8 Surefire Signs You’re a Balikbayan
Sep 20, 2021   •   Tim Henares
8List.ph is published by ID8, Inc.
Sep 20, 2021   •   Tim Henares
The travel ban has been lifted from several countries, and regardless of what you think about that decision, a lot of overseas Filipinos are relieved. Finally, a chance to go back home!
While Pinoy Balikbayans come in all shapes and sizes, they invariably seem to have quite a few things in common. Here are just some of those things.
An old relic of the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, keeping the plastic cover on all your new stuff used to be the cool way to prevent wear and tear. It seems many Balikbayans didn’t get the memo that this was no longer in vogue, because whenever they come home, this is still common practice for them.
Don’t worry, not everything is going to sound like a throwback to a Rex Navarette standup routine. Nonetheless, shoes are definitely the big-ticket pasalubong of choice, so the sheer number of bond papers with traced feet Balikbayans have in possession tend to be a near-universal experience.
Balikbayan boxes only have so much space, and because they both come in handy containers, soap and chocolate invariably end up beside each other. It’s a weird combination, but it really does grow on you.
The crazy traffic? The sappy television shows? The food you’re so sick of? Once you’re away from the Philippines for long enough, those are the first things that will remind you of home, and you’ll have a newfound appreciation for once your home.
Although we could all do with less of that crazy traffic, regardless…
Willie Revillame is just invariably one of the first celebrities that come to mind for the average Balikbayan. I should know — I felt exactly the same way when I was one! It doesn’t matter if you liked him or you didn’t before he left. There is just something unmistakably Pinoy about him, and he seems to really be actively catering to that oft-taken-for-granted demographic to the point that he’s well-known for it.
Balikbayans really love Willie Revillame, is what I’m saying.
It really feels weird to see that only Pinoys have this thing of applauding smooth landings. When a plane hits the ground perfectly, the smatterings of applause you hear are invariably from Balikbayans. They truly know how to appreciate the finer things in life.
Puto and polvoron. Need I say more? When Balikbayans think of Pinoy pasalubong, Goldilocks is easily top of mind — and with good reason! Those boxes of polvoron are practically a secondary currency among OFWs — just ask them!
Absence truly makes the heart grow fonder, and it’s never been more true than with Filipinos who want nothing more than to go back home to the motherland. People like them have been trying to fit in wherever they are for so long, that to finally return and be where they always felt they truly belonged is a kind of reunion that is every bit as sweet as it’s triumphant.
Got any more signs of identifying a balikbayan? Tell us below!
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