Category Archives: Philippines

An Assassination, Martial Law, and a Revolution, Part 1

  In 1983, when Senator Benigno Aquino was assassinated, we were there—not at the Manila International Airport where thousands of supporters waited to welcome their hero back from exile in the United States, but at our home in Manila, watching … Continue reading

book reviews, books, expatriate life, historical fiction, Philippines , , , , , ,

Seasons of Love, a Post for Valentine’s Day.

                                    On Valentines Day we celebrate love as it is at this moment in time. But love has a history. It has ups … Continue reading

family, life, Philippines, seasons , , , , , ,

Whoops! I Missed UN Day.

United Nations Day was October 24. I’d forgotten all about it until I turn the page on my calendar. And there it was: UN Day. For many years–thirteen to be exact–it had been the biggest school celebration for my three … Continue reading

Culture, expatriate life, holidays, Philippines , , , , , ,

Manila American Cemetery — Traveler on Foot

  I’m re-blogging this post by Glenn Martinez because it reminds me of a day long ago. My mom was visiting us in the Philippines, and the American Cemetery was close to where we lived. I’d never been there before, … Continue reading

expatriate life, Philippines, travel, Uncategorized

Aunts and Uncles: So How Are We Related?

  In all the stories my husband told me about his childhood in China and Taiwan and his teenage years in Japan and the Philippines, he never mentioned any aunts, uncles, or cousins. It seemed reasonable since neither of Eugene’s … Continue reading

expatriate life, family, Philippines , , , , , , , ,

In the Days of the Dressmakers.

When you move halfway around the world, all the basics of everyday life change. The moment I stepped off the plane in Manila, the first, most obvious difference hit me in the face—a blast of heat unlike any I’d ever … Continue reading

batik, clothing, Creativity, expatriate life, Philippines , , , , , , , ,

Two Maids? Really?

In the earliest letters I sent to my family after we moved to the Philippines, I wrote about all the touristy things: the hot weather, the juicy mangos, the ornaments on  jeepneys. “We rode in one jeepney,” I wrote, “that … Continue reading

expatriate life, family, letters, maids, Philippines , , , , , , , ,

“Everyone” Has a Maid (or Two or Three).

 Back home, I was an independent woman. I did my own house cleaning, washed the clothes, cared for the kids, weeded the garden, mowed the lawn … No pizza delivery for us, no take-out, no supermarket deli food. We cooked … Continue reading

expatriate life, family, maids, parenting, Philippines , , , ,

The Letters My Mom Saved.

  When we lived in the Philippines and later in Vanuatu, I wrote letters to my family every week. And every week after my parents read my letters, Mom filed them away. That’s a lot of letters. Let’s see, fifty-two … Continue reading

family, Philippines, travel , , , , , , , ,

Reverse Culture Shock & PTSD

 When we lived overseas, we didn’t talk much about culture shock. At first, we were newcomers busy adjusting to the new country. After a year or two we were old hands. When someone did bring up culture shock, almost invariably, … Continue reading

Culture, home, Philippines , , , , , , , , , ,