"My street, myself"

Maryanne Moll, author of "Tepid Water" (2001), "Three Men In One Night" (2002), "Scorpio Over Siquijor" (2002), and "At Merienda" (2005) has started a blog. She lives in Bangkal, Makati -on Evangelista St. Her latest entry is wonderful description of street life in our metropolis.

"In Evangelista, there’s always a handful of jeepneys in line to take passengers to Libertad and Buendia, people are practically spilling over the sidewalk and into the streets, and an average of five empty taxicabs pass by every minute. Edsa is a two-minute walk away, along a road that glimmers with a 7-11, a 24-hour Mercury Drug, Video City, Yes Wash, Andok’s, Julie’s Bakeshop, Goldilocks, HBC, PNB, Reyes Haircutters, The Look Salon, Pizza Hut, Jollibee, McDonald’s, Chowking, and about ten different pawnshops and twenty cheap cafeterias, and four grills, plus a hundred eload stores and internet cafes and one bingo place with dingy yellow tables where people play alfresco. Add to that a Makati Police Station and a station of the Bureau of Fire Protection, and a hospital.

It’s a street that never sleeps. I sometimes go out at 2 am to buy myself some ice cream, a reward for having labored over a five thousand-word draft, and jeepney barkers still call out, “BuendiaLRTBuendiaLRTBuendiaLRT,” and people would get in, fully dressed and fully awake, bringing their plastic file folders and umbrellas, as if it were the most natural thing in the world to go to Buendia LRT at 2 am. But I am not one to judge. After all, I myself buy ice cream at 2 am.

I love my street. Here I can do my grocery shopping at 6 am with an unwashed face and not be judged. Here I can walk while wearing my last smelly pair of jeans before laundry day and not be physically thrown out of the ring of the civilized. I can also trip on a piece of garbage and fall down and not be helped, but, well, at least I won’t be laughed at. I enjoy the complete lack of judgment here. I even suspect that this total lack of judgment that my anonymity in Evangelista has caused is in turn causing me to be somewhat of a superwoman. Here I can exist on an eccentric diet of instant food, junk food, cereals, and lutong bahay and still stay standing after three days of non-stop writing-to-beat-a-deadline. Here I can also write a chapter a day in my apartment about Philippine politics in the late 70’s and still be able to carry on an intelligent conversation with one of my downstairs neighbors about the pros and cons of having laundromats do one’s laundry while we’re on our way to take out the trash."

1 comment:

Sidney said...

Thank you for the link. I am impressed by her writing. The description of Evangelista Street is wonderful.

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