Saturday, July 11, 2009

Mona Lisa's Smile

I had risen early today and found multiple little swamps in the yard, contrary to what I wished and prayed for last night—to see a pile of fluffy crystalline water ice on the ground this morning. I am sure that God gave me a continuous drizzle overnight instead of a gush of flurries which, all these years in my life, I’ve been dreaming to see!

Actually, this is not the first time He did it to me; when I'm asking for something, He was providing me another thing. ...lately, my requests seemed to be always put on hold. I don’t know why.

In my day to day quest for just a sign or an answer I’ve met men and women in my neighbourhood who, somehow, have opened my eyes and reminded me that the troubles of others are always greater than my own. These friends had and have been facing various and even more complex challenges than what I have but they could still manage to face the world with a smile!

I am inspired by their bravery to deal with all the difficulties they have in life. Frankly, I am overpowered by shyness to ask them about their source of exemplary courage and strength but one thing is certain: they have helped me believe that, really, there’s always a reason to smile.

10 July 2009

(Midwinter Down Under)

From LEFT to RIGHT: Siony, Nati, RJ, Gem, and Juliet

is apparently a glittering gold at 50; an Australian citizen; 8 years in Australia; the 5th wife of an 82-year old Dutch-Australian named Charles who’s currently confined in (and has been in and out of) the hospital because of diabetes and heart problem.

Nati has just turned 59 last month; an Australian citizen; 23 years in Australia; was married to Abdul (a grandson of one of those Afghans who brought the first camels in Australia) but has been a widow for 2 years now; currently working as a caregiver in the nearby town-Balaklava, and is living alone in her house.

RJ will be exactly on his 3 decades of existence in August; 2.5 years in Australia; a working visa-holder, a poultry farmer and a blogger. (You can browse through the pages of The Chook-minder’s Quill to know more about him.)

Gem is, obviously, still small (but terrible) at 41, young at heart and in mind; a poultry farm manager working for more than 2 years in Australia; has been granted of his residency visa for 2 months now; married and blessed with 2 sons but he is still living alone in the farm house while continuing to convince his wife to come back here in Australia (after she decided to go back to the Philippines with their children when she felt she couldn’t meet the demands and face the challenges of the outback Australian life).

Juliet was, incidentally, once married to a Filipino (now deceased) named Romeo! ...has just turned 61; an Australian permanent resident; more than 2 years in Australia and is currently married to a 74-year old British-turned-Australian divorcé named Norm who's currently having chemotherapy because of a certain cancer. Juliet is financially supporting her 2 sons in the Philippines who were unfortunately denied of an Australian 'dependent visa' earlier this year.

Glenelg, South Australia


Anonymous said...

Medyo natigilan ako sa title. Mona Lisa's smile. Hindi ko maapuhap kung bakit.

(Ssshhh...akala ko nung una you are sorrounded by Mona Lisas. Lalaki pala si Gem. Paxnxia na po).

Buti ka pa, nakasakay ka na sa camel. I've been here in Saudi for long pero ni minsan hindi pa ako nakasakay sa camel.

Lord CM said...

Wow naman parekoy, mukhang may selebrasyon kayo ah :) ...

Kaano ano mo sila? kamag anak? kaibigan?

BlogusVox said...

Doc, ikaw pala ang "bunsoy" dyan. Ma palad ka at ang dami mong "nanay".

In a foreign land we stick together!

RJ said...

Sorry po... Nawalan po ako ng salita kagabi, hindi ako maka-express kaya 'yon na muna ang nai-post ko. Hayan po, updated na. Sana ay maapuhap niyo na. Hindi ko, actually, alam kung tugma ba itong pamagat sa content ng post ko, pero ayaw ko nang palitan pa. Hahaha! U

Sumakay po kayo sa camel, nakakatuwa pala! Magalaw ang bewang kapag nakasalay sa camel! (,"o

Dinner lang 'yan kasama ang mga kaibigan, Lord CM... Mga problemado kasi ang mga tao rito sa Port Wakefield kaya salu-salo muna para makalimutan ang mga problema.

Yes, dito po sa Port Wakefield ako ang pinakabatang Filipino. U

May idinagdag po ako sa post kong ito, basahin niyo nalang po, baka kasi hindi niyo rin naapuhap ang pamagat at content katulad ni Kuya Nebz. Hahaha! o",)

A-Z-E-L said...

wow! you must be so lucky being surrounded by fine ladies...

it's great to know that someone is with us kahit we're far from home db?

seems you found a second family in Aussie... hehehehe!

again, another chicken on the table! i saw it!

gaya ni kuya nebz, tagal na ko dito pero di pa ko nakasakay sa camel... daig mo pa kami ah! lolz!

Everlito (ever) Villacruz said...

dok rj,pareho tayong gwapo..este bunso.dito rin sa mga ktrabaho ko ako ang pinakabata.he he he.

swerte mo pards, at may nakasama kang mga tita..:)

Everlito (ever) Villacruz said...

pareho lang tayo halos 2yrs nako dito sa lupang buhangin pero di parin ako nakakasakay sa camel.:)

poging (ilo)CANO said...

first time kung makikta ng camel dito doc pero hindi pa ako nakasakay nyan.

gusto ko rin sakyan..

ano feeling?...hehehe

The Pope said...

Looking at the pictures, I am sure being with them you are in safe hands, they seems to be full of wisdom, their wits and experiences in life will be your guidance in facing your daily tasks.

Best regards to your company, and happy weekend.

Anonymous said...

Naapuhap ko na...somehow! Kaya lang baka mali pa rin ang interpretation ko sa title.

Here goes nothing...

Up until now the reasons behind Mona Lisa's smile remain a mystery. Siguro ganun din ang bawat tao. May kanya-kanyang misteryo. Katulad ng mga tauhan sa larawan mo RJ. They -- I mean you -- all have stories behind those peaceful, warm, smiling faces.

And true, there are troubles far greater than our own.

Truer, there are lotta reasons to smile about, RJ. Like, no matter how better our situation is right now, the best is yet to come.

Anonymous said...

wow, it's good to see picture/s of people having good clean fun. glad to know you have a 'family' there in oz to keep you company, doc.

and this reavealed that i'll be 3 years older than you a month after you celebrate your bday in august. i'll make sure i'll read your post on your big day a month (or so) from now. happy weekend, doc.

RJ said...

Subukan mong sumakay sa camel. U

Tama ka, nakakagaan ng pakiramdam na makasama itong mga nakilala kong mga kaibigan dito sa Port Wakefield, S.A.

Pareho po ba tayong gwapo?! Wow! Hahaha! Pangalawang blogger po kayong nagsabi sa 'kin ng ganyan. U

Natatawa ako, kasi napakagalaw pala ang likod ng camel kapag ito'y naglalakad! Whew! Kembot kembot din beywang mo habang nakasakay. Whew! o",)

The keywords, wisdom and experiences- yun na nga po yun! U


Ang galing! Ganu'n nga po ang iniisip ko. U

Natutuwa talaga akong mga matatalino ang mga readers ko rito. o",) Sigurado akong matututo ako sa inyong lahat.

Yes, mababait po silang lahat, Doc Gelo.

Bata niyo pa pala, Doc! (,"o Try kong makagawa ng magandang post sa birthday ko. Hahah!

Kosa said...

with a smile pa talaga ahhh

siguro sa akin Hindi lang smile kundi; BIG SMILE...

wala nman kaseng taong walang problema. ikaw na nga rin ang nagsabi may mga taong masmalaki pa ang pinoproblema kaysa sayo at TAMA ka dun parekoy... we have our own obstacles and challenges in life and the battle field is our mind.

Kosa said...

naalala ko may nauna na akong comment sa post mong ito parekoy... kaya lang di ko makita.. di ba aprobado?

RJ said...

Galing nu'n, bro, ah! "...the battlefield is our mind." Tama ka rin dito.

Wala kang lumabas na comment dito, bro. Hindi mo yata na hit ang 'publish'.

Mr. Thoughtskoto said...

When you look at the faces of these wonderful people, you will see the through their smiles, the simple happiness and joy, but the stories behind those years of perseverance, patience and loneliness is a story that make them stronger and admirable to me.

We learn from them, while we are young, we learn from those ahead of us, that they too have the trials and challenges to face that eventually lead them to where they are now.



That photo shows the thing we do to beat homesickness.... celebrating anything with friends.

jeszieBoy said...

huwaw. great monalisas..

gusto ko ring sumakay ng camel!
nyahaha :]]

RJ said...

Wala na akong masabi pa, ang husay at ang galing ng comment mo, Mr. Thoughtskoto.

Hahaha! Oo nga. Kahit walang occasion mag-dinner. Actually, dito sa Australia 'party' na ang tawag diyan. o",)

Balang araw makakasakay ka rin sa camel, Jes.

Dinadalaw din kita sa blog mo, pero hindi ako nakapag-iwan ng comment, madalas nawawalan ako ng salita eh.

lucas said...

did i get it right? they're all widows ? ( except you of course :)) good thing you have each others company to make things there bearable. it's really good to have friends especially when living in a foreign soil. feels home somehow, doesn't it?

Sardonyx said...

Basta nasa ibang bansa tayo, age doesn't matter when it comes sa pakikipagkaibigan at yun ang maganda. I think sila ang "inspirasyon" mo sa buhay mo dyan sa Australia aside from your family, kasi they can still afford to smile despite the burdens they have in life. Kaya Doc RJ, enjoy your life sa Australia while bata pa and keep on riding the camel hehehe.

RJ said...

No, only Nati...

Yes, somehow, it feels home. o",)

Kumusta na ang lolo mo, Ron?

Yes, enjoy lang nang enjoy at smile lang amidst life's challenges.

(,"o Hahaha! Naku, isang beses lang po akong sumakay sa camel.