I found some old coins while cleaning today. These coins are from Singapore, Thailand, Philippines and Qatar. There’s a huge coin among the other coins which is a Five Peso coin from the Philippines and is also rare.
Sundays in the Philippines begin with church bells.
Sundays, the witches come out. Sundays, the church and the marketplace are alive as one, with shamans setting up wooden benches selling healing potions, dried leaves, crystals and healing prayers, talismans gleaming under the baking sun.
Brown faces and drenched brows crumpled fervent in prayer, street urchins peddling wreaths of jasmine to uninterested church goers-
Dozens of porcelain-skinned, glass-eyed, plastic haired saints being paraded about, decorated with dried wildflowers as the voice of a priest echoed across the plaza,
as is custom in the Philippines-
Such were were the Sundays and most days of Cain- Born named Nerissa, orphaned at the age of 11, Cain was gentle in every way. He kept his long, inky, black hair loosely tied back.
When his mother was alive, they would make necklaces and necklaces of nauseating sampaguita flowers and hunt for clam and fish to sell at the marketplace. Dried Fish wrapped in newspaper, and wreaths of jasmine.
Cain told himself he was content living his life selling fish and wreaths. Learning to count at the age of six, grubby, baby fingers separating five peso coins from one peso coins on their earthen floor, delighting when it was enough for dinner.
One afternoon his mother vanished into the sea foam. (It’s been years and Cain still thinks the mermaids took her.)
It’s been years and Cain still walks to the lighthouse, wondering if the whales were crying, or if his mother had asked the mermaids to come for him and take him to their underwater world.
Cain, like many other orphans, lived at the church. Wise beyond his years, and beloved by the priests.
Cain, malcontent, who longed for a life much more than wrapping fish in newspaper, making wreaths of jasmine, and studying in his quiet room, in his quiet church.
This came to me after that whole discussion about paying for someone writing and that “anyone” can write. Needless to stay this stoked my ire. Then a sense of deja vu hit me.
Who got paid to write? I did.
I grew in a third world country, and this was back in the day you had no internet and no texting blah blah blah. Anyway, I was 12, I was in high school (because there is no such thing as middle school where I came from), also I started school early and nobody questioned it.
I was the target of bullying, because, hey, weird fat kid with big glasses right? They picked on me, called me names, whatever. Bullies, what’s new? I went to a private high school so these were rich kids bullying middle class nerd. Long story short they chose to nitpick on me.
Of course in high school you had all these goddamn freaking essays they made you write. What I did in the Summer. What happened in School Today. We had creative writing class. When I was 10 my English teacher discovered I had a knack for writing. I competed. I won. So when I hit 12 and these writing assignments came, it was easy for me. I wrote what came naturally. I was a star! I can deal out a 1000-word essay and not break a sweat.
Then the bullies noticed.
They said, “Hey nerd you wanna make these essays for us?”
I blinked. Without a second thought. “Okay. But you have to pay me.”
I don’t know what I was thinking. Maybe it was the entrepreneur my mother instilled in me since I was 8.
They were stumped for a bit. But between their lousy grammar and laziness they decided. “How much?”
“Five pesos per piece.”
These were spoiled rich brats. Between making their homework and paying the talented nerd in class they decided on the latter.
So I wrote. I got paid. I didn’t give them their homework (which they had to rewrite so it’s in their penmanship) until I got my cash. No, they can’t stiff me because I would snitch on them. I could say they bullied me into writing their stupid homework.
Also, we had different teachers for different Creative Writing classes, so if I reiterated one essay, they wouldn’t notice. I would reuse old material if I knew they had a different teacher. Did we get caught? No. I did minor changes but sometimes gave the same essay to different idiots. I threw words around, changed a paragraph here and there.
One other thing I made money on? Love letters. Like I said, back in the day, you didn’t have texting/email/whatever. Also it was a conservative Catholic school, No crazy shit allowed. Girls were immediately smitten with a goddamn, well-written love letter. What did I do? I penned them, for 10 pesos a piece, altered my penmanship for every one, modified words here and there. We were dumb teenagers, they took the bait. They would think Casanova wrote it. And if I didn’t like the asshole who commissioned me? I told the girl he likedthat I got paid to write it.
It honed my writing, it got me extra cash, and the bullies left me alone because they needed my expertise.
Of course my shtick only lasted for maybe two years. I eventually got tired of it. Sorry dudes, you gotta do your own homework now.
Anyone can write? I dunno about that. I wrote pretty damn good back in the day, good enough to make girls swoon and rich brats to pay me to do their shit.
Bunga Falls is located in Nagcarlan Laguna, my dad (forever photowalk buddy!) and I went there last June. I actually forgot the exact date (this is what vacation does to me, I’m not aware of the dates lol) but it was a weekday. Since it was a weekday I expected that there would be less people and it’s June summer’s over!
Well, it turns out my expectation was right! There’s a sign in the entrance that you need to pay five pesos, but there was no one to pay. From the entrance, there’s a short trek and when we arrived there was no one not a single being! We had the falls all to ourselves! That’s also why my video diary that I posted you’d see no people.
I think this was the first falls that I’ve seen. Yes, I’m from Laguna but I haven’t seen the more popular falls because I don’t have time or maybe I don’t make time for it. Unlike my dad who have gone to several falls already. Anyway, I can’t explain the experience, I just know that the nature lover in me was so happy! What I like best was when I was in this small hill(?) in front of the falls and I was just watching the water falling it was so calming he he he ~
When we’re preparing to go, a family came and some kids that I think just live around the place. That’s why there’s a photo above of a kid jumping from the waterfalls. I was so happy I caught it on my cam!
Bunga Falls is not yet super developed, but I’d still recommend you take a visit.
All photos were taken by me, even the self portraits (I managed to use the self timer lol) because my dad was so busy taking low exposure shots for me to bother him loljk! And also the layout and design were made by yours truly. ✨