Last night, Feyma and I were invited to an evening social with a group that I am a member of called “Friends of Mindanao.” I think I have posted here before about the group, and I know I have on my Mindanao Blog. The group is a small group of foreigners who all care about Mindanao, and the people of Mindanao. We are all Davao based, and we get together normally twice per month. Last night was not a normal meeting, but rather a Dinner where members could bring their wives along, and we all enjoyed good food and good conversation too. I can’t decide which was better – the food or the conversation!
The head of the group is a New Zealander named Ian Fredricks. Ian is a great guy, very gung ho about anything that he gets into. I always enjoy talking with Ian, because of the fact that he always has a new angle about any topic we discuss. Talking with Ian tends to open up my mind, and helps me get outside my box! Another member of the group that I have become fast friends with is John. John is from the UK, and just a super nice guy. Lately, John has been spending a fair amount of time at my place, I am teaching him a little about blogging and basic Internet things. Last night, John brought a friend along, Steve, who is also a Brit, and I enjoyed meeting him too.
Over the past few weeks, when John and I have gotten together, one thing that we have both mentioned to each other is that it’s nice to get together because of the intelligent conversation that we share whenever we are together. I believe that having a friend that you can share intelligent conversation with is very important when living away from your home. Now, don’t take me wrong, I am not saying that Filipinos are not intelligent. What I am saying is that I have a hard time sharing intelligent conversation with many Filipinos because we come from different experiences and backgrounds. Let’s look at one of our frequent guests here on the LiP Blog, Julius. Not trying to single you out, Julius. But, you see, I can share intelligent conversation with Julius, who is Filipino, because he lived in the USA for some time, and has some common experiences to mine. I have lived in the Philippines, his home country, so I have some experiences that are common to some of his. All around, we have things that we can both intelligently discuss, because our backgrounds overlap. It can be hard to find people like that who have experiences similar to your own, and whom you can sit down and talk with.
When John and I get together and talk, time just goes out the window. I have noticed that if either of us has something that we need to do, often we just blow it off and keep our conversation going. This, I believe, is because we share some common values, and experiences. I also enjoy talking with John, because we are able to compare notes about each other’s countries. I have learned more about the UK from John than I ever knew before. He has also asked me some questions about America that when I answered left him a little surprised, I think!
Anyway, getting back to the dinner last night, there were about 20 people there, I guess. We had people there from the USA, Britain, Syria, Germany, New Zealand and probably a few other places that I’ve forgotten about. The conversation was very stimulating, and interesting. The food was great too, with a buffet of different items available ranging from soup to salad, pasta to a beef dish that was great!
A special thanks to Ian for putting this together, and for inviting me to join in!