If you spend one weekend in the Philippines, you will never want to leave! An old retired US Navy guy told me this not so long ago and he shared his many wonderful experiences in the islands. He met the love of his life in the Philippines, as he married one of the lovely local ladies and is still married to her today, some 35 years later. I already knew about the grandeur of the Philippines but I did not want to spoil his story telling, as I also have so many similar and wonderful experiences in the Pearl of the Orient over the past 27 years. The great news is, I am adding to those fabulous experiences every single day that I am living here! It is not only a cliche when I tell others that everyday unfolds a new adventure in the Philippines! At age 58, I am thankful for even the small discoveries and new things that come up.
What's So Great About The Philippines?
I recall my last year living in the USA way back in the year 2000. I was sitting around with a number of my American friends one afternoon and they were grumbling and unhappy because they said they did not have any extra money. Yet, they all had good paying jobs, a nice home that was nicely furnished, they had newer pickup trucks or other vehicles and they were all in apparently good health. However, the way they were talking, they were down and out!
Some of my Filipino friends are not nearly as blessed as my American friends, yet everyday they have a big smile, they laugh and they know how to have a good time. Not long after I moved to the Philippines, I also found it easier to have a good laugh everyday! It feels great. I had not laughed so easily and so heartily in years but it is not hard to do when you are around such fun loving and positive thinking people. Many Filipinos do not worry about anything because they realize it is a waste of energy and it is a stress in life that none of us need. Tomorrow will take care of itself! What is going to happen will happen and only God can change it, is often the attitude. A strong Faith is one of the characteristics of many Filipinos, which sees them through day to day.
Psychology was my Major in the University and I know it is true that the type of people we surround ourselves with can have a strong effect upon our own mood. Positive thinking people with excellent attitudes about life is infectious and so is the negative thinking people with terrible attitudes in life!
I recently shared to a group of expats my very first experience with Filipinos back in the 1960s. When my dad was still in the US Navy and when he had the weekend officers duty, he would take me to his ship on Saturday mornings. While he attended work, he would leave me with the ship stewards and the stewards were all Filipinos. They would entertain me with games, singing, dancing and they also gave me a lot of good food to eat. They told me when I got older, I must visit the Philippines and I did! I discovered the people here to be as hospitable, friendly, happy and fun being around as all the guys on the ships over the years!
Everyday A Fiesta
Most Filipinos look for something to celebrate, to dedicate, or honor. With so many barangays or villages in every city, there is a fiesta going on in one of them at any given time! Beauty pageants are very popular in the Philippines and there is probably no other country in the world that holds more beauty pageants than the Philippines. On the international scene, Filipinas are most always in the Top 5 of the final contestants in every major pageant held in the world!
If there is not a formal fiesta, one is often held in the homes. Good food, drinks and singing karaoke is a most popular family activity. I join right in because I enjoy singing and can sing many different songs of various types of music. Despite being a Southerner from the USA, Country Music is not what I enjoy singing!
For the disgruntled expats living in the Philippines, who always have something to complain about, I came to the conclusion that they would be unhappy no matter where they lived! Those guys are at the top of my list of people to avoid, at all times. Some just cannot stand to see others being happy. There is much wailing and gnashing of the teeth when they see a simple, fun loving people having more fun than they are because they do not know how. And they are not willing to try!