One of the strongest motivations which propelled me to publish the book (at a considerable drain to my meager if not altogether non-existent retirement fund) was to answer, for the record, anyone and everyone who pestered me with the question of when I was going back to the Philippines, that vaunted “Pearl of the Orient Seas,” “birthplace of the glorious day,” the Paradise Lost of Jose P. Rizal’s [nuestro perdido Eden]. Well, the answer in all its bluntness and pathetic hapless futility has been laid out on pages 43 and 44, the concluding section of the first chapter of the book.
From here onwards, I can tell anybody who poses the question to please go to Amazon.com’s “look inside” feature and search for the text string “Residual Repercussions.” Chances are much higher than average that you will find the section in its entirety available for you to peruse without violating copyright protocols. Better still, you can actually buy the book. There is more to it than superficially meets the eye. You may even learn something from it while actually enjoying the read.
Once again, as has been my wont, for the benefit of those who cannot be bothered to click the hyperlinks, the featured pages are reproduced in full hereunder:
=== Begin Excerpts === mid p. 43 =
The proposed trip to Saudi Arabia, including the authorized detours to the United States, was of course funded in its entirety by the Philippine government. I was a government official on an official mission. On the completion of the mission I committed, among others, to tender a detailed written report about the trip to the Department of Foreign Affairs in addition to that required of me by the university.
A case can be plausibly made that I did not only willfully abandon my mission but rather premeditatedly conspired to sabotage it maliciously from the very start. Having not completed the mission, I am liable to be brought to court for breach of contract and malversation of public funds. The former may have a statute of limitation. I know for a fact that the latter does not.
From what little I know of the Philippine judicial system, I’d be most likely to be hauled off to jail than see the light of day in a court of law. Although I have somewhat of an adventurous disposition, battling with mosquitoes and bedbugs, among others, in some god forsaken jail in the Philippines has not been my idea of enjoying my retirement years.
It is therefore with dejected resignation that any speculation on physically going back to the geographical roots of my heritage had to remain vibrant only in the La Manchan realm of impossible dreams, too effervescent to abandon, too inscrutable to pursue. One impossible dream should remain intimately entangled with all the ruminations I venture upon through the remaining days of my sojourn in this mortal coil.
Consequently, it had become more urgently incumbent on my creative faculties to nurture the imagination and keep the embers of inspiration smoldering in the inner chambers of my soul so as to afford a pleasurable promenade along nostalgia lane into the portals of Shangri-la, unencumbered by the lethal inertia of hubristic indifference which could prove a tragic millstone around the neck in the twilight of my years. Such eventuality would most certainly render the magnificent bliss of reminiscences in solitude into a barren desolate desert of remorse and pointless, if well-deserved, contrition.
Granted, I might have mercifully fallen short of my goals. But having passionately pursued my convictions, I had achieved peace with my conscience that I had remained honest and true to myself. If I had to do it all over again, I would follow the same deliberations and most likely would end up on a kindred side of the bifurcation at every decision point.
=== End Excerpts === top p. 44 =