A 43-year-old seafarer in this town has been selling balut (fertilized egg embryo) and bananas to support his family since the lockdown due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
In an interview on Monday, Ricky Pinlac, a father of three, said he looked for an alternative source of income as he was not able to board his ship due to the pandemic.
Pinlac said he was not embarrassed to sell balut and bananas at the town’s public market as it “puts food on our table”.
He said his income from selling provides for their daily expenses, as well as for electric and internet bills.
“Mabuti na ito kesa maubos savings namin, actually nagalaw na din savings namin (Selling is better than losing all our savings. Actually, we have already spent some of our savings),” he added.
Aside from balut and banana, Pinlac also sells vegetables to his neighbors.
Pinlac added he will also search for a new job.
“Kaya mabuti na ito hindi gaanong mabigat na trabaho kasi inaalagaan ko din sarili ko para kapag maayos na lahat at makabalik na ako sa barko, subsub ulit sa trabaho (This is better since it is not strenuous work. I take care of myself so that when everything returns to normal, I would be able to return to work, it will again involve hard work),” Pinlac said, adding he worked as a cook when onboard a ship.
Pinlac, however, admitted there are risks in his newfound venture, but he also realized that doing business is a good source of income especially when employment is not available due to circumstances, such as the pandemic.
“Sa mga kapwa ko OFWs (overseas Filipino workers), maghanap tayo other source of income para hindi tayo mawalan ng pag-asa. Ang Diyos marunong, hindi niya tayo pababayaan. Wag ng mahiya basta marangal ang pinagkakakitaan (To my fellow OFWs, let us strive to look for other sources of income so that we will not lose hope. The Lord is wise and He will not forsake us. Let us not be ashamed if we are earning in a decent way),” he said.