May 2017 musings: Lessons from mother’s Martial Law

May isn’t over yet and mothers still rule the month (and the whole year), in her household, at least.

I still remember how Patria (I call my mom by her first name when I tease her. She’s in heaven now), runs our home:

On weekends: Tayo na at mag-linis ng bahay. Ano ka senyorito?

On Sunday mornings: Gising! Inumaga ka ng uwi, disco-disco ka magdamag pero hindi ka makapagsimba ng isang oras?

Those are just a couple of the many.

Mom has a soft heart. I know just when and where to ask for something I need (or want).

While she’s doing her “business”, a paawa voice speaks through the door’s crack: Ma bili mo ako ng bagong maong please? (The door in between is protection in case she goes ballistic).

Or at the mah jong session in the presence of three other amigas. How can she refuse me when the women turn into my rah-rah girls? She would sweetly reply, “Sige anak, mamaya tayo mag-usap.” I sensed danger.

If ever she taught me one important lesson, it’s this: “Magtrabaho ka, mabibili mo lahat ng gusto mo.”

She was right.

Shop I did. Those signature labels I can afford and bought it until the closet got filled. I accumulated stuff I don’t even wear, bags got worn out, soles of unused shoes crumbled. What a waste.

Perhaps, I have arrived at my age of enlightenment (char!). Quality and style doesn’t have to come at a high cost. I knew that much all my life it’s just that I was wowed by the glitz and glamour of the Italian and French names.

Most of all, I find it funny toting luxury stuff while I ride the jeepney. It just doesn’t match. On board the jeepney, all LVs, Guccis or Pradas, genuine or not, are the same.

I’m just glad one of my favorite Japanese clothing brands finally opened shop in Davao. UNIQLO apparel is injected with the Japanese values of simplicity, quality and longevity. The pieces are of good quality and very affordable. It probably occupies half of my closet now.


Finally! UNIQLO, one of my favorite Japanese brands, opens in Davao at SM Lanang Premier. UNIQLO SM City opens on June 2.

Kampai! Launching the first UNIQLO in Mindanao & the 37th in the country. UNIQLO SM Lanang store manager Rose Velardo; Japanese consul Tomoko Dodo; COO, Fast Retailing PH, Katsumi Kubota; Area manager Binnah Kim;& SM Lanang Premier mall manager Therese Lapeña-Manalo

The other closet occupant is Marks & Spencer. The UK brand refers to its style as “core fashion” and I like the basic pieces that transcend trends.

Mom was a great cook. Each meal at home was lovingly prepared by her hands and boy was it always a feast!

Name a dish and she can cook it. She would have loved the current Chinese buffet offerings of Café Marco at Marco Polo Davao. The noodle selections, which are offered on the room service menu as well, are quite delicious and filling.


New at Café Marco & Marco Polo in-room dining: Nanjing beef short ribs noodle soup, among many other choices.

Chinese is now part of the Cafe Marco breakfast buffet spread

Back to house cleaning. Mom vs. the best cleaning apparatus in the planet. Mom will win. She is OC when it comes to cleanliness. She would get down on her hands and knees, stretch her arms high and rid every corner of the house of dust and dirt. And she expected the same of us when we clean our own rooms.

If she saw the Dyson cord-free, hassle-free vacuum, she would love it. It can cut cleaning time to half with its power and efficiency.


A very attractive vacuum cleaner. Which one is the question. Bobby Yan hosted the DYSON product launch at Chimes, Sales.


DYSON power showdown

The brand also has chic bladeless fans, air purifier and hair dryers. Do check the display at Chimes Sales.

So you see, mom trained me well. I value work because it buys me the stuff I need, value everything no matter the cost, value cleanliness, value the hands who prepare the food. I love you, mom.

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Also published in the SunStar Davao newspaper.