Free

I want to share this with you because it’s something that frees me.

We all have a lot of things.  Many have too much.  And we don’t know what to do with them.

It may be that top you’ve been wanting to wear but when you do, it doesn’t seem to suit you anymore.  It can be that extra charger that reappeared after you thought went missing and so bought a new one.

I would like to share with you my experience in decluttering, not just the space but my life.

Some months ago, I started leaving things, big and small, in private and public spaces: a toilet cubicle, an empty seat in a restaurant, a park, etc.

The things are individually packed but of course I use used containers or plastic bags to be more environment-friendly.  With the thing, I place a note that says: “Kung nakita mo ito, ito ay para sa iyo.” (If you see this, this is for you.)

I will never know who will pick up the found item nor will I see the response.  Maybe it’s the janitress, maybe it’s a homeless person, maybe it’s someone who needs that particular thing I left.  But that’s the point.  I would like to give it out there without expecting anything.  The only wish is: Hopefully the finder will have use for it.

My mind for many years now is in the declutter mode.  If the stuff is saleable, I put it online to sell.  If it’s something my friends would appreciate, I gift it.  If it’s, I put it out there. 🙂

You see, when you declutter, you also give space for your mind to breathe. 🙂

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A Blind Man’s Sight

I have seen and touched his life-size rattan sculptures.  The human-like ones have seemingly deep-set eyes as if the eyeballs are not there.  He even made a water buffalo complete with its organ.  He’s that precise.

Why am I making a fuss out of the works?  Because the artist, Rogelio, is blind from birth.

I was fortunate to meet Rogelio in person.  He is from Ifugao but now lives in Nueva Vizcaya.

I was in a van from Ifugao to Baguio with Kidlat Tahimik.  We were going home from the Punnok.  Kidlat said we will visit Mang Rogelio.  Kidlat is his patron.

When we neared his house, we saw Mang Rogelio carrying a long stalk of sugar cane.  Unassisted.

He’s a very simple man but I felt honored to be in his presence.

When I introduced myself, he held my hand for a long time.  I felt infused by his touch.  He was trying to know me by feeling my palms and listening to my voice.  I have not had that much attention for a long time that I was taken aback.

When Kidlat chose from his works that were found here and there in his house, it was evident how happy he was that someone appreciated them enough to buy them.

His contagious smile was from ear to ear when Kidlat took notice of the music instrument he made from wood and thin metal sheets.  The sound was that of a gong.

Rogelio struck the metal while another man hit the wood with a stick creating that familiar Ifugao music.  A grandmother danced like a teenager.

Like magic, a wooden box turns into a gong.  A grandmother transformed into a girl. A blind man can see.