Disclaimer: You are about to read a “too personal” post as I am going to open a chapter of my life when I started dreaminag not just for me, but also for my family. This post was triggered when I recently walked inside the watch section of a department store.
I never had a nice watch in my entire life. Up until today, I am using a cheap plastic watch which was given by a friend. As I look at the price, there are some that I can afford and some that are really nice which I can’t.
I would love to buy one for myself, but it is out of my budget. Nonetheless, I have promised myself that next time I look for a nice watch, I will buy my piece even without checking the price tag.
Honestly, I had self-pity as I can’t buy it but as I walked home, I asked myself why do I need to feel this way? Am I not proud of what I have today? Materially, I have what I need, I have an iPhone, a Macbook, I’m living in a nice condominium in Makati, etc.
I remember 10 years ago, I don’t have all of these. But I have them now plus I can now travel which I didn’t have a chance when I was young, not just travel all by myself, I can also bring my family on a holiday trip which was just a dream.
I grew up in a middle-income family. When we say middle-income, there are three categories of it, lower-middle, middle-middle and upper-middle. Ours is in the lower-middle class.
My father is a driver and a car mechanic. My mother used to be a store manager of a local clothing brand but opt to resign when I was about to start my college years and opened a small business but closed after a year. I am the eldest in 5, and the youngest is as young as 5 years old.
My mother loves cooking so she ventures in cooking merienda and peddles it on the street. I also sell some in school. Though I don’t often do it.
I was an average student and never had a taste of luxury when I was young. I never had a smartphone at school and no laptop. I didn’t ask my parents to buy me one as I know we can’t afford it at that time.
I supported myself to finish my university degree. I worked as a service crew in a fast food chain for 8 hours after my 7:00am to 4:00pm class. How did I survive? Honestly speaking, I don’t know. Maybe if you have a few choices in life, you can do things that you never thought you can.
I also worked as a tutor, computer shop attendant, grilled and sold BBQ on a weekend. Earning around PHP100.00 per day is enough for me to have extra money as my allowance. I did this until I graduated in 2011. That was the year that I started to earn money and help my parents.
When we were young, people always tend to tell us that maybe you don’t have anything right now, but once you graduated and have a decent job, that’s the time you can buy anything you want, go wherever you want, and I think that is true.
Back in 2014, as I started building my career as a travel blogger and currently been to over 50 provinces in the Philippines and 10 countries in Asia. I never forget my biggest promise, to show the beauty of the Philippines and hopefully the world someday, to my parents, to my family.
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Here are the places best for Family that we have been for the past 5 years and I recommend visiting with your family too.
Puerto Galera – This place has been very special to me as this is where it all started, my travel blogging career. It is probably one of the easiest and famous escapes near Manila, so this is where I brought my family first last 2015.
I want them to experience why I love the beach so much. We stayed in a nice resort away from the crowd to have a closer bonding.
For the following year, we went to Bolinao. It was quite a long travel via bus and a little hassle since my sister was just 2 years old at that time, but I saw them really up for an adventure.
We hired a tour guide and visited most of the landmarks in Bolinao, Pangasinan. It was a bumpy tricycle ride but a single complaint from them was never heard.
On our 3rd year of family travel, we leveled up the game. I have rented a car as I saw how difficult for us to transfer from one mode of transportations to another as we were traveling with a little kid. This time, I chose a beach which is not too far from Manila, we did surf in La Union.
2018 was a little different. I realized that we were always at the beach. So, I asked myself why not somewhere mountainous. The best family friendly place that I could think is Baguio. We rented a car because it would be a nice place to do a road trip and my parents were not getting any younger, so it is better and more convenient if we had it that way.
Since I wanted to experience them a bit of fancy accommodation, I booked a nice lodge with jacuzzi where we stayed and slept for 3days and 2nights.
Just this June one of my biggest dreams for them in terms of traveling came true. At the age of 50, for the first time, my father rode an airplane. I was able to fly my family to Iloilo which is my favorite city in the Philippines and brought them to the island where I lived for more than a year now, Guimaras.
To give you an idea of how excited they were, they arrived in Airport 4 hours before their scheduled boarding time of 7:00am. I advised them to be early because as we know, normally the morning flights have a long line outside the terminal and they were not familiar with some pre-departure processes since I was not there to guide them. I never thought that they will arrive in the Airport as early as 3:00am.
Their happiness when I saw them arrived in Iloilo is priceless. Truly, there is something magical in making your family happy.
Looking at the progress I made in life 10 years ago and how I can now afford to travel with my family at least once a year, made me truly happy. I might not be as financially stable as the others, and still cannot afford a lot of things. Nevertheless, as I see myself slowly growing and making some of my dreams come true for my family is absolutely an achievement.