Friday, April 11, 2008

life is not about what we have

these people got my attention when i was planning to take a photograph of Manila bay from the sea surface. two were searching for something along the sea shore while the other one is with a kid preparing something to be cooked.

since it was a holiday, it looks like they’re on a picnic. so i approached them as i was curious on what they were cooking. there were four of them aside from the other people swimming in the bay.

this is mang Armando. he used to work as an LPG distributor and is currently unemployed.

this is mang Nestor. a construction worker who is usually assigned to a painting job.

and this is mang Lito who they jokingly call Tolits with his son Manuel. he is a jeepney driver in the Makati area.

i decided to chat with them on what they were doing here. like what I guessed, they are indeed on a picnic. while some of the people along the bay are fishing, they were searching for sea shells below the rocks to cook for their lunch. there were dozens of sea shells attached to a soft coral-like net. one by one they remove the shells from it. then they place it on top of a rice cooker cover as a way of cooking these shells.after a few minutes, the cooked shells were transferred to a white bowl. ready to eat. here’s what it looks like inside a cooked shell. mang Nestor ate this piece and so I asked them if they still eat it in times when a red tide occurs. mang Nestor said yes because they don’t have a choice. mang Armando also nodded and even told me that he never experienced getting sick because of eating these shells even when there is red tide. he further explains that these shells actually can cure goiter. hmmm… let me research that.

and since the Philippines is currently encountering rice crisis i asked them how they feel about the sudden increase of its price. they say life becomes harder for them because even the cheapest rice has increased from P18 to P28.

but the three of them agreed that life is still worth living as long as they have their family with them. i asked them “where do you go home?” and they are all from Sta. Ana racetrack area in Makati. ooops! that’s like kilometers away from this place but my amazement was not on the distance alone but it was when they told me that they just walk going to baywalk and back. take note it takes them about two hours to go home. that’s a long distance!

i can’t imagine how special going to baywalk for a picnic is to them. it again simply reminds me that life is not about what we have but it is about how we live life with what we have. these three men tells me what friendship and simple places like baywalk can bring to them.

again it’s about how we live with what we have that will make us appreciate life and to add to this is to recognize who we should honor for what we have.

note: they even brought with them plastics to dispose their garbage. very responsible!


Anonymous said...

i'm amazed at your style pre. you have the guts to approach people, talk to them and present it here in your blog. angat ka sa iba :-)

Anonymous said...

by the way, add kita sa blog ko

Anonymous said...

As usual Kuya Dong, astig pa rin ang posts mo! You should do more posts like these (actually marami na nga!) SUGOI!!!

lagal[og] said...

well put and well said, dominic. this is, as bai estan notes, a more noble way of street documentary photography. you take the time to get to know the people, not just take their picture, get to know their stories and not just be a stranger/bystander armed with a camera. keep up the good work bro!

Traveling Bells said...

Ahhh, thanks for another enjoyable trip to Manilla. Blessings to you.

escape said...

estan, thank you very much. best way to approach them is to be as friendly as possible. these are really good people.

thanks for adding me in your blogroll.

earvin, thank you. thank you. hopefully i'll be able to do more posts like this.

oggie, maraming salamat. it is very important to once in a while do this because i believe by talking to them, you show care.

sandy, thank you.

Anonymous said...

you're the kind of blogger who's not afraid to show the ugly, the seemingly ordinary and worthless; your courage alone makes all them pleasant to the eyes and valuable to the mind. way to go!

Rio said...

palagi ka dyan sa baywalk ah...magawi nga dyan at makipagkwentuhan sau...pwede bang papicture na din?? hehe..nice pics from a nice guy!=)

Dina said...

Shalom . Just discovered your blog today, and what a wonderful post to start with. Great people pictures. Thanks for your story.

Sidney said...

A lesson for us all and a heartwarming story. Let's hope their life improves in the future. said...

street photography or environmental portrait is something you are really good at. keep it up! you make us filipinos be proud of our tenacity to be a happy people despite the crisis.

escape said...

barry, thank you talaga.

dr ria, this was taken on the same day as on my post on "coco bay". picture at kwentuhan? sure. hehehe... parang artista ah. thanks sa comments.

hi dina, peace. thanks!

sidney, yes. there's hope for people like them.

arlene, yes we are happy people who looks at life in a simple perspective but seriously gives effort to improve life.

Brad said...

"again it’s about how we live with what we have that will make us appreciate life and to add to this is to recognize who we should honor for what we have."

Hear Hear.
So very well said.
I don't have much money, indeed not much at all by Australian standards.
It once bothered me until I got involved with the Filipino crowd down here, especially a select couple of Pinay's who I am very close to and have shown me that fun and happiness is far more important.
The Filipino knows how to have fun and enjoy life and doesn't have the deluded view that material possessions is the only way to achieve it.
The Philos have taught me how to have fun and showed me the empty life I had prior to knowing them.
It is something the average Aussie could never hope to understand and something that makes me admire you people more than you could imagine.

Philippine Railways SIG

Anonymous said...

This is really interesting. I never thought you cold still get some free food from Manila Bay. Those beggars nearby should have learned how to harvest them so they would have food.

I like these kind of spontaneous entries and see how happy a simple life can be.

Anonymous said...

omg i love this i love this!!! ganito ang gusto kong gawin!! i envy you...

keep it up!!! keep the posts coming!!!

escape said...

brad, thanks for sharing that realization. it helps us to be happier that way.

thanks ferdz. yes. there's good enough source for food in Manila bay. i also saw crabs along Manila bay.

rich, thank you thank you. we have many inspiring noypis living a simple life. gives more opportunities to feature them in our blogs.

dave said...

very "eye-opener" indeed. at least there are still people like them in this chaotic world of ours. nice post...=D

Brad said...

"thanks ferdz. yes. there's good enough source for food in Manila bay. i also saw crabs along Manila bay."

There was another awesome source for food on Manila Bay but Mayor Lim thought it best to remove all their stalls :-(
Twas also a great source of Philo live music.
RIP "Baywalk'

Philippine Railways SIG

escape said...

thanks dave.

brad, "RIP to baywalk" but we welcome SM Mall of Asia's own baywalk which is better than the old baywalk. It is in partner with San Miguel. people flock this area every night.


eye openner.. ang galing.. kung minsan nakakalimutan kong maswerte na rin ako't nabibili ko ang gusto ko, pero lagi pa rin akong nagcocomplain.

Heart of Rachel said...

I admire how it seems easy for you to approach people.

It's wonderful how some families can find pleasure in simple things.

Thank you for sharing.

escape said...

jasper, yes. you are indeed blessed so be happy and maybe when you come back you can share some old stuff to the needy. that would be great!

hi rachel, they are in one way our responsibility coz to whom God has given more, much will be required. sometimes we need to spend time by simply being with them. thanks for dropping by.

Maya said...

i really like how you present your articles..this is one of the many interesting post you have that makes me keep on rereading.
How you deal with actuality there is really good & more you've gone beyond it surface.

bid yan said...

amazing.. makes me appreciate life more.. galing ng posts m.. keep it up.hehe

bid yan said...

link kta ha..hehe..

escape said...

thanks maya. i am just a bridge to share their stories to people but it is still these people who really inspires us.

bid yan, thanks for adding me to your link list. thank you for appreciating their story.


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