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MOVIEGOER: Loving local

JUST A THOUGHT: “Discover how beautiful our country is and how wonderful our people are. Time to fall in love with the Philippines.” - Tony Meloto

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EVERYTHING FILIPINO: Having just come from a six-week trip abroad, I now long for many things local.
I miss my favourite narra table, the gallinera at the living room, saging na saba, pinakbet, sinigang na bangus sa bayabas, guinatan and all that. I realize, after having been gone for some time, how much Filipino my tastes and sensibilities truly, shamelessly are.

The streets of San Francisco and Orange County in California may boast cleanliness and beautiful surroundings, their food just so huge and so wonderful, yet in the midst of all those wondrous things, one continues to pine for more familiar environs, tastes, likes, and dislikes.

There’s no place like home. And despite everything else that obtains in this country—traffic, corruption, epidemics, garbage, all the bad news there is—one knows where his heart is located.

Just a tip to travellers overseas. In conversations with foreigners or fellow Filipinos who have moved to distant shores, refrain from bashing your country of origin.

I notice that it is common practice among Filipinos to compare and contrast situations abroad, such as roads, social services, common practices, among others, with those in the Philippines. It always happens in any gathering, usually just to break the ice.

These “Philippine experts’’ always end up treating the country like a punching bag, like some laughing matter.

Don’t.

XX

MALL ACTION: Yesterday, missing the action in local malls, Cecile and I felt the beat all over again at Trinoma.

It was different. It was vibrant, alive, pulsating. So unlike the malls in Garden Grove or Redding where few people roam and where silence is golden.

We try out a local film, “Isa Pa, With Feelings,” and come out of the experience feeling good. It is a well-made Filipino film that tackles an unconventional topic, a unique, challenging relationship between a deaf man and a hearing woman.

CARLO AQUINO and Maine Mendoza in 'Isa Pa With Feelings'

CARLO AQUINO and Maine Mendoza in ‘Isa Pa With Feelings’

We both find Carlo Aquino quite charming, an engaging actor, a very fine one at that, considering his very difficult role that required no dialog. Just facial expressions.

His partner, Maine Mendoza, formerly just an overnight TV sensation, proves she has improved immensely and is now ready for heavier parts.

There is hope, indeed, for Filipino films, and all things proudly Filipino that we so love and miss.

XX

BUY LOCAL THIS CHRISTMAS: The 2019 Sikat Pinoy National Arts and Crafts Fair (NACF) runs from October 24 to 27 at Megatrade Hall, SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City.

Showcased are local products, such as textiles, mats, jewelry, accessories, and baskets made from indigenous or locally-sourced materials.

Loren Legarda

Loren Legarda

These contemporary arts and crafts exemplify indigenous living traditions as rendered by small and medium scale enterprises.

The NACF is a four-day fair organized by the Department of Trade and Industry with support from the Office of Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda.

Go local this Christmas season. Give your friends hand-made Philippine products.

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