about the talking fish

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Writer. Wheelman. Occasional DIY mechanic. Walking collection of hang-ups. Hopeless romantic. Old-school. Analog soul in a digital world. I am all of these things and more.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The next major challenge awaiting me

My dad laid down the gauntlet for me and Bianca at the dinner table. The two of us are no longer young, yet we're still living with our parents, basically as freeloaders. By comparison, he'd moved out of the family home at sixteen or seventeen.

He was daring me to leave my comfort zone, to learn to live all by myself without househelp. Without anyone to clean up after my mess. Without anyone else to wash my car, wash the dishes, prepare packed lunch in the morning. I've gotten used to all this going on without my lifting a finger, for so many years. My beloved Yaya Cora, who has basically raised me since birth, is now an old woman and deserves her rest.

Suddenly I felt guilty for turning away all those real estate agents congregating in the parking level of the mall right next to my office. They gave away fliers as most agents do, trying to sell condominiums or townhouses. For the longest time I thought I wasn't their target market. What would I do, I thought, with a condominium when I had a perfectly functioning home to go to?

Apparently I was; I just didn't know about it.

Perhaps I'd been spoiled for far too long. My parents never mentioned it outright, but I guess this is as good an ultimatum as any. I envy the friends at work I have who've got their own places. Chielou's boyfriend Niku had just taken possession of an apartment or condominium recently. His very own pad. Gee. For the longest time, I never thought I'd be able to do that. I guess I can...or should I say I must?

I realize how misguided my priorities were. Saving for car modifications? I should have been saving up for a house. I should save up for a house and all its bills: water, electricity, phone/DSL. I should forego a number of luxuries I've gotten very used to. Suddenly I want to ask PJ and Zaldy and everyone else how they managed to live independently---PJ especially as he just got married and had a baby.

Planning has never been one of my strong suits. If there's anything I learned from work, however, it's that a plan should be dynamic and flexible to account for bullshit encountered along the way. Perhaps this new challenge is one worth planning for. I should move out and be self-sufficient within two years, before I get married, before I turn thirty.

A scary proposition, surely. But I plan to do it without losing or neglecting my Jazz. Perhaps my aibo will receive its planned modifications much later on in its life---especially that Bride Digo seat I've saved up for so fervently these past few months, and the new tires it needs. But it needs the dreaded 40,000 km tuneup soon, too. Crud. I'll make it work, somehow.

Yes, I'll make it work...somehow.


Dynee said...

Wow, is this something new in the Filipino culture? I always thought parents wanted to keep their children close, very close to home.


Dan said...

I don't know if it's different in the Philippines but here in the U.S. most people our age (22-28) begin their independence by renting an apartment/condo with 2-4 other people and then taking the next step to buy a house or living alone/with gf/wife.