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Byaheng Borongan

The Misadventures of a Jologs Volunteer

4/1/06 06:12 pm - Nearing My Destination

This is it. Two days to go and I'm off to Davao. Two days more 'til my stay here in Borongan official ends. God, it's as if something pricked my heart as I write the previous sentence. But that's the reality of things, and I have to face that. Everyone who dared the JVP path knows this time is inevitable.

It is inevitable, yet we still dared. And we risk, and we give, and often times we give so much of ourselves without even knowing it. We give so much of ourselves because this is where our fulfillment lies. It's funny how it sounds, we give, yet we become fulfilled. At the end of it all, we give so much that it's hard to let go when time ticks ten months.

You know it's going to be hard to let go, but you won't really know how hard it is until you're in that situation. This is what I've learned now.

Yet we give, and we become fulfilled. We give, and in return, we receive more. My heart aches like crazy now, but I wouldn't trade the ache for all the jewels in the world. It is this heart ache that affirms me this has indeed been one helluva a good experience. I love this place since the moment I got here, and I seem to love it more every single day. I hope I get to see Baybay beach again. I hope I will still get to see Mickie and Donald and the rest of the gang still painted on the wall of our staff house. I hope someday in the near future I will be able to enter the SEKAP office and see Kuya Ian, Ate Maricel, Ate Marlie, and all the staff members still working their asses off for the causes I have once (and hopefully will still) fought for.

Yes, I am nearing my destination. The jeepney that I'm in right now, the jeepney that says "Borongan" on its windshield, is nearing the finish line. As much as I hate to admit it, Byaheng Borongan is about to end.

But before it does, let me just give my deepest thanks and utmost gratitude to the people who have made this journey truly unforgettable. Let me thank Kuya Ian, who has been more of a friend rather than a boss to me. Let me thank Ate Maricel, who at times may be very strict, but with it has taught me to be more responsible in my work. Let me thank Tin, who's support, and sometimes the lack of it, has pushed me to be a mature person. Let me thank Ate Marlie, who has inspired me most in the field of community organizing and solidarity with the poor. Let me thank all my Ate's in SEKAP, and my two Kuya's -Kuya Lalit and Kuya Santi- for putting up with all my corny jokes and for always treating me as their "bunso."
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There are still a lot of people who I need to thank, but that would take a very long time to finish. To all those not mentioned but have made Byaheng Borongan one helluva a trip, thanks!

Kita-kits sa malayang bukas...

3/29/06 04:01 pm - Wonderful World of Disney

Tanong nila: bakit ka laging happy?

Sagot ko: Bukod sa lagi akong nag-e-Enervon, eh nakatira rin ako sa Wonderful World of Disney.
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Hay, pero malapit na rin kaming magkawalay nina Pareng Mickie, Mareng Minnie, ang "special friend" kong si Ariel, at ang buong barkada ng Disneyworld...

3/24/06 06:27 pm - Paghahanda

Isang linggo na lang. Isang linggo na lang at iiwan ko na ang napakagandang lugar na ito. Isang biyaya na dito ako itinapon ng JVP. Isang biyaya na masaksikan ko ang kagandahan ng islang ito. Hay, Samar. Kailan kaya ako muling babalik sa 'yo?

Sinimulan ko na ang paghahanda. Sinisimulan ko ng linisin ang lamesa ko sa office. Ito ang aking lamesa:
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Kung titingnan ng mabuti, anjan yung helmet ko. ang helmet kong binili sa Tacloban dahil kay Dove. Ganito kasi ang kwento n'yan, noong nalaman ni Dove, ang aking magiting na POVS (a.k.a. JVP supervisor), na tatlong beses na akong nagdadasaga sa aking motor, natakot s'ya. Sabi ko naman, "Sige bibili na ako ng helmet para safe." At yun, doon nagsimula ang maganda samahan ni Benjie at ng kanyang helmet.

Ngayon, hindi na operational ang aking pinakamamahal na helmet. Nasira ito noong minsang ginamit ng officemate ko. Nahulog habang nagmamaneho, at yun, humiwalay ang "inner core" sa "crust" (naks! para bang planet earth!?).

Sa may tabihan ng helmet na ito, isinulat ko ang mga katagang "Donated to SEKAP, Inc." dahil yun naman talaga ang balak kong gawin dito pag alis ko. Pero ngayong sira na ito, nilagyan ko ulit ito ng bagong mga kataga sa may bandang likod: "AYAW PAKILO ITON!", o sa Tagalog, "Huwag ipapa-kilo ito!" Anak ng pooh bear, ito na nga lang ang lasting legacy ko para sa kanila, i-kikilo pa nila!? Pero hindi ko na rin talaga sila masisisi kung ipapakilo nila ito. Kung ano-ano kasing klaseng kalokohan ang mga pinagsusulat ko helmet ko matapos masira nito e.
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Sa tuktok; "Helmet ni Benjie" (syempre, para marecognize ang donor)
Sa kabilang tabi: "Yeba", at isang malaking JVP cross.
Sa likod, sa taas ng "Ayaw Ipakilo Iton": Ang batch 26 maxim na "Rak en Rol!"
Sa may cap: Isa muling malupit-lupit na JVP cross.

Ayun, nagmukha tuloy pader sa EDSA ang helmet ko sa dami ng "vandalism thingies." Kung krimen siguro ang magsulat sa helmet eh malamang nakakulong na ko ngayon kasi obvious na obvious na isang JVP ang salarin sa vandalism na ito.

Anyway, patuloy sa pag-aayos ng lamesa ko. Sa aking paghahalungkat, nakita ko ang mga nakaimbak na "Evaluation Forms" ng aking mga nakaraang trainings. Dito ko muling nabasa ang mga evaluation at mga comments sa akin ng mga nanay na tinuruan ko ng kung ano-anong kalokohan. Nakakataba ng puso lahat ng sinulat nila. Seryoso, at hindi naman sa pagmamayabang -at sa awa ng rin ng Diyos!- lahat ng comments nila ay positive. Hindi ko na rin talaga sila masisisi. Kung ganito ba naman kagandang lalake ang nagtuturo sa 'yo eh ewan ko na lang!? (sabay suntok ng sarili sa sarili dahil sa angking kahambugan)

Ok, seryoso na ulit. Nakakataba nga ng puso lahat ng mga sinabi ng mga nanay tungkol sa akin, pero may isa sa kanila na talagang...talagang...sige na nga i-englishin ko na... She struck a cord in me (nakngpu, paano mo ba naman kasi tatagalugin yan!?). Anywho, ito ang sinulat niya:

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Sana nga...

3/1/06 08:18 pm - something from me' mentor


Biomechanical Electronic Nullification and Justified Infiltration Entity

2/22/06 11:08 am - Bente Sais

I updated my scrap book last night, and just now I finished reading long yet very inspiring e-mail from my JVP batchmates. The series of events from last night up to now have made me very nostalgic about my batch, and everything that has happened this past nine months. So for them, I give this entry.

For all the smiles, the laughs, the tears, the memorable quips, the hugs, and for every hand squeeze after singing Our Lord's Prayer at Mass.

For all the memorable icebreakers - Shark attack, Banana, Baka La Baka, JV La JV (with Zambie's mala-flittering butterfly dance move), Paketome Tome Papa, "Deep Deep", and all the other icebreakers that I can't seem to remember at this moment.

For the SO clap. For Jayjay doing the SO clap.

For all the songs we shared during our midnight-until-morning escapades, for the songs we've dance to, for the songs we made for each other, inspired by the bond that we have, and for the songs I'm sure we'll share come year-end.

For choices, session road, lover's lane, and the Good Morning CD.

For our cool RTs - Growing Up+1, Team Chuy, Papabert's Preachers, Team Shark, Team Kadyot, and for our uber cool POVs and formation staff.

For the Mission Mass, and for the calls and text messages we gave each other as we left for our "new homes."

For that day we were all re-united for Mid-year.

For that trip in Cebu when we had two drivers - one at the front, and one at rear manning the "big stick."

For that big whirlpool we made in a beach somewhere in Cebu, and that JVP cross made of batch 26 hands.

For the love teams that have yet to be made.

For sticking to our promises to refrain from cliques, na bawal ang mabaho, and that we'd write to each other.

For the letter cycle and for all the support.

For sharing your problems, fears, anxieties, happiness, reflections, revelations, and most especially, your proud moments.

For every story shared.

For sharing this story.

Thanks.

Rak 'en rol batch 26!
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