OFWs Perspective of the Philippine Independence day in 2016

Today marks the 118th year of the Philippine Independence day. Filipinos commemorated the Philippine Declaration of Independence from Spain on  June 12,1898.

June 12, is one of the dates that one Filipino simply cannot forget. As a young Filipino, I remember gathering artsy materials in these colors: blue, red, white and yellow. Come on, we had to make a Philippine flag for the school project, that is if the school year started earlier than 12th…

As a grown up, Independence day meant off from work, time to visit the parents in the province, or on the eve of June 12, karaoke or drinking spree as you like because it is a  National Day, it is a holiday! You have the full day of 12th to do whatever you wish to spend it! Yet, again if the date didn’t fall on Saturday or Sunday…

Now as an OFW, 12th of June is just an ordinary day here in Dubai.  To have a slight taste of the National Day, Here’s few OFWs perspective of Philippine Independence day on this Ramadan 2016.


Lulu lives in Dubai for almost 9 years.

Lulu : 12th of June has no special meaning for me as an OFW. Maybe if Duterte finally stepped  in as an effective president and the corruption has been fully eliminated, then I would say we are liberated. 

I miss baked oyster and grilled fish or meat with kalamansi.  



Mark works as an OPD/SAP clerk in one of Mediclinics  in Al Ain for 1 year and 9 months as of the time of the interview.

Mark: For me it means celebrating Philippine Independence. We are celebrating freedom. In my opinion, no need to wait June 12 to celebrate it. It should be every day. 

I miss everything in the Philippines, the 7107 islands, especially secluded white sand beaches. I miss the streetfoods like isaw, betamax, adidas, bbq and the authentic Filipino dishes.

I miss my life there, because it’s simple. There is no place like home.

Marie works as a Visual Merchandiser in an exotic furniture shop.

Marie: For me it is just an ordinary day, especially you are in a different country so you don’t get to see any celebration. If I am in the Philippines right now, I might feel a difference because it is a holiday. 

I miss Filipino sweets like suman, espasol, sapinsapin, etc. I miss these kind of delicacy that you really have to go to their place just to satisfy the cravings.


Paul Faust is currently residing in Doha, Qatar, pushing his luck, against all odds, to succeed in his chosen career.


Paul Faust : 12th of June? Hmmm.. My best friend’s birthday? (laughs) Just kidding. Well, kidding aside, our independence day was a symbolical and sentimental representation of freedom for me. Was. But with the things happening in our country right now and the spot it is currently in, I can’t even imagine freedom or independence without relying on those who have conquered us in the first place. It is very saddening and heartbreaking to see my country going down this path. But I still hope that the best has yet to come and I wish the incoming administration could somehow diminish, if not eliminate our country’s main problems.

As an OFW, I don’t really celebrate it. Not that I’m unpatriotic, it’s just that I don’t feel like celebrating it yet again. I know I’m free, but the freedom of one man doesn’t sum up the freedom of his brethren. I love my country. But not all of its people especially those who’ve tainted it black.

The things I really miss from the Philippines are my friends. My beloved friends who stayed true and loyal to each other just like real brothers. Our experiences together and memories of our past, then some good and sh**ty things we did. (laughs) Priceless! I miss some foods like our legendary adobo. That’s why from time to time, we still buy pork even if it’s exponentially expensive than its regular price in our country.  No sacrifice, no adobo rice! But even if this may sound a bit hypocritical, I really miss those tricycles in Cabanatuan City which never fail to jam our roads and highways. I also miss those computer shops near our school where we used to shout and trash talked each other but still ended up as friends.

[I miss] those malls and food kiosks. Fast food chains! Tuhog-tuhog! Ate Pia’s burger! Oh s***. I’m getting nostalgic about all these.

Short summary, I don’t celebrate Independence Day but still, I love my country more than any country out there.

There. Few of my kabayans speak up about what 12th of June means to them.As for me, Philippine Independence day is something that I’d like to look on the positive note.

Philippines represents an old lady that has ALREADY learnt her mistakes but too weak to bounce back from them. She is quite lost and can be compared to a child that has ADHD. She has to be cared for and not to be exploited. But I like the idea of Independence day, somehow our people have different notions about it.

Are we really independent? You know the answer; NO! (or at least, what I think)

I am just hoping one day, one sweet day, our Philippines will find us knocking on her front door smiling and ready to celebrate Independence day in its truest form and celebrating it is not just an idea but a reality.

Until then, let us keep June 12 as the symbol of us trying to stand on our own two feet.

Happy 118th Independence day, Philippines!




2 thoughts on “OFWs Perspective of the Philippine Independence day in 2016

    • You are right! Nothing beats the taste of our food cooked in a real “kusina”.

      Happy Independence day to us! We can recreate a scenario of fireworks and marching band in our imaginary stadium!

      Liked by 1 person

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