ukay-ukay: thrift store at the market or on the side of the road of give-away stuff for sale, or a pile of give-aways that nobody wants. aka: free pile
The last couple weeks has been nothing short of insane. Some highlights of the week include moving, 2 night shifts in a row, and some last minute homework.
Moving has actually been great! I will have to do lots more walking now which, hopefully will help me to lose my first-year-fifteen. I also ride jeepneys almost every day now, and the best part? I get to live in a house with less people that is surrounded by lovely green trees! It really helps me to forgive the fact that my new neighbors like to do cock-fighting and their rooster crows about 10 feet from my bedroom window. So after turning in our last assignment of the year and taking the test, moving (incredibly stressful) and then having my post-move breakdown (thanks for hugging me when I cried Brenda), I still had to find a way to fit in some last minute make-up homework, catching a baby, and 2 prenatal conts between my last 2 night shifts before break. I slept 4 hours in those two days. The good new is that I was also incredibly productive! By the grace of God! And I did it! So here I am now, on break, I guess my sleep is getting a little postponed (because of my flight being postponed), but its ok, because such is my life. Thank God for His incredible grace. And also... I get to sleep for a month now!!! WOO HOOO!!!
Ok so Dan... You were half right, my bag was over by 5 kilos. Which... Doesn't quite make it 67 lbs... But it definitely passed 50. ANYWAY... The nice man behind the counter told me that if I didn't move 5 kilos of my stuff from my big bag to the small one, he would have to charge me $150. SInce I haven't really seen dollars for a while, but I live in a country where you can go out for a nice meal for about $5 I was like, "Hmm... Let me think about that. NO WAY." So the guy helped me shift some stuff from one bag to the next. I was thinking though from the very beginning, there was NO chance that I was going to fit 5 kilos of extra stuff into my small rolling suitcase. So I did what any sensible person would do. I flung open the bottom portion of my suitcase, where I had put all of the stuff I hadn't really used much in the last year and was taking home to save on space (at my house and for my travels home next year) and I quickly picked all the items that I could live without, made a pile and yelled "UKAY-UKAY!!!" to the other passengers in line.
It was actually really fun! I though wow... I probably should have put this in the ukay-ukay pile at Mercy since I obviously didn't love all this stuff enough that I just HAD to keep it, but I'm kind of glad I didn't, because it was so fun to do it in the airport. They just ran up and swarmed around me, and I made sure everyone got something. The older gentleman grabbed a running jersey, the ladies loved my blouses and make up bag, and I even happened to have a small mens t-shirt that was the perfect size for the young boy with his dad. I even wound up giving away a tank that I may have otherwise kept because I wanted to make sure everyone that came got something!!
(Greta, if you are reading this it was a tank you gave me. I though you might like to know that I passed on the love)
Haha. I just loved it. And they all were so happy an appreciative. It made me feel a little convicted for how silly I can be for holding onto stuff I don't need. And also for just being wasteful and unappreciative for the things I have sometimes. I think most Americans wouldn't have looked twice at that pile. And I'd like you to sit there for a minute and imagine the looks you might get for doing the same thing in an American airport (not that that would have stopped me!). I love that about the Filipino people. They are so honoring and loving. I notice that there is always such a kindness and appreciative attitude for what they have. It seems like the less we have, the more content we are. I have seen that contentedness in the Filipino people on many occasions. I rarely hear a Filipino complain for what they don't have. As one of my supervisors said one day during our pre-prenatal clinic devotion, "We are just happy if we have rice!" SO true. And I am a stubborn American who doesn't even like rice that much.. Haha.
Well its things like this plus many others, that make me know I am going to miss the Philippines. Now, this time I know I will be back in a month. But I will really miss it when I go home. Those lovely Filipinos with their loud laughing and jokes, weird food, and funny english sayings. The birth room isn't the only thing I will miss. I also LOVE the look on the faces of the Filipinos when they learn that I can speak some Visayan. They are so amazed that a white person would take the time to do that. Unfortunately, that is very uncommon.
I honestly didn't think I would ever say this (about 6 months ago), but I adore the Philippines.
So next things, I was sitting in the Manila International Airport Terminal waiting for my direct flight to San Francisco. I got through security in Davao with no problems... Just made my quick ukay-ukay give away pile at the airport as I was checking my baggage.
So after getting through all that, I even got through immigration at the Manila without a hitch! I was a little concerned about the i-card line, because I have heard of it taking 45 minutes to an hour, and I had to catch my connecting flight only 1hr 50 minutes after arriving in Manila. Thankfully, there wasn't even a line and I even wound up paying less than I expected!
So I got into my terminal, grabbed a quick mirienda (snack), and headed through the extra security to wait for my flight to board to San Francisco. I wasn't able to get on the internet to message my mom and tell her I was alive, well, and everything was going off without a hitch, when I thought to myself,
"Wow, what could go wrong now? I'm here, I don't have anymore security stops, and my flight is boarding in 30 minutes!"
Well... You know its usually about the time when you think that that something goes down. For me, it was right about the time the airline attendant got on the intercom to inform everyone that due to a change in aircraft carriers, our NEW departure time was 12:20am instead of 10:20pm. Really!? Yeah ok... whatever. So this is the Filipino way. EVERONE groans audibly, then its quiet. The guy behind me goes, "Something must be wrong with the plane. Good thing they found it!" I think to myself for a second... Yeah, maybe... Ok 2 hours. Whatever. I've got this.
Patience will get you so far in this country.
So thats my story and I'm sticking to it.