September Sunrise

It’s been more than a couple of weeks that we have returned from our trip to the Philippines.

I have fully recovered from the jet-lag. My tracks of the mosquito bites were all gone. My sunburn have healed. The stash of the butong pakwan (watermelon seed) that we brought back is almost gone. And all that I have left are the sweet memories of home.

I miss the Philippines.

As September rolls in, heralding the end of summer, we brace for the coming cold season. Yet waking up to this beautiful morning, is not bad at all. Not at all.

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(*photo taken in our neighborhood, with an iPhone)

Up on the Wall

People hang pictures on their wall. It could be art photos or beautiful landscapes. Or it could be pictures of themselves showing their achievement, like graduation or wedding photos. Or it may be photos of someone we our proud of and like to remember, like our children or our parents, or even our pets.

In the corporate world, they hang photos of their founder, or top executives, or model employees. Maybe you have your photo posted as the best employee of the month. Or as the boss’ pet perhaps?

In the old days, especially in the wild west, they also post photos of persons on walls but for a very different reason. It has the words “wanted” and “reward” on them. That’s not what I am talking about here.

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(photo taken at Cody Wyoming)

In the company I am with now, they have a tradition, that after a doctor is with the group for 10 years or more, they would hang a photo of you up on the wall on the clinic’s main hallway. It is like an honorary gesture, that the organization is proud of, after that years of service you dedicated to them. It is like the wall of fame. Sort of.

Sure enough, since I am now with this organization for 10 years, they told me that its time for me to get up on their wall. No, they will not hang me! Just my picture.

Then I thought which picture of me would they hang? When I asked them, they told me it is a photo that they have taken when I joined the organization more than 10 years ago.

Wait a minute. Yes, I may look much younger then, and my youthful image would be immortalized on the clinic wall, but that photo does not look like me anymore. I got lots of hair then. People would pass by and see that photo and wonder, who is that doctor?

So I asked our office manager, to schedule me to have a photo session with the organization’s official photographer, so I could have my picture taken. I want a photo on the wall that has full resemblance of me.

In this day and age of photoshop, you can airbrush your image, or altogether alter your appearance to make you look more beautiful, or younger, or thinner, or more glamorous perhaps. Except that, it is not you anymore.

My take on this is, the closer to the reality the photo is, the better. If we cannot accept the truth about our own appearance, then what a sorry state we are in.

Never been more proud of the result of my new photo. And I can vouch, they did not have to retouch it much.

As I pass on that main hallway, I saw my picture up the wall. It certainly look like me. And there’s no “wanted” or “reward” underneath it.

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our wall of fame