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Playing with Water: Passion and Solitude on a Philippine Island (Twentieth Century Lives) Kindle Edition
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Alongside the salt encrusted humidity of his tropical life, we learn about New Elizabethan England; finding ourselves in tunnels at school, blowing up water butts and recalling some of the moments in childhood that become so important in later life.
A great introduction to Hamilton-Paterson's wonderful writing.
Memorably the colourful undersea world is mirrored in the New Year's sky with a typical Filipino cacophony of rockets and home-made fireworks over his usually peaceful island. We learn too of the practical use of explosives, with discussions of the hard economics (and expertise) of dynamite fishing. Normally though the tropical island lifestyle is meditative, and the author reflects on his parents and schooldays. There is however a contrasting aside on clamorous Manila.
The author rigs a swing from a tree branch overhanging a cliff edge, and likes to swing out over the water. The reader too gets that weightless feeling of aquatic pursuits.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
how good it is. this book is not only about the underwater
world but also about the goings-on in a typical barrio in
the philippines. it has a socio-economic aspect to it that i
found quite realistic, having been born and raised in that very
same third world country. it amazed and pleased me that a
foreigner like hamilton-paterson could, quite accurately, capture
the very essence of filipino rural society---like the old woman who
he suspects isnt so aloof and taciturn as she seems
and the children of the barrio who frolick in the water and
in their humble amusements, oblivious of the shortcomings of a
third world upbringing. the book is an unusual stew of underwater
adventure and an unpatronizing account of a life among barrio folk.