Postcards From Home: Dubai

Hi, you can call me Anon, based in the Desert City Dubai. A sales coordinator/go-to girl in the office; aka tita ng lahat at doraemon ng opisina.

The thing I miss most about home is Mang Inasal.

Like literally stuffing yourself with all the unli rice you can finish, while laughing with your friends or family, racing on who got the most cups. There's something about food at home, may it be in a pungko-pungko or a crowded Starbucks; there is always someone to share with.

Here outside the country, as most people are so busy with their own jobs and lives; sometimes it's hard to find a coordinated time with anyone. And oh, those quiet days when you can just sit at home, open the windows and let the breeze come in while you take a nap.

The scariest part about leaving home is being out of your comfort zone. You gotta have a high level of tolerance.

For us Filipinos, tolerance seems to be a negative word, but in this place its actually even celebrated. You will meet people from different races, or even from the same country; but later on, you'll realize how diverse each are in terms of character and norms.

Social culture shocked. Or maybe shookt.

In the Philippines, delicadeza sounds very decadent...outside the country, I have learned to toughen up, accept criticism, be patient and open myself to widening my acceptance and understanding even if its out of my comfort zone.

The most difficult thing about living abroad?

Work. Lots of work. I only get one day off and sometimes I'm even amazed how a 24 hour can go so fast, especially if you just wanna stay at home and rest and sleep. That makes me appreciate hard-earning OFWs who do everything just for their families.

I hope people back home realize that its not all rainbows and roses here...and that a Skype call wouldn't be limited to just asking about how much will be the next tuition transfer, or the new shoes, or when will be the next out of town trip when your loved one comes home.

Although technology has helped people to get in touch with love ones from miles away, I think we've lost touch of how a simple how are you, kamusta ka na, kumain ka na ba really matters...

Accessibility is my fave thing about Dubai.

 Although the rent is crazy (like imagine paying 10000 pesos for a bunk bed in a 6 person room); being in an area where you can literally just walk up to the nearest supermarket/mall and having a good metro system is heaven-sent (no shade to the 3 hour Mandaue-Compostela route I used to shade).

Another is being able to help when people really need help.

Sometimes, because youre pressured to save because you dont wanna go home with nothing, whenever something comes up back at home you can easily help out financially. Especially when youre a 20 something who's not really required to bust their ass just to put bread to the table, you'll be amused on how much growth a person can get, just because of a fresh perspective on how responsibility works when you're far away from home.

Living here for good? Nope. 

I'm turning 28 next year, and miraculously sometime after I turned 25; I finally made up my mind where to build a home; it's not on a snowy cabin somewhere north, nor a high rise building, or well known subdivision.

In my mind I find myself in a lovely wooden shack in Camotes Island, free from the pressures of the world,  as I write love notes to my future self.

Parting words for people who want to embark on the same journey


Just kidding!

It's the exact opposite--- it's to slow down enjoy life as it is.

I think most millennials can agree, because of the pressure of having to prove myself and make a name out of something, I was so desperate to try out new things, change my mind the moment I see something greener, give up when I felt like nothings working.

I was moving too fast. Wanting to go out of the country too fast.

I realized wait up--- I've actually missed out on life as I passed by through it.

I came from an OFW family with my dad being in the PH for a few days maybe only after a year or two,  and now being an OFW myself, there are moments when I wish I could just be me as I was back home..scrambling to get a jeepney to be on a cousins birthday, having tanduay ice with my friends after their break ups, being an un-absentee ninang or just go to the neighbors house and have a laugh.

But life is how you make of it, and home is where you wanted it to be. No matter where you find yourself in the world, stay grounded..just live life how you wanted it to be.

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