Tuesday, June 24, 2003
this afternoon, sitting there contently sipping my vanilla latte and muddling through readings on developing countries, i was rudely reminded of dreams. my dreams from years back, eons ago it seems. lofty dreams that came to me in short episodes, urging me to continue on this path.
i'd almost forgotten. the ordinariness of every day, the daily drudgery, keeps visions short. dreams tend to linger in the horizon, just a bit out of reach....
i don't know how she got in, the lady with the small child in her arms. most likely at the side of the building. she came up to me and said "ate, pambili lang ng gamot." (ate=term used to call an older sister, some money to buy medicine). i am ashamed, because i didn't look at her too long. a mere glance took in her general appearance. she could have been 20 or 35. and the boy she carried was asleep. it was too painful to look at them. and the din of young people, like me, sitting and talking, the ambiant music, the expensive smell of caffeine, suddenly seemed too loud.
poverty is an abstraction, easy to ignore, until of course, it runs right smack to your face. i gave her 20 pesos, and i said "kung makita kayo nung guard pagagalitan kayo" (if the guard sees you you'll get into trouble). she said thank you, and went on to the next table. i looked down at my almost empty cup of coffee that cost me 110 pesos.
and so, i am reminded of my aspirations from years ago. lofty ideals of changing the world. how, where, when, i have no clue. have i aged so much that i've forgotten? have i been losing my ideals, my messianic dreams. have i been calling them delusions lately. is this the path to heaven?