A Certain Definition of “Uuwi na ako”

“Uwi” is the Filipino term for going home. So when one says “Uuwi na ako,” he or she means “I’m going home.”

Since I went to college, I am always looking forward to going home. A text to my mom saying “Uuwi po ako” is like a combination of adrenaline rush and a sigh of relief: adrenaline from excitement to breathe fresh air again and relief from all the worries of the urban world. In short, there would be no other place in the world that could give this kind of peacefulness except for home.

But recently, I discovered another meaning for “Uuwi na ako”. It’s something still related to home.

This post had been transferred by the author to another blog named “Nimotsu Counter.” To know what I discovered about the words, “Uuwi na ako,” kindly click here.

Caloy’s Battle

mouth copy

It turned out that the incident with Auntie Beth (can be read in Caloy, The Infamous Master of An Infamous Art) had other effects on poor Caloy.

At an early age, Caloy learned that words, specially spoken ones, could hurt him.  And these words came after he made something not pleasing, at least to Auntie Beth’s eyes.  And so from then on, he tried to perform things that would produce only positive remarks from people around him.

Through the years, Caloy learned that acts close to perfection yielded the most sympathetic remarks.  Everything must always be right.  Everything should always be the best.

At first, he was glad he was able to sustain perfection and the wonderful words about him. And he started loving it.
Along this road to perfection, Caloy learned that failure is a threat to the continuous flow of perfectionism and compliments.  So from then on, failure was ousted from his vocabulary.

And if spoken words, can hurt, they can also cause failure.  So from then on, Caloy became cautious about each word that came out of his mouth.  Because of this he developed a filtering system that would select only the best words to come out of him.
At first the filtering system did a great job of making Caloy sound very intelligent. It helped his perfectionist side a lot.

Here’s how it works.  When Caloy has something in mind, he would feed that to the filtering system, and then the system would choose the words or rephrase it before letting the mouth blurt it out.

One day, Caloy was surprised that what came out of his mouth was completely different from what he meant.  He wanted to say that things were not ok with him but his mouth blurted out that he was just as fine. He tried to check the filtering system but it simply won’t allow him.  And the more he tried to resist, the more his words were being rephrased as to none of the original intention was left.

Caloy, being convinced that he already cannot do anything about the filtering system, decided to target his mouth.  He tried to feed his thoughts directly to his mouth. But it was not easy.  The filtering system had already occupied it, even building a strong defense around it.

Caloy did not give up.  Soon the filtering systems’ defense was damaged.  But this only made the system mad.  As revenge, it shut the mouth completely, not letting any word come out of it.  And to not generate any suspicions from the people around, the system implanted a large smile on Caloy’s mouth.

Because of the smile, people thought that there was nothing wrong with Caloy.  And that was the start of thoughts being unspoken and feelings being unexpressed.

It went on for a lot of years.  For some time, Caloy became tired of fighting against this filtering system.  But I am glad to say that he resumed his battle just recently, and this time, there is no stopping him from regaining his mouth and the power to push words through it freely… words that come from the deepest parts of his heart.

And I am glad that he is very determined now.


Day 41 of the 365 Challenge


The sun was up.  The sand was warm.  The water was excited to hit the shore.

A hammock was swaying in between two coconut trees.  It carried in it five children, laughing loudly as the cool breeze hit their faces.  Another four were standing near the tree, shouting to have their turn on the hammock.  And Caloy was one of them.

The screaming and begging of the kids were halted when Auntie Beth called for lunch.  The boy next to Caloy said, “Let’s race to the picnic table!”  And off the children went, but not Caloy. Once the hammock was vacated, he saw this as an opportunity to ride in the hammock, solo.  But as soon as he sat in it, the rope connecting it to the trees snapped and he fell to the ground.  Auntie Beth saw this.  But instead of helping him stand up, she said angrily, “Is that how an honor student acts?! You know that five had already been on it and you know that the rope is not strong enough.  But still you sat on it.  Didn’t you realize that? Look what happened to you!  You are an honor student, you should have known better!  And… didn’t I tell you to come and eat?”

This post had been transferred by the author to another blog named “Nimotsu Counter.” To continue reading about Caloy, kindly click here.