Monday, October 09, 2006

Bye bye and thanks

The day I arrived in Saudi Arabia in 2003, I was introduced to one of my Filipino office mates. When I asked him how long he had been in Saudi, he replied “almost 20 years now”. In the back of my mind, I was asking, why? Why he stayed for 20 years? This question, I have asked, despite differences in people’s goals and objectives; because while I was in the Philippines doing my preparation of going to Saudi, I told my self: sapat na ang one year. I am sure Pinoys that have gone abroad have their target number of years to stay there and work, and definitely have some sort of an idea how much they wanted to save and where the money should go.

Anyway, my target of 1 year extended to more than two years. Although, my initial financial targets were met, it changed over the years. It kept on growing. I just wanted 1 house lot, it changed to five. I just wanted 1 motorcab, it changed to 2, and now I wanted 5 of them; I just wanted this much of agricultural lands, it increased in hectarage; I just wanted this much amount for a lending/land pawning business; the capital targets increased. And lastly, nanghinayang kasi ako sa sweldo ko abroad. I told myself go back, saying ang kikitain mo. So off I went, and I lasted more than two years in Saudi.

My vacation last June was just for 30 to 45 days. I had a return ticket from here in the Visayas (via PAL) to Manila and back to Saudi (Gulf Air). I also have an exit reentry Visa. The tickets until today was not used and the Visa expired. Why? Well….

1. Life is short, and I want to spend it here. I wanted a longer quality time, and I want to pursue the things that I wanted to do that I can’t do when I am working overseas.
2. My investments/businesses are growing and they need more attention. Besides the income from my businesses can keep up with my expenses and more.
3. If I go back this time, I am afraid I will go back again, and will not be able to get out of the trap.
4. I want to stick to my original target even if I extended it to more than two years.
5. And lastly, and most importantly, I have met a lot of Kabayans in Saudi who are already in their forties, early fifties and late fifties, who are still there toiling in the deserts. Yoko tumanda ng ganoon.

Almost five months now since I departed KSA. And I am happy I did not return. And my balance sheet is still alive and kicking…actually growing, hehehe.


Actually why did he (my officemate) stay for 20 years? I don’t know. I am not even sure if he bought a house and lot during the 20 years, or if he was able to establish businesses. All I know was that he even had loans to be paid. How he spends his earnings is beyond me since he was getting a salary higher than I do.


Now that I am officially not working in KSA anymore, what should I do with this blog?