Feedback: Remembering Teddy Benigno & thinking Manila and New York

Another kababayan bumped into my blog.  Here’s a comment from Tony Joaquin:

Dear Pinay,

I was fascinated reading your blog entry on TEDDY BENIGNO who once upon a time was my boss at Agence France Presse where I worked as rewrite man during the historical “French army coup – the Fall of Dien Bien Phu in the early fifties.

I was in my Junior year of Journalism at th eAteneo at th etime so I worked parttime with the French news agency. Earlier I was also working part time with Reuters Manila.
Pray tell me about you and your New York stint. I do have friends who live and work there in Manhattan like Jorge Ortol, Bemby Daty and my cousins Aurea and Marita Hernando (Queens). Oh how I would give my right leg (I use my right arm a lot) to live there. Once – many moons ago, I lived close by in Toronto and I just hopped a Greyhound to get to the Big Apple.

Actually, I do enjoy reading well organized blogs – like yours. I would like to form one titled HELP SAVE THE PHILIPPINES. Interested? I know little of creating one.

May I expect a reply?

Thanks lady. Abrazos, Tony

My response: Maraming salamat, Tony.  I will e-mail you privately on how you can set up your weblog and I look forward to going there and reading another kababayan’s blog.  It’s always refreshing to touch base with fellow Pinoys be they from Manila or from here.  I find that the new friendships formed by themselves have made this baring of my soul well worth the effort — not that it was the primary intention of writing here, but rather, it was an unexpected reward.

It’s like a free-falling discussion among kindred spirits.  Though I have received comments from non-Pinoys, I find that the comments from our kababayans are more in point because they can understand what I’m driving at.  In short, naaaruk nila ang gusto kong sabihin.  (Medyo nagiging makata tuloy ako. Translated: .. they can understand what I’m trying to say.. I’m waxing poetic here..)  That’s the reason why I wanted to put the Pinay in my blog title.  It’s actually a monicker I’ve been using on a separate website for a while now, and one which has spurred some entrepreneurial ideas in my head.  I’m proud to be Pinay, the New Yorker bit is just part and parcel of who I am now.

You are so lucky to have worked with a distinguished journalist like Teddy Benigno.  I was just part of his audience but I was awed by the man’s wit and tact.  Sadly, many of our journalists only have one or the other but not always both. 

So you are a fellow Atenean.. I consider myself half-baked, though, because I only went there for law school.  My prelaw was at the “Other” school — UP.  (Before you ask, no, I am not practicing here because for one, I never really practiced back home.  Motherhood is my number one career now.. I just have a dayjob because I can’t just quit and live like I do right now.)

Save the right leg, Tony.  Ha, ha!  You need both legs to walk the rounds of Manhattan — you know how we do a lot of that around here, in contrast with the driving in other parts of the US.  (Everything in New York is a hop, skip and a jump away!)

I hope you will come back to visit and “chat” through your comments here.. and I will wait for your own blog to come to life in this blogsphere.  Again, maraming salamat.

PS. Tony, please e-mail me at .