“Walang mandirigmang walang sining sa katawan.” (No warrior has ever been left unmarked.)
– Lourd de Veyra
Tall, dark, and handsome. Like any other girl, I have this perfectly captured image of an “ideal guy”. Having been fed with fairytale books and novels at an early age and hooked to bishies and bishounens of animes, the concept of an ideal guy became totally illusive to me. True to its word, this “to-be-married-and-live-with-forever-and-always” guy remains an idea – floating aimlessly at the back of my mind waiting for that day to meet in person its match.
No body piercings. Never been inked. Man of few words. And has high intellectual capacity. And a pair of glasses would be a bonus too. Yes, I like people with glasses for they looked like geniuses. HAHA. These were my standards. Were. Past tense. Because this was before I fell in love with Ed Sheeran, got hooked to the Tall Black’s Isaac Fotu, and discovered the oldest tattoo artist of Kalinga – Apo Whang Od.
I had a sudden change of heart.
For some reasons, I felt free and relieved with this change of heart. I began to see things in a different perspective. I found joy in the emergence of new knowledge regarding the meanings behind the tattoos permanently inked on the bodies of the tribes of the past and the friends of today. The artist within me has been unleashed after researching on the different methods of putting markings on the body by different tribes in different countries. And most of all, the stereotypical images of people with piercings and tattoos vanished. I began to see individuals whom the society condemned for not abiding the mores in a different angle – this time with love and admiration.
Probably, as we age, we realize that ours is not a perfect world and sometimes, our ideals are the very villain of our existence. And to be able to survive and appreciate what life has to offer, we need to accept that ideals need to remain as ideals; and reality needs to be dealt in the real world.
What happened to my ideal guy? The one without tattoos, body piercings and seemingly looked like a genius with his glasses? I don’t know. Maybe, he turned out to be a gay, became a priest, got married to somebody better than me, died in combat with the rebels, or got aborted by his parents. I don’t know. Maybe… he walked past by me without me noticing him because I was too cautious in meeting that ideal guy.
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