Monday, July 24, 2006



“pasensya na po sa abala.”

“sige sige, parepareho lang tayo sa mundo.”

These were the last words that the Kunduktor said to the man beggar as he alighted from the bus. I was behind him, waiting patiently as he slowly went down. He has a nerve or muscle related problem. His knees and arms shook as he moved, his eyes firmly locked at the path he wishes to tread, his mind unsure if he can make it back to the curb.

He introduced himself as a former bus driver. He slowly walked around the bus asking for help. I gave him some cash, so did some of the passengers. Others did not notice the man; I guess apathy kills more than we will ever know.

When I gave him my alms, he looked me straight in the eye and whispered:

“Diyos na ang bahala sayo.”

I gave him my poker face and acted as if I didn’t hear a word. Inside, my heart bleeds.

In the end, if you really want to think morbidly about it, what the Kunduktor said was true: parepareho lang tayo sa mundo. From the rich folk of condos and gated subdivisions, to the middleclass to the poor of the shanties: we will all leave the earth someday. We will all laugh and cry, fight and retreat, crawl, walk and crawl again, and in the end, the sum of our actions decides our destiny. We are all bound by a singular fate: the final test to know if whether we are worthy of paradise or its counterpart.

On a bus, a helpless man asks for help. He says “diyos na ang bahala sa inyo” when you give of whatever you can spare.

And if you don’t give even if you have:

“Diyos na ang bahala sa inyo.”


curiosity killed the cat:
Hi there! I came across this url on a little white sticker on the door while taking a pee at Seattle’s Best in Alabang Town Center, and believe me, I’ve seen it just about a thousand times so today I finally decided to visit your blog. Your stories remind me of my own bus ride adventures going to or from school whenever I don’t have a ride. I’ve had my share of oldies, crazies, poor beggars, funny candymen and kunduktors. I actually abhorred riding the bus when I was a freshman in college. I’ve heard a lot of horror stories from people about manyaks who are also called exhibitionists for some reason, the ever so famous holdapers, pick-pockets and plain old weirdoes, all of whom I just don’t want to be bus mates with. Whenever I had to commute, I always felt like a poor little kid nobody cared enough for to make hatid or sundo from school. Of course I’ve changed from an overdramatic (more like over-kaartehan) freshman to a now, (hopefully) more mature senior and since then I’ve actually learned how to love riding the bus (I’m quite sad to find out that there was actually a bus liner that was called Love Bus before and now it’s gone! What a loss). There are still some things about riding the bus though that drives me up the wall. Number one on my list are those little insects, scratch that, COCKROACHES creeping down from the bus window and ALWAYS to the part of the wall near your leg. That scenario always almost provokes me to get one of my flip-flops to smash the stupid cockroach with, and the hardest part is you can’t do just that because you’ll definitely look like one of the crazies when you go wild when a bus insect threatens to fly up your nose. The best I could do is squirm away from the wall without making the stranger beside me think that I want to get cozy with him, try to muffle my disgusted screeches as much as possible and pray that the cockroach will go back to the crack on the corner of the bus window where he came from. Next would definitely be GMA 7! 95% of the times I have ridden the bus there’s a TV switched on and 95% of the time it’s tuned in to GMA freaking 7. There was a time for several terms I had to go home by bus on several days every week, and it was usually around noontime until late afternoon and believe me did I already know what was happening in Daisy Siete, the latest chino/koreanovela and I was very well equipped with bits of useful… and well, not so useful knowledge from the very educational, very Filipino Eat Bulaga! I could never forgive myself whenever I forget to bring a book to read or my music player to fight the tendency of staring into the idiot box (I really am not a TV person, and definitely not a “kapuso”!). I also hate it when a big, smelly, sweaty guy sits beside me and insists that there is still space for him by squeezing himself into a comfortable position and the ticket inspector drives me crazy too for it's just so irritating sometimes to look for your ticket, but I know they're just doing their job. A couple of bus collectors have also forgotten to give me change for my big bills, but then i also forgot to ask and I just hoped that my change helped them even just a little bit. Despite these little bus issues I have, I still enjoy the sights and sounds i take in whenever I ride the bus. I feel like I'm experiencing the world, the real world in this colorful country with its colorful masses. The Baclaran church going oldies every wednesday, the NGO workers or missionary workers giving a speech and passing out envelopes, the pastillas man who gives out free samples, the peanut vendor in Buendia who knows me by face already and always asks me "mani, tisay?" and my favorite, the babies and toddlers with their mom or dad, who sits beside me or on the seats in front of me, peaking between the head rests as I make faces to play with them. Anyway, I've blabbed on way too much already. The bus is always a fun topic, so I really like your blog. I'm looking forward to more of your fun, witty, informative and sometimes touching blog entries! peace man! :) commuting rules! (we should really promote commuting, there will be less traffic and it helps the environment too!)
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?