Toilets and Philippine Politics

As we end the Jeju Island, Korea series, let me write about two side topics which I encountered during the said trip. Not too unrelated, I suppose, considering how dirty politics can get in our country.

First, the toilet. Someone in charge of the toilets at the international airport in Seoul must have had a Filipino mother. Am sure most of the Filipino females out there have been told by their mothers not to sit on public toilet seats - on the assumption that these are not clean enough - and most of the time, that assumption is correct. We can squat, slightly stand - whatever - just don't sit directly on the toilet seat. Well, welcome the Higolet. The Higolet has a red button that you press and the seat is covered with plastic. Before you use the toilet, press the red button and the plastic will be replaced with new plastic. That way, you can be sure that the seat is always clean. Can we bring these into Manila?

As for Philippine politics, we were in Korea after the elections and I couldn't believe that foreigners were actually interested in the way our elections went. They were all aghast at how long it took to count the votes and my boss had to explain the whole process of counting the votes at different levels and how our country is made up of several islands, etc., etc. It was amusing to a certain extent but considering how long it took us to get the official results, it was actually quite shameful.

As for the Overseas Filipino Workers, most of the comments I heard (or overheard) were pro-GMA and anti-FPJ. Some samples: "Nakakahiya naman kung si FPJ ang presidente. Hindi na kami uuwi sa Pilipinas." or "Pagtiyagaan mo na lang si Arroyo - at least may pinag-aralan. Hindi nakakahiya iharap sa iba." I overheard these comments in hotels and airports and so I suppose, the overseas voters were truly Gloria's.

That ends the Korea series. Till the next trip...

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[By Angelica Viloria | Wednesday, July 21, 2004]

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