catching up

I can’t believe winter is almost over. Where did all the time go? I guess February came and went away while I was too busy whining about work and second-guessing my decisions. But you’ll be proud of me, I actually managed to make up my mind for once and I am going home in April. Forget about my future plans for now, or the fact that the Philippine government is still reeling from the latest coup attempt (what else is new, right?), I’m going home and I couldn’t be happier!

This past month has been very interesting. So many things happened, both highs and lows, and I feel like I could write a short story. Let’s see, I can call it “The Art of Calling in Sick and Taking Pictures of the Sky” or “How to Avoid Dancing with Sleazy-Men-Who-Look-Like-Five-Year-Olds and Laugh About it Afterwards” (this is actually Neeha’s brilliant idea, hehe). I could also write about the plays we watched and the books that I’ve read, especially since as a proof of my geekness, I bought the complete collection of Marcel Proust’s A la recherchĂ© du temps perdu (In Search of Lost Time), and my mind is already spinning from reading too much of his freewheeling prose. Proust’s writing is amazing, no doubt about it, but its not your typical literature, there’s just way too many words, which reminds me of Jack Kerouac’s classic On the Road, only this time Proust is writing about France circa 1890, which is definitely harder to picture than Kerouac’s adventures in 1950s America. Also, reading Proust is an experience to be savored every step of the way, not hurried like what I’m doing now. And did I really think I could finish Swann’s Way in a week? I must be more deluded than I thought!

What else?

Well, I also realized that my mood definitely improves with the sun, my hair is so much better when it’s layered (yes, I had a haircut, again thanks to Neeha), and ‘The Boy’ is, and will always be, beautiful. Unsaon. Funny how after all this time it all comes back to this:

Thinking, tangling shadows in the deep solitude.
You are far way too, oh farther than anyone.
Thinking, freeing birds, dissolving images,
burying lamps.
~ from Neruda’s Thinking,Tangling Shadows

I want to wish that things could have been different, that maybe there’s more to it than just a simple ‘goodbye’. But the truth is, our lives are so divergent (and literally worlds apart) and I don’t think there’s anything that I could have said or done that will change that. End of story.

Now on to more cheerful thoughts.

After two-something years, I am finally reunited with my dear, dear friends: Grace and Tata, Bachang, Machai and Dede and my beautiful goddaughter Drew. On the surface, we all seem so grown up now, starting our new lives in this so-called Land of Milk and Honey but deep inside I know we’re still the same old carefree crew. It was fun to hang out with everyone, catch up on the latest chika, and exchange anecdotes about our college days (nothing beats Bachang’s infamous letter :P). Of course, in a true candeng-candeng she-kid fashion, I had to harass this poor actor from the show Arrested Development, all for the love of Machai. Good thing the kid was nice and he gamely posed for a photo op with Mai, even in his hideous shirt!

and speaking of photos...

Here's some that I took at Manhattan Beach, thanks to my Canon Digital Elph:

The Strand. I may not be a huge fan of L.A. but I've always loved Manhattan Beach and taking long walks by the ocean. There's a little comfort in knowing that the Philippines is just right across the Pacific, that somehow I am still connected to my islands this way.
. Lone Surfer Boy. I love how you can see the pier in the background and how the image of the boy blended perfectly with the colors of the ocean.

Chasing Waves. This is definitely my favorite shot. It reminds me of my childhood and how I used to stay under the sun for hours, playing with my siblings on the Saavedra coastline. I miss those days!


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