And as we walked our way to Sydney Opera House, several Filipinos were there already. They were taking photographs (syempre parating may picture-picture ang mga Pinoy) of themselves with the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge, waving their Philippine Flags non-stop, communing with other delegates, chanting "Filipino, Filipino, Filipino" once in a while to let the people around them of their identity (wala kasi tayong Pinoy cheer yata kaya chant na lang) and some are just enjoying being under the Australian Sun.
We approached one group and welcomed them to Sydney. They were from St Benedict's Parish in Commonwealth, QC. Their first question to us was "So, nami-miss nyo na ang Pinas?" and we can only agree.
We talked of their experiences here in Sydney: how they miss eating rice, how cold the winter weather is in here, how expensive everything is in this country, how tired they are from all the walking and WYD activities they have to participate in and most importantly how much they enjoy and cherish being a WYD08 delegate inspite of the challenges of being in a different country. They are grateful and they know how lucky they are to be here.
Below is our photo with the delegates from St Benedict's Parish. They were at Circular Quay waiting for announcements on when to get on the ferry that will carry the Pope for his Boat-a-cade. Yes!!!! They were the chosen Filipino group to experience being on the same boat as with the Pope.
At Hyde Park, we also got the chance to quickly say hello to another group of Pinoy delegates. We actually heard them talking aloud:
"Ano ba ito? Ang liit nga mga flags natin...3rd world country kasi tayo...."
Then the whole group laughed. Iba talaga ang sense of humor ng Pinoy. :)
All day and all night, we saw a lot of Pinoy delegates...I even met a Priest from Davao...said "Hello" and "Welcome to Sydney" to a group here and there...pati sa train nagkakawayan pa kami. :)
When the WYD08 celebrations are long gone, I will remember how alive Sydney has become because of so many wonderful souls who've come here to gather and celebrate our Christian faith. And I will especially miss seeing the hopeful and happy faces of our kababayans who've come acrossed thousand of miles just to be a part of this joyous occassion.
Mabuhay ang Pinoy and God bless us all!