asia & asians

Orphans Of History

The Seattle Times
March 12, 1996
By Alex Tizon

Blia Xiong, a small, soft-spoken woman with a radiant face, says she’s been writing a letter in her head for years that goes something like this:

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Mount Pinatubo: The Aftermath

The Seattle Times
February 18, 1996
By Alex Tizon

SAN MARCELINO, Philippines – Her name was Rowena Domingo, 27 years old, thin and cocoa brown with eyes that belonged on a kid’s face. I met her in the western foothills of the island of Luzon, 60 miles northwest of Manila, on a mud trail outside what used to be the town of San Marcelino leading to what was once the Santo Tomas River. The town and river no longer were recognizable. They, along with Rowena’s husband and an immense portion of the central plains of Luzon, were buried under mudflows of Mount Pinatubo.

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The Vanishing Tribe

The Seattle Times
February 27, 1994
By Alex Tizon

In Felix Castro’s one-room apartment, calendars have collected on the walls in layers: poster calendars, planning calendars, girlie calendars, business calendars; stapled, taped and nailed. Where do the years go? One day, he’s a young man sailing to America with big dreams, the next he is 85 years old, living alone on $552 a month, and marking time.

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The Killing Fields of the Mind

The Seattle Times
January 23, 1994
By Alex Tizon

Patient A has a stomach ache. It never goes away. It keeps her awake at night and tired during the day. She can’t work or play or enjoy sex. For three years she goes from doctor to doctor, subjecting herself to tests. The tests find nothing. She insists on the pain. The doctors are baffled.

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