I was a liaison officer, among other things.
To the Filipino who is unfamiliar with the word’s correct pronunciation—much less the definition—the word could be pronounced as “lie-as-on”. In Tagalog, layas (“lie-as”) is a term associated with act of going and/or leaving. It’s a local pun hidden in a foreign word and yet speaks truth: to liaise, I had to leave the office a lot.
Leaving the office was something I didn’t mind, despite the frequency and toll it made on my body. I loved being on the road; it was always great to see people on the street and the ever-changing scenes of the urban jungle.
Despite being trapped in traffic many times, I rarely minded it since I had good music with me. My choice of songs kept me sane, which I really needed because of work.
What did I mind? It wasn’t supposed to last for more than two years.
For the record, I don’t mind helping people out, especially those that are “sick”. The person who is the actual liaison officer had to undergo a 2-year treatment of some illness of hers. Her doctor prescribed that she avoided travels because she might go into seizure while in transit, which would not be good—so no arguing from me about that.
Yet I couldn’t help but notice that she made more trips around the country and even abroad during those two years. One time even, they took a boat that almost capsized because of huge waves, being close to open sea and inclement weather. And she insisted to not liaise when in the city with paved, often smooth, concrete roads and predictable times?
Precise, unforgettable, clear terms—all of those are violated!
Then the two years were up. And no one remembered to lighten my load, to relieve me of that job. That was the last straw. The camel’s back would’ve broken but the choice to power through was still available. But I’ve had enough.
So I resigned.
Last I heard, she’s back to liaising. When I think about it, I almost wonder if she hates her work—the way I did—but I stop. I have better things to waste my time on.