya ito dahi palagi nilang binabanggit ito sa mga interbyu nila nang magbalik-pelikula sila sa Pilipinas.

 

Ang mga pinagmamalupitang mga domestic helper sa Middle East ay mga Pilipinong kulang ang kaalaman sa pagluto at paglinis ng mga bahay dahil hindi sila familiar sa mga kasangkapan ng kanilang amo. Yan ang dahilan kung bakit pumasok sa eksena ang TESDA na nagti-train at nagsi-certify ng mga domestic helpers na pupunta sa Middle East at ibang bansa. Samantala, noon pa man ay marami nang mga Filipino professionals na nagtatrabaho sa Amerika at Europe bilang caregiver, nagmama-mange ng bahay at gardens at personal secretary at cook ng mga kilalang tao.

 

DAPAT TANDAANG HINDI NAKAKAHIYA ANG ANUMANG TRABAHO BASTA HINDI NAKAKALAMANG SA KAPWA, LALO NA ANG PAGNANAKAW AT PAGBEBENTA NG DROGA! HANGAL AT UNGAS ANG MGA PILIPINONG IKINAHIHIYA ANG MGA KAANAK NA NAGTATRABAHO SA ABROAD BILANG DOMESTIC HELPER, WAITER, CAREGIVER, DRIVER, ETC! ANG HINDI NARARAMDAMAN NG MGA UGOK NA ITO AY ANG SAKRIPISYO NG MGA NANDOON NA NAGTITIIS SA LUNGKOT DAHIL NAPALAYO SILA SA MGA MAHAL NILA SA BUHAY! MAKAPAL ANG MUKHA NG MGA HANGAL, UGOK AT UNGAS NA ITO DAHIL UMAASA DIN NAMAN SILA AT NAKIKINABANG SA PINAGPAGURAN NG MGA IKINAHIHIYA NILA!!!!!!

 

Hindi Dapat Ikahiya ang mga Trabahong Housekeeper, Domestic Helper, at Caregiver sa Abroad

Hindi Dapat Ikahiya Ang Mga

Trabahong Housekeeper, Domestic Helper at Caregiver sa Abroad

Ni Apolinario Villalobos

 

Hindi dapat mahiya ang mga titulado o professional o mga galing sa mayamang pamilya sa Pilipinas na naging housekeeper sa ibang bansa dahil ang kaalaman nila sa pagsalita ng Ingles at pag-asikaso ng bahay upang maging maayos, pati pagluto ng iba’t ibang pagkain ang tama at angkop na kaalaman sa trabahong nabanggit. Bago naging sikat ang mga Pilipino sa pag-asikaso ng mga elders at pag-manage ng mga bahay at gardens sa Amerika, ang palaging hinahanap ng mga kliyente ay mga Britons o British. Sila ang mga kinukuha bilang “mayordomo”, “butler” at “nanny” dahil mga edukado sila.

 

Sa Amerika, ang mga anak ng mayayamanng business moguls ay nagtatrabaho bilang receptionists, food attendants, dishwashers, hotel staff, at iba pa, pagtuntong nila sa edad na 18 taon. Ang mga nabanggit din ang ginagawa ng mga artista sa Amerika na nagsisimula pa lang, kung wala silang available na assignment.

 

Ang pamilya ng mag-asawang artistang Pilipino na sina Eddie Guttierez at Annabel Rama ay nagtinda ng mga kaldero sa Amerika, mamahaling klase nga lang. Nagtiyaga silang kumatok sa mga bahay upang mag-alok ng kanilang mga paninda….at hindi nila ikinahiya ito dahi palagi nilang binabanggit ito sa mga interbyu nila nang magbalik-pelikula sila sa Pilipinas.

 

Ang mga pinagmamalupitang mga domestic helper sa Middle East ay mga Pilipinong kulang ang kaalaman sa pagluto at paglinis ng mga bahay dahil hindi sila familiar sa mga kasangkapan ng kanilang amo. Yan ang dahilan kung bakit pumasok sa eksena ang TESDA na nagti-train at nagsi-certify ng mga domestic helpers na pupunta sa Middle East at ibang bansa. Samantala, noon pa man ay marami nang mga Filipino professionals na nagtatrabaho sa Amerika at Europe bilang caregiver, nagmama-mange ng bahay at gardens at personal secretary at cook ng mga kilalang tao.

 

DAPAT TANDAANG HINDI NAKAKAHIYA ANG ANUMANG TRABAHO BASTA HINDI NAKAKALAMANG SA KAPWA, LALO NA ANG PAGNANAKAW AT PAGBEBENTA NG DROGA! HANGAL AT UNGAS ANG MGA PILIPINONG IKINAHIHIYA ANG MGA KAANAK NA NAGTATRABAHO SA ABROAD BILANG DOMESTIC HELPER, WAITER, CAREGIVER, DRIVER, ETC! ANG HINDI NARARAMDAMAN NG MGA UGOK NA ITO AY ANG SAKRIPISYO NG MGA NANDOON NA NAGTITIIS SA LUNGKOT DAHIL NAPALAYO SILA SA MGA MAHAL NILA SA BUHAY! MAKAPAL ANG MUKHA NG MGA HANGAL, UGOK AT UNGAS NA ITO DAHIL UMAASA DIN NAMAN SILA AT NAKIKINABANG SA PINAGPAGURAN NG MGA IKINAHIHIYA NILA!!!!!!

 

Taimtim na Dasal (para sa Ied Il Fitr)

Dasal para sa Eid Il Fitr…

 

Taimtim na Dasal

…bukod-tanging natira nating pag-asa

Ni Apolinario Villalobos

 

Sa pabago-bagong panahong dulot ay pinsala

sa halip na biyaya…

Sa harap ng kagutumang ating nararanasan –

walang katapusan…

At, sa harap ng mga kinatatakutang krimen –

‘wag munang tapusin ang dasal ng “amen”.

 

Magdasal pa tayo ng marubdob at taimtim

‘wag maging sakim…

Sa panahong ang patayan ay kalat sa mundo

piliting ‘wag masiphayo…

basta’t  namumutawi ang dasal sa ating bibig –

sa pag-asa, tayo’y nakahilig!

Strong Faith in God and the Resilience of the Filipino

Strong Faith in God

And the Resilience of the Filipino

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

In the face of adversities, the Filipino has always been strong, steely- willed and resilient. It is this supple character that makes him adjust to any condition after a catastrophe. His unquestionable faith in God is the vigor that makes him move on and hurdle the rest of hindrances along the way.

 

No man-made or natural catastrophe can ever make the Filipino turn his back from God. For him, all these are just trials that make his faith stronger. He knows that God will never give him a challenge that he cannot muster. He knows that all these are the proverbial litters of stones and thorns along the way of his journey to the waiting arms of the Lord.

 

Life is beautiful. But everything in the universe has its end. To prepare himself for this, the Filipino has even shown greater faith in God by becoming more aware of His presence. Religious movements are on the rise. Humble prayers for mercy have grown louder. The Filipino can be likened to Tobit and  Job, Biblical characters whose lives were full of challenges that put their faith to an acid test.

 

God manifests His consolations in mysterious and unexpected ways. It could be His way of showing His love to the Filipinos as a people. The Philippines is profusely endowed with natural resources. The Filipino has an easy smile and has the habit of taking a scandal lightly and make it worthy of a good laugh, without losing its serious color.

 

God has chosen a people in the past – the Israelites, as the Bible says….they, who had to roam around the desert for forty years. Today, He must have chosen a new one – the Filipinos who are engulfed in controversies and series of misfortunes…but for how long will the Filipinos be tested by the Him?

 

 

Holding on to Dear Faith

Holding On to Dear Faith

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

Tears may fall in anguish

Hearts may break in sorrow

Dignity may be lost in hunger

But always, despite all these –

Something is left of our faith.

Questions may be mumbled

Doubts may raise eyebrows

Whimpers may lessen the pain

Despair may block our sight

But always, faith gives us light!

Pagpupunyagi (Kuwento ng buhay ni Elmer Festin)

Happy Fathers’ Day!

 

 Pagpupunyagi

(Kuwento ng Buhay ni Elmer Festin)

 

By: Apolinario B Villalobos

 

Ang landas ng buhay na ating binabagtas

Mahirap tahakin lalo na kung tayo’y nakayapak –

Mga lubak na hindi mapansin ay ating natitisod

Matatalas na batong di maiwasan ay nayayapakan

Pati tinik ng dahong mariang sumusugat sa ating talampakan.

 

Ang taong hindi handa sa pagtahak nitong landas

Sa ilang hakbang pa lamang niyang magawa –

Kahihinaan na ng loob at pangangatugan na ng mga tuhod

Hindi malayong babalik sa pinanggalingan

Di kaya’y mangingipuspos at sasalampak na lamang sa daan.

 

May isang taong sa murang gulang ay naglakas-loob

Nagpakatatag at taimtim na nagdasal sa Panginoon

Na harinawa sa paglisan sa sinilangang Bantoon, isla ng Rombon

Patnubayan siya sa kanyang paglayag at tatahaking landas

Bigyan din ng malinaw na pag-iisip at katawang malakas.

 

Masakit iwanan ang isang bayang tulad ng Bantoon

Islang animo’y tuldok sa mapa ng Romblon

Di man pansinin, ito’y mahalagang itinuring

Ng mga Kastilang dumating noong unang panahon sa ating bansa

Kaya’t sa aklat ng ating kasaysayan siya’y naitala.

 

Ito ang kuwento ng buhay ni Elmer Festin

Isang taong may ngiting agad mapapansin

Napadpad sa Cebu kung saan siya’y nahikayat

Suungin ng buong tapang, masalimuot na buhay –

Na wala namang pag-atubili at matatag niyang hinarap.

 

Ilang taon din siyang dito ay nagturo

Naglinang ng dunong ng mga kabataan

Hanggang sa siya ay kawayan ng kapalaran

Na nangako sa kanyang sa dakong katimugan

Siya ay makakatamo ng pinapangarap na kasaganaan.

 

Dala ay kakaunting pera na sa bulsa ay kakalog-kalog

Pilit winaglit ang pag-aalala at takot sa dibdib na kakabog-kabog

Hindi rin alintana ang mga tuhod na nangangatog

Siya ay naglakas-loob na pumalaot at tumango’ sa tawag ng kapalaran –

Ipinasa-Diyos na lamang, magiging bunga ng kapangahasan.

 

Sa Notre Dame, sa Tacurong siya ay napadpad

Paaralang sa bayang ito ay pinagkakapitagan

Limang mga gusali nang panahong iyon ang kanyang nadatnan

Pinangangasiwaan ng mga pare at madre na Oblates of  Mary kung tawagin

At katulad ni Elmer, pagtulong sa kapwa ang sinusunod na adhikain.

 

Nakitaan siya ng kakaibang sigla sa pagturo

Dahil hindi lang sa mga aklat, mga estudyante niya ay natuto

Naibahagi rin niya ang kaunti niyang kaalaman

Pati sa gymnastics na para sa mga estudyante’y bagong larangan

Kaya napasigla niya ang dati’y matamlay na kapaligiran.

 

Anupa’t si Elmer ay nakilala hindi lang sa loob ng Notre Dame

Dahil ang galing niya sa pagturo, sa iba ay nakatawag pansin

Kaya nang magkaroon ng Polytechnic Institute sa bayang ito

Binuksan nila para sa kanya ang kanilang pinto

Upang makibahagi sa kagalingan ng kanyang pagturo.

 

Sa bago niyang malawak na kapaligiran at hitik sa iba’t ibang halaman

Lalo pang sumidhi ang kanyang hangad na makahubog ng kabataan

Hindi naman nasayang ang marangal niyang adhikain

Dahil taos-pusong pasasalamat ay kanyang naramdaman at natanggap

Mula sa mga estudyanteng binigyan niya ng pag-asa ang mga hinaharap.

 

Natupad ang pangarap ni Elmer na maibahagi ang kanyang kaalaman

Napatunayan niya na kakapusan sa pera ay hindi hadlang

Hindi rin nasayang ang kanyang pagpunyagi magmula pa sa kanyang kabataan

Kahi’t sa pagtahak niya sa landas ng buhay siya’y nakayapak lamang

Dahil alam niyang sa dulo nito’y mayroong walang hanggang kapayapaan.

 

 

(Si Mr. Festin ang nagbigay ng pagkakataon sa may-akda upang mahasa niya ang kanyang kakayahan sa pagsulat. Hinirang siya ni Mr. Festin bilang patnugot ng “The Green Ember”, pahayagan ng high school department ng Notre of Tacurong noong 1966, kahi’t siya ay nasa first year pa lamang. Ang tiwala at dagdag kaalaman sa pagsulat na ibinigay sa kanya ni Mr. Festin ang naging kasangkapan niya sa pagharap sa mga pagsubok ng buhay. Kulang ang mga kataga ng tula upang maipadama ng may-akda ang taos-pusong pasasalamat.)

elmer festin

Ms. Flor de la Rosa: Untold Story of a Sacrificing Woman of Tacurong City

Ms. Flor de la Rosa: Untold Story of a Sacrificing Woman of Tacurong City

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

Despite her advancing age, beauty could still be discerned on her calm face. After more than fifty years, not only was I fortunate to meet her but had an intimate conversation with her at close range after a hearty breakfast hosted by Nita and Nito Bernardo at their home, and to whom I am so gratified for such opportunity. It was my first time to hear her speak with the typical melodious Visayan tone and delicate voice.

 

Her family used to live in New Iloilo, a sitio of Tantangan which was then part of Tacurong. Today, it is occupied by Jaime, a younger brother, and his second family.  The late mayor of Tacurong,  Jose Escribano was always around when there were affairs in Tantangan. During the time, Flor, who at 19 was a student and about to finish a course in education. It was during one of the occasions in Tantangan that the mayor could have noticed the pretty Flor who was always invited during public occasions. While she was studying in Cotabato city, a bodyguard of Escribano discreetly followd her to make sure that no guy would attempt to court her. The mayor also resorted to “courtin” Flor’s mother and enticed her to put up a business in Tacurong. She was a dressmaker in New Iloilo, then and her husband was managing the logging company of a rich relative in Parang, but on a meager wage.

 

A building was put up then in Tacurong with the ground floor occupied by the Dainty Refreshment which Flor’s parents managed and the second floor was allotted for the whole family. The establishment became famous for its halo-halo and cake which competed with those of the Angelita’s. And, to ensure that it would earn much as expected, the bus terminal was relocated in the vicinity, from its former location in front of the Tacurong Pilot School. For 24 hours, the Dainty Refreshment was open and that was how the de la Rosa family was able to earn substantially.

 

The late mayor had the reputation of getting what he wanted by all means, but not in the case of Flor, for it took him 4 long years to finally get what he wanted. Courting went as far as Manila where Flor continued her studies. When she finally graduated, she taught at the New Iloilo Elementary School, moving on to Tantangan, and when the Dainty Refreshment was opened, she was transferred to Tacurong with the instigation of the late mayor. The principal then of the Tacurong Pilot School was Mr. Abadilla and the District Supervisor was Mr. Llavore. At the Tacurong Pilot School she taught Science and Pilipino subjects. Out of gratitude, Escribano built a building that was later used by the Home Economics pupils.

 

Flor confided that due to emotional pressure, she resigned from her job and went to Manila, although, she feared for the safety of her family who might earn the ire of the late mayor. But as she could not stop him from courting her, she finally softened a bit and accepted her fate…finally, going back to Tacurong to be with her family. While in Tacurong, she would occasionally show herself up in public to assist the mayor during special occasions. That was how she got to be known as the “mayor’s secretary”.

 

When she went back to Manila again, she finally told Escribano once and for all, that she wanted to end their affair and threatened to enter the convent if he won’t concede. It was at this juncture that she saw the good side of the brusque mayor…who begged her not to proceed with her plan, but for them to maintain a platonic relationship. She agreed and the arrangement encouraged her to be with her family in Tacurong again to help manage the Dainty Refreshements, the earnings from which practically sent her siblings to school.

 

During one of her trips to Manila, she met Gregorio Aragona but who used the family name, “Soncuya”. They eventually got married and settled in his hometown, Sara (Iloilo). At one time, her sister, Bernardita who was living in the United States, had a need for a trusted caretaker of her child. Flor viewed it as an opportunity to visit the United States, so she asked Bernardita to let her do the job. In no time, she flew to the States as a tourist and took care of her niece. When she was no longer needed to take for her niece, she took jobs discreetly as she had no legal papers. For 18 years of her stay in the United States, her status did not change as she declined to bite the options to become an American citizen, beside her passport indicated her status as “married”.

 

Meanwhile, her husband took in a lover which came to the attention of Flor only much later. What triggered their separation was the reply of her husband to one of her queries if he had been missing her to which he replied, “please come home and bring the bacon”. Such blatant reply immediately made Flor decide not to go home, as she felt that her husband was just after her earned dollars. Despite her decision, she could not hold herself from sending money to him when he got sick.

 

In year 2000, she went back to the Philippines but dropped by Iloilo to visit relatives and also surprised her late husband’s lover. As she did not harbor any hatred in her heart, she even gave the widowed lover of her husband, three thousand pesos…her gift to their two children. She then, proceeded to New Iloilo in South Cotabato to be with her mother. But not long after, she decided to buy a house in Tacurong City where she now lives with a trusted aide.

 

While in the city, she faithfully attended the early morning Mass every day. Later, she was enticed to join the Marian Movement of Priests (MMP) which prays the Holy Rosary after the Mass. She was in the middle of this hectic devotion when she met a friend who introduced her to another spiritual passion, and this time, as a member of the Servants of the Holy Trinity, a healing ministry and prayer group whose main base is in Negros Occidental. She joined her friends, Lina Lacanafrancia and Margie Calansag during their pilgrimage to the movement’s base on what the pilgrims consider as the “holy mountain” of Escalante where a “prayer house” is located, and where an image of the Holy Child Jesus in enshrined. She was also brought to the “holy mountain” of Calinog to visit another shrine. From then on, her small group would make an almost monthly visit to Escalante, while that for Calinog, they do during the Holy Week. The two shrines have become beneficiaries of her benevolence, as with the shrine of Our Lady of the Holy Candle in Tacurong.

 

Ms. de la Rosa is the eldest in the family raised by hardworking couple, Salvador and Fe. Her siblings are Elsie, Salvador, Jr., Manuel, Rodolfo, Aurea, Bernardita, Corazon, Jaime, Ricardo, and Lorena. Their grandfather on their mother side had a German blood, while their grandmother had Chinese. On their father side, their grandfather was an Ilocano who married a mestiza, and who belongs to the Navarro clan.

 

She has no regrets for not having a child of her own, for she presumes that her being in such situation prepared her for motherly missions – for her family and other people. Before we parted our ways, she confided that during her high school days in Notre Dame of Marbel, she was often chosen to play the role of the Virgin Mary during Marian processions.

 

Up to the time that I was writing this blog, I could not believe that I had been talking to Ms. Flor de la Rosa and even kissed her check…..she, who was the misunderstood woman in my youth, although, with a celebrated status, and whose life today is devoted to Jesus and Mary.