Monthly Archives: January 2013

Get your head in the game

My life at work has been a bit fast paced for the last 3 years and a half now. I remember the first time I worked as a cashier in a fast food chain I was still a student that time which was four years ago. I saw my dad struggling with our finances at home so I decided to work so he wouldn’t give me my allowance and other expenses at school. It helped us a lot especially with our finances at home but not entirely with my studies, I started to have failing grades due to absences which was my choice because I couldn’t afford to get sick and no one would pay my medical bills just in case so I was taking care of myself very carefully. One day, my dad was really down and I could see the hardship on his face but he still managed to put his self together since he’s the head of the family. That was the day when I didn’t have enough funds to cover for my tuition fee and exams were getting nearer. Being vulnerable at that point in my life, I gave up my studies and chose to find a job that would give me and my family enough resource for our everyday expenses. In the year of 2008, Business Process Outsourcing also known as call center was at rise in our country so it gave us a lot of job opportunities and I was one of the people who got hired. As I have mentioned on my previous post about this call center experience, my first full time job only lasted for 3 months and I was 7 months unemployed. Afterwhich, my life had full of blessings not only I was able to buy things I would need for survival but for my family as well and not only that, I was able to send my brother in college even just for a 2-year course in the field of Computer Networking. Right now, it’s my greatest dream to finish my degree course since I only have a year and a half to walk down the aisle, to march and get my diploma. The only problem is that I left school with a debt. Of course I won’t let it just sit there and do nothing, I plan to pay for it and continue studying since I now have a source of income which I calculated that I could pay it off in ten months and could manage my time very well.

Let me tell you what exactly we’re doing as a Quality Analyst. We were hired to monitor and score recorded calls from law firms overseas to make sure that collectors would follow guidelines and codes of conduct by the client who retained their services, also to provide good customer experience.  As to my schedule, I find it really challenging working at night and find it difficult to sleep in the morning or early in the afternoon and I know it’s not good for my body and I’m health conscious by the way. In terms of our salary, it would be enough for my month’s expenses like transportation and meal allowance, utility bills and other type of bills plus I still get a chance to buy extra things and fund for my sport.

This would be the most interesting part of this post: How was I doing with my new working environment, the job itself and especially how was I doing with my colleagues as of this moment. I can’t say exactly I am always in good shape because a lot of times I am being challenged. I keep justifying myself and my judgment if I am really happy with my team but I always set it aside so I could work more productively. It’s not with the job I am having a hard time with since it was just easy as one, two, three but I can’t say right now that this is the job I want because what I love the most is art and writing. So what I do in order to cope up with my best interest in writing is that I write a lot when I have free time in everyday of my life, at least a part of me is still being outspoken in this not-so-perfect world. Justifying myself with the team in terms of friendship, I want to say everything, I want to express every tiny feeling I have as to why I changed. One, I became more conscious about my acts and with every word I say which is partly good but not entirely. You see, you now have to choose what you need to say because not everybody will listen and you don’t want to see them not looking at you directly which is a sign of boredom and not actively listening, that hurts. Second, I became more sensitive but trying to not show any kind of disappointment in my facial expression. Because no one listens, I chose to be alone which was more peaceful, hell yeah I was and still will be a loner. Third, I learned to keep my feelings because I was carefree before when I was younger, I was transparent to everyone in a nice way but not all the time. In short, I learned how to shut my mouth up. One day, a colleague brought a small piece of dress for me for our Christmas party and I didn’t like it at all so I told her that I was not wearing those kinds of dresses and it wouldn’t look any good in me especially with my big hips but they insisted that I wore it but I declined, I ended up not going to the party but with my badminton friends instead. She, my colleague who brought that black dress was disappointed and you could see it on her face. I felt the guilt because of what I did and I didn’t have the chance to say sorry because I couldn’t, I became coward to say the word.

I’d like to tell a story between me and this girl that I am pertaining to. We had a good relationship for first few months and she confided a part of her life with me so was I and still keep them safe even though we’re not talking anymore.  There was a time that when she tells me a story, she doesn’t seem too genuine for it, like she was just making out of it but I didn’t pay attention, I just let her talk so to kill time and to keep the conversation going and that was the first thing I didn’t like about her, too good to be true so I set it aside. Then, every time we take our break at work where there were three of us girls, she always talks over me or whenever I’m almost done with what I was saying, she then proceeded talking about herself and whatnots, she always wanted to be heard, always have to say something for something. What I did, to keep myself together, I looked on the brighter side why she was like that or why she had a personality like that, first was to keep the conversation going and secondly,  to know more about her and learn from her experiences. Until such day that I realized that learning from her was way over I could take and didn’t want to listen anymore because simply she’s way too over or more to say, overreacting.

Few days ago, I didn’t plan to let my entire burden out with my Boss when she coached me so we went down and lit few cigars (I don’t smoke). When she said to be professional at work and don’t include personal issues, I know it in my mind until I felt it real time where it was an overwhelming experience so I cried. We’re in one team so we have to deal with everyone’s self whether we are demanding, snobbish, witty, bully, loner, bossy or whatever you could think of. I just needed to cry to ease up the pain and to feel light which happened perfectly.

As of this moment, we’re now five months as Quality Analyst and all I could say is: Everything and everyone is different. I am totally different, perfectly different. I don’t feel like talking with that girl yet because I can’t and I won’t, unless it’s a business matter so we’ll keep it professional I should say. Even if I put my feet on the ground and say “sorry”, I still wouldn’t talk to her because I already lost my interest so I’ll just keep it to myself. I am happy not taking my breaks with my team unless again it’s required but with my other friends on the production floor and sometimes which is most of the time, I am happy taking my breaks alone.

A New Year With A Smile

Everyone deserves a vacation and so was I. Two days off from work and 2 days holiday vacation given to us, lucky enough than those who worked on New Year’s eve and the next day after but of course they got paid double. Spending my first day rest from work, I played badminton from morning till afternoon. It was worth my day because I played more than I could than my other Saturdays of playing badminton. My two play buddies were not there due to preparation for the New Year, Mommy’s duty I said. Luckily, more players in our group were there to play and what I couldn’t forget was the bag of chocolates one of us had brought. Knowing that Mr. N loves chocolates very much, I knew he’d consume much as I could so I kept an eye. But that was a joke, what I really did was to make fun and be funny around my friends because I am happy when I’m with them and that’s what they loved about me too! Though there were times that I felt over, I stopped for a minute then continue spreading the happiness. Later in the afternoon I had to go somewhere to meet my college friends, actually it was just 3 of us that night. Back into badminton court, four of my friends were inviting me for a pizza dinner but wasn’t able to make it anymore since I first committed with two of my earlier plans. I was waiting for them to pick me up so we could head on our way and have some major chit chats and asked our whereabouts for the past 6 years of our lives after leaving college. Even if there were only three of us, I could say that nothing had changed and I was lucky to have them part of my life whether our acts a long time ago where not so bad, I still managed to stay strong and didn’t give up with my life. Without beers or liquors, the fun wouldn’t be so complete and of course the karaoke was present where they asked me to sing, so I did because I was one of the singers in our group, bragging it out yes I have a very good voice like Christina Aguilera. After few hours, I was feeling tipsy and a couple of hours more I was already asleep.

Second day from my off, I had a hangover. I got eight hours of sleep the other night but still sleepy when I came home the next morning. I felt restless that day but I have to wash my clothes and so I did for 3 hours. The day was a lazy day for me, four o’clock in the afternoon I was already asleep on our sofa until ten o’clock where my Mom had to wake me up to go upstairs and continue sleeping in my bedroom.

New Year’s Eve and I’m alive and kicking at around four o’clock in the morning. Mom was cooking and my brother was helping her out with the tables and chairs outside. For a small business my mom put up a little eatery outside our house for people who couldn’t prepare for themselves a breakfast because of their busy lives. The income was good but because of inflation in our country today my mom and I had to work hard to live and luckily, we were paid back very well and now I just have to save more money for my future though. My mom asked me to go with her to buy her new dress in the mall, went around for like 2 hours until she chose what she desired because she wasn’t able to buy herself a new one where she bought us new stuff like bag for me, footwear for my brother and clothes for my little sister. I felt dizzy afterwards so I drank my medicine then tried sleeping so I could wake up before midnight.  My favorite food was Carbonara, a spaghetti white sauce as others may say. It was one of our dishes for the New Year’s Eve together with our neighbor’s other dishes we had a lot and they had a lot too. Party outside and exchange gifts was the scene outside, kids were so happy for the games too. Once again, you’ll never get out of getting drunk for passing the New Year and that’s what everyone did. I was afraid of firecrackers because they’re deadly; I remember when I was in high school also New Year, I met an accident while watching the fountain doing the show then suddenly this little crap hit my head and I thought It was just something, until my head felt heavy and blood was streaming down my face, it was one of my creepy nights though. Spent January 1 in the hospital were a lot of people were crying and suffering from pain because of either they were gunshot unknowingly and or got into riot or the most common; firecracker related injury. A year after, also New Year, my cousin met a horrible accident and died. He got hit and run by a van, by this drunken man who got out alive and didn’t go to jail at all because of what he did. My Aunt was all in pain for the whole year and probably would bring the sorrow for the rest of her life, until now that 8 years had passed they spent their New Year in the province and not here in our town as my Aunt didn’t want to remember one of her nightmares.

After midnight I was watching the kids partying on the street as we never had any private place here in Tondo Manila to celebrate big events like New Year. But even though the situation was like that people were still happy and slept with smiles on their faces, and we thanked the person who organized it even though the next morning his voice had ran out. I slept at 2:30 in the morning, the night was young still but I was falling asleep again so I decided to go to my bedroom. Lights off at 3:00AM.

January 2 was my first day at work for the year of 2013 and of course I wasn’t able to get enough sleep for the whole day since my body was used to sleep and rest at night, but that was fine since me and my team only had 3 days of work then it’s our weekends off again.

I am thankful for the job I got right now. Honestly, It’s a little awkward right now if I talk about my dilemma in my professional life because I always have to justify it whether if I needed to react or not. Something I needed to control in order to put myself together. Next entry would be Life and work balance.

Christmas and Eve (Christmas Season in South II)

Christmas Eve…

Nothing happened really special this day. Usual morning routine and had my breakfast with Dad and step Mom and was just sightseeing around the area since the house was located a bit higher from the road and so you’d see of a bit overlooking part of the place. Feeling the cool and breeze of nature made me feel like home, hills and mountains from afar while the birds were singing and the trees dancing. A little while longer, my brother asked me to go with him in town to refill our gas for cooking. Took us several minutes to the city proper and from there, lots of people were in the market while there were three of us; Mom, me and my brother. First, we hit the wet market to buy fish then went to the vegetable area. On our way back, I saw a lady who sell processed sugar cane in a can, I didn’t know the real name for it but it came from sugar cane and then probably went to some processing before it turns out to be like a jam, I bought one. So were on the road and were having a chit chat when my step mom requested me to pick some flower seed that you see on the roadside of Nasugbu highway, and so I got the seeds for colors; pink and yellow. In the afternoon, the scene was me writing this blog, mom and dad were busy listening to the radio for some herbal medicine lectures and my brother and her wife together with their kid, were preparing the dish for Christmas Eve. Late afternoon, we went to Chateau Royale’s Gulod or known as Evercrest. Inside were suites for check-ins and now for occupancy I guess, no one was there but us; me, brother, wife and some relatives. The kids went swimming but I didn’t even though I told them I would. Honestly I went more on sightseeing and took some pictures instead, wrote a little on my journal then followed them to this big suite and inside you’ll see the part of Caleruega. They watched TV while I was continuing with my journal. Back at home, I slept at around I didn’t know what time exactly but they woke me up at 12 midnight. We had Spaghetti and Menudo for Christmas ate together with my family and then after, they went to sleep while I decided to watch this movie called “I am Sam”. The movie didn’t fail to make me cry at almost all scenes, and yes I’m a cry baby just so you know.

Evercrest

                                Evercrest’s Suites

GE DIGITAL CAMERA

Merry Christmas!

Just as I thought that my Caleruega getaway wouldn’t be possible, we were there in the afternoon at around 15:00 (3:00PM). First I took pictures of mom and dad into this staircase full of poinsettia on the side, took pictures of the Christmas tree and the Belen. We went inside for more beautiful surroundings then we realized that there was a wedding but the mass was over and the people were going to the reception already called Gazekubo, I took a picture of the couple though I didn’t know them because they look happy, I wouldn’t miss those moments of course. We went inside the church to begin our silent prayers and went outside for more sightseeing. On the façade of the church, we took pictures. Dad was tired but we haven’t gone to the way of the cross yet so he decided to stay in the car instead. The road was downhill and on the side, apart from a very beautiful overlooking, there were different kinds of plants you’ll appreciate and the wood carvings for every station you’ll pass by. So we reached the hanging bridge and found ponds where there were different colors of fish swimming. On the hanging bridge itself, I started to make fun and jump until the whole bridge was moving. Mom was laughing while asking me to stop doing it but I didn’t stop until she reached the end of the bridge, just for fun anyway. Now were on the hill and needed to walk to reach the end for the Way of the Cross. It was getting dark and the cloud seems to thicken saying it’s going to rain so we went down hurriedly. Yes, it did rain but we were inside the car already when it pours that only lasted for few minutes. It was worth our time visiting the place for sightseeing and while my brother was driving, it came to me like I miss running on hills even though I don’t do it often. We came back home at night and so I continued and finished my blog entry for this Yuletide season. Next up would be my New Year’s experience in Manila, my hometown.

Mom and Dad

                             Step Mom and Dad

The Belen

                                      The Belen

Way to Gazekubo

                                  Way to Gazekubo

An outside view of Caleruega's Church entrance

    An outside view of Caleruega’s Church entrance

End of Way of the Cross

                         End of Way of the Cross