While many wouldn’t want to be where I am in, I admit the spot on the second floor of a dilapidated house with windows reflecting the narrow Burgos Street in Brgy. Obrero attracts my co-settlers. In front of me, across the street, is an old Spanish-styled house with weeds of all sorts sprouting all around. It has five ancient windows filled with dusts and mites, bringing someone to the 1800s, except that it has one air conditioning unit clad with cobwebs; as if my own seating isn’t a time machine in itself. I cannot exactly see the happenings on the street, I can only hear and assume. Dogs are barking, radio turned on in the landlady’s room, broadcasting updates of the new president’s State of the Nation Address. At several intervals during the day, Obrero jeepneys rush, crowding the air with the piercing noises of howling drivers and loud engines; yet so often the street stays silent with only the birds serenading and cocks expressing their might even at midday.
Enjoy the silence now, I murmur to myself as I continue to type and type. I wonder what life is going to be two to three weeks from now. Wait. Am I moving ahead again? What’s the point of checking up the future, imagining what it holds? For the past three days, I devoured all pages detailing the predictions for an Aries/Taurus Rising. What I am, I am not yet sure. Then I start asking again, does it even matter? Two months ago, I sat in a different modern blue-tinted room with paintings spread on the walls, and a brownish carpet smoothing the soles of my feet, closed in from the world with no one to gaze at but the huge finger painting of the Alcatraz, with only the fluorescent lighting the room, day in day out. The same emotions linger in me in two different scenes. Blessed with amenities and a monthly stipend back in the modern room, I still ruminated and twisted and turned the future cinematography of my life: frequently gory, seldom glory. “In the Philippines, things will get better”, I assured myself.
Now situated in an old room with sun lighting the whole expansive space for most of the day and the bare wood easing the heat steaming out of my feet, I continue to ponder what the future holds. When’s start to fill the list… when I get the CHED position, I would be better; when I build my business, I would feel great and unstoppable; when I put a PhD at the end of my name, only then I would experience profound pride beyond my placid life; when… when… But what if the when doesn’t happen? Then the would’s would never be? What if the when’s do happen yet another list of when’s opens up with more demands, more great expectations? Would the would’s be more than what’s enough? I cannot stop the thoughts bursting in all the crevices of my searching mind. Guilt creeps back and the realization swiftly slaps my rather unconscious soul.
I stand up, start pointing my index finger to an unseen spectator, as if berating someone who has soared high only to return to the landing ground. Then I realize, I might be pushing events to happen in my life too much instead of allowing situations to pull themselves up. Stop. Stop. I grab the seat, comforting myself and start typing: Then it dawns on me. The place doesn’t matter, even the situation. It’s how I perceive every situation, every pursuit. Even the desire to be in the future place is strong, I understand I am where I need to be, the neurotic overthinking included, and I am what I need to be. No more scolding for overthinking. No more stopping from ruminating. Just letting things be as much as just letting this writing flows as it flows, for the joy of lines combination and not for anything else, not restrained and too scripted or over-the-top verbose and flashy; just letting it and life be.