Wednesday, November 28, 2012

City Symphony

What I love about my city is the soul that pulses beneath its intimidating and busy facade, and, even more so, the way it gets me when I least expect it. 

Today, on my way to work, for instance. I was on a jeep taking my usual route to the MRT, and was rather pissed off for many things: the incredible heat, the fact that the jeepney driver waited at the corners for more than he should have in an effort to get more passengers even if there was no more space to sit, the  two douchebag guys sitting beside and across me who were having an inane pataasan ng ihi conversation with matching pa-cool flashes of the Finger.

As I began to fume inside, a young street musician came on the jeep, head held high commanding everyone to lend him their ears for a while. While clearly destitute, the young musician had no pathetic air around him, such that one gets the sense that while he's obviously there to get some donations from the passengers, he also believed in the music that he then proceeded to play--a percussion rhythm on drums fashioned out of discarded cans of potato chips and formula milk.

I had heard him, and others like him, many times before and had always been thankful for their wonderful music, but this particular performance, perhaps because of the timing, struck me more than any other had done before. As my ears welcomed the sound and my skin felt the beats, I was no longer pissed, but suddenly just humbled by the beauty and innate sadness of what was unfolding before me.

Thank you, boy, for your music.

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