In November 2010, I posted an account of my first treatment for macular degeneration and the events which had led up to it. (Link)
The macula is a small spot at the center of the retina, the back of the eye. It is made up of millions of light-sensing cells, enabling people to have clear central vision. With macular degeneration, a fluid seeps through the layers of the macula, causing blurring in the central area. By the time mine was discovered during an examination for new glasses, the center of my right eye had turned into brown scar tissue. When … Read More
Before the Covid 19 lockdown, Benjie Abad, a.k.a. Mang Urot, was operating a soup kitchen he called Karinderia ni Mang Urot. He and his wife, younger daughter and assorted volunteers were feeding the needythree nights a week, sometimes in a bank parking lot, sometimes at the Abad home in a typical middle class subdivision in Metro Manila.
Benjie and I spoke via Facebook Messenger when he was in Quezon City and I was in Antipolo. Thanks to KMU for the photos.
It was almost eight years ago when you set out to feed the hungry. Can you … Read More
Several people expressed an interest in seeing photos, so I added some.
Now the story.
Toward the end of January my housekeeper, Fe, and I were inspecting a house to rent in Antipolo, a hilly town two hours from Manila. It was the only available house she’d found, so we were hoping it would do. Because of all the wasted space, there was a lot less available than what we’d had before. I doubted all my stuff would fit. She said it would. I think she was more right than I was, depending on what … Read More
The first time I was caught up in a natural disaster in the Philippines was in September 2009 in the flood known locally as Ondoy. At the time I was so unhappy with the domestic situation I found myself in that I was repeating over and over, “Is this going to be the rest of my life now?” Then one morning I woke up to a lot of rain, and soon the refrigerator was floating a meter high in the kitchen. I told my housemate to turn off the electricity, and not too long after that we were out of … Read More
In teaching workers how to do their part of the production process, Michael Sanders uses some of the same principles I’ve used for decades in language teaching. Meet the students where they are, not where the university catalogue says they should be, take everything down to the simplest level—including advanced concepts—and start there. But Mike has ideas which could transform the Filipino economy.
We spoke over Facebook Messenger while he was at home in Abu Dhabi and I was home in Tagaytay.
Why don’t you start by telling us why you came to the Philippines?