Life Lately

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Hi. I miss you. 

This is an update the no one asked for. 

With everything that's going on in my professional life ( in case you still didn't know, I am a public senior high school teacher), updating this website seems to be the the least priority. I mean, this academic year has got to be craziest year ever: DepEd started late, students were met with their choice of learning modalities and to top it all, face to face learning is not happening up until early next year at least. This is the first time that it happened and honestly I am still looking for the silver lining of this all. So instead of thinking ideas to keep this website going, I have my work to think of first. I know it is not an excuse because I MUST be able to balance my obligation and what pleasure this gives me but believe me when I tell you that I am learning the ropes here. 

I am currently handling Oral Communication subject of four sections: twice a week are my scheduled online classes and the remaining days, I monitor my students through Google Classrooms and group chats on Facebook Messenger. Everything is just so new to all of us that we fumble and stumble. Sometimes we fear that we cannot stand again from the fall but since teachers are the frontliners now, we have no choice but to dust off and start anew. Although distant learning is not all that bad as I perceived it to be, it is not as lucrative either. 

Since I am teaching in a public school, our students do not have the same privilege nor the opportunities as compared to the students who belong to a well-off family who can afford to study in the private schools of their choice: most of them do not have decent Internet connection, functioning phones or even money to buy cellular load. This is the real situation that some romanticize about. There is nothing romantic here. This is the truth that the majority of Filipinos suffer on a daily basis. Some may applaud those who suffered for their resilience, but certainly not me. It's appalling and preposterous and not in any way a valid, solicited reaction. If we keep on celebrating this so-called resilience, we are just accepting the very little portion that they can give us. I hate being too political on this site because this is meant to be a sanctuary of the things that make me happy and certainly that thought doesn't make me one. 

That's a reality bite, if ever you need one. But I can't promise you, it will make you full. 

But I need to continue with this creative endeavor because this is basically what I signed up for. It's just that my insane schedules zap out all my energy, I barely have time to even pick a book. In fact, even if I wanted to finish Jessica Zafra's The Age of Umbrage and it still has a truckload of Miss Z's acerbic wit that I had known and adored, I am having a hard time getting around it. My reading record this year is laughable, I am still debating whether I will still join Goodreads Reading Challenge for 2021. I have 5 TBRs on my Kindle Fire and I can't seem to even get to Chapter 2. The only consolation I have is that I grew up reading the books I love so I am not as guilty not being able to live up to that bookish reputation that has been tagged to me from people who knew me. 

Speaking of reading, Novice magazine, where my essay #Pride of Passage was published, arrived during this hiatus and I just marveled at how wonderful it all turned out. It's a literary concoction from creatives of myriad disciplines and I still get kilig on my inclusion. And I must say, everything's worth it! I am thankful to all those who bought copies. You can still buy a copy of your own by clicking this link

I am also over the moon that my story, ‘Cumulus’ was selected by the fiction editor Yeow Kai Chai to be one of the only 5 fictional pieces to appear in the end-of-the-quarter issue of Quarterly Literary Review Singapore. International baby!  

In the website, these words prompt me to pinch myself if I was really a part of it or am I only dreaming: 

Our mission is to promote the literary arts in Singapore, to stimulate the feedback mechanisms in the literary scene, and to develop Singaporean writers to international standards. Our standards are therefore high, and our paradigms are the TLSes and LRBs of this world. We believe that good writing can and will emerge in Singapore, and we aim to aid that process by applying rigorous critical and editorial criteria.

Like, I can't believe it! QLRS is a dream journal and me being included is one of the best plot twists this year. I am still waiting for one more plot twist and I hope I'll also get it! Keeping my fingers crossed! 

I still have more ideas up my sleeves for more website updates, I just need time, energy and motivation to keep doing them! I am also open to suggestions. All you have to do is to comment below! 

Thank you and I hope you are safe in wherever you are at the moment! 




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