Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Am I living in countryside?

Geographically, my house is supposed to not be categorized as very "countryside". In fact, our place is just 4-5 km away from city where is the center of commerce and education in this region. 

But my house is bit away from the main road and surrounded by rice fields. So atmosphere being rural still remains. 

Then, I proudly say I am in rural area. 

Now, I certainly developed through my observation, certain measurement how countryside/rural the area I am in. It is not scientific just simple observation based on my experiences.

Reaction of people when they see me on the street

Well, first measurement is reaction when people see me.
They recognize very quickly I am from somewhere. Funnily, in Metro Manila, people often see me as Chinese Filipina. But here, no one think in this way.

Once I bike and pass in front of small group of people, they, especially children shouted at me some foreign sounds greetings to express their interests toward alien (me). Sometime, I do not understand what they said because they sometimes make own languages sounds like foreign :D After all, children giggling.

My husband is Jackie Chan??
One day, I biked with my husband. Children called my husband as Jackie Chan. By the way, looks of my husband is far from Jackie Chan. But children cannot find another suitable name on him. So, he was considered as foreign national too because he is always with me.

Our case is not commonly seen in this country, Filipino man and Japanese female. So many people thought he must be from somewhere too. But he is from another side of the same town.

Concept of space - no permit needed to enter the house ?-
Since I am new here, for our neighbor, it might (might not) be an object of curiosity. Anyway, my husband is Jackie, no wonder!

However, my neighbor literally got inside my house and look around our rooms, which was often happening first 2-3 weeks. I have never experienced this in Manila neither Japan. So I wanted to say this is not exhibit! But I did not...tried to be polite to that person. But I finally stopped entertain her to show I do not like what she does. 

Another case, while I was staying in mother in law's house, someone I have never met got inside the house without permit, enjoy watching TV, eat dinner and disappear from the house all of sudden. People in the house seems not much care of that person.

Who is that person??

Later, I learn that person is far relative. 

Our place does not mean totally safe since new comers coming in whom the people in the community do not know yet, which makes people sense certain insecurity. But in general, door of the house remains open in day time. 

Nudity on the street?
In front of my house, I often see children around 2-4 years old walking around without underwear. Is it problem? For me, not so as long as there are no people satisfy sexual desire by seeing these children..anyway, children here are FREE in many ways. 

My husband mentioned this once because he did not do that. House he grew up is nearby town proper, which is the reason he mentioned. So when he was small, if his mother did not want him to be out of house, she did not let him wear the underwear. Then, he could not go out, which means he developed sense of shame to show his private part. 

Animals on the street 
Dogs, chickens, ducks and  turkey are everywhere. Sometime, I see water buffalo working and eating grass in the rice fields. It is nice to see them around but I am scared of stray bogs night time. Usually ordinance certainly prohibits letting dogs on the street. But it is happening. Animals are everywhere can be one of the sign I am in bit countryside. 

By the way, my favorite among these is duck because I like their butt when it walk. I always think it look like they wear a diaper. 

Burning garbage on the street
I do not appreciate this practice because people even burn plastic. But community here does not have garbage collection service. Unless people have certain idea reducing garbage or create the way to recycle these, garbage will be accumulating in your house. 

So people burn it but burning especially plastic is not good idea. I am not environmental scientist then I avoid here to discuss scientific explanation but smoke comes to your house and eventually I suffocate. How about children, it will affect them more than adult. 

But smalls packs of snacks, shampoo and so on are available every corner of the street. How this practice will be stopped?  
Then, my friend in NGO is making plastic pillow by collecting these plastic garbage, clean, slash and put them into pillow case. It can be one of the testing solutions.  

Anything else? Yes, actually more..but there are I encountered first 1-3 months.  

For your  little information, my hometown in Japan is suburban area which has less uniqueness in terms of nature's beauty unlike my mother's province where has beautiful rice fields like here and famous of Natto (sticky soy beans) production. I certainly admire life in the "countryside" which is far from the capital city.

Relation with children are slowly being developed since I responded them in Tagalog (sorry not in Bicol language). Some of them know my name and other way around.

I will enjoy discovering more something interesting (for me).

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