Sunday, December 20, 2015

A Year Older, and Exactly 7 Months Since I've Left Home


So firstly... 


Really. Thank you all so much for the greetings and emails for my birthday. It really REALLY makes me miss home. My dad sent me all of the posts you all put on Facebook. You guys rock and motivate me so much to do my best while I'm here in the Philippines. So my birthday was alright. It didn't really feel like my birthday. We went to church, worked, and went home. But a lot of the members here in San Jose greeted me happy birthday which was nice. Anyways, regarding this week... This week was awesome. It rained a lot... AHA! Here's a funny thing that happened. So we keep all the windows in our apartment open at night so that it's not too hot. So when the bagyo (strong storm) came we figured we'd just keep our windows open. My bed is right next to the window so I was super ballsy to call that the bagyo would be pure wind. I was right!... at first... See what happened was that the wind started to become a slight drizzle around 2 am. You know how when you make a farting sound with your mouth, little particles of spit just fly everywhere? Well I woke up to something of that effect.. about 3 times. I would wake up, close the window, the rain would stop, I'd open the window and not 15 minutes later the drizzle would come back. What the heck... 

BUT anyways I've been on the face of this planet for 19 years and for seven months of that time, I've been in the Philippines. What can I say that I've learned in that time? Well I can't put it any more simply than this: The Journey of Life is so short but oh so sweet, if we choose to make it so. Let me explain. In 7 months of being here, I've encountered SO many challenges that, now looking back, seemed absolutely impossible to overcome. But I haven't let them bring my spirits down. The quality of our lives, I would say, is an attitude thing. I've met people whose spirits are as high as the clouds, even the means by which they live would seem a tad bit lacking. But yeah. I'm trying to copy those people. I have a quick example. There's a man that I've met here named Hino. He lives in a bamboo hut. No electricity. Hardly any money. A family to support. And no matter what happens, the biggest smile that I've ever seen on the face of this planet. But behind his bamboo hut, he has about half an acre of pure farm land. He plants vegetables and thus he and his family have food every day. "Der," he says, "Kahit wala kaming pera, der.. Kahit gaano kahirap ang buhay namin, laging masaya ako." Which roughly translates to "Even though we don't have any money, however hard life may be. I'm still happy." He always has food on the table and not a cent to his name. But to say he is content would be an understatement. And he then follows to pat his larger than life stomach. Life is as it is. We complain and we "think" we struggle. Maybe we allow ourselves to consider it as such. So I'm a now a 19 year old kid on the other side of the planet. I can say at least one thing at this point: I'm happy. I was happy when I got here, I'm still happy, and will be as happy as ever even when I go home. Missions are awesome. 

Anyways. Take care everyone! Thanks again for all the greetings. Now that I love you all so much and keep you in my prayers! Until next week! And of course.


-Elder Bondoc

A little background on the picture attached. So my parents sent me this t-shirt. The front translates to "Where is the [word used for when you forget the name of the actual thing you're trying to say]?"  On the back it says "Nandoon!" or "Over there!" I think it's hilarious.

1 comment:

  1. HAPPY BIRTHDAY and may God bless you as you serve him. You are such a wonderful example to the Tuminez clan. I am very proud to call you my nephew! MERRY CHRISTMAS and enjoy the Philippine ambience. Hugs and prayers for your success!