'An E-mail' is an open letter of an OFW to his sick mother. The story is factual, and is highly metaphorical. The letter sender- RJ and his friend represent the Overseas Filipino Workers. While RJ's ailing mom is, actually, the Philippines amidst the chronic political and economic problems- which, the author believes, are still curable. The other characters may be a typical family member of an OFW, and the rest of the Filipino people.
This is written to show the support of The Chook-minder's Quill to the 2010 Pinoy Expats/OFW Blog Awards.
"Strengthening the OFW Families:
Stronger Homes for a Stronger Nation."
DATE: 14October2010 11:59:01 PM
Kumusta? I hope that you have been feeling very well these days regardless of your thirty-day isolation period. Across the oceans, I have been seriously praying for your immediate recovery after that radioactive therapy twenty-four days ago; and with the help of the Almighty I trust that you’ll be healed... online publications have stated that the type of thyroid cancer that you currently have has a very good prognosis. I want you to know that even if I am not physically around to take care of you, I have left my heart and my mind at home—and I believe that, with my frequent prayers, these are enough for you to stay stronger and eventually restore your health. Kabay pa...
By the way, my flight from Davao to Adelaide was so tiresome; my stopovers and transient stay in Manila, Brisbane and Sydney before finally touching down in Adelaide wasn’t really enjoyable. In my next holiday, I might get back to the convenient itinerary of Singapore Airlines... it may be a little bit dearer, though.
Nevertheless, the time I spent with you, and with the rest of our family last September was so memorable, especially during your testimonial program and party. It was a very remarkable event, ay?! I am actually planning to send a ‘thank you’ card to your ex-co-teachers in Bialong Elementary School for the preparations and execution that they’ve done; the way they gave honour to your thirty-eight years of government service was truly exceptional!
Uhmn... I have attached our family photo during that event with this email, please check it. I know that Rose has her own version in her digicam over there, but I have noticed that my copy is much better so I decided to send it to you. I’d be very happy if by the time your ‘isolation days’ are over, you can develop a copy of it and if you don’t mind, please buy a decent picture frame from Ivan Robert Bookstore in M’lang and have it mounted. I have already displayed my own copy of that photo here in my living room.
You know Nay, our family picture would have looked happier if Tatay had been with us. I believe you have plans to visit his grave tomorrow; it’s his birthday, right? Just stay away from the crowd, remember you’re under the power of radioactive iodine.
I understand that you feel so crook most of the time and can’t manage to send an SMS to my roaming phone every single day. Don’t worry, because I have been getting regular updates about you from Rick... People may not always find him nice but, yeah, I can say that he has been a good brother to me the reason why I didn’t have second thoughts to give him my 6300 when, before I go, he asked for it. Weng had also sent me a message saying that it was a relief that she and Rick have their own mobile phone now. I bet... the gallery of that Nokia phone must have been full of baby Clint’s photo because Weng was so excited to tell me that she’ll upload some of their photos in her FB account. I am happy that my younger brother has successfully started creating his own family... Somehow, I can feel that Rick isn’t really interested to come to Australia; he told me that he will pursue his plans to join those ‘boys in blue’ in our country. I’m not sure if he has already shared it to you, but that’s what you wanted him to be, anyway.
It’s good that your next visit to the endocrinologist falls on a semestral break, Rose can surely accompany you that day.
Rose told me, by the way, that she is looking forward to satisfy all the requirements of her degree in October next year (so, I better schedule my next holiday). I believe that our decision to purchase a public utility tricycle for Jeff has really gone well with their current situation, at least a good source of Rose’s daily allowance, plus a regular vitamin dose for their daughter- Athena. In that way, Rose’s tuition fee is our only outstanding worry... but leave it to me, I’ll take care of it. Mayad duman di-a kung makatapos. I have, actually, felt the air of remorse during our conversation back home while we were preparing the ‘give-aways’ for your retirement party. Certainly, she has learned from all her mistakes.
I am a little bit concerned about your medical check-up fees in the coming weeks so I electronically transferred some amount to your account this morning. I am surprised that an Australian dollar has been surging up to ninety-nine and a half US cents! I have also heard in The Filipino Channel that the Philippine peso has been getting stronger lately, and is expected to continue to rise especially that the OFW remittances to their loved ones are high before and during the Christmas season.
Speaking... It was on my schedule today to get a Forex box from Ate Nati this afternoon but I haven’t gone because South Australia is currently experiencing a cold front with some showers; and tomorrow we’ll be experiencing a winter-like condition down here. It was also forecasted that the mountains close to the capital city of Tasmania—Hobart will have a snowfall tomorrow. Very unusual for an Australian mid-spring season, and it only aggravates this post-vacation syndrome that I’ve been suffering since I get back. But just like our current weather here, I know that this feeling won’t last very long. Holiday Season Down Under is scorching hot!
But, yeah, as soon as the chicken harvest is over, I will resume my packing so I could send this box the soonest as possible because I know that Paul is expecting to have his robot on Christmas Day. The looks of that little boy really reminds me of the face of Rose when she was younger. Paul really look like his mom, doesn’t he?
It’s almost midnight down here, uhmn... it’s only 9 p.m. up there. I have to turn the feed lines off in the chicken sheds in preparation for the 5 a.m. bird catch tomorrow.
Get well soon, Nanay. Get well... Who knows, my next vacation will not only be for Rose’s graduation, but for my ‘long table’, as well.
Oops! Nay, remember my friend here in Port Wakefield whose from Batangas? The one who requested me to carry home his gifts to his wife and kids when I had my holiday last month? He told me that their newly-opened bakery and refreshment business has been luckily getting an excellent payback. With this, his family is now having second thoughts in pursuing their plans to migrate here in Australia next year. Perhaps, we are gradually gaining from the fruit of our own labour with the help of the sincere efforts of the new Philippine government.
Huhmn... I am planning to put up a poultry farm in that vacant area adjacent to that mango orchard there. What do you think?