THE RIDE OVER (coming to Philippines)

by Vincent

Immersion. You gotta be in it to know it, whatever that ‘it’ may be. To immerse oneself is to realize what something is really about. I once read that to realize is on a whole different tip then just understanding. Tagalog words of the day, Marunong “to know” vs Intindihan “to understand”. When you understand, you get it intellectually. But to realize is to have a 3-dimensional experience of it; a mental, emotional, and physical moment for yourself. It’s the example of driving a car. Everyone understands the idea of a driver behind the wheel, but when you’re the one powering down the road in that 2-ton vehicle, something clicks, and you say to yourself “oh, that’s what it’s like”. IF you don’t do it, or live it, you don’t know it.  

Coming over to the Philippines, on the 24 hour trip, I wanted to be in the spirit of fully traveling, not letting my mind reel, and focus on being in the here and now. I didn’t think of how much time was left, or what time has past, instead it was about looking at what is going on in the present. I ended up watching about 10 hours of film and tv content. What content you asked? Well let’s see I saw (2) eps of the Big Bang Theory, Amelia, Where the Wild things Are, The Invention of Lying, The Informant, Extract, and New York I love You.

So I’m not sure if these ramblings of realization and gluttonous show watching really means anything. Just some thoughts about the ride over, and what I hope will be my experiences in the Phils. To be ever present to what’s going on in front of me and around me. To not be pulled away with the busy mind and go into the past or future. To be conscious and aware of what’s going on in the here and now. To realize what it’s really like to live in the Philippines. Immersion. I want to know it, since I’m actually ‘in it’.


Tulak – to push
Alak – alcohol
Bulaklak – flower
Gulat – surprise
Terno – to match
Ang Malata ko terno – my luggage matches
Yong Malata mo terno – your luggage matches
Marunong – is to know
Intindihan – is to understand.
Marunong ako mag manejo – I know how to drive
Na intinidihan ko yong pinsan ko – I understand my cousin



  1. I love those phrases, haha.

  2. malata? Lol. Maleta tsong.

    I see you learned a lot already even for just a few days of your “immersion”. I appreciate people like you, people who are not afraid to look back. Tomorrow might be unknown, but that is what’s exciting about life – The X (the unknown). Tama – to fully understand the nature of being Pinoy is to actually live like one.

    Enjoy your everyday adventures as well as your failures (kasi baka tatanga-tanga kayo dyan, di mo maiwasan. lol).

  3. You said physical, mental, emotional. But true realization comes from the spiritual. That one level that transcends the three you mentioned. And if there’s any place in the world to access your spirit it would be there. From your writing already it sounds like your spirit is the one searching for realization. Just watch out for the mumus….

  4. Thanks Romeo, I guess my writing does give the sense of searching for spiritual awakening of sorts. I’ll be sure to be open to what may come, and also be guarded against the “mumus”.

  5. Naiintindihan ko yung anong sinasabi mo tunkol sa present moment. Make sure you stay attentive to what the 5 senses capture… the spirit is everywhere;) How is it felt in the Philippines?

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