Being able to live in Metro Manila, particularly in Quezon City had me appreciate the life I have back in the province of Misamis Oriental, and also in Laguna. I’m originally from Northern Mindanao but had to move to Los Banos, Laguna for my college. Then grad school happened and I have to stay in QC.
I have realized that Metro Manila may offer you a lot of opportunities in terms of jobs, I would still choose the life in the province. So here are some things why I would like to live and stay in the province for long term in the future.
1. The environment is so much better.
One thing that I hate in QC is the moment when I step out from the apartment. The first thing I would be seeing is traffic. The air always feels so dense because of pollution and there are just cars everywhere, literally.
As much as Metro Manila is overpopulated with humans, it’s also overpopulated with cars. In our simple home, you’ll enjoy the presence of nature. The freshness of the air and rich shades given by the trees are very rare in Manila.
Another thing is that at 9pm, heavy traffic is still visible, or if not, it’s still close to that. At home, every door and window of every house is already closed. People are already inside their houses, maybe watching TV or already sleeping, I don’t know but I’m sure that everybody has finished dinner already.
2. Transportation is not that complicated.
Transportation system in the Philippines in general sucks. I have to ride tricycle every time I go to UP, which costs me P40 for a ride with a little bit of comfort. And if you wanna go to malls in EDSA, you have to ride LRT and then MRT but then again, who would like to reach their destination with a haggard face (and a messed up make up, but I don’t wear make up so I’m fine in this part), chaotic look, tired legs and body full of sweat? (Somebody fix that MRT air-conditioner please.)
Also, the second that you’d have your arms or legs collide with the other passenger’s sweaty skin is what I detest the most. And you’d probably end up with taking
Uber Grab (sorry I still miss Uber T.T). I’m satisfied with a one jeepney ride to SM Downtown from our simple home in Misamis Oriental.
Another thing I want to point out is that in Manila, when you’re already 500m to your destination, you have to go near the bus door so that the bus need not to stop fully and it can accelerate easily once you got out. In the province, the driver would even tell you to wait for the bus to fully stop before standing.
I’m fine with waiting so I’ll go with the latter.
3. Food is cheaper and tastes better too.
I was so shocked after knowing that a kilo of Lakatan (a kind of banana) costs P70 – P75 in QC while it is just P30 in our place. Imagine the gap. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why a lot of people who moved to Metro Manila hoping to get a decent job gets poorer instead.
Supermarket vs Local Market
To add, while some of the vegetables and meats displayed at the supermarket may seem presentable and attractive, who knows the amount of preservatives applied to those stuff? There was once where we’re forced to buy very stale and old leafy veggies just to fill our stomachs with, supposed to be, nutritious foods.
In the province, veggies and meat are always fresh because the resources are just from neighboring towns and provinces that when the food arrives in the market, it’s still really really good as new. And commonly, we just pick out the veggies like malunggay (horseradish) and pechay (chinese cabbage) from our backyard or buy them from our neighbors. It’s easy to grow them in the province.
Aside from that, there’s nothing more delightful than a community sharing food. I remember when one cooks a bit special viand, he really does the effort to go to the nearby houses to share his food.
And I think that is just so beautiful.
4. Sunset is always more beautiful
…and I don’t know why. The sun in QC always sets between buildings while here in the province, it always sets on the horizon. I know it’s the same sun but the feelings are different. When I’m in QC, sunsets give me the thought that tomorrow will be another tiring day and there are still loads of work to do and all those stuff that even the thought of it drains you already.
Sunset in Taguig vs Sunset at Home
Sunset in the province gives off good and positive vibes. Like it tells you that you’ve done great that day and you should rest. And it tells you that that tomorrow will be another fun and awesome day.
5. It always feels home.
Obviously, the province is where my original home is. Yet whenever I go to Laguna, UPLB in particular, I always feel at home. UPLB is my second home (and maybe I’ll write about UPLB vs. UPD some time soon haha). My undergrad years were very memorable and fun and one reason is the environment that it has. The ambiance is so much different. It’s so welcoming and it makes me wanna stay for a longer time. More on nature, less cars and pollution. And that’s why it feels like home.
One last thing is that, family, relatives and close friends are in the province. There’s always something to look forward to after you’ve booked that flight going home: to see those people. While my life in QC is just an apartment-school cycle, I didn’t really experience a lot of rest from that. In the province, even when I spend the whole day outdoor, and bonding with friends, my energy is still greater than a whole night sleep in the apartment. And I always feel rested.
Of course, place is one of the biggest things you have to consider when you already want to settle down. Yet while I may want to live so much in the province, I’d have to consider still the job that I’ll be taking and also if I want to have a family or not, and all those stuff.
But whatever wants and needs there is for me, I’ll still choose where God would lead me to and what things would He like me to do. And I’m so excited for it!