While there are those who were dissatisfied with the President’s State of the (Vacci)Nation speech – three hours for what should have been a 60-minute address that he himself kept interrupting, to the consternation of the teleprompter’s page-turner – I found it easier to weigh its contents by counting what I was able to get out of government.
As a taxpayer, I have every right to count pesos and centavos, don’t I? Right, taxes cost more than occasional government freebies, but better some than zero-sum.
When else would I get two free doses of a vaccine that might otherwise have cost me a few thousand pesos? When else would I have had several thousand pesos (five digits) discounted by the Universal Health Care Law (on top of my senior citizen’s discount) that left me with enough cash to pay for the professional skills of the exceptional Dr. Richard Kho and his super-efficient American Eye Center for a 15-minute laser surgery? When else would my first granddaughter have been enrolled for free in UP, and completed her sophomore year with a certified university scholar grade of 1.1?
Every day I count my blessings. Like how the rain stopped to let the sun come out smiling after one week. Like how it’s a joy recounting the blessings showered on others, such as learning that a granddaughter of my classmate a hundred years ago finished at the top of her class in UP last Saturday. Congratulations, Lola Flora, for your grandchild Gabrielle Marie Limpe Chungunco, Bachelor of Science in molecular biology and biotechnology, summa cum laude and class valedictorian! As if that’s not enough, Gab was cited for “excellence in BS studies.” There’s more: This girl plays the piano, sings in 35 languages, and paints like her mother, a painter and jewelry designer.
Gab, daughter of Edwin and Isabel Chungunco, is an alumna of Immaculate Conception Academy like her grandmother, but she’s not the only UP summa from ICA. There are five more, ICA 2016-17: Eunice Valerie Li Chua, business administration and accountancy; Stephanie Nicole Ong Go, applied science and applied physics; Francesca Anais Young Siasoyco, business ad; Elaine Co Tan, business ad; Francesca Louise Coseip Villanueva, business ad.
Ladies, the world is your oyster.