Thursday, September 07, 2006

Excess Baggage

This morning, I accompanied my sister to the authentication office of the Office of the President. Once you enter the gate, there is a sign, under the seal of the Office of the President, that says 'NO FIXERS.' The sign is comforting cause after all, this is so near Malacanang and I was relieved to know that next to UP, there is at least one government institution that is not infiltrated by fixers.

My sister fell in the long line and I sat not far away reading Milan Kundera's Unbearable Lightness Of Being. After about half an hour into reading, I heard this group of able-bodied gentlemen, about 40-50 years old, asking a mother and her daughter what they need. The mother said, "Papa-otenticate po."

Then one of these 4 gentlemen said, patingin ng papers mo. Check natin kung pwede na.

I had a sinking feeling in my heart and I knew then that it was just too good to be true that a busy government office like this would really be free of suckers like these gentlemen.

So there, the mother and her daughter actually fell into their trap. I was dying to save them from that trap but I chose not to intervene. I sat there, trying to make sense of Kundera's lightness and heaviness while these good-for-nothing gentlemen pretend like helping these people when we very well know that is far from what their doing.

I wanted to hit each of these vultures with my book but I thought, no, my book is worth more that their brains combined so why waste a good book? Besides, I don't wanna jeopardize my sister's future by loosing my temper.

What's ironic is that this government office is only a kilometer away from the Malacanang, bears the seal of the Office of the President and has 'NO FIXER' signs everywhere.

I couldn't have brought a better book to read in that place. These fixers and the very corrupt government employees inside those air-conditioned offices are this country's excess baggage. They are too heavy that they actually pull down the rest of the honest Filipinos who only wants to earn and improve their quality of living.

I want to believe and continue hoping that one day, these heaviness would just go then we could all be as light as we want and move forward.

No comments: