Friday, May 30, 2008

Road Trip

Perhaps the longest period of time I was unable to post an update. Before we decided to complete the road trip across America that we began with a trip from Brooklyn to San Antonio, TX in 1991, I decided to back-up my files and photos. Found out my DVD drive was out of order so I called Dell and they sent me a replacement part in 48 hours. After the drive was reinstalled, I realized that all my files were wiped out! Whenever I would get internet access in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California, I would contact Dell but all efforts have so far proven futile. Talk about a disaster.

We’ve been on the road though. Spent one night in Flagstaff, AZ which became our staging area for our Grand Canyon expedition. I had been warned about the canyon before and I agree that it is the most impressive natural site in the United States. I don’t know of anything grander and henceforth, I will reserve the use of the adjective only to describe the canyon, it is that grand.

Spent 2 days in San Diego, attending a Filipino unity event and a Gawad Kalinga builders summit. With all the problems in the Philippines, GK remains one of the few sustainable private projects that deserves our complete commitment and support. There was GK supporter Kuh Ledesma and to prevent any conflict with the other Diva, I had my photo taken with her.

Visited classmates from Medical School who tried practicing in the Philippines before making the tough but practical decision to relocate in the US.

Gas prices rose 50 cents in a week and even food has become significantly more expensive. In Los Angeles and Orange County, home prices saw a 21.7% drop in the first quarter (Las Vegas registered a 25.9% fall). If it’s getting bad here, how much worse will it be in the Philippines? We buy oil the same way everybody buys it, at $128 a barrel. Already, the peso has fallen to 43.92 to a dollar, it was PhP40 to a dollar 2 months ago, and looking at what’s going on, the Filipinos are being distracted by a corporate power struggle over the power company, American Idol, speculation regarding the elections in 2010 while rampant smuggling and corruption and generalized low productivity prevail.

It was also with sadness that I learned about the death of longtime labor leader Crispin Beltran who must have had a CVA while repairing his leaky roof and fell on his head. And one bishop even instructed his priests not to conduct Catholic services for a man, however imperfect who spent his life for others. Sure makes your sorrow deeper.

These are not precisely hopeful times.


Anonymous said...

From Flagstaff, you should have driven down to Sedona and visited the red rocks.

From the grand Canyon, you could go through Page, Arizona and then drive to Bryce Canyon and Arches National park in Utah.

My kids like the Grand Canyon but Bryce , I beleive, is much better. It is not as large as the Grand Canyon but you can grasp its beauty better. While you are there, you can also watch the rodeo, which I know you'll appreciate because you are from Guymon.

Iowa Doc

Anonymous said...

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pian said...

The priest's decision was gutsy but I would say right because Ka Beltran was not just an imperfect man, he was a communist, he supported a movement filled with violence which is all but killing the country. I don't share your sorrow.

Ness said...

I liked this post, Doc. The Grand Canyon is a place that I've long wanted to see talaga. And you had celebrities in your post too. Complete!