Our 1st year, wanderlust and election ‘sinat’

It’s been one year since we moved as a family to Sydney. Among the 6 of us, it was only Ala who actually did a straight year of stay here. All the rest of us went back to Manila for varied periods of time. Nevertheless, we all felt that psychologically, we all crossed the Rubicon a year ago and made this place our home for now. Ala had some friends over and had an FOB (fresh of the boat) party to celebrate our immigration to Aus. Erica was kidding when she suggested that the theme of the get-together should have been ‘nautical’.


Soon I will be going back to Manila to join Danny and Boboy on a US tour. I am having a hard time thinking of leaving again and being away from my family. I actually feel a deep sadness about it. It takes a lot of calming, and philosophising to accept this situation for now. It seems like at this point, I am not destined to cool my heels too long in any place. I’ve always wanted to travel and the truth is, I have insatiable wanderlust. It has always been a passion for me—until now. These days, I just want to stay put in Sydney, teach guitar and voice to my students, be with my family and do simple things.

On a lighter note, Danny teases me about my crazy migrant status–a Filipino migrant in Sydney who goes to the Philippines to earn money for his family in Australia. Ang tawag niya sa akin ‘AUSSIE W’. Ha ha.

It’s election time in Aus and all I can do is shake my head at the disparity of my experience of elections in the Philippines and over here. Perhaps the main difference from a visitor’s point of view is the lack of annoying, dirty campaign posters, streamers or vehicles with loud speakers extolling candidates and playing their insulting, mindless jingles. In place are radio and TV spots that run mostly negative campaigns on each candidate. It’s much less of a circus than what we have back home. No actors, boxers, or disgraced people running for public office. And I have not heard of any election related murders or violence that has happened here. The issues are laid out well in the few handouts that we’ve received at home. Oh, and we got a check from the Premier of New South Wales to help us with family expenses. An election c’mon to be sure.

All in all, the sedateness of the event is striking, and yes, so Australian. If our election passion can be described as a burning fever, theirs is a sinat, hardly detectable. Laid back sila talaga. The only aspect that shocks me somewhat is that everyone is required by law to vote, or pay a fine. That only happened to us during the Marcos regime. But as an Aussie told me, you don’t have to put any name on the ballot if you don’t want to. And you can vote by mail days before if you plan to go out of town on election day.

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Anonymous
Anonymous
14 years ago

Congratulations on your first year in Australia. Your comments are right. I even had to ask my colleagues at work how to vote (i.e. how do I mark the ballots) on Saturday. It is absolutely sedate here. I have seen some candidates go to our neighbourhood to hand out their flyers and to shake our hands. Minsan nga nandun pa sila sa may bus stop at sila mismo namimigay nang flyers nila. – Ian

Anonymous
Anonymous
14 years ago

Aussie dabalU(W)now I know what it means-sorry for the wrong guess…ha!ha!

I’m posting the books to US now.My officemate will order too!

Happy anniversary,happy trip at good luck sa concerts…

M

JT of Dural
JT of Dural
14 years ago

Tito Jim,

Sa Sabado, dalawin mo ang isang paaralan at malasin mo ang state election. Kung ihahambing sa Inang Bayan, masyadong BORING. Walang indelible ink sa daliri, walang flying voters, at walang steel ballot boxes. Walang kabuhay-buhay, sir! 🙂

Iyong local council elections ay mas interesting. Noong huli, may nag-aabot ng flyers na matandang akala ko pulubi. Pagtingin ko sa flyer, siya pala ang kandidato!! 😀


JT of Dural
Sosing.Aussie

Novi
Novi
14 years ago

Boring pala ha? Baka naman gusto nyong dalhin dito si Glorya, Esperon at Garci? Ano kayo sinusuwerte?

Dyok lang 🙂

Kat O+
Kat O+
14 years ago

Sometimes the elections can be quite exciting, depending on the candidates…but I don’t think they’ll ever get close to what happens in the Philippines. The negative campaigns are disappointing but I’m hoping the federal elections will be a bit more positive (they have more money to play with, for one thing).

In my old electorate, the polling booth ran a charity sausage sizzle. Nothing flashy but mmm…sarap! *lol* It felt like a real community event.

I used to be against compulsory voting but once you think of voting as both a right AND a responsibility of living in a democracy, it makes more sense. As long as there’s no coercion involved in the ballot box, I think mandatory voting results in a more representative government. Imagine if the US had compulsory voting–how different the world might be.

Congratulations on surviving (and enjoying) your first year in Oz! 🙂

Jim
Jim
14 years ago

Dalawang magkaibang mundo talaga ang Aus at Pinas pagdating sa politics. This is one time I will choose ‘boring’ over ‘exciting’.

Novi
Novi
14 years ago

OK kayang iboto yong “Australians Against Further Immigration”? Palagay nyo?

N
N
14 years ago

hello sir jim!

hihi! Aussie W! that was funny!

i went there in sydney last january and i realized how the government really influences people to properly do this and that (ex. sa driving) or they pay a fine. nagagalingan ako sa strategy ng govt nila.. shempre no one wants to pay a fine kaya they would have to do what is required of them. sa atin kaya magiging effective yun ganon?

nette

Jim
Jim
14 years ago

novi–I doubt whether they could win though, Too many immigrants here na–1 out 4 people na yata.

Nette–yes, they are strict here, and apparently, it works. Kaka nga ganyan ang kailangan natin–implementation.

Lani
Lani
14 years ago

Congrats!!!

I agree with you, mas pipiliin ko rin iyong boring kesa sa exciting. Ang gulo at ang dami ng election dito.

Lani
Lani
14 years ago

ups i mean *dumi

yeng
yeng
14 years ago

yeng said…
Sir,
elections have actually different effect to different kind of people. for me as a public school teacher, it would actually mean danger and excitement; danger for i am assigned to give my service in a remote area that would be about 400 kms. from the city and excitement of course for we will be receiving an honorarium that we could actually use for the coming enrolment period. This is the main reason that we teachers are willing to go into perils because the allowance we would be receiving is a big help for us.

pen
pen
14 years ago

“sinat”, perfect wording! =)
I’ve been ambushed several times about how elections are in the Philippines, and I’d always answer with “Do you have at least a half hour to talk about it?” Kasi most of the time I know they’re asking out of courtesy, and they’re busy people too. They just laugh and say “That bad, huh?”