Goodbye 2013, Welcome 2014!

Whew! It has been thee years since I started doing my series of 'goodbyes' and 'hellos' for the outgoing and the incoming years. And I've done all of those in my three places of residences: in the Philippines, in Saudi Arabia, and now in New Zealand. Indeed, I've started exploring and experiencing the adult world; I work to pay the rent and send some home, and technically, be the young-adult who 'explores the world' out there. 2013 had been very good to me... I've once again made a big leap in my career and personal life as I dared to challenge my self with big decisions and crossed life-changing routes.


At the start of the year, I was just tad busy working on my papers for the Nursing Council of New Zealand's requirements for international registered nurses. Other than the usual shifts in the Refinery where I worked as an Emergency Room nurse, my days were spent in the streets of Jeddah to process my legal documents. It was quite a liberating experience for me to travel around Jeddah and see different places (as opposed to the misconception of people about traveling alone in the Arab city). At least in those days, even weeks, I have felt that I could really stand by my self, do the things that I was quite hesitant to do before, and of course, travel alone. The pedantic me remained the same, I planned my trip, I set alternatives if my first plan didn't work out, and I learned to use the GPS from my mobile phone. Jeddah is (still) a very interesting place. I could still perfectly visualize how the streets look and feel like. Somehow, I'm missing Saudi Arabia.

Apart from processing my papers during January and early days of February, my post-graduate course with the UP Open University kept me busy. Honestly, I can't remember (at this time) the last courses that I had for AY 2012-2013 but I am sure I finished all of those. To sum it all, I had 27 units completed, I just have to finish my intensive practicum and the dreaded thesis to have that Master of Arts in Nursing (MAN) after my name. However, with the recent change in my career plans (and location), I doubt it if I would be able to continue with my degree... I really am clueless of what my options are.

March came so fast! It was the month that I got so busy arranging my annual leave for the Philippines. At the same time, it was March's second week that I decided to drop my conditional resignation. March 16 was the date of my resignation letter and that was the first day of the 90 days countdown for the final working day. It was a strategy that I thought of just to have options. I'd be on annual leave which still meant that I was an employee of my company and the two remaining months to be completed when I come back. But there was a twist of fate!!! My CAP school in New Zealand declined my application for an apparent reason! I was really devastated when that news came and thought that New Zealand might not be meant for me... But just a few days later, they reversed their decision and accepted me back into their programme. But from the initial August intake, it was moved to the second week of June. Of course, I was energized again and I activated my neurons for some time-planning activities.

I once again kissed the soils of the Philippines when I got back in April 2013. I just loved the environment of Manila and my hometown, Muntinlupa. I was welcomed by my mom and dad in the airport and when I got back to our home, our cat, Pippin, welcomed me with aloofness. It took him quite a while to get acquainted with me until I was able to carry him again. He's gone big! Really big!


One thing that still makes me smile when the thought comes into mind is the morning breeze-scent in our home during my first conscious breathe when I get up from my bed, add the sound of the birds chirping and the choo-choo sound of the Laguna-Manila railway (which in fact is so far from our place, yet clearly [but not annoyingly] heard), the sight of the morning sun from the East - my senses are completely vitalized by the environment where I was literally born and raised. Haayy, when could I possibly visit our house next year?

Okay, enough of my reminiscing...

My April 2013 vacation was extra special because of the presence of my brother, a marine engineer, whom I last saw in person before I left for Saudi in 2010. He's a grown man! We almost looked like twins! lol. Well, I really missed my bro... and of course we had a couple of bonding days during my vacay. Some food trips here and there, mall hops, and out of town adventures were great! We made it a family event, something that we can look back during months that we're all offshore/abroad.


After processing my papers for New Zealand and working on my OEC, I once again bid my farewell to my homeland. Although I know that I'd be coming back soon, I didn't know that IT would be very soon enough.

Just like what I mentioned in one of my previous paragraphs, my CAP school in New Zealand asked me to be here in an earlier date, a month (or two) earlier than expected. So I rushed things up, had my medicals, ran to the Saudi Council for Health Specialties to get my good standing certificate, and passed by the police station for the police clearance, all of which were required for my New Zealand stint. I arrived in Saudi in May 04 then I had my final exit within the same month, May 31, 2013. Ang bilis!

I once again kissed the soils of my homeland, only to leave it again in less than 10 days. That was one of the fastest series-of-days I had... Another journey, another beginning...

So I landed in the Maori land, the 'other' land down under, New Zealand. I actually blogged about this in my entry entitled From Middle East to Middle Earth. I finished my CAP and gained my registration as a nurse here in New Zealand. And while hurdling towards the goal of landing a job, I had a couple of tours around the areas of Oamaru, Dunedin, and the Southland.

I landed a job in September 2013 and so far I am quite contented with my current workplace. I'm still in the Emergency Department, just the extension of my practice in the Philippines and Saudi Arabia. Workmates are good (a couple of Filipinos in our department), some are approachable, some are just civil. My flat is just in front of the hospital and IT IS really a huge convenience for me. I like my current place, but I am still eyeing to be in a place where I can explore further. I'd like to be in a bigger city, if possible, but right now I think I am very much settled in my place.

Oh, did I mention that salary is so good?! Yes, it's something I never imagined before. Haha.

Before the year ended, my most precious smartphone, Galaxy S3, was soaked under water for a couple of minutes!!! I came from a toxic night shift that time and when I got home I just undressed and threw all my clothes in the laundry and I completely forgot that my phone was in one of my pockets... then boom! Memories and apps all gone... :( I told my self, "what the heck... microsim is still okay, sim still works... I'm earning dollars... I should buy a new phone!" Within the same day, I bought my new Galaxy S4! Haha.

I am very thankful for 2013. A lot of mind blowing events happened, good thing those events were all good... What could possibly happen next year? Will I be able to step on our dream house? Shall I have a love life? A son/daughter perhaps? lol. We'll see. Thank you so much 2013, I welcome you with great enthusiasm and positivity, 2014!!!


Katz said…
Super entertained with ALL YOUR POSTS HERE" yes i read ur posts almost all.. Lol.. All the while i thought ur a she.. (Because of all the cooking and stuff) only to realiza almost at the end of all your posts ur a male. Lol your so inspiring and it radiates in this blog how dedicated you are as nurse. Keep writing!
Sa Akin Lang Po said…
Hello, Katz. Thanks. I appreciate your comment. I will continue writing. Anyway, this is a perfect way to kill time! :)
Anonymous said…
hi sir super inspiring ng blog nyo.. keep it up..Goodluck sa life journey mo...hope someday magkakakilala tau..hehehehe ^_^

Anonymous said…
Hello,Thank You, your blog give me knowledge on landing a job or greener pasture. I would like to ask for advice since your a nurse and currently in New Zealand. I am currently working as a NICU nurse of one of JCI accd hospital here in Philippines and recently got married. My husband and I was planning to avail the STUDY- WORK with spouse in New Zealand. Is it good decision if your in my situation? Have you ever encountered that after study a filipino nurse will become a NZ nurse and How? Your advice is much appreciated. Thank you and God Bless

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