The Search For Dalagang Pilipina


“Do Maria Clara still Exists”?

Ayon sa libro ni Dr. Jose Rizal, si Maria Clara ay isang babae na halos nasa kanya na lahat ng magagandang katangian. Bukod sa kanyang pisikal na kagandahan, siya ay masunurin, mahinhin, makadiyos, mapagmahal, may-paninindigan, at may pamamalasakit.
Kilala din ang dalaga sa pagiging talentado at may busilak na puso. Higit sa lahat, nakilala si Maria Clara sa katangiang konserbatibo.
Sa madaling salita siya ay hindi ma-ARTE!

Today, the Maria Clara types are now close to extinction. Women of today (although still blessed with beauty and talents), only have a few good characteristics similar to the fine lady written in the book.
Ladies of today are more career oriented. Most of the time, these ladies are even more financially successful compared to their better half. They are the CEO of a promising company. Or they have created a new business model that sells their products like hotcakes.
The only setback is they have become so busy that they don’t have enough time to check on their old folks.
We don’t like our daughters to do that to us when we get old… do we?

Girls of this generation are more aggressive in all aspects. If they like somebody, they will approach the guy with no hesitation.
Little did they know that Boys like to be challenged. They want to do the courting and wooing the girl of their dreams.
Boys are created to be aggressors, like a Lion in their pride. Girls are more respected if they let the boys be the initiator.

Women of today are not as religious as before. When they hear mass and go to church, they are wearing attires like they are going to a concert or a party.
That is why the Roman Catholic church now advises women to wear more appropriate attire to give respect to God, the priest, and their church.

I don’t blame the women of today. After all, nobody is perfect.
And Maria Clara is just a fictitious character from a famous novel. Nobody in this world has all those positive traits.

But what if there’s one? What if there’s a real Maria Clara roaming around in one of our 7,641 islands?
If there is somebody like that… I assume it is like finding a needle in a haystack. A unicorn that is totally uncatchable and extremely hard to find.

Well, I found not only one but two Maria Claras. The Gods of the old and new must be shining down on me and giving me the chance to see a “Real Unicorn”.
Allow me to introduce my 2 unicorns…

“Mano po Girl”
Abbie is a Political Science student from the University of the Philippines Cebu. I am so lucky that we crossed paths a few years back.
She came to Manila to attend a big event at the Office of the Senate. Abbie came to our place to spend 2 nights before she goes back home to Cebu. One thing I noticed about her is she always gives the “Mano po” to me and my wife.
Mano or pagmamano is an “honoring-gesture” used in Filipino culture performed as a sign of respect to elders and as a way of requesting a blessing from the elder.
Similar to hand-kissing, the person giving the greeting bows towards the hand of the elder and presses their forehead on the elder’s hand.
Abbie always says the words “po” or “opo”. She also is very polite and courteous to our security guards and housekeeping staff.

She has discretion and dignity. The aspiring soon to be lawyer has “Delicadeza” and “Palabra de Honor”.
Why do I say she has all of that? Because I was there to witness everything and it see in my own eyes. A Unicorn from the “Queen City of the South”.

“The Princess from Malabon”
Malabon City is known for poor waste management and highly vulnerable to flood. It’s not the ideal place to find a Unicorn.
But alas, there was one remarkably beautiful creature in that place. Czarina is a student at St. Theresa’s College in Quezon City. But we know her better as my son’s classmate in Aikido.
Yes, this sweet and gentle lady can break your bones if you dare to attack her. Luigi, my son, still have the bruises in his shoulders and legs as a remembrance.
But aside from her talents, Czarina is known for her being “Mahinhin” and “may Busilak na Puso”. She is very kind to all people.
This “Unica Hija” is so protected and guarded by her parents and her brothers. Wherever she goes, she has a driver to accompany her.
The amazing thing is Czarina doesn’t ride at the back. She sits beside her driver. Whenever there is a feast in our Aikido dojo, this charming girl won’t eat unless her driver was offered the same food.

This girl from Malabon doesn’t “Dress to Impress”. She just wears ordinary clothes and sneakers but still remains fabulous even with her utmost simplicity.
Perhaps her radiance is enough to show to everybody her true worth is.

The real “Dalagang Filipina” has a resemblance from the Maria Clara character. They have genuine and ladylike characteristics that are very rare these days.
They are what they call the perfect “Wife Material”. They are Family-oriented and overly faithful.
They will be the structure and foundation of the family that they will be having.

They are unicorns that can only be found in rainbows. They are very hard to find, almost close to impossible.
But when you do find them. When the Gods of the old and new give you this once in a lifetime opportunity. Take advantage of it. Seize it.
Take pleasure of being with these lovely creatures. You’ll never know if you’ll ever see them again.

Written on May 17, 2019