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Live To The Point Of Tears

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Gosh, what a month, what a month.
The above picture is from my FAVORITE comic/graphic quote-book-thing, ‘A Softer World’
Always cheeky, poignant, and reassuring…they used to be in The Coast, which is a free newspaper in Halifax, NS, and I used to cut them out every week. I still have them all tucked away in a box at my moms somewhere.
I found out later you could buy a full-color book version at Strange Adventures comic shoppe, but I found the process of cutting them out and sticking them into an envelope kinda kitsch and wonderful, so.
Yep.

Anywhoo, I guess I have a lot to update you on, so here we go.
I wrote down stuff as it happened to better remember, but it’ll be a bit spotty, my memory has never been great.

On God-knows-what day in Jan, Damon had been drunk for weeks, and I decided enough was enough for me.
I took a Jeepney downtown to Lee Plaza, got a bit of cash out, picked up smokes, and went to Coco Amigos.

I sat there chain smoking and crying, had every intention of sleeping outside, but it was raining and I had forgotten my umbrella. I was half-hoping Damon would show up and take me home but he didn’t. After a while, I was really tired and I just wanted to go home, so I got the last Jeepney back to Valencia and walked back to the house, and slept on the porch.

On the seventh of February, I again packed up and got ray to drive me to Coco’s. I had no money this time, and so I went over to the boardwalk across the street and sat there, smoking.
After a while, I curled up and tried to rest, but kids kept bothering me asking for money and stuff….that’s kinda an annoying part of downtown…..all the kids beg, and I’ve been told that the women sometimes lend their kids out to other homeless/beggar-people so they can have a better haul for the day…..people pity people with kids all around the world, I guess….and they cash in on that fact here.

Anyways, A man and a heavily makeupped Lady stopped eventually and started asking all kinds of questions…I told them my story, told them my visa had been expired since January, etc, and they told me I should go to the Mayor for help in the morning.
After they left, two guys stopped and asked to take my picture.
I was immediately creeped out, wondering why they wanted MY picture, and one guy said he was from Manila for the weekend and so he wanted a picture….My antennas were wiggling furiously, but let them take one..

After they left, the group of kids that had been hanging around told me to call the police because I was going to get taken.
I asked them if they meant kidnapped, and they said yes……so I didn’t know if they knew much English, and I don’t know if that’s what they really meant, but I went to Coco Amigos, and got them to call the police.

They eventually got there, and I told them I was pretty much homeless and my visa was expired….everyone was super nice, and they let me smoke….They took me to the copshop, let me use the computer, gave me hot chocolate….I answered questions and gave all my info and stuff….and then we basically just talked about our two countries, Canada and the Philippines, talked about jobs, food, education, etc until I got tired.

I slept in a bench in a back office, and the next morning it was kinda super rainy.
The day started a bit hectic, they were trying to figure out what to do with me.

We went to see a social worker in Valencia, who gave me P200 for food, but said there was pretty much nothing she could do for me because I had no money or tickets to get home to Canada, and they had no money either.

We went to the Immigration office, and they said I had to update my visa and obtain an exit clearance just to leave, and that they couldn’t help either. I asked about deportation, but since I hadn’t done anything wrong, they said it’d be impossible, and that it takes months anyway.

One of the Female officers bought me lunch at a little cafe and we had a bit of a chat, she told me she’s dating a female judge in Ontario, she showed me pictures, and talked about Canadian money, I pointed out that the toonie and the ten peso looks similar to each other and stuff, it was a really nice break from the stress of the past few days.

After a few hours of head scratching, I was taken to la Casa Esperanza, which is a crisis center for women and children in Dumaguete city. I was told I would be able to stay until Monday, this day being Saturday.

I was shown around, read the rules, and shown to my room, which I shared with a woman and her baby, and a little girl.
It wasn’t really all that different from being at Adsum House, which is a shelter for women in Halifax that I have lived at quite a few times in the past.

My stay was fine, all the girls tried to teach me Tagalog, and I managed to remember a few….I now know shark, water, plate, dog, cat, eyes, and bat…and I have a list of other stuff that I’ve yet to memorize.
I had to beg for coffee and to be able to smoke cigarettes outside out of sight, which had me a bit stressed out for a few days, but I got through it.

On Monday, I heard nothing, then on Wednesday I got really homesick, so I asked them if I could go back to the house and see if things were any better, to try to make peace and stuff.
Two officers and a counselor took me back to the house, and right away I could tell Damon hadn’t even stopped drinking at all.
I spent two days at the house before I figured everything was royally effed, and so I went to the Valencia police station, and told them I wanted to contact the Canadian Embassy about going home.

They cleaned up a little nippa hut on the property and told me I could sleep in it while we got everything straightened out.

It was awesome watching how fast they cleaned and fixed the hut, it was a wreck before I got there, and a team of about six or seven guys zipped around and put a tarp on the roof and all that.
So I lived there for about a week and a half, then Damon sent me a stupid message on Facebook saying my Lush package had arrived….I paid a lot of money for it and so I went back to the house to get it.

Stupid fucking idea.
Damon was sitting in my pajama pants, all contrite and resolved and told me he had stopped drinking and he didn’t want to drink anymore and it was too inconvenient and blah blah blah blah blah, long story short, I decided to give him yet another goddamned chance, and he lasted a week.
As SOON as his mother left for her job, he picked up a bottle and started in on me yet again.

I’m now back living in the hut at the police station, trying to get the Canadian embassy to help me, and being very hungry and frustrated and tired and depressed and suicidal and pretty much the lowest I can currently be.

Donations would sincerely be appreciated at this point.

The Bloody End for now.

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Posted by on March 7, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Anything You Lose Comes Round in Another Form

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Lots of things have happened, and fear not, I have not abandoned this bloggity at all, the technology in the house all went kaput at pretty much the same time….
Donna went to Makati for surgery a few days before my birthday…..which was January 17th….then the tv died, and the internet started glitching up….

Damon drank again for four straight days and that was terrible, I got called all sorts of nasty things again, and at one point it was so bad I took my bag, packed it, and got a jeepney to Coco Amigos on the waterfront downtown.
I sat there for hours, had a calamansi juice, and smoked cigarettes…..I foolishly assumed he’d come try to find me after so many hours, but I was wrong. I was going to sleep outside and start doing what I needed to do to survive, but I got really tired and it was raining so I got the last Jeepney back to Valencia and walked back to the house.

What a terrible cycle it is….He drinks and treats me horribly…..I tell him I want to go home, and that he promised to send me back if things didn’t work out…then he stays sober for a few days so I feel like everything’s back on track, then he gets drunk again.

I’m tired of it, but I’m literally stuck here…I have no way to get myself home, I have about $100 in the bank, and I don’t know anyone who can help me out. I don’t want to ask Donna because she’s dealing with the chemo and stuff right now….but I’m going to have to.

My visa extension has also been expired since January 18th…..so technically I’m staying in the country illegally right now….but again, no money to do anything about it.
Maybe I could be deported. lol

Anyways, while Damon was on his little binge, I’d go up to the top of the path with a book and a beer and just sit and read all day….one day I was just crying and begging God for help, saying I needed to talk to someone, and that kinda stuff….and a few minutes later after I calmed down a bit, two missionaries, Sister Seaberg and Sister Fatiau sat down on the bench beside me and talked with me for quite a few hours.

They’re Mormons, and we’ve been hanging out ever since, they come to the house, we’ve cooked pasta for them, we went to church, and I’ll be going again this week, and while I don’t think I’ll join the church as a member, it’s just really nice to be socializing and to have someone to talk to again in the ‘real world’

Damon was invited to start a cooking class in the church, but last night while drunk he was going on about how he’s not going to go anymore and blah blah, so tough luck for him.

 

Not much other news, we’re going to be switching internet providers soon, because this one has terrible connection.

Write more soon….I haven’t died, don’t worry. haha

 
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Posted by on February 6, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Silence Is a Text Easily Misread

AAHHHHHHH!!!

I was absent too long! 
Don’t worry, I’m not dead yet!

Like I’ve been mentioning, the last few weeks has been a bit rough around the edges for Damon & I… It was leading to a lot of unnecessary tension, and it built to a head the other night and burst open like a big sack of gooey green pus.
Nothing life-altering whatsoever, we were talking about something I can’t even remember, and he told me I can sometimes be a finicky b!tch.

I lost it, started crying my head off, drank a pint of rum in the bathroom, and sulked for about two days. 

Finally, he got tough with me and one afternoon made me lay down and snuggle with him…

((Terrible marriage, when ‘getting tough’ means ‘making me snuggle’, eh? It’s laughable now, but I was illogically cranky at the time))

We then took two days just staying close, talking, snuggling, and, in his words, ‘Tending the Nest’.
We cooked food together, ate together, laughed and giggled at each other’s silly antics and kissed and hugged each other a lot.

In my opinion, it is very important to nurture a relationship with that sort of affectionate, innocent closeness every once in a while… It clears the air and clarifies the bonds that you share with your significant other.
You’re reminded that you’re both together because you want to be, and not because you have to be… Which is a really good thing to remember.

With everything emotionally sorted, I ended up painting him a watercolor, putting up the hammock in the yard, and writing this bloggity out. I also have two videos to share.

The first one is a Mimosa plant… They’re known as ‘shy’ plants because when you touch them, they collapse and close up.
I remember when I was young, our science teacher brought one in to show us. He told us that if you touch them too many times, they die, and that they were very rare.

Now that I live in the Philippines, I see them every day, they grow like crazy all over the place!!
When I first found out that they grew in our yard, I freaked out with excitement, I couldn’t believe we had them. 
Second to Lilacs, they’re my favorite plant.

The second video is of a worm.
Not spectacularly exciting, I know, but the worms in Canada are very slow when you poke them…they don’t really care, and tend to just scrunch up for a second, then continue on their way.
Philippine worms, however, act as if they’re having a panic attack when you touch them, then slither away like a snake. I was fascinated the first time I poked a worm here and it wigged out.

Anyway, I guess I shall go for now, but I will try in the future to stay as regular as I’m used to being.
I try to make a post every day before five pm, though a lot of the time it’s realistically before ten pm.
Either way, sorry to my followers, and I hope this one makes up for my absence!
Don’t forget to tell your loved ones how you feel about ’em.

-Vicky-

 
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Posted by on October 4, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Keeping Regular – Good for the System

Well, I almost didn’t write a new post today…no news is usually good news, but I suppose being the author of a bloggity…no news is bad views?

So I suppose I shall talk today about driving on the Scoopy.

Way back in the day, when I was a little youngster, I thought it would be awesome to get my driver’s license… a personal milestone of life-changing grandeur, opening a whole new world of opportunities and greatness. I couldn’t wait to turn sixteen and buy a cheap rust-bucket to call my own.
As sixteen got closer and closer to becoming a reality, I realized that having a car was highly overrated, way too expensive, and much more work than I was willing to put in, and in the end, I never ended up getting my license.

When I moved out to the Philippines at first, the roads and traffic terrified me… the people here are insane on the road, and rivaled only by Montreal, in my mind.
My husby Damon told me I would get used to it, and that while it looks chaotic and dangerous, there actually is somewhat of a method for driving here. I thought he was just as insane as the rest, especially after telling me that when he’s alone on the bike, he drifts around corners and reaches speeds of over eighty without a helmet… Can you say potential street pizza???

Eventually though, after about four months of my being here, I got the driving itch. One day when there was nothing going on and I was ready to crawl out of my own skin at the boredom I was feeling, I decided to hop on the bike and go for a spin.

Previous to this, my only experience with the bike was being on the back with him, and one teensy instance of driving it from the Sari-sari to our house…a grand, majestic total of about a two-minute trip down the driveway.
I had never driven a car in my life, let alone a scooter, which is what we own.

So the day I drove alone, I went up the mountain… Deciding that since I hadn’t been up that way yet after months of asking Damon to take me, I’d just go right ahead and take my damn self.

I have to say, it was a lovely drive, the flowers, trees and various plant life here are all breathtaking, not to mention the scenic views of the city from the mountainside.
I could feel the local people all staring at me, and a few tried to get my attention, or said hello as I drove past… but being a foreigner here, it’s getting to be a normal thing for me to experience.

I almost drove myself off the road trying to avoid a baby chicken, and at one point I was stopped by a large herd of goats, but other than that, the ride up was smooth and beautiful.
I found what looks to be a park, that I want to investigate further, and I saw an old Lady sweeping grass clippings off the side of the road. I took the time to appreciate and admire her work, the way the freshly swept soil looked richer and darker for her doing so…

The way back home was a bit frustrating, I definitely got lost, and got a few smirks from people as I passed them more than three times trying to find my way…
I decided at one point to stop and ask for directions, and realized as soon as I did that I was on my own darn street.

I got home just before the tank ran dry, and decided I think I may very well fancy this driving stuff… I can’t wait to go out and adventure again…next time, I’ll remember to bring my camera.

SAM_0192

 
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Posted by on September 18, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Sickness in Paradise – The Foreign Plague

Welcome to my blog!

This may as well be an introduction as well as a critique… I have a lot to say, but know I must keep my posts short-ish and sweet to lock you in as a potential regular.

I am a 26 year old Lady living in the Philippines, originally hailing from Nova Scotia, Canada.
I moved here to be with my husband, who, up until about eight years ago, also used to call Canada home.

This blog came about in the last few days as a protest and response to another blog I found while surfing on the internet… It is a self-proclaimed ‘personal journal’ that a fifty-something year old man from America had started back in 2005, chronicling his move and subsequent retirement in the Philippines.

While reading his posts, I’ve discovered the blatant racism and distastefully vulgar opinions that I’ve been warned about by my husband…He tells me most foreigners that move to or visit the Philippines are here for the ‘Sex Tourism’ and the ability to easily take advantage of the local population.

Seems to be very true for this guy… he jokes around about having sex with women in their early twenties, talks about his rich friends who do the same, he insults the people, calls them ugly, and talks about hanging around in the places my husband has warned me about… Pick-up spots like the Whynot discos and the McDonalds, etc.

It disgusts me that old white men from America and Europe can come to a beautiful paradise such as this and mar it with their revolting, beastly ways.
Every Filipino I’ve ever met or spoken to here is so polite and happy that it is almost unnerving, and the beauty of the people is well-matched by the beauty of the landscape.

So basically, I will be keeping this blog as a record of my own experiences here… not as a rich, spoiled, fat, white foreigner, but as a simple Lady living a simple life with her husband in a beautiful land.

I hope you’ll come along, and enjoy a different take on what I now consider to be our home country.

SAM_0066

 
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Posted by on September 16, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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