Posted by: neblinoso | October 22, 2009

Filipino Blood

The more time i spend here, the more i’m starting to feel like i fit in better than i do back home.  Maybe there’s some sort of name for this phenomenon, but in general, i just feel like i have a lot more in common with these people.  Don’t get me wrong, i do miss my friends and family immensely, but it seems to have taken me years to feel okay with being myself around them, whereas here, i’m just myself and i don’t feel weird or silly or awkwardly different in any way, right off the bat.

Then again, it could just be me.  I don’t know, it’s hard to tell.  I think i do have some Filipino blood in me, even though i stand out as an obvious foreigner.  No matter what seems to happen to these people, they are perpetually happy.  For the most part, i’ve always considered myself a jovial person, and i don’t feel like i’m being judged negatively by my silliness.  I don’t know why i feel this way about being silly back home, and i’m sure some of you are thinking it’s all in my head, but then why don’t i get that vibe here? 

And then there’s the music.  Everyone loves music here and i’m always around someone who is singing or humming.  This soothes my soul.  I was in the grocery over the weekend, strolling along with my little two-basket cart, quietly singing along with the christmas carols that were playing, when another lady passed by me who was also singing along.  And in some cases, it’s whole aisles full of people who are singing, as if at any moment they’re going to break out in a synchronized dance move like in musicals.

It’s so easy to connect with these people immediately and not have to worry about trying to impress anyone or be someone you’re not.  There’s an instantaneous comfortability that i haven’t experienced with very many Americans.  What is wrong with our culture?  Or maybe, what is wrong with me?  Am i just being naive and blind to what’s really going on?  I certainly don’t feel that way, and i generally have a good sense of how people are perceiving me or a given situation. 

Looking towards the future, i know it’s going to be a painful good-bye.  It seems no matter where i end up, there will be people i’ll long to be with, whether it’s in my native home, or with my new foreign family.

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Responses

  1. I sometimes think that when people find themselves living somewhere new (either temporarily or permanently) they take it as an opportunity to “reinvent” themselves or start living the way they always wanted (or live the same way, but with a clean slate perspective) since there are no preconceived notions/beliefs about the person and they can start new. Kids going away to college is a great example of this. Perhaps that’s your situation. You feel uninhibited — or unburdened by a sense of established personality — because those around you don’t already know you as the person you have been up to that point.

    • Oh, Jeremy…. you and your fancy talk. 🙂 It shouldn’t matter. You should still feel comfortable being yourself no matter how long they’ve known you or where you are. And I don’t feel uninhibited. I feel like i’m acting the same way i would if i was home, but i’m being perceived differently. I’m not trying to reinvent myself. I just want what is “me” to be seen as unique in a good way and not weird in a bad way. I know i’m different. I’m proud of those things that set me apart from others. What i don’t need is people bringing me down or telling me i should be different and i don’t feel that at all here. You are what you are here, but in the States, i feel there is a pressure that what “you are” should be what someone else has already defined, and if you aren’t, you are not accepted.

  2. One more thing… this literally just popped up in my Google Reader today:

    Is that Queens, Philapines? Maybe…

    • LOL!! OMG, i heart this! And, i’m buying you a dictionary.

  3. Allie,

    You are different (in a GOOD way) and have always seemed comfortable with yourself and I love you for that!

    Theresa

    • Thanks T. 🙂 Please smack your husband for me in an “Allie-rolling-her-eyes” sort of way. 😛


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