We asked OFWs on what they miss most about Manila
by Shara Mae Balce, September 11, 2018 9:30am
Art by Dani Elevazo
It has become a fact of life among a lot of Filipinos to dream of working abroad. And for those who are already claiming the OFW status, it’s usually easy to envy them especially with their social media photos posing on sceneries we only see in movies.
We know life as an overseas worker is not always so picturesque, and so we asked our friends from abroad on things they miss about the PH (apart from family and friends, of course!). Here’s what they have to say:
“Traffic! Chos! But, seriously, wala kasing traffic dito eh. Maliban kung may accident, ayun talaga, blocked ang buong area ng road dito.”
-Amy, 46, 11 years in Abu Dhabi
“Aside from my daughter, of course, fruits like star apple, siniguelas, santol, and rambutan—mga pagkain natin. Pati na rin ‘yung mga bonding with friends and relatives. Kasi dine (dito) puro work. Occasionally lang kami nagkikita-kita dine (dito), kapag may mga party lang.”
-Vicky, 43, 15 years in London
“Living in a different culture and environment made me miss the sari-sari stores in the Philippines that you could see everywhere and every corner, just a walking distance from your home. Compared here in California, you really need to have your own car to get around and/or go to a big outlet store to get something you want. It’s not like PH, believe me, and hirap dito.”
-Ankira, 22, more than 2 years in California
“I miss Mom's home cooked food such as sinigang na langka, Adobo, Pininyahang Manok, Bicol Express etc. I also craved most of the times for beverages that are only available in the Philippines.”
Dhaizy, 22, 2 years in Dubai
What I really miss in Manila is the social nights, of course the urban feel, surroundings and the jeepneys.
Andrew, 33, more than 3 years in New Zealand
“For me, kasi I have my family here, may mga kaibigan din naman ako dito. So, para sakin, ‘yung food and events yung nakakamiss. Iba kasi talaga ‘yung food sa Pinas. Nakakamiss din mag-Pasko d’yan at mag-fiesta.”
-Jeff, 27, 6 years in Abu Dhabi
“I miss the food! Sa totoo lang, Jollibee. Pati street foods like fishball, isaw, kwek-kwek at lomi.”
Angelic, 24, less than a year in Quebec
“Summer or the weather in the Philippines is one of the things I miss. It is purely warmth and sunshine here (in Dubai), but you also get to enjoy the beautiful sceneries. Also, an authentic Filipino home-cooked meal is what I look forward to everytime I go back to Pinas. Having all these things, it is the feeling of being “home” that I truly miss—which I will never find elsewhere, even how far I wander away.”
-Sam, 22, 2 years in Dubai
“Since Muslim country dito, bihira makahanap ng masarap na pork dish, kaya I miss Filipino food, lalo na ang pork. Also, night life more fun d’yan eh, dito mahal ang price ng alcohol and limited options lang. Hindi talagapinopromote masyado pag-inom dito, for non-Muslims lang kadalasan. Of course, si Jollibee at lahat ng local fast food.”
-Joyce, 24, 1 year and 3 months in Jakarta
The cheap street food, the traffic, the chill life with kaladkaring friends, and even the irksome humid weather are the things we often take for granted and are sometimes annoyed of. And yet, these too are the things that remind our overseas friends of home. So, let’s appreciate from time to time! For we may not know how bittersweet it is to miss those.