I have prepared my whole life for the hardships of living here and I'm the one who actually goes out to make it happen when I decide to do something. People were shocked. Even I was shocked. But then there is nothing more I would want to do but attain the best opportunities. Cebu is great but it has no more room for my professional and financial growth.
I have been down so long that I never wanted anything else but happiness for myself and people around me from this point on.
Yes, living costs here are skyrocketing high. Food prices range higher, commuting is broken down to multiple rides and long walks to stations and stops, amidst the blistering sun. Long walks. Prepare to dish out a big amount of money just for transpo expenses alone. You even have to round off your taxi fare to the nearest tens as a custom.
To be honest, having a car or a job that could pay for taxi allowances is a must. There is a great amount of pollution, as with any highly urbanized city. And don't even get me started about the traffic. Even with color coding, it's just insane. I haven't started work yet but I know that aspect is gonna be a big problem.
If I may add, the threats to your safety as pedestrian taunts you every day to the point that commuting here is the worst thing you can do to yourself. Your day has not even started yet but you are already exhausted and sweaty. Your sunblock, handkerchief, towellette and wipes are your best friends here. But when you have been exposed to the heat, your back is moist and you have to suddenly enter an establishment, mall, train or bus, it suddenly sends chills to your spine and the threat of getting pneumonia or some lung disease becomes eminent. Or am I just exaggerating? Either way, I thank God I am not asthmatic.
And then there's the riding in tandem that you might have seen in the news. It makes me squirm just thinking about how morbidly random it is. God bless the souls of the victims and God bless the crime group who does it for some reason. God bless the pickpockets and arrogant drivers too.
Have I mentioned the floods? I had my taste of it with my siblings here but let's just not hope for the worst. I was a victim of it in Cebu and I will do my best not to suffer from it ever again. Floods are known to cause typhoid fever, cholera, leptospirosis and hepatitis A among others. Aside from dying, you also get to lose your possessions and home from it.
Manila is a huge city, so you have to be alert, to be brave and to be smart. Respect the people you know who live and work here in this city.
But with all the negativity aside, it is actually one of the MOST beautiful city there is.
I have been to many places but nothing else could come close.
They have great roads and tollways, startlingly impressive malls and high-end scenic business districts everywhere like Bonifacio Global City and McKinley Hill that is indistinguishable to great cities like New York and Venice accordingly, and there's a lot of alluring and tranquil residential areas... truly a place where dreams can come true.
What'll happen to me next? I really don't know. I know what the end for me looks like but only God knows what tomorrow will bring for me. One of my credo is just to take a leap into the unknown and trust that everything will always turn out for the best. But if it doesn't, then move forward. Simple.
I have never been more focused in my career. I will try to achieve a work-life balance. I will do my best to go beyond getting by and having my bills and obligations get paid, but live a life so comfortably that I could praise God to the highest since it is in His plan for all of us.
"'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'"
Thank you to Geraldine Tabada for the amazing Bonifacio High Street shots!
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