In a conversation I had with Edward Pastor, the current Deputy Secretary-General of Anakbayan National I wrote down one of his various quotes.
“One month isn’t enough to integrate, because the struggle is endless”
Surely enough, I agree.
I’m writing this on the eve I depart back home to the Bay Area as I sit in a room in Cavite where it was flooded just a day ago and it was as if I was trapped on an island and hopping on chairs just to make my way to the door. During my time here with my family in Cavite, I’ve done serious reflection on the past month and re-reading the words I’ve written in my Moleskin Journal has me feeling I’m in the moment again…
We didn’t even have a formal despidida. Also it put into perspective, that the work here never stops. Due to the conditions that has presented my beloved country with Typhoons and Flooding throughout the land. We were evacuated from Kabataan HQ to Migrante HQ to United Methodist Church. I left to go to Paranaque because I had no where to stay and came back the next day to join Tulong Kabataan in the Med Mission in Baseco. After that I’ve been in Rosario, Cavite ever since. I see graffiti of “Oust Gloria” around the neighborhood. I haven’t even left the country, but at the very depth of my heart.
I miss being with the masses.
I’ve learned so much in my short time here. 5 weeks has flown by just as fast as a Typhoon Gener hit us here last week. I walked outside toady and felt strong winds. Hopefully Typhoon Helen comes later than sooner. Or else I’m trapped here in Cavite.
The lessons/stories I take back are important of the expansion of our movement in the belly of the beast. I’m coming back with a new role I’m settling into. Bitter sweetness is what I currently feel at the moment, I’m looking forward on re-connecting with my life back in the Bay Area, but I’m saddened that my last goodbye to all the kasamas was so abrupt… It’s been a time to remember, where I can say I’ve felt every emotion possible.
The news of President Noy Noy Aquino “Blasting” away communities of flood prone areas reminds me that he as no set plan to actually deal with the solution for the flooding. Large scale corporate mining and deforestation has led to the country not being as prepared as we should when faced against the elements. Capitalism is the root cause for the suffering of our people.
I’m writing to all the Kasamas here in PH that I didn’t get to properly say goodbye to. Thank you for everything. For all the laughs, the stories, the worries, and the love. You’ve put into perspective how I can be a better kasama and better person. You all are reminders that even this political work can get heavy at times, we are never alone to struggle through those speed bumps.
Cavite mosquitos have attacked every imaginable part of my body and sucked my Fil-Am blood. I may not get a chance to write until I fly so as I’ll cherish every moment that has passed. I’ll cherish my time with my cousins and god daughter Glessie. I’m at peace right before I leave. The movement here will continue to advance until we win. I want to see my God-daughter to continue to smile… To see my family live happy. I’ll continue to fight for National Democracy and the Liberation of the Philippines from any form of Foreign Domination.
Mag-Aral Maglingkod Mangahas Na Makibka! LFS!
The heavy rain has resumed again. Mother nature don’t want me to leave.
-Ian Jerome Conde
IPIS Kill Count: 25