I’m writing this blog from my phone so forgive the formatting. I have prettier blog posts scheduled!
Bohol has been a luxurious trip with a resort hotel room including a poolside patio. My mother really splurged on her I-beat-cancer trip. After 7 months of treatment she’s making it rain on this island.
Hennan resort is incredible. A carp pond, a pool winding from room to room, palm trees swaying in the wind and a breakfast buffet from foodie heaven. It’s a stark contrast to the the reality of Bohol which is filled with shacks lacking electricity and running water. The barely paved roads have Stray dogs covered in sores and cars missing license plates amongst lush green forests.
Last night we had dinner with my mom’s friend, Nora. They met living in Germany many years before I was born. They bonded over their Filipino heritage and shared birthday week. While they chit chatted after decades apart, I spoke to her husband Buck. Buck is a nice southern man in his 70s who worked as a truck driver for many years and branched Into tourist shops in Florida. He was all too excited to talk my ear off, a non Christian he could perhaps move to a path of light. Buck enlightened me to the realities of this beautiful place. He spun a tale about his life, he retired to Bohol to live in style with Nora with a beautiful home overlooking the crystal clear shores. The part of Bohol he most enjoyed were the people. While they are from simple means and often difficult backgrounds, the people had so much love. When typhoon hayain devastated parts of the Philippines everyone from the man in with a waterfront property to the woman in a makeshift shack, pulled their resources to send any type of aide within their means and even outside their own means. Because Filipinos stick together. They live for the community not for themselves.
While the Philippines is part of my identity as a biracial American, I still have so much to learn about my culture. Growing up most of my friends and family were white and in a sea of caucasians I was unable to grasp my Asian identity until much later in life.