The Foreign Wish List

The Wish List (Photo Credit: Thebookwurrm.wordpress)
The Wish List (Photo Credit: Thebookwurrm.wordpress)

The lack of sentiment these couple of months may have been gravely aggravated by the roller coaster ride I’ve experienced, returning back to pasta land from a vacation.

Right now, the mood is swinging almost back to normal, such is the feeling of a foreigner trapped in another place, forced to make ends meet. It separates fantasy from reality, the mental image of being in a diverse country, such as Italy, can set of countless delusions of grandeur. Money does not fall or neither picked from trees. Jobs are not stable nowadays, because of the economic crunch. Homesickness has no remedy. Which leads us to the very first question; why are you away from your love ones? You can very well choose a lot of answers for this.

The most famous response would be; to save for the future of my family, build a home, assure your future children that they will not  be deprived of the best education, and return back with a huge capital; to construct a lucrative business.

Let us focus on the aspect of saving. Money can very well be saved by anybody. Here in Italy the Euro-to-Peso conversion can be an instant savings account in the bank. Although, today the Euro is floundering, a job that pays you around 700 Euros (about 35,000 pesos), is actually good money. This is the usual starting salary here in Naples. Milan and Rome has a much higher salary cap because of its diverse standard of living. 700 Euros minus expenses, which can come in the form of sustenance, apartment rental, daily needs, can more or less, set you back by at least 200 Euros give or take. 500 Euros, if your single, is still above average. What about an ailing mother or father? A sibling who is studying nursing, engineering, or an aspiring medical doctor in college.

The ones who can save are the people who have high paying jobs, are privileged to be given an apartment, free of charge from utilities by their employers. Who are consistently paying Italian taxes, up until they are 65 years old or more, so they can earn pension. Saving is very hard to do in Italy, and if this is the primary reason you are going here, then be ready for the challenge. It would depend on your situation. A lot of factors will also cascade because of your style of living. So if you think a person has a stack of money because he is working in Italy, think again. They can get a loan or set aside their liquidation or 13th month pay, but it still boils down to the situation of the person if one can save or not.

Building a home is actually easier than saving, why, because there are a lot of rent-to-own houses in the Philippines. A lot, that it actually adjusts to your needs. It forces you to put down and set aside for the amortization. After working for an abundant number of years in Italy, you are now able to cool down your heels in your very own home. Most Filipinos working here in Italy have mansion-like homes, and it is where a lot of their hard-earned money goes. No savings? At least you have a big house, which by the way, was inhabited by relatives while you are working your butt off in Italy. There is the question of maintenance, but that is another story.

The assurance of giving your child the best education abroad, can be true in other countries, such us the U.S., Canada, or Australia, not here in Naples. First, seldom do they speak English, nor do they incorporate it correctly on their curriculum. Next, most kids here are not disciplined enough to make a difference in society. That’s how Naples ranks rock bottom in terms of good vibes between its citizens, and how they treat non-Italian citizens in return. This definitely goes against the Filipino attitude of respect for elders, as well as within their fellow peers. Raising a child here, and making them go to a school with a bunch of non-respecting and liberal-toting- point-of-view-of-the-world Italian children, will really put your patience of disciplining to a test.  This is just the first phase, and I’m not talking yet on the stage of puberty, where teenagers can experiment to the maximum limit. Last but not the least making money to have enough capital to raise a business. Hello?!?!?

If you can’t save and all your earnings have gone to love ones or home amortization, then how in the world can you set aside for capital. That’s your 700 Euros in Italy, hard-earned, coupled with sweat, homesickness, and tears and it still not enough to complete your hopes and dreams. Might as well be a call center agent in the Philippines where the earnings can be a little bit close to 700 Euros (in some call center establishment). But without blue-collar work and the other factors that make living overseas a roller coaster ride, (wishful thinking).