Posted by: nastypen | November 10, 2006

What a Difference a Lost Day Makes



I am very tired. It’s my first day back at the cubicled existence, too. So, the gruelling travel halfway across the world made me lose more than just 12 hours of my life. The trip is a total of 16 hours, not counting the stop over in Tokyo, mind you. However, we had to cross several time zones thereby making me lose more than 12 hours of my life just like that.

My stop over in Tokyo Japan left me mystified. The last time I was in Japan was three years ago, but I just did not recognize the airport. Perhaps I was in another airport wing. I had to convert my dollars for yen to be able to eat at the airport McDonald’s. Yes, Japan has the most expensive McDonald’s on earth. One measly fillet-o-fish sandwhich and a coke cost me five American dollars.

But I was hungry because Northwest food has got to be one of the shittiest airplane food ever.

I sat at the gate where the flight bound for Manila will be boarding. I sat next to this Filipina with buckteeth sticking out it makes Bugs Bunny seem to be a spokesperson for proper dental care. She told me her life story. However, I just wanted to read the hilarious book War Reporting for Cowards by Chris Ayers.

But she rattled on and on about being a wroker at an Italian cruise line. She almost convinced me to leave my cubicled existence and be a cabin steward. I would like to see all those different places. The dowside is that I would be folding linens, clean the cabin, swab the decks, bringing in their drinks and carrying suitcases…basically a slave. She harped on about earning so much from the salary alone and she gets tips from these rich Europeans and Americans who “belong to the Class A and B.” She tells me of a fellow Filipina cabin steward who makes money on the side by spreading her legs to horny fellows on board. And that woman is married! I just sat next to that woman for threeminutes and she tells me of the scandals she has witnessed. Do I look like Oprah Winfrey?

It got me thinking. Would I really want to subject myself to manual labor for a group of people who, generally, may not know what the word “hebetudinous” means?

Ah yes, intellectual elitism trumps pragmatism. But, I might be bored and tired from the job, I might just jump ship. I mean I do mind-numbing rote work in Manila for a pittance but at least I get a climate-controlled environment. Whereas workingin a cruise line….well. If I am pissed at work or at some people, I go to places where I decongest. Now, tell me, how will I do that on a ship in the middle of the open sea? I can’t walk out on a ship at full steam ahead now, can I?

So, then we are joined by this older Filipino couple who flew in from Seattle. The woman had her fur coat inside a huge plastic bag becasue she claims it was so cold in Seattle she just HAD to wear fur! In two minutes, that woman told us that she may be a senior citizen but her waistline is till 28 inches.

I wanted to tell her why do we pin our happiness in numbers? I thought of people whose points of view are hammered in “I earn 60,000 pesos a day!” or “I lost 130lbs!!!” or “I look 21 but I’m 30-something!” or “I have three homes and five cars!!!” or “I have a 10-inch penis!”

Please, finite happiness.

Maybe I’m just jealous at that bitch because my age is her waisline….whereas her age is the circumference of my kneecaps? hmmmmm. But, these are things that I can’t imagine myself talking about with strangers.

The woman with a fur coat pointed at her husband who set out looking for mineral water, “Him? My husband and I are first cousins!!!” I just had to keep my poker face on but inside my head I was standing up pointing at her face laughing and screeching “Incest alert! Incest Alert!”

Man, she has this icky necklace of stars forming an upturned pryamid, as if pointing at her mirage of a breast cleavage. She was saying how wonderful life is in AMerica but she wants to return to the Philippines for Christmas. she was patronizing. She muttered “You know what, it is still happier in our country no matter what they say.” At this point, my eyebrow became suicidal and wanted to jump off my face and bitchslap her and say, “You have the LUXURY to think such thoughts. You ABANDONED the country and you just CONVINIENTLY go home whenever you deem fit. Of course, you think it is nicer to be in the Philippines! You practically are a SELECTIVE Filipino.”

Agh….maybe I was just too emotional because I could not read my book from her grating chit chat. I can’t leave my seat at the gate because there are just few seats available. I was just praying to God that I don’t have to sit next to her in the flight.

I was thankfully left alone in my flight home.

When I arrived at the decrepit Ninoy Aquino Airport, I was grateful that Gloria Macapagal Arroyo‘s ugly mug did not greet me as I walked through the tarmac. But there was a “Bird Flu Watch” with matching camera and monitor. When I checked out the monitor, the entire thing was turned off. Brilliant. All show. Just a stupid facade. What an apt metaphor for Filipino politics.

I was a bit frazzled waiting for my luggage considering my horrendous experience with Northwest. I realized that since I was one of the earliest ot check in from Los Angeles, my stuff will be one of the last ones to be spat out to the conveyor belt. An old lady tapped me to pick her luggage from the belt. Being the boy scout that I WAS, I helped her. It was huge and heavy and I thumped it gently next to her. She stared at it and exclaimed, “Ay! that’s not mine!” So I had to carry the damn thing back to the conveyor belt. She pointed another one. I obliged. cue in laughtrack. It wasn’t hers. I was so pissed, I curtly said “See those men in yellow? they’re called porters. What you do is go to them and tell them where your bags are. You pay them to pick your baggage for you. ” She strode away from me. Bitch, please. It is hard to be nice to morons.

As I was waiting for my baggage, I saw this family having their photos taken by the conveyor belt. What the? But why? Why on earth would would you want to smile amidst tossed bags and huge ugly boxes? I guess it is one of those life’s mysteries as to why people hold leaves of a flowering shrub as they smile to the camera.

I got my bags, finally. I was the last one to leave the conveyor belt. My sister’s boyfriend was supposed to pick me up. But his car overheated in EDSA because of the traffic. It was near midnight and EDSA just closed three lanes for God knows why. I guess, this is how the Philippines welcomes me from a vacation: with migraine sprinkled with weariness.

I was so tired and I lost time that I found out later that Britney and KFed are divorcing and the Bush bunnies (What I call the Republicans) lost power at the elections in America.

I have barely sat on my seat at work and I am met with a deluge of backlogs. I have to send in some more comic strips to Philippine Star because my strips have been in repeat mode despite the fact I sent them a massive cache of strips before I left. On Sunday, I will be flying in to Bacolod for work. I have to dispose of the padala I had to lug around. I have to do this or do that.

I am just counting the days for the Chrismas vacation.

Welcome home, bitch, have a dose of exhaustion and a dash of stress….and a spoonful of disappointment. Your vacation is now but a distant memory and it just ended yesterday.  I’m still dazed that I lost a day.  That is a day’s worth of daydreaming and de-stressing flushed violently because of the time zones.

Ok, the whip is cracked that is my cue to work now.



  1. Welcome back 🙂
    Now u need another vacation to recuperate from your vacation. Ay!

  2. Welcome back!

  3. you do nothing but complain,,

  4. Kramer, thanks for pointing out the obvious. complaining is a catharsis and this blog is therapeutic. But I don’t complain all the time. Check out my other tags in this blog. hahahaa.

  5. Who’s Kramer? He surely is not a friend for he doesn’t know you, dahlin’!

    Again, welcome… you are indeed back to hell on earth…


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