Hi. I am Rhoda Cua. My close friends call me Ody, derived from the 2 letters of my name – O and D. I am a registered pharmacist and a real estate broker by profession. I used to be a full time mom to my only son, Josh, until I decided to somehow practice my profession, not as a pharmacist but as a real estate broker.Now, I’m back to becoming the ultimate mother and teacher to my child.
I am married to Regie, an Industrial Engineer, who spent 9 years of his life working as a Medical Representative of Pfizer until he realized that he has greater potential as a real estate broker. He is currently unemployed and has decided to become a businessman.
I am a certified probinsyana by blood and by birth. When I am asked about my origins, I have to rant over the places I have been and my parents’ bloodline.
My dad (Urbano Camiwet Batay-an) is a full blooded igorot (FBI) whose parents came all the way from Sagada (father) and Sabangan (mother), both are towns in Mountain Province. But my grandparents raised their children in Conner, Apayao (Kalinga-Apayao that time).
My mom (Miriam Jean Mustard Dumlao) is an Ilokana. Her dad is from Batac, Ilocos Norte while her mom is from Abra, Mountain Province. Due to my grandparent’s work (they are both public school teachers),my mom and her family lived in Basilan, a place found in Mindanao. However, they were forced to evacuate the place because of the war. My lolo and my lola stayed in Zamboanga while my mom and her siblings were brought to Bulacan to stay with their maternal grandfather. From Bulacan, my mom also stayed in Nueva Ecija before she joined her brother in Conner, Apayao.
Enough about my parents..:) According to them, I was made in Villasis, Pangasinan and was born in Boguibog, Salcedo, Ilocos Sur. But I grew up in Tabuk, Kalinga. How? My dad was transferred from Ilocos Sur to Kalinga. He is a pastor, by the way.:) I finished my college degree in Saint Louis University, Baguio City.
After passing the board exam, I worked in Makati for 2 years before my boyfriend at that time decided to take our relationship to the next level. After marriage,we stayed for another year in Paranaque City before he decided to take us to Davao City. But fate had another plan for us so we ended up staying for a year in Lucena City, province of Quezon. Then, we moved to Tagum City where we are now settled.
I spent my childhood days in Barangay Casigayan, Tabuk. According to Wikipedia, Tabuk is a municipality located in the province of Kalinga in the northern part of the Philippines. It is also the capital of the said province. The population of Tabuk is a mix of different Kalinga cultures and languages.
The two barangays of Bulanao and Dagupan are the centers of commerce and trade for Tabuk, and the focus of economic activity for most areas of Kalinga. Merchants from Ilocos, Pangasinan, Cagayan, and other nearby provinces, come to Bulanao and Dagupan to purchase rice, which is the major agricultural product of Kalinga. These merchants sell other commodities, especially seafood, clothing, fabric, metal and plastic manufactures. The language of the market place is Ilocano.
I am a proud probinsyana and i never regretted growing up as one. With all the fresh air, fresh harvests and simple lifestyle, I can really say that I have a happy childhood and a contented family.
Even now that i am living in a city with my own family, we have kept the provincial set up at home. I have my own vegetable garden. How i wish i could also have an animal farm.