Real Estate Marketer

99.99% Sagada Igorot

Working Ant in Ortigas

Brewed Coffee Addict

Very Personal Blogger

Manila Through the Eyes of an Igorot

Upon dropping off the bus along Ayala Avenue and saw the tall buildings and brick-carpeted sidewalk, I was like a child wandering through the Disney World with a lollipop in one hand.

The signage in front of every building, the cabs coming in different hood accents, the security guards ready to kill with their guns, and the static air welcomed me to a new world that I have been longing to explore.

Now is my second month of stay in Makati, a known city for its tall buildings inhabited by the working class. Coming from Quezon City, I was certain I was already approaching Makati City because of the change of scenery- from the typical dirty surroundings to a clean, less populated street.  

The first thing that fascinated me was the water garden of Manila Peninsula, then the underpass which was totally a paradise to an Igorot because of the wonderful posters and art paintings on the wall.

However, starting anew is not as easy as eating pizza. Having paid New Media Services a quick goodbye, I started working for Salarium, an IT startup offering Payroll software for HR and accounting functions. 

I had to train myself to speak in straight Filipino when dealing with people since Ilocano and Kankanaey are not the lingua franca in the area. 

I had to look for a place to stay in since coming from Cubao, Quezon City would cost me four hours a day for travel time, which is totally physically stressing and therefore unwise. With the help of a batch mate who first came to Makati to work, we found a building offering bedspace to working folks. 

After two months, it seems I am starting to catch up although the depression that everything I allowed to spoil my happy spirit still haunts my every single moment affecting how I deal with everything here.

In the evening when the buildings turn their lights on against the orange clouds in the background, I could not close my eyes to staring at the scenery because it is more than perfect. I no longer feel the drive to go back home and count how many pine trees grows on the mountain.

Every day, I walk to work for half an hour. I see frowing bankers wearing uniform, exciting chief executives magnificent with their business attire, and tired fellows in casual dress. One time, I came to work wearing slippers because a typhoon has just approached the city, and I thank God no one cared how dumb I looked.

Tough as it may seem but I am trying to relax myself and get away from fear, worries and tears I have invested in myself. Thanks God my workmates, roommates, old friends, Facebook friends, blogger friends, and those that I deal with from time to time understand where I am coming from.

As of now, I want to explore the neighborhood. I am already done with Solaire Resort, Divisoria Market, 12 Monkeys, Edsa Shangri-la, and A Venue Mall. 

Yesterday, I had a simple meet up with four wonderful bloggers to share the news about our software. I am no fan of Starbucks but I learned to deal with the fact that people go there for socialization. 

While waiting, I noticed a couple sitting next to me was conversing in Baguio Ilocano. Afterwards, they were speaking in Kankanaey. I really wanted to get their attention but my skin just cannot stomach doing such.

My friend Xavier Arobo told me to enjoy the freedom. Another friend Vienna Urbiztondo once reminded me never to be afraid to ask and to commit mistakes because no one knows me here. Let us do this! 

Christian is a Marketing Communications practitioner in Quezon City. He is an Igorot from Sagada, Mountain Province. To get in touch with him, please shoot an email to christianaligonow@gmail.com.


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