I realized that we, Filipinos, are so lucky that we get to enjoy so many holidays in a year. Aside from the long two-week Christmas and New Year’s holiday, most, if not all, employees enjoy a generous sprinkling of holidays spread across the year.
Today is the beginning of another anticipated holiday spell: Holy Week.
All public and private offices (and, of course, schools…students are off the hook as it is summer already) are enjoying days off starting Maundy Thursday until Easter Sunday. Unfortunately, here in Dubai, we (well, more of The Husband and other hardworking Filipino employees) do not get to enjoy the same holidays. Holy Week here is just like any other same working week.
Sometimes I find myself the Holy Week off in bad taste because people do forget the true meaning of these holy days. For us, Catholics, it is supposed to be the cornerstone holy days of our religion, when we celebrate how Jesus suffered, died and conquered death in the Resurrection; but instead of taking the time off to slow down and reflect, people take the time off work to fly off and have a grand vacation. Well, I don’t blame them for that. Weary nine-to-five city dwellers need a break from the craziness of the daily grind, especially when long holidays come along.
While other people have the luxury to fly out of the country or enjoy the holy days in the provinces, our family avoids the craziness in the airports & highways and savors stay-cations in the Metro Manila, when the usually busy streets are quiet and void of the bumper-to-bumper traffic and the haze of people rushing to to their daily business. It is quiet time together as a family in our wee house on top of the hill, where we cook and sup together (meals not limited to fish unfortunately), which is a rarity in the fast-paced times, and join in some of the religious services and traditions such as the Visita Iglesia (when you visit seven or fourteen different churches to pray the Stations of the Cross) or the Antipolo pilgrimage, to help us reflect on the past and help look forward to the future lives we will lead.
I miss this chance to just slow down and reflect because The Husband and I, on the other hand, will be going about our daily business here in the desert given that we don’t share the same Holy Week holidays as the Philippines. As I do value these Holy Days, I will sneak in a bit of quiet reflection time and thank the Good Lord for being humble and brave to go through unnecessary pain for our salvation.
Have a Blessed Holy Week everyone!
Delirious about delicious,