Monday, October 30, 2006


Silence is a golden virtue.

A Spanish proverb written on the back of a prototype textbook in Spanish I. At that time, I didn't understand the proverb, perhaps for two reasons – first, the proverb was, of course, written in Spanish, and second, youth is a noisy phase.

I came to appreciate silence during my assignment in the city of pines. I had stayed at a house that sat on top of Legarda Road. It was a house owned by the foundation that had commissioned the book that we were printing. Due to the foundation's character, the house was clean, neat, and very well-kept. One had to remove one's shoes, place them beside the door, and wear sandals (which were lent by the foundation) while inside the house.

Since it was an off-season for tourists, I was alone in a room that had eight single beds. Aside from myself, there were three housekeepers, who stayed downstairs, and the officer-in-charge of the house, who also had a room for herself downstairs.

Simply put, I had the second floor all to myself.

While I was there, I savored the silence that went with loneliness. I savored the time I had for myself, to "center" myself, to listen to myself. If I had needed music, I had my CD player with me, and large headphones to keep me company.

The din of the metropolis, the chaos that pervaded the cities, the decadence of the spirit and the body that was being proudly paraded around the halls of the powerful and the powerless – all these things had pushed me to transplant myself. It was not taking a break.

It was about saving my soul.

to be continued

No comments: