Showing posts from December, 2020

The Filipino Toxic Culture and How to Deal With It.

I have been married to a Filipina for 20 years now and I know a thing or two about the Philippines and its culture. I do love the Philippines and its outstanding landscapes, its mixture of Spanish, Asian and American architectures, its cuisine and so much more, and I would go back there one million times to explore every nook and cranny of the archipelago. What are some of the toxic traits of the Filipino mentality? But, unfortunately, the Philippines is not just those amazing and fascinating things. It is also some of the nasty things that, from time to time, I mention in my blog and that qualify as "toxic". These include: Bahala-na (basically leaving things to chance and then expecting a higher power to take care of the consequences) Ningas kugon (when Filipinos have no clear plans or goals and their plans and goals easily fizzle out) Filipino time (the habit of always showing up late at an appointment or not showing up at all)

Ang Wikang Italyano para sa mga Pilipino - Bahagi 1

  Maraming Pilipino na nagtratrabaho sa Italya ay may anak na lumalaki dito at fluent sa Italyano Bilang Italyanong asawa ng isang Pilipina, napansin ko na napakaraming adultong Pilipino na nagtratrabaho sa Italya ay may malaking problema sa komunikasyon sa kanilang mga anak na lumalaki dito at mas nakapagsasalita ng Italyano kaysa sa Tagalog. Kaya isa sa mga layunin ng aking blog ay upang magturo ng Italyano sa mga magulang Pinoy na nagtratrabaho dito, dahil marunong akong mag-Tagalog at medyo kaya kong ilagay ang aking sarili sa isip ng isang Pilipino (Pilipina kasi si misis.....). Syempre, ang Italyano ay medyo masalimuot at kumplikado, pero sisikapin kong ipaliwanag ito sa simpleng paraan at para makagawa nito gagawa ako ng medyo maikling mga post na nagpopokus lang sa isang paksa sa bawat pagkakataon. Ang isa sa pinakaimportantent bagay na kailangang malaman tungkol sa wikang Italyano ay na, kung ang isang salita ay "feminine" o "masculine", lahat ng ibang mga

Where to Eat Filipino Food in Rome

(I am migrating this post from In my 20-year experience with Filipinos, what I have noticed is that Pinoy restaurants here in Italy have always had a hard time succeeding. The over 50,000 Pinoy who live and work in Rome do eat out quite a lot, but they usually prefer fast-food chains like KFC, Mc Donald's and Burger King and eat all you can restaurants run by Chinese to Filipino ones. One reason is probably the fact that most Filipinos who live here are either part of a big family and have several relatives here or they are part of a religious community like the Iglesya ni Kristo or the Saksi ni Jehova or others. Therefore they have plenty of options to taste Pinoy food in the several salu-salo or social gatherings that take place on a weekly basis within their extended family circle or their community. Because Pinoy salu-salo follow the K.K.B. (kanya-kanyang baon) rule and every participant is expected to bring something, there is usually way mo

Should You Retire in the Philippines?

Unlike what many Filipinos who have never left their country assume, living in the West is not easy, at least not here in Italy. Wages are higher than in the Philippines but so is the cost of living. And so the idea of moving to the Philippines for good can be rather tempting. My Filipina wife and I have been talking about it for years but we haven’t come up with a plan yet. Why? Because there are so many variables involved and things to ponder very carefully. So in this post I am going to explore this topic and the various aspects that need to be taken into account, because a lot can go wrong when moving to the Philippines for good. What are some of these things that need to be weighed? Do you already have a house in the Philippines or are you going to pay a rent or a mortgage? Our house in the Philippines, the ground floor is a boarding house and there is a karinderia next to it One of the strong reasons why my family might eventually move to the Philippines is precisely because we d

Why You Should Learn Tagalog if you are Married to a Filipina

Many Filipinos, as well as Westerners, wonder why I went to great lengths to study Tagalog, and my wife herself sometimes argues that my investment of time and energy to go deep into the Tagalog grammar is a waste of time. But I beg to differ. I actually believe that going deep into my wife's native language, not just dabbling at it, is a major key to succeeding in this kind of relationship.  It is key in any multiethnic relationship and it is much more so if your wife is Filipina. But while learning Tagalog well is extremely important in this kind of marriage, in terms of how it is a huge rapport builder (not only with your wife but also with the extended family, which is the core element of the Filipino culture), it is better to stick to English when you are having deep conversation with your Filipina wife (provided, of course, that she speaks English very well, which is highly likely if she has higher education). The reason why it is good to know the Tagalog language, but it is

Can You Learn a New Language Like a Child?

spending months in the Philippines didn't help me learn the language as I was too busy snorkeling and hiking Much of what I write about in this blog is related to the Tagalog grammar.  Like many adults who approach the study of a foreign language, I approached the study of Tagalog by using an active hands on approach that entailed digging into the structure of the language and looking for analogies and differences between the languages I already knew and Tagalog. My stepson, who was 8 years old when he came to Italy, back in 2005, learned Italian in less than 6 months and he accomplished that effortlessly and he even took on an Italian accent, and in only 6 months! Kids have a biological advantage over adults Interestingly he did that when he was 8 years old, not 2 or 3, when, according to neuroscientists, infants have a peak ability to absorbe every sound like a sponge, because they use both the left and the right part of the brain and so they are not like adults who are more loca