Honoring my Mother: Love thy neighbors

If respect for others were measured through a visual spectrum of colors, then living in the middle of a housing project, such as a subdivision, would totally be a rainbow.

As such, the most comprehensive variation of colored pencils would still be unavailable at any store and, if this were the case, the salesperson might probably just lie through his teeth and mutter, “walay stock sir.”

Aside from our house’s thin walls and the proximity of our door to the narrow street, the block-by-block configuration of the Philippine version of suburbia, is the perfect victim to a daily cacophony of audio interventions, or noise. Be it loud music, incessantly-crying two-year olds, or just naturally-boisterous neighbors, the daily bombardment is up to a point wherein, one just lamely accepts his fate (especially if you can’t afford to move to a much quieter neighborhood). Add to this the motorcycle-riding peanut vendor whose face shows up at the screen door, shouting “mani mani!” while you’re having breakfast.

I’ve really tried to take it all in stride and even attempted to convince myself to see a brighter side to all these. In almost any part of the house, I can get my daily update of the freshest gossip, left and right, and then opt to listen to various playlists and musical genres blaring like fire sirens from here to the corner. But no, it’s not my cup of tea. Sometimes, I fight fire with fire so to speak, and play harmonica blues music at near-full volume on our speakers. As this in turn, sends the neighbor’s dogs howling like crazy and irritated at the harp’s shrill sound, I feel sweet revenge seep in like a long nice drag from my Marlboros.

However, I have only resorted to this tactic a few times, as I myself cannot think when it’s too noisy in the house, especially come writing time. The struggle is all too real, mind you, and my only consolation is during the weekends. That’s when the neighbors (and their help) go en masse to either the malls or somewhere else to take a break from my torture.

The only welcome noise I want to hear next is the pot-pot horn of the garbage man, and my response to that would always be, “take them please!”

Posted in Opinion