I got a phone call from a dear friend a few days ago. I could tell that there was something wrong because she called me up. Our communications are usually through email, or I always call her up because I have a Vonage phone and can call cheaply. When I answered the phone I could tell that something was up. So, after saying how are you? I then asked her what’s the matter? Is there something wrong? She asked me if there is a big threat in Southern Mindanao? I said as far as I know there is none that I can think of. She asked again, threat to bomb the communication line like the land line provider? I told her none whatsoever that I heard. So she then told me that she had been told that there is. This friend of mine has been living abroad for over 20 years now. So, its been a long time for her to be away from the Philippines.
A couple of months ago she had the land line provider hook up a phone line at her Mom’s house. It was fine for awhile until last week she, when she couldn’t get a hold of her Mom or any member of her family. She finally made contact with somebody and asked this person to go to her Mom’s house and tell her mom to call. So, the Mom called her up.
When she talked to her Mom, she asked, “what’s going on with your phone?” The mom just said that she didn’t know but would go to the the phone company that day and ask them what happened to their line.
When the Mom went and asked at the phone company, one of the people there told her that “The reason you don’t have line right now is due to the threat here in Mindanao.” Hmm, strange, I thought. So I told my friend that if there is a threat here they will just cut us off on our land line then? My friend just thought of this scenario that they might be just telling her mom that because her mom looks so poor and thin?
The problem is there are lots of poor and thin looking people here. In reality this is a third world country. I am not ashamed of that, its just true. I hope that its not a reason to make up such stories. I told my friend, “is that really the statement from the phone company or your family just say those thing because they know that you are already mad at them on some matters too?” Did they just make up the story? Maybe they didn’t pay the bill? She said that she believed her family over the phone company. I really told my friend that the only place that has a threat in Mindanao right now that I know of is in Jolo, Sulu.
The phone company had another story when they came to fix it. They said that its the line outside the house had the problem. But, they didn’t tell the Mom exactly what the problem was. I just got an email from my friend and she still has no idea what the problem is, and it still is not working.
I was really smiling upon reading my friend’s email. I could tell that she’s already been away for a long, long time from this country. I saw myself in her when we first moved here.
My gosh she was really fuming over this matter and she’s asking me, “what will happen if there is an emergency over the weekend? Would somebody ever help you?” The reason also that they didn’t fix anything at her mom’s phone is because its a weekend. It could also be a holiday too. No, they will not come to your house during a weekend. Some places might work during the weekend, other places do not, though.
For all of you readers that want to live in the Philippines, expect problems like this. I know its not easy to keep your cool. I’m the first one to admit that I’ve been there. Lots of times my blood is boiling over simple stuff, but Ifinally realized that these people will not change for me. I have to change and accept the way they do business here or I’m going to be dead in a few years from the stress. Now I just look the other way or bite my lips to remind myself to be quiet. Of course sometime I slip, I’m just human you know. Just take it easy.