Saturday, March 27, 2010

JOURNAL | UP Memory 2: BA European Languages Major in French

Three years after I posted this entry, I now regret that I didn't pursue French. Now I am struggling and starting from the very basics of the language. There are so many opportunities that I could have seized if I only persevered (24 August 2013)

The first few days in UP Diliman were certainly challenging for me, with me always struggling to prove my worth and I usually find myself disappointed and frustrated for feeling inadequate compared to my brilliant classmates. I always felt substandard. This is the reason why I always had to put an extra effort with all the things given to me be it homework, reports, exams, etc. I was not easily satisfied with mediocre grades because I felt it a duty to maintain a worthy reputation as a UP student. After all, UP students have always been known for their mental eliteness and I wanted to fit in.

Friday, March 26, 2010

UP Memory 1: Palma Hall on a Rainy Monday

Today is the start of 30-day countdown to graduation and I promised myself (without faltering) that I would post some good/bad memories I've had in my university, after all, I spent almost 6 years here and leaving this place is a move that would definitely give me reason to be sad (even just a little). So here goes the first memory, and hopefully I can keep this up until the 30th.

I remember the first day I set foot on the infamous grounds of the University of the Philippines Diliman. It was rainy that day. My parents drove me all the way here,  an hour or so drive from C-5 (a very place place) which served as my abode for three months. It was June indeed and the sky couldn't cove that up when the clouds are all dark blue and the air heavy all the while raining. I ran to the nearest building, Palma Hall, after saying goodbye to my parents. I was nervous and excited at the same time. This was my dream and I am living that dream. I never thought I'll be able to study in this University.

Photo 1. Palma Hall Steps (also called AS steps which stands for Arts and Sciences. This building used to house the Arts and Sciences majors until new buildings were constructed.)

I remember vividly, my first class was Geog 1 with Professor Lou Ann Ocampo. It was on the second floor and not many students were in the classroom then. It was too early. I sat on one of the chairs, observing. My friend Sarah came and I was only too relieved. Finally, someone to talk to. Turned out that first day of class, professor didn't attend. So Sarah and I just walked around and ate at CASAA (the building canteen). After this, I can't remember what else happened. I just knew that I attended all the other classes and in the afternoon, met our house helper in Philcoa where we took a bus (the rain still falling) and went back home to my new boarding house.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

What Teachers Make

This excerpt was taken from my email. I apologize for not citing the real authors of these inspiring stories. I don't own these stories. No infringement meant. If you know the authors of these stories, please do tell me and I'll make the necessary revisions. I just want the netizens to be inspired the way I did.

The dinner guests were sitting around the table discussing life.

One man, a CEO (proud of being a professional) , decided to explain the problem with education. He argued, 'What's a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?'

To stress his point he said to another guest;

'You're a teacher, Bonnie. Be honest. What do you make?'

Bonnie, who had a reputation for honesty and frankness replied, 'You want to know what I make? (She paused for a second, then began...)

He reminded the other dinner guests what they say about teachers: 'Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach.'
Teacher in class.

'Well, I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.

I make a C+ feel like the Congressional Medal of Honor.

I make kids sit through 40 minutes of class time when their parents can't make them sit for 5 without an I Pod, Game Cube or movie rental.

You want to know what I make?'

(She paused again and looked at each and every person at the table.)

''I make kids wonder.

I make them question.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them have respect and take responsibility for their actions.
I teach them to write and then I make them write. Keyboarding isn't everything.
I make them read, read, read.
I make them show all their work in math. They use their God given brain, not the man-made calculator.
I make my students from other countries learn everything they need to know in English while preserving their unique cultural identity.
I make my classroom a place where all my students feel safe.
I make my students stand, placing their hand over their heart to say the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, One Nation Under God, because we live in the United States of America.
Finally, I make them understand that if they use the gifts they were given, work hard, and follow their hearts, they can succeed in life.'
Boy and girl (6-9) carrying school bag, smiling.

(Bonnie paused one last time and then continued.)

'Then, when people try to judge me by what I make, with me knowing money isn't everything, I can hold my head up high and pay no attention because they are ignorant... You want to know what I make?

I MAKE A DIFFERENCE . What do you make Mr. CEO?'

His jaw dropped, he went silent.

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Quality of Life

The story below made me realize that life is but simple. It only becomes too complicated because people want so many things in life when in fact our goal is to be happy. Well, happiness doesn't require much.

A boat docked in a tiny Mexican fishing village.
A tourist complimented the local fishermen
on the quality of their fish and asked
how long it took them to catch them.

"Not very long." they answered in unison.

"Why didn't you stay out longer and catch more?"

The fishermen explained that their small catches were
sufficient to meet their needs and those of their families.

"But what do you do with the rest of your time?"

"We sleep late, fish a little, play with our children,
and take siestas with our wives. In the evenings,
we go into the village to see our friends, have a
few drinks, play the guitar, and sing a few songs.
We have a full life."

The tourist interrupted,

"I have an MBA from Harvard and I can help you!
You should start by fishing longer every day.
You can then sell the extra fish you catch.
With the extra revenue, you can buy a bigger boat."

"And after that?", asked the fishermen.

"With the extra money the larger boat will bring,
you can buy a second one and a third one,
and so on until you have an entire fleet of trawlers.
Instead of selling your fish to a middle man,
you can then negotiate directly with the processing plants
and maybe even open your own plant.
You can then leave this little village and move to Mexico City ,
Los Angeles , or even New York City !
From there you can direct your huge new enterprise."

"How long would that take?" asked the fishermen again.

"Twenty, perhaps twenty-five years." replied the tourist.

"And after that?", said the fishermen.

"Afterwards? Well my friend, that's when it gets really interesting,"

answered the tourist, laughing.

"When your business gets really big,
you can start buying and selling stocks and make millions!"

"Millions? Really? And after that?" asked the fishermen.

"After that you'll be able to retire,
live in a tiny village near the coast,
sleep late, play with your children,
catch a few fish, take a siesta with your wife
and spend your evenings drinking and enjoying your friends."

And the moral of this story is:

........ Know where you're going in life.... you may already be there!


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