It's like I'm inside a beautiful painting

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March 13th 2014
Published: March 15th 2014
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It's my first time to see a park full of bare trees. It is so beautiful to me. I think I'd like fall even more. Or spring when the leaves and the flowers bloom! If I can afford it I'd like to see all of it. The scenery in this park I'm showing is so inspiring. Artists would never have a difficult time finding inspiration here. I love the different colors that I see. The brown grass. Red bushes. Green pine trees. The water that reflects the sky. Sorry for describing these. I know its a boring read. Always hated the part when Hemingway describes the scenery. But I cant not talk about how beautiful it is in this park.

The locals are finally coming out to enjoy the beautiful weather. Now I know that they come out when it's sunny. Of course! It was raining everyday in my first week here. Now I see lots of people in the park. A lot for Canada, few if I were in Asia.

There are homes beside the lake. They said those houses cost upwards $1.5 million. With that view, that is cheap. I especially like the yellow house. It is so english country if I know what that looks like.

There are several kinds of birds including owls. There are even warning signs for Cayotes and Bears. Bears are rear but Cayotes you can find every now and again. So I went to a narrow trail that very few people take. Maybe because it's a dirt path. It was starting to get dark so I was a bit scared. I did see an owl in that trail. I know I should be more thrilled but that owl was boring. It just sat there staring right back at me. I think I also saw an eagle. You come across so many kinds of birds here that you won't be surprised anymore if you see another kind that you've never seen before.

The people are just lovely. As I walk towards the park I came across a woman who was walking her dog. She didn't just say hello. She told me where I should go to take pictures and the route that I should take. When I look lost people would give me directions. Some even volunteer to take my pictures without being asked! That is shocking to me.

I am slowly learning how the public transportation works. The bus and skytrain tickets are difficult to explain. Basically your ticket gets validated in the bus. Its valid for 90 minutes or so if its a one zone ticket and you can transfer from bus to train during that 90 minute period without having to buy another ticket! If you're traveling far then you need a two zone ticket. Which is valid for about 150 minutes I guess. My first time to ride the SkyTrain I didn't get to validate my ticket. I did have it validated on the bus but it was my first time in the train I didn't know how. There are no turnstiles in the train where you can put in your ticket so you can go inside the station. Here you just go inside! No security guards to check if you paid or not. They expect too much honesty from the people here.

The SkyTrain is never full in a Filipino way. Even in rush hours after 5pm when they get out of work you wont get squished. You won't have to compete and wrestle your way into the the train. I don't know if people here realize how lucky they are. I guess people here never dream of living elsewhere.

They pay a lot of taxes but get a lot of refunds as well. I talked to a family who got $7,000 in tax refunds. The tithe that they give to church, donations, children's tuition, even the summer classes that their kids take like sports and music lessons! That is the coolest thing! I loved music lessons when I was young but they are so expensive that I didn't get to study everything that I wanted to learn. Here they have about $600 dollars a year for that. Tithes and donations have always been part of my budget so it's great that they're tax deductible.

I wan't all of this for the Philippines too but I don't think it will happen in my lifetime. Or if it ever will. I try to think of how we're are going to do it but I don't know where to start. Is it education? Discipline at home? Religion? What makes a country successful? If the Philippines was given the things that they have here and the same rules and system applied, I don't think it would work. It's the values of my people that needs to change.

I think if more Filipinos came here to visit, they would be inspired to do better once they know what could be achieved with discipline. It's hard to change when you don't know what for. I don't think my people know that it's better to be middle class in a country that works than to be rich in a chaotic one.

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16th March 2014

Growing up with scenery like this all around me and animals like bears and coyotes in our back yard, it all seems so boring. It's very cool to see someone from South East Asia coming and enjoying the topography in this part of the world as much as we enjoy visiting the tropics. I'm glad you enjoyed it.
25th March 2014

I am enjoying it a lot. Everything looks so different here and things are done differently. I've been learning a lot!

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