If you fall

If you fall in love with people like me

I will take you to museums parks, and monuments

Pinto Art Museum
Pinto Art Museum

I will take you to every place that promises permanence
Hoping that in every place you may find forever in those brief moments
we share

On my way to Pinto Art Museum
Pinto Art Museum
McArtthur Park at Palo, Leyte
Macarthur Park at Palo, Leyte
Temple of Leah
Temple of Leah,  Cebu

for we encrypt histories in monuments
and every piece of art adds value to collector’s items

Baluarte, Vigan
Baluarte, Vigan

2015801120436

I want to freeze our stories with those artifacts you see
and when your eyes can no longer find beauty in me
you can always look back at those paintings
for paintings outlive my youth
hoping that the details of my face are crystallized
in those paintings you see

Pinto Art Musuem
Pinto Art Museum

I will take you to places born with stories
so that even if you choose to forget our story
You will never forget the heroes and artists
whose lives and works outweigh our story

Juan Luna Shrine, Ilocos Norte
Juan Luna Shrine, Ilocos Norte
Panday at Sand Dunes, Ilocos Norte
Panday at Sand Dunes, Ilocos Norte

I will always like to take you to museums
I will always want to be with you in museums
because in those places we make an illusion of forever

DSCF0732
Pinto Art Museum

This piece is inspired from Caitlyn Siehl’s poem, “Do not fall in love with people like me”

🙂

Postcard from Thailand

If I meet you in Thailand

one that got away
Wat Pho Photo by Rima Granali

I will make your feet sore
You will receive many smiles.
But One will be the brightest

Maybe from a Thai, maybe from a farang

2015123155946
Wat Pho

We will take motor rides
in highways
in alleys
There is danger
But there is liberation

We will ride a tutuk
It will take us to many places
including a jewelry shop
And if they know you have no money
Just tell them I’m here
to find an engagement ring
Then I’ll pretend and say
“I change my mind”
Trust me,
It’s a scam

2015123115211
Grand Palace Photo by Rima Granali

If you want to have a sign from heaven,
ask for a bird to come near you
I will take you to the nearest park
and call a flock of pigeons to gather around you
Then..

2015123140851
I will ask you, Have you heard about the movie The King and I?
There’s a line, “Will you be my new romance?”
And I will point you to Grand Palace.

2015123114526
Grand Palace Photo by Rima Granali

We will travel along Chao Phraya River
we will survey the Old Bangkok
and notice it is a city of rainbow
where red, orange, yellow are alive
where the person next to you is pale
and your driver is made of bronze

2015123105451 2015123103638

We will visit Jim Thompson’s house
If you ask me if I want to live there
“No, I don’t want to live in the past.”

2015122151820
Jim Thompson’s House

If you want to cry but you just can’t
I will let you eat the spiciest food
If looking into the elephants’ eyes hurts you
Just look at me
and you will laugh

jack by rima3

We will climb the highest temple

2015123101610
Wat Arun

2015123103031
We will climb all the temples of Ayutthaya

2015124164230
Photo by Rima Granali

We will never stop climbing

photo by ted dy
Photo by Ted Dy

until I hear you catching breath

2015124185055
Wat Phra Mahathat

There, we will wait for the sun to sink
for the ruins to be at peace
like scratches of pain healed

2015124184108
Wat Phra Mahathat

We will see ruins and say they make a beautiful disaster

jack by rima4
Wat Phra Si Sanphet Photo by Rima Granali

We will smile at the camera without thinking that this sight
is a place where many have rebelled and died
we will not think at all
We will not be weary
even if our feet will tell us
even if our stomach will grumble
We will just be happy

jack by rima5
Wat Yai Chai Mongkol Photo by Rima Granali

If you ask me, Why Thailand?

10941015_10203396636105352_3077489731277200727_n
Wat Phra Si Sanphet Photo by Rima Granali

My reply: “I just want you to be enlightened”

jack1 by rima
Photo by Rima Granali

Journey

I am about to make a major decision in my life: I want to be nomadic. After so much thought, I realize how much I am missing in my life after reaching and struggling, testing and deciding, competing and asserting. It is a cliché  to say that  “Life is a journey.” But most of the time we are focused on our destination and not on the journey itself. The process is as important as the results. We are so preoccupied with the future and most of what we do are based on perceived consequences. We study to work. We work to save money. We practice to be perfect. We learn a set of skills to get a better job, and to be a better person. Can we just learn simply because we want it? We live for the future and much worse, you hear some people linger on the past. Why are we like this when the most important moment in our lives is the present? I got inspiration from a TEDx talks of Colin Wright, Extreme Lifestyle Experiments and Eoin Finn, Hammock Enlightenment. They have a different perspective on what a quality life is.

How does being nomadic relate with all my nonsensical and impractical ideas?

I want to be nomadic because….

I want to meet “real” people.

Our society is highly industrialized that we have become machines too. We are extensions of computers, power plants, cellphones and cars when it should be the other way around. We are programmed with a set of tasks and goals. Sometimes when you ride a train or walk towards work, you see people like paintings not as human being, capable of sending and receiving stimuli. On the other hand, when you travel and meet people who are on vacation, you see them as themselves.  Real people are not machines, not slaves, and not just members of the population.  They love family and friends. They are passionate in what they do. They get scared.  They get tired. They share the same feelings with you.  You may feel bad over the news on TV but not everybody can understand your sentiments.  On the other hand, traveling makes as one. We can all share the fear of heights, the excitement of a new place.

sagada family

new friends – the family we met during our trip to Sagada
sagada tourguide

Our Tour Guide during trekking … She taught us a new word “Ibayaw,” an expression to show concern
sagada mangcesar

Mang Cesar, the owner of Happy House. He cooks and serves his guestssagada clement

Our tour guide in Echo Valley… he looks nice, divah? pwede? hehe

I want to experience.

Everything counts as an experience but the thing about having conquest behavior (the busy mode mentality in a fast-paced environment), we don’t do things for experience sake. On a regular day, before trying something new, we always ask, “How will this benefit me?” Will I be rich? Will I be pretty? How we think is influenced by trade and commerce. And again, it all boils down to practical value. When you’re a tourist in a town, it changes how you see things. Your mind is set that this might be the first time in forever or the last time. I just wonder how Makati or big cities would look like if everybody acted like a tourist. Probably, there will be a few hot-tempered people, and probably an increase of friendly people.

sagada climbing

I want to be a minimalist

I travel light. As much as possible, I only bring one backpack. When you travel, you try to keep only those that are essential. You don’t bring all your clothes, gadgets. And sometimes it helps when you have no internet access. There you can appreciate life, bare and uncluttered.

IMG_1448

I want to be connected with the universe.

The world will be a happier place if everybody take their time to appreciate what they see, what you taste, and what they hear. These are moments that make us alive: when you take notice of the birds, when you hear the shore chasing your toes, when your skin gets hurt with the warmth of the sun, when you let the wind lift you up, when you don’t think too much, when you are in awe over small things.

 sagada echo valley

sagada terraces

sagada mountain

After reading this, question:

do you think im odd

The world is too big and life is too short 🙂