To all dreamers out there, here is a comic strip inspired by one of the most successful business establishments in the Philippines, graced by an edited excerpt of Edgar Guest’s poem Things Work Out.
Before National Book Store became Philippines’ biggest and most-trusted local books and school supplies store, its founders, the couples Jose and Socorro Ramos, endured many obstacles to keep the business going. Not long after they founded their first store in 1940, it was destroyed during World War II when Manila was under Japanese attacks.
But not even a world-wide war can stop the Ramoses—around 1950s, they relocated to build their second National Book Store in the then commerce-blossoming Quezon City. Unfortunately, a typhoon that entered the country damaged several properties including Socorro and Jose’s second store. The typhoon broke and tore off the store’s roof, leaving many books and paper goods unsellable. Others might have given up then, with the universe seemingly conspiring against their dreams. Yet, the Ramoses trudged on.
They lost their supposed profit, but not their hope. Their roof might be broken, but not their souls. And so the couple repaired their store and began business again, working hard until they had saved enough money to buy a 9-storey building where the largest National Book Store branch in the Philippines now stood.
Today, National Book Store branches are scattered all over the country, all existing as proof that with passion, resilience, and perseverance, anyone could make their dreams come true despite the biggest trials.