It’s common knowledge that when I have a commitment and I have to use my motorbike, it’s raining. I believe that after ten years of mission I have grown in many ways but I have also enriched my vocabulary against the government incompetent and corrupt. With just ten minutes of rain and the roads become like rice fields or slippering like soap to put a strain on any motocross rider.
It’s common knowledge that when I have a commitment and I use my motorbike … it’s raining. I believe that after ten years of mission I have grown in many ways but I have also enriched my vocabulary against the government incompetent and corrupt. Within ten minutes of rain the roads become like rice fields and slippering like soap, this puts a strain on any motocross rider. The pants are getting wet first then cover by mud and at the end blend with the same color of the dirty motorbike. When you arrive at your destination you are a monster of mud and …anger. You can’t talk about development without decent roads, we need to spend hours to reach a village to attend matters that would require only ten minutes and ten minutes of rain can make you mad. Travel like this have the power to blur my sight and mind and trigger the usual litany of sighs that discourages anyone to get closer or talk to me. Usually when the gall it brakes out I slow down , and where there is a waiting-shelter I stop. The gloved hands are freed to reach the usual cigarette that has the power to take away bad thoughts.
However the other day, after getting wet as usual, my mood was different and under the shelter of a giant mango tree, I found laughing at myself. From the four dilapidated wooden houses near my place of rest, a forest of bulky looks wondered what I was doing around there, beneath that pouring rain, the white and weird man. The road was the same that I had traveled some months ago with a group of Italians. We stopped right here. Taking off my helmet and looking at the curve over there, in the distance, I seemed to see again the four in the car with their barrage of questions, petulant and curious that require you, as you drive, to choose the right words between languages that tangled as a skein of nylon in the mind.
But sometimes something else happens and you put aside insults and anger and let yourself not to mind anymore, insomuch all is the same day by day. The mud becomes a mean for an heroic service to the people, the ramshackle veicles that block the road, a symbol of the filipino ingenuity and the intrusive eyes from which nothing escapes screens that looks like small billboards of hospitality.
The simple house that host a desperate and wet traveler, with the mosquitoes that do not leave you alone, is the living proof that you’re not afraid of adaptation and inculturation. Yes when there are guests around, everything becomes nicer and light and even the Eternal Father becomes more sympathetic cause basically He put you to live in a little sanctuary.
Basically the habit, the inurement, puts the simple look to sleep, the hard work upset you to think that only you are experiencing this and you do not realize any loger that so many like you have already made the best of a bad job.
A rotten mango, who knows where it is coming from, rolls near my shoe and I cast it away as I usually do with those who want to load our people, out farmers, with even more penance and fasting. Life is already difficult, do we want also to remove the ability to smile and hope ? I go back on the motorbike. I am fixing the helmet on the head and I see again the blue sea. The children now are making noise near the road. I start to ride again, but with lighter heart. The Italian guests are no longer here and peace is back as usual in this peninsula of Zamboanga that continues to live despite everything, that continues to smile back to us despite the weather, remanding us that rain and mud do not matter much, that the government can do anything it wants. What matters is what you are. What am I. So just try to survive and enjoy the little things that ultimately are the ones you love most. Sights.
A PIME’s traveler