Tuesday, 2 September 2008

A rat's life in Dubai

I hear buzzes, hisses, clicks and taps and the occasional hum of the printer as it labours to deliver a page. I see the silhouette of a four-eyed sub from across my monitor and now I hear incomprehensible mumbles from a running-order meeting a click away from where I sit.

I’m trying to keep myself from dozing off. I feel like a sock puppet forcibly being propped up on a barbecue stick.

I need to type words on this screen to prevent the white space before me from teleporting me to the world I desire to be in right this very moment.

What I’m scribbling right now will perhaps eventually make it to my blog as a regular entry – or maybe, will totally disappear with just a click of the mouse.

A cocktail of meds prescribed by my doc over the weekend for my pharyngitis, a 15-minute catnap in lieu of the required 8-hour nighttime sleep and the nagging question whether I’ll be homeless again at the end of the day are working in unison to try to zap the lights out of me.

Wuz slipping in and out consciousness when my CPE came over and unloaded my day’s share of trash that needs to be spun into gold.

Like a battle-weary infantryman, I slowly swung into action, summoning whatever strength left to push my page through.

Along the way, I’d get updates from FB like Pocholo Lagniton announcing that he’s cheering for the old Chronicle pack whose libel suit was quashed by the Court of Appeals, Bing Orosa craving for a cuppa, Bocap being “committed” to work for a “good man” till 2010, and Joel Saracho needing a kneading. Syet, buti pa mga “miserable” friends ko may life.

Dubai pala has more than 860,000 registered vehicles or 541 cars for every 1,000 residents. Meaning, there are roughly 400 of us lowly slaves running after or waiting for eternity for buses and taxis while being baked to perfection inside D-shaped toasters that are supposed to make commuting a desirable option.

Page done. Time check 1645. Sabi ni Tata, power will be restored daw by 1700 but just like last night, nakapako pa rin ang pangako. So pano ‘to, I’ll just again prepare to face the eventuality that I’ll be spending the night in the bunker for the 2nd straight night. Pusang ina!

Eto another flash from Outlook: “Bro, pwede paki-edit?” wat is dis? Ay hayup, farewell letter ni alleged dahil nag-resign na nga pala ang hitad at lilipat na ng ibang disyerto.

“Now is my last day here in Gulf News after two and half years, what I can say is...THANK YOU (from the bottom of my heart)..........I don't want to say goodbye........but just want to say see you later guys!..........I will definitely miss you all!!!!”

Hmmmm…nabasa ko na to dati. Aha! copy-pasting na naman to. Pati ba naman mga ganyan kasimpleng bagay pine-plagiarise na rin? Sige oks na yan. Low-batt na low-batt na ko. Pilot light na lang power ko.

Sporadic clicks punctuated by the lift’s bell and isolated bantering are the only signs of life here in the bunker. Everyone’s waiting for the cannon to pop, to signal the break of fast – and bye-bye time.

Lucky bastards….they have houses to come home to while here I am, homeless and clueless.

Two and a half years sa Dubai and I now live like a rat. Eto na nga siguro ang karma ko.

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