Thursday, January 11, 2007

Manila


It was summer of 1994 that I first set foot in Manila.

It was unplanned, at least for me. My dad wanted to schedule for an interview at the US Embassy, while I was on my way to school to enroll for my last year in college. I asked him if I could go with him. He agreed. So I hurried to school and used all my connections just to get enrolled within an hour. The boat, MV Mabuhay 1, was scheduled to leave at 12noon. We both had no tickets.

While inside the boat, I was observing almost anyone and anything near me. This I noticed: Upon departure, everyone spoke Cebuano. When the boat was about to dock at the Manila port, almost everyone spoke Tagalog. I was also tempted to do just the same.

After my dad’s unsuccessful attempt for a US Visa, we roamed around Metro Manila. I was hoping to bump into, or at least get a glimpse of some celebrities, but was disappointed. The first time I saw the tall buildings in Makati, I was really amazed. But I never imagined myself working in any of the offices there.

After that short visit, I pondered upon my future destination: Manila or Cebu? But I remained undecided and assured myself, “God is with me wherever I’ll go.”

A year and a half forward and I passed the CPA board. When I applied at the local PW office, the Partner asked me if I was willing to be assigned in any of their offices. Without hesitation I said ‘yes’. But there was a feeling of relief when he said that I’ll be assigned in Cebu.

From then on, I got the opportunity to travel to Manila twice or thrice a year. The longest of my stay was a 3-week audit assignment at a popular restaurant at Glorietta in 2001. At that time, there were changes in the organization. We heard that senior associates will be assigned for a year in Makati. I quit and transferred to another company before that took place. But in my mind, I had plans A, B and C.

Why not Manila? The lure for the vast job opportunities in Manila is just so tempting. Had I pursued any of my plan A-C, it would be difficult for me to return to Cebu. Some of my classmates who ventured into this large city were all successful in their field, but some still longed for Cebu.

Last night, as the Cebu Pacific plane took off from the Manila domestic airport, I took a look at the city from the plane’s window. Manila is huge and beautiful but this could never be my home. Someone is waiting for me in Cebu.

9 comments:

iskoo said...

i have an officemate who works as engr and receiving a very decent salary and benefits but he always tell me that he will look for a job in his hometown in cebu soon.

cess said...

hindi ako taga-cebu but i want to live there. :)

sexy mom said...

be it manila, be it cebu, what matters is where the heart is. as for you, it is in cebu. have been there only once, but i still have fond memories. cheers

Ferdz said...

Gusto ko yung last line mo. Hehehe. Despite whatever reason you stated about Cebu. It's that "someone" who'll pull you back. Naks! :D

gbert said...

hey, it seemed ages the last time i visited this place. homey talaga blog mo... before, when i was still seeking out for jobs, i also wanted to try cebu but i really cannot understand cebuano, poor me... but i loved the place, loved the malapascua beach and i hope i can still go back...

Ver said...

Like what they say, "Home is where the heart is". "Iba na ang may pinagsamahan" :)

Daisy said...

uy! you make me miss Cebu!!! i especially miss talking in the dialect.

cruise said...

kung saan ang puso mo dun ka, kasi kahit saan ka pumunta kung payapa ka siguradong di ka magsisisi :)

niceheart said...

Aww! You're going back home. I agree with the others. Home is where your heart is.