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Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 | By Kaye | In

I keep telling myself that retiring in the Philippines will never be an option for me,- it is extremely hot and humid, the pollution is unbelievable, and everybody especially family is always trying to interfere in your life, as if they have a say in every decision, action and reaction that you make...and I admit, when I came home for a holiday, I was in anticipation and was more than a bit wary about all these things. In fact after having been the object of teasings, to the point of being ridiculed and laughed at, because of my weight, a week was enough for me and I was raring to go back to NZ.

But the Philippines has its way of wooing me back- seducing me with her panoramic beauty, the smell of the earth after the rain, even the view of nipa huts with our amazing sunset as its background is really, without exagerration -breathtaking...everything that seemed normal and common before, now seemed refreshingly different. The food still appeals very much to my palate. I relished riding the jeepneys and tricycles, going to the wet market and watching my hubby haggling with the vendors, ha,ha,ha...And sweating! yeah, you hardly sweat in cold countries like NZ, even in summer, and I missed the way sweat trickles down my face. Jeez, I know blog-reader, strange isnt it?
I slowly got used to the way people think, their kind and way of joking and saying things, their humour. It was an eye opener. Life is harder than before and I admire my fellow countrymen for being survivors, for bearing all their troubles, for still being able to laugh. Its a good thing ( despite all the bad things happening around them ).

And now that I'm back here, I guess I really left my heart back home. Just the other day, I was talking with my friend Ruth, who is also an imigrant from S.Africa ( a lovely woman, by the way ), and we talked about how we miss our friends and family, our country and we both came to a conclusion- a sad conclusion, that the truth is: we're never really going back home for good, that the country we've left behind- won't get any better. That is the reality, although we'd like to think and imagine, that someday we could go back and live there again.

I know in my heart, I would love to, especially in old age, it makes me feel sad just thinking about it ( because it might not just happen...). But who knows ?
I remember, as our plane finally took off, high above Philippine soil, I took in all the vastness of the land until it faded from view, I didnt realize that tears were rolling down my cheeks in big drops. It might be years again before we go home...

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