In every interesting plot of a tale of highschool woes, there is almost always at the center of it the one group of people that dominate and rule the social scene, the ubiquitous popular crowd. In my school, a Filipino catholic school run by Augustinian Recollect nuns at that time, that set was The Amoebas. The Amoebas did not sport the telltale high-low popular girl uniform like immaculate gel nails, polka dotted Mango mini skirts, Balenciaga sneakers, armed with their LV cross bodies, but you could still sort of sniff their ilk out of the crowd.
It has been brewing in my mind for a few months—the idea of sharing some stories of my experience living in the Philippines—since I began retelling them woven within different funny anecdotes I would share with friends to try to give a sense of how different, sometimes bizarre (if viewed through Americanized eyes), and often illuminating life in a foreign country can be.
Of course, I have to begin by telling you that this particular story started more than four decades ago, in the early 70s. But let us go ahead and make this its new inception point, the place where we can chat cozily about our present states, express hopes for our precariously-balancing futures, and weave a tiny bit of our past in there too by way of context and providing that always irrestible backstory that begs to be told.