VACATION TRIP TO PHILIPPINES
Q: We learned that you are from Philippines, isn't it?
A: Yes, I am from Philippines, a well-known country in Asia. I was born there in Caloocan, Rizal on April 23, 1970. My parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and great-great-grandparents are also from Philippines. I am grown-up there and finished my studies until I migrate to United States on November 11, 2000.
Q: We observed that Philippines is the only country in Asia that are Christians, why?
A: Well, Philippines is the only country in Asia that are Christians because when Ferdinand Magellan visited our country, he contribute the Christianity on March 16, 1521 in Cebu, a southern part of Philippines. Not all the parts of Philippines are Christians, there are still parts of Philippines that are not Christians like in the southern part especially in Mindanao.
Q: We also observed that Philippines has the same culture of Spain and other Latin American countries, why?
A: Well, Philippines has the same culture of Spain and other Latin American Countries because our country was colonized by Spain for almost 400 years since when Ferdinand Magellan visited our country. Our culture is similar to Spain and Latin American countries when it comes to religion which is Roman Catholicism, festivals or fiestas, politics or government, conservativeness of people especially the women, foods that we eat, the clothes that we wear, attitudes of people, and so on.
Q: How do you distinguish physically that a person is Filipino/Filipina?
A: Well, I can distinguish physically that a person is Filipino/Filipina by the following: the skin complexion is brown, the hair is black, the eyes are dark brown and black, the faces are similar to other Asians countries like Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia, approachable, hospitable, industrious, helpful, friendly, family oriented, brave, intelligent, and physically fit. There are some Filipinos/Filipinas that their faces are similar to Spain and other Latin American countries because of our country was colonized by Spain and some of the Spaniards are married to Filipinos/Filipinas. A Filipino/Filipina that has a race from Spain, Latin American countries, and United States are called "Mestizos".
Q: We also observed that Philippines has many islands, isn't it?
A: Yes, Philippines has many islands about 7100 islands. Our country is also a tropical area like Hawaii and other Carribean Islands. Many foreigners and tourists like to visit in Philippines because of the islands, seafoods, resorts, and beaches.
Q: How many provinces/states that Philippines have?
A: Philippines consists of 72 provinces plus Manila, its national capital. Philippines is classified into 12 Regions. Each region consists of provinces and cities. Philippines is also classified into three major areas: Luzon, Vizayas, and Mindanao.
Q: How's the weather in Philippines?
A: Philippines has a temperature of 90°F to 100°F during the summer period. You will sweat a lot there because it is also a humid place. In the winter period, the temperature ranges from 70°F to 80°F.
Q: We heard that in Philippines, the people there like games, outings, and parties, isn't it?
A: Yes, Filipinos like games, outings, and parties because most of the people in Philippines are happy persons. After the work, most of the people there will go out for shopping, watch the movies in the cinemas, sing thru videoke, drink a beer or other alcoholic drink with the friends or "barkadas", relatives, and neighbors, go out for outings during the week-end or vacation period with the family, friends or "barkadas", or relatives, go out for the party especially in the birthdays, weddings, baptismal, graduations, promotions, fiestas or festivals, and other occassions. Filipinos are also like sports. Usually, Filipinos like basketball, golf, volleyball, soccer, marathon, tennis, chess, and so on. Most of the sports that Filipinos like are from United States.
Philippines was also colonized by United States from 1898 up to 1946.
Q: We heard that Philippines has many languages, isn't it?
A: Yes, Philippines has many languages because there are many cultural minorities or tribes. Before the colonization of Spain, Philippines has already many languages. The people there speak Tagalog, Ilocano, Pampango, Ilonggo, Cebuano, Waray, Chavacano, and so on. Tagalog is the national language in the Philippines. Because of the colonization of Spain and United States, the people in the Philippines speak Tagalog, English, and Spanish.
Q: We heard that Philippines has already a woman president, isn't it?
A: Yes, our country has already two woman presidents. First, Mrs. Corazon Cojuangco Aquino of Concepcion, Tarlac in 1986 up to 1992. Second, Mrs. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo of Lubao, Pampanga in 2001 up to 2004. The trend in the Philippine history that everytime that our country will have a revolution or people power, the next president of our country is always a woman.
Q: We learned that Filipinos like cockfight or "sabong" and horseracing or "karera", isn't it?
A: Yes, Filipinos are also like cockfight or "sabong" especially in the provinces and horseracing or "karera" in Manila or other cities in Philippines. Cockfight and horseracing are also contributed by Spaniards. These are also considered as gambling because the people there will spend their money in the bet. These are also bad hobby when you are very serious in these games.
Q: We heard that in Philippines, the people there are very devoted to their religion which is Roman Catholicism, isn't it?
A: Yes, Filipinos are very devoted to Roman Catholicism since Spanish period. Filipinos are very active to the church activities especially in the festivals, Holy Week activites, and Christmas activites. Filipinos are church goers and they go to church with their family always every Sundays and participate in the church activities. Filipinos are usually attending the masses, novenas, and, praying the Holy Rosary.
Q: Since you are migrated to United States, do you miss Philippines, your country?
A: Yes, I miss Philippines so much because I stayed there since my birth and I grown up there. United States is also a good place but I like to visit in Philippines because I like everything like food, travelling, and visiting my friends and relatives. If you are very busy here in United States and spending much of your time in your work, you will get homesick and sad. I will save some money in order to travel to Philippines for vacation if I have a time. Thanks God that we have TFC (The Filipino Channel) here in United States. TFC is operated and managed by ABS-CBN. Because of having TFC here in United States, our homesickness and sadness here are already healed. I am now watching the TV shows and news of ABS-CBN here in United States. There are many Filipinos here in United States that's why we have TFC.
Q: When did you visit to Philippines and with whom?
A: I went to Philippines many times as follows:
- First, in November 14, 2003, by airplane via Philippine Airlines at 10:30 pm. I am arrived at Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Manila International Airport) in Philippines on November 16, 2003 at 6:00 am. My cousins, Ester Garcia and Malou Garcia, picked me up at the airport. The purpose of visiting to Philippines are very important because of the following: 1. I will attend the MIT ChE-Chm Alumni Association Homecoming at New World Hotel. I am already 10 years as an alumnus of Mapua Institute of Technology and I want to see my former classmates, friends, and my former professors. I missed the MIT ChE-Chm Alumni Homecoming for two years since I migrate to United States on November 11, 2000. When I have a time to visit to Philippines, I will plan and schedule my trip preferably in November in order to attend the MIT ChE-Chm Alumni Association Homecoming. 2. I will go to Mapua Institute of Technology and De La Salle University in Manila, Philippines to get my transcripts of record. I need my transcripts for my job applications here in United States and for my Doctoral Degree enrollment here in United States. 3. I will visit all my relatives and friends there and have a tour also in Manila and provinces as well. 4. I will attend the Technical Session of Philippine Institute of Chemical Engineers (PIChE) at Manila Midtown Hotel. Ms. Adela "Baby" Anota, Secretary of PIChE, and my fellow Members and Officers of PIChE were recognized me in the Technical Session. 5. I will also attend the 2002 Chemical Engineering Congress at De La Salle University. My former students, co-faculty members, college staffs, the Vice-Dean of the College of Engineering, and the Dean of the College of Engineering were recognized me in the university as well as in the ChE Congress. I enjoyed in my vacation in Philippines for three weeks. Usually, when a Filipino/Filipina will visit to his homeland, one month vacation is enough or sometimes one and a half month. I have to go back to United States because my employer here gave me a three-weeks vacation and I have to do my job immediately once I go back to my work. I went back to United States on December 8, 2002 by airplane via Philippine Airlines at 10:30 pm. I am arrived at San Francisco International Airport on December 8, 2002 at 6:30 pm. My parents picked me up at the airport. My visit to Philippines is very memorable to me. I will plan to visit to Philippines again if I have a time and money as well.
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