A series of my columns that started two weeks ago, from “’Til death do us part”, ends with this column.
My wife received a call at 2:30am from her brother. The time has come, and her dad was soon to expire. We all rushed to the hospital with my children to bid him farewell. It was actually my first time to see and experience a loved one passing away. The family was all gathered. His wife and all his children were there. The room was full. It was like how we send off people in an airport. But, at that time, we all knew that it would be the last time in our lifetime that we will see him. Sadness filled the room. His daughters and sons were all in tears. My children, who have been close to their grandfather, were also in tears. They could not help it, knowing that it was the last time they would see there lolo.
What came to my mind was the song of John Mayer, simply entitled “Daughters”. The song says that fathers be good to your daughters, as they become mothers and they will take care of their fathers. True. My father in law has always loved his children. Since they lost their mother to cancer at a young age, the children had him as a dad and a mom combined, especially to the youngest son Jay. His children, in the end, took care of him.
Normally in Chinese tradition, the men take a more special role than the women. To most Chinese families, the eldest male is normally the apparent heir. But, we can see that in the end, it is the women who end up taking care of their parents. Parents who have brought up their children, with love, respect and the right values, will be rewarded with the care as they grow old. This is a treasure that no money can buy.
My father in law did not die a wealthy man. He faced a lot of challenges as an entrepreneur. But, he will be remembered by the community that he served. He set up a building for the church of Victory Christian Fellowship, along with his other contributions. He has given the love and time to all his children. He lived the Christian values that he taught. My wife, a true daughter, will miss all those early morning phone calls to her dad. She will also miss running to him at times when we have normal quarrels.
Life is indeed short. While it is early, we must realize the real treasures in life and give enough time while our parents still are alive. Treasure them. To the parents who have been busy building their negosyos, don’t forget to spend time in building a relationship with your children. This investment, in time, will be remembered when the day comes. Life, indeed, is a journey of experience through family and friends. Sometimes, we are blessed with a wealth of varying degree. To those who are given more, much more is also expected. Let us use this wealth in creating a better future. In the end, the measurement of how we lived our lives will be through our children, our friends and the communities we have influenced and helped with the wealth that has been given to us. This is the process of identifying real success. These are the things that matters most in our next life. Eternal happiness is the real pot of gold that we should all be looking for.
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Tomorrow, Go Negosyo together with Gov. Lray Villafuerte, a Go Negosyo Champion, will be hosting the largest entrepreneur summit in Camarines Sur – the “Go Negosyo sa Bicol Express”.
It was once a sleepy province; until Gov. Lray, who is only in his early 40’s, decided that the Camarines Sur government should take the lead in establishing the province as destination for extreme sports.
He felt that tourism was the right business model for this province, to make it a lot different from others. Today, thousands of tourists come to CamSur to visit and experience wake boarding, water complex, eco village, ancient landmarks and the amazing beaches. Also, the province will host the first ever Half Iron Man event and another World Wakeboarding Event. He has created great interest in his area that attracted more investors like call centers and more learning institutions as new locators. Refusing to just sit around and wait for investors to come, Gov. Lray decided that he would let the local government of CamSur invest by setting up tourism facilities. The investment paid off. To us, he is one of the leading Governors who is a Negosyo Champion in his area. Go Negosyo is encouraging more local leaders to be the Negosyo champions that will hasten the entrepreneurship development nationwide.
Our vision, especially now that I am presiding as chair of the MSMED with Secretary Peter Favila, is to partner with governors and mayors to champion the cause of negosyo in their areas. We would like to help them identify the business model that will work in their area. By doing so, they will be able to create a more focused approach in developing an entrepreneurial environment. Through the MSMED council, we will be able to get the government inter-agencies to support local governments, with an entrepreneurship development template that they can follow.
This year’s Go Negosyo Caravan will kick off with the “Go Negosyo sa Bicol Express” on January 30, 2009 at the Camarines Sur Convention Center.
Go Negosyo sa Bicol Express will be graced by Senator Manny Villar and Presidential Management Staff Secretary and recently inducted Press Secretary Cerge Remonde. Member agencies will also be present to reach out to the participants. Go Negosyo mentors and entrepreneurs will also be joining our forums to share their stories and business advice. Governors and local leaders from all the provinces in Bicol will be there as well.
We will also be giving recognition to the local entrepreneurs who took control of their lives through their negosyo. Our congratulations to our Most Inspiring Bicolano Entrepreneurs, as they have all worked hard for their success.
Most Inspiring Bicolano Entrepreneurs
* Eng. Salvador Albia – TROPICS AGRO INDUSTRIES
* Elizaldy Co – SUNWEST GROUP OF COMPANIES
* Dahlia Dy – SOUTH STAR DRUG INCORPORATED
* Alice Esquela – BEN’S BAKERS CORPORATION
* Avelina Miranda – RPM PILINUT CANDIES
* Jerly Peyra – JERLY PEYRA POULTRY FARM
* Eng. Florenio Regala – MACAGANG BUSINESS CENTER
* Lyndon Tan – BASIC NECESSITY, INC.
* Mediatrix Villanueva – SHELMED COTTAGE TREASURES
Most Inspiring Bicolano Microentrepreneurs
* Marianne Gabrielle Bordado – CHOCO NAGA
* Pedro Durante – FAMILY SPRAIN EXPERTS
* Hanilyn Aguilar-Hidalgo – PROPOLIS LIFESTYLE
* Carlito Millano – CGM HANDICRAFT
* Rolando Nicerio – DAD’S SPECIAL PINANGAT
* Marianne Olano – BAYCRAFTS
* Cindy Pereña – COP PILI SWEETS AND PASTRIES
* Carmen Ravago – RAVAGO’S LONGGANIZA DE GUINOBATAN
* Hector Torente – BIKOL CERAMIKA
Most Inspiring Bicolano Entrepreneurs – Special Award
* Labo Progressive Multipurpose Cooperative
* Simbag sa Pag-asenso, Inc.