As I told you in an article earlier this week, Feyma, the kids and I were down in General Santos last week for the wedding of a niece. Before going to the wedding, we had a chance to visit with some family members for a while. I got a chance to talk with one of my nephews, DJ. I did not know DJ well, we have not spent much time together. DJ is eight years old. I think that in the past I have only met him once or twice, and never really had an opportunity to talk with him.
DJ lives in the bukid. What is the bukid? Well, it is the mountain. It is the Bisaya term for a very rural area, usually in the mountains. Anyway, DJ lives in Barangay Patag, in Malapatan, Sarangani Province. I’ve only been to Patag one time, and I don’t recall meeting DJ there, although it is possible that I did.
Anyway, being able to speak Bisaya now, I had a nice conversation with DJ while waiting to go to the wedding last week. I asked DJ if he would want to come and visit us in Davao. He immediately said “YES“. Ha ha… I didn’t really intend to invite him to come with us immediately, but that is how he interpreted my intentions, so I readily agreed to let him return to Davao with us after the wedding.
DJ is a smart kid, and he is not shy at all, which is something that I like. Since coming to Davao, DJ has experienced a lot of things that I believe are quite new to him, and he likes it, it seems. One thing that DJ always does is that after dinner, he always asks us if we can buy some ice cream! I asked DJ if there is ice cream in Patag, and he quickly told me that there is none, or at least it is very rare to get ice cream there. Well, I can assure you that DJ has not missed a single day of having ice cream in Davao! He is not shy about asking for it either! I have enjoyed seeing DJ enjoy these little luxuries that he is not used to having.
DJ has a habit that every morning when he wakes up, he comes to my office to talk with me for a while. I get up early, and go straight to work in my home office, so I am usually deep in work when DJ wakes up, but by that time I am usually ready for a little break, so I don’t mind. Each morning, I ask him how his sleep was. He tells me “Lami” – ha ha – “delicious“. Ha ha… a little different answer than I would expect, but it’s cute to hear.
One thing I have been doing a lot lately is cooking. We recently built a new barbecue grill with brick in our back yard, and I have kind of gotten into barbecuing as a hobby, so DJ will often see me outside cooking something on the BBQ grill. He seems to enjoy eating whatever I decide to cook too!
One morning, when DJ awoke, he came to my office to talk, as is his regular habit. We talked for a while about different topics. After a while, I told him:
“Sige, magtrabaho na ko.” (OK, I will work now)
“Magluto ka na ba?” (Will you cook now?)
It dawned on me that DJ thought my job was cooking! You see, really, I make my living using a computer. I operate a number of websites on which I earn my money. I sell products, and I publish information on the Internet. Through these efforts, I am able to earn my living. But, I realized that in DJ’s world, he would have no way of understanding that a person could actually make money by using a computer.
So, I set out to explain to him that I actually do my work using a computer, and idea that was obviously hard for him to understand. As I explained it, he asked:
“Nagdula ka ba sa komputer?” (do you play on the computer?)
No, I told him, I don’t play, I work. But, it seemed impossible to make him understand the difference.
Later that day, my wife asked DJ what I do on the computer, just to see what he would say. DJ responded:
“Gitanaw niya ang mga pikture sa komputer.” (He looks at pictures on the computer.)
My wife and I just laughed.
Thinking about this exchange, though, it really made me realize how different things are in the city compared to the bukid. It’s like we are on different planets. I wonder what it will be like in Patag 20 years from now, or 50. Will computers simply be a part of everyday life then?