After enjoying half of my life in the U.S., I came back to the Philippines with the idea of starting anew. After more than a year living here in Cebu, I say I love it here. I like the warmth of my friends and the sweat running down my sun-soaked skin every time I go to the beach or go sailing.
I have to work harder to earn a living, but I still think it’s worth it if only because I have not paid one centavo in taxes. So far my earnings are still in dollars deposited at a U.S. bank, and that’s the reason I have not been taxed yet. Soon I will start earning in Pesos, and will experience first-hand how it’s like being taxed like a slave. On the other hand, living expenses here are much cheaper than in the U.S., so probably I shouldn’t complain.
If only the taxes were two-thirds lower, then this country would really be the paradise it’s destined to be.
Politically you may classify me as a Libertarian, but I’d vote Republican anytime. I love Rush Limbaugh, and I also listen to Glenn Beck and Michael Medved.
Last week, while shopping at the Ayala Center Mall here, I surprised myself by conversing in pure Cebuano with a toilet attendant. He started it: “So who are you going to vote for in the coming election?”
“Manny Villar”, I responded with no hesitation.
“You believe he is really good for the poor?” He asked.
“Yes, I think what Manny will do will be good for the poor.”
“How will it be good for the poor?”
The question startled me, coming from a toilet attendant. Normally, the level of skill required to be a toilet attendant does not include asking How. I was then already washing my hands, and I wanted to get out of there quickly because I didn’t have change for the tip. It occurred to me that replying to the question would be worth much more than any tip. “Well”, I said, “Manny Villar will make it easier to start any business. He will change things so money will start coming in from other countries. With businesses and money flowing to those businesses, we will get more jobs. YOU will get a better job than just attending to this toilet. I know you are here only because there are no other jobs available, and I know that you have to fight for this job before you got it. Is this true, what I am saying?”
“With Manny Villar running things, I, Carlos Tapang, can personally promise you that in a year’s time you will get a better job because I know you work hard and you deserve it.” With that, I stepped out without waiting for a reply.