Tuesday, November 22, 2005

On Being Grateful

This is an account of a wife who was left behind by her husband for 3 days! (mwahaha, OA noh?)
You see, since we got married in 2001 or even before that (9 years earlier), we have never been apart. The rare times that we 'separated' was during hubby's short 1-week work-related trip to Malaysia, and another shorter 5-day trip in November last year when he accompanied Aunt Lina to Oras.
So when I learned that he's off to Bangkok, I made the effort to search for low fares as early as September, hoping that i'd be able to squeeze in (ha ha!). The PAL round-trip was just around P13T that time, but when I got back several days later, the rates escalated to a whooping P22T! I just realized that it was peak season 'coz of the SEA Games here in Manila (grrr!). Because of that, husband was not able to get a Nov. 19 return booking, what with the many delegates coming over.
The new rates being over the budget, I had to beg off. Ok fine.
Hubby said the Rama Gardens were he was billeted was rather imnpressive, better than Hilton, true to its 'hotel in a resort' subtitle. On the 19th, he took a chance flight back to Manila but had to shell out a few dollars for that. He could have just galivant around Bangkok considering that the remaining 4 days at the hotel have been paid, but he chose to go home. Aaaws, that's sweeet.
He had for me a pair of gold dangling earrings which he placed in a fancy jewel box. Bad as it may sound, but I'm not an earrings person. I was hoping for gold bangles, but he didn't remember (haaay). And because I'm such a brat, I went like arrrrgh instead of being grateful.
I soon realized my bad, and really felt sorry. So from the office, in order to make up, I bought him a slice each of sans rival, fudge cake, banana cake & an ube ensaymada at the newly-opened, neigborhood bakeshop, Ella's. To my surprise & embarrasment (haay, torture ito!), he was already home & on our dining table lay a beautiful box of Aggy's brownies. I just hugged him.
Anyway, I just learned another lesson. I realized the importance of being grateful for whatever comes your way.
Speaking of being grateful, hubby said that at the Bangkok airport, an old man claimimg to be a Singaporean approached and told him that he dropped his wallet! The old man patiently compared every human face at the airport w/ husband's ID in the wallet. When the man handed him his wallet, he embraced the good fellow with utter happiness. Oh I thought, thanks heavens for that honest to goodness man. I wish he had at least an email address so we culd have thanked him endlessly, but he don't have.
Now, that's another thing to be grateful about.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

10-day October Fun

I should have blogged the moment husband & I arrived Manila after a 10-day hiatus in Oras. But I got very lazzzy (yah! I just can't get enough).

here's my travelogue:

Oct. 15 - our PAL tickets say 0600 hrs but as early as quarter to four, Nanay, husband & I were already at the centennial airport. After checking-in, I had to find a place to sleep (side kwento: I didn't sleep the previous night; after a brief, crammed, shopping, I realized that I left at the office 'what-should-have-been-our-first-born' [product of miscarriage on 2-13-05], so we had to get it at midnight 'coz we want to have it buried with father-in-law in Oras; by 4am, I was finished packing our things!). The cold steel chairs at the airport didn't prevent me from catching a 1-hr sleep. It was only when i waas awakened did I get back to my senses in time for boarding.

The PAL airbus 320 impressed me. It's sleek as new. Thanks God for Cebu Pacific, otherwise, PAL will enjoy monopoly & not improve their services. In fairness, we took off on the dot. After having travelled so many times to Tacloban, it was my first time not to experience a delayed PAL flight. Isn't it that PAL stands for PAlaging Late?

We were in Tacloban 45 minutes later without the bumpy feeling although the stewardesses remeained stoic, still.

While alighting, a crowd frenzy caught our attention. The banners say: Welcome Jericho! (with the exclamation point in the banners, huh). I found out that it was meant for Jericho R., the actor who was in the same flight. In fairness, he looked good (at least that day, LOL). From the airport, my bro-in-law treated us to a seafood breakfast in a nearby resto. Life must be beautiful!

After dropping by to see my 7 mo old baby niece Bea, we headed off to Oras at exactly 10am. My bro-in-law lent us his pajero and my cousin Kevin & his family of 3 rode w/ us so it wasn't a lonely ride. We hit our destination at 2pm on the dot & found our household in Paypayon running agog for Tatay & Anjo's birthday party later that night.

After a brief nap in my in-law's house, we reported to Remedios Garden to help. To my surprise, we were in for a blast, complete with skirted buffet tables - - you know, the works. Indeed it was a celebration: Tatay's 60th and Anjo's 13th bday. They blowed candles atop layered Go Nuts Donuts w/c we painstakingly hand-carried.
Oct. 16 - we were awakend at 8am by the Holy Cross Academy Alumni parade, led by the pioneering batch -- 1950's (?) that's why they had to ride tricycles! My unconformist Auntie Lina from batch '58 was grinning from ear to ear, while Nanay was in chika-mode w/ her classmate Auntie Estring. Tatay was also with his classmates.

that's my sassy mother in dark sunglasses w/ her hi-school classmates

For me, the best shirt was that of batch '70 that says "batch, miss na kita, txt back" (cute 'no). Batch '85 was also a blast w/ a gay Darna.

When husband's batch '87 came, they were teasing him 'coz he didn't join (here, his mind was willing but his flesh was weak). The culminating dance that followed in the evening was rather enjoyable, what with the older batches' production numbers. I was so happy with for Auntie Lina, Tatay & Nanay 'coz they all participated in their respective presentations.

The night ended w/ a brawl w/c I'd rather not elaborate. Batch '87 'continued' the night 'til dawn of Oct. 17! (that makes it our 3rd no-tulog night!).

Oct. 17 - We hit the sack at 6am, yet still woke up before noon 'coz we were scheduled to see Burak-ay for the first time (background: Burak-ay is a beachfront along the stretch of Burak, thus, the name, inherited by Nanay & her siblings from their father. Tatay started developing my uncle's share last August only). A huge cottage is ready for use & 2 big ones are under way. Two concrete restrooms & an artesian well are already working. In time, it will be open to the public.

Oct. 18
- The previous night, husband & I promised to have a good sleep, but lo & behold, we were awakened by shouting in our adjacent bedroom (background: bro-in-law & wife, the same characters discussed in my Sept. 9 entry). Husband & I opted to leave Tiguib in the morning since we knew there'd be continuing arguments. He headed to the plaza to help coach the Tiguib team in the basketball championship vs. Balocaue (yap! Tiguib won 2-1) while I went to Paypayon. I whiled my time wrapping spoon & fork since it's my only talent. After dinner in Paypayon late in the evening, I had a long conversation w/ my sisters-in-law w/c lasted 'til 3am!

Oct. 19
- It's our 5th day in Oras & we haven't had a decent sleep yet. At 6am, we were again awakened by a brawl (yes, same characters). To my disgust, husband reprimanded his brother & sis-in law! And there was silence & peace.

It's fiesta day! In Paypayon, visitors included my sisters' friends & several others I don't even know; same thing in Tiguib. In the evening, we visited 2 addresses: Auntie Mitang's & Uncle Rady's.

Oct. 20
- We visited Tatay Bett's musoleum. At last, we were able to finally bring to rest our 'what-should-have-been-our-first-born'. From there, we visited our 6mo old niece Chin-Chin. By 12 noon, Uncle Andy was already sending us a message that he wants us to leave for Borongan. And so we did.

I was amazed at how Borongan has become. In fact, it already has a mall & what looks like a decent hotel. The hotel's coffee shop 'Se La Vee' (yes, just as how you pronounce ces't la vie) is a good experience - - - nice place w/ really cheap food.

When we got back to Oras in the afternoon, we headed to Dundee's place for another batch '87 reunion. In the evening, we tried the new Mucho Beer Garden (yah! that's how petty it sounds).

Oct. 21
- Husband promised that he'd have an undisturbed day w/ my 'latest' bro-in-law, Jerome. And yes they did, despite the 1st Balic-Balic Boys Reunion in the adjacent vacant lot & another batch '87 reunion in Tru-Cut.

Oct. 22
- We were awakened early in the morning, thanks God not by a brawl, but by nephew Kobe telling us that it's breakfast time. The Tiguib people reminded us that it's our 4th wedding anniversary! How could husband ever forget! Instead of going back to Manila as previously planned, we headed off to a beach in Binogawan & had a great time.

here i am at the beach w/ my baby niece bea

Oct. 23 - In the morning, we watched the Del Rosario procession pass by our house in Paypayon. Nanay is next year's hermana so we better observe. By 2pm, we (w/ Chinky, Baby & Jerome) were on our way to Tacloban. In the evening, Mano Alex treated us for a b-b-q dinner along Mac Arthur Park.

Oct. 24 - We were supposed to take the 8am flight back to Manila but didn't catch a plane. As if perfectly planned, we instead had lunch at Mano Alex's parents' house in Sagkahan: fiesta time! Talk about eat & run, by 1pm, we were on our way to the airport to make sure we make it to the 3pm schedule.

Cebu Pacific's Airbus 320 was not as polished as PAL's version. Ha ha, after that super bumpy ride, I promised not to ride CP anymore (that, even if I won a t-shirt in their "fun flight game"). I wouldn't trade that for a smooth PAL experience.

By 4pm, touchdown Manila na. Waaa! back to reality again.

In hindsight, in spite the hectic schedule, our 10-day hiatus was a blast. Thanks God for treats like Oras!