Minsan lamang ako mag-full marathon…

“Once, twice, thrice – gaano ba kadalas ang minsan?” – Hilda Koronel, Gaano Kadalas ang Minsan? (1982)

Once…

Manila International Marathon – Sept 25, 2011

Twice…

Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore – December 4, 2011

Thrice…my love-run-crazy 3rd?  11 days to October 28. =) 

Photo grabbed from Runrio’s Official Website.
http://www.runrio.com

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My California Dream Vacation

All the leaves are brown
and the sky is grey
I’ve been for a walk
on a winter’s day

I’d be safe and warm
if I was in L.A
California Dreamin’
on such a winter’s day

Lines from a classic psychedelic / folk rock song by the Mamas and the Papas, ‘California Dreaming‘ (1965).  I also love the Beach Boys’ cover.  I used to listen to this song a lot before I went to San Diego.  Last weekend, Wilson Phillips performed a cover that made me browse Youtube just to be able to listen to this classic all over again.  Here’s reminiscing of those good times in California. 

———————————-

Day after Christmas, year not so long ago, I was aboard a PR flight bound for Los Angeles.  It was my first long-haul flight, all by myself, and with that I prefered to book a flight with Philippine Airlines for an ‘at home’ vibe.  I instantly jibed with my Fil-Am seatmates, and they talked about their lives in CA and those they left behind in our home country.  The conversations were truly an eye opener.  Instantly, the first-hand accounts become part of my life education.  Hours in the plane were well-spent!

I was literally pinching my arm once in a while during that 12-hr flight. It was real, I was finally on with my dream vacation.  Inside, I was singing with excitement – California Dreamin’ on a winter’s day!

Flight landed at LAX, approximately 7PM.  The California winter chill was truly shocking to the ribs for someone like me who thrived in tropical climate.  My family fetched me from LAX and we headed for San Diego – my home away from home!!!  =)

Timezone gap was foreign to me.  I slept through the night. Next day, after a hearty lunch at home, my cousin Sarali and I went shopping.  I was loving the town centers that I instantly bought 3 pairs of shoes, a bag, and a pink pair of Everlast boxing gloves for my training back in Manila (I was to lose 40.00lbs through a fitness routine which included boxing).  Very promising stay (Yikes! I was extra careful not to break the bank).  The next three weeks were spent visiting family friends, driving around National City, shopping at outlet stores, chillin’ in Las Vegas…and munching on steak, fries, and everything nice (meaning, more steak!).  I forgot about what I was doing at work in Manila for three weeks.  The inner child in me got a free rein for the rest of my stay in CA.

Here’s a mix of fun stuff and ideas, stamped – Meowth’s California Dream Vacation:

1.  Driving – For me, long leisure drives or road trips are therapeutic.  My uncle and I took turns at the steering wheel on our way to Vegas and back to San Diego via freeway.

Freeway: California – Nevada

Sunset – Otay Ranch

2.  I was so excited to see Shamu and Friends up close and personal.  I got to bring home a plush dog, which I named Lester.  I got him from a target game at SeaWorld San Diego.

San Diego SeaWorld presents Shamu

A charming sea-lion – he wants fish! =)

3.  Legoland is a wonderland!

New York! New York! – an amazing cityscape by Lego

The Capitol by Lego

Lego’s Fun Town Academy

4.  Nevermind the 2hr ++ drive to Anaheim; heading out for the happiest place on earth called DISNEYLAND!  The magic got into me; queued at Mickey’s place for a meet-and-greet with Mickey and Minnie!  I talked my cousins into doing a jump shot (photo), and we were laughing out loud while (we were) at it.  People were staring, but after our shot, we saw a couple of kids who were giddy over their version of the ultimate jump shot.

I was part of a happier crowd @ Disney Anaheim!

Chillaxin’ @ Mickey’s House

5.  Shopping.  I filled three cartons with shopping finds – two of which I shipped in advance to the Philippines.  We, Filipinos call these cartons, ‘Balikbayan box’.

Federal offense? NOT Guilty. Shopping??? Charge!!! Uh-oh

6.  Lovin’ the Pinoy food at Tita’s Kitchenette in National City – love, love, love their banana fritters or turon (in Tagalog), complete with jackfruit bits or langka (in Tagalog).  I ate those turon in the parking lot, sort of when I started to miss home – I ate turon as I watched cars plied by the plaza.  Dreyer’s and Haagen Dazs’ were relatively cheaper, so I ended up being the only person in the grocery who bought ice cream on a winter.  =)

My favorite Pinoy fastfood – Tita’s Kitchenette, East Plaza Blvd., National City

7.  New Year celebration in the Philippines is about family, and it is very much the same with the majority of Fil-Am in San Diego.

8.  Las Vegas seems lifeless under the morning sun, but it transforms into the grandest place under the night sky.  View from the Stratosphere – Top of the World was amazing – under a canopy of stars and over a blanket of the brightest city lights.  Bellagio’s Dancing Waters is a classic outdoor production not to be missed.

Absolutely Vegas! =)

Stratosphere view deck

Bellagio Dancing Waters

9.  I was basking in the snow at  Mount Charleston (the mountain resort is about an hour’s drive from Vegas, that part going to Reno).  We never have snow in this part of Asia where I live.

Enjoyin’ a day out in the snow with my cousin Sarali. =)

10.  A little downtime at Shady Glade had a rejuvenating effect, as well.

Home away from home =)

After a three-week vacation in California, I was ready to go back to Manila…to go back to one of life’s reality called work…to start a new chapter – aligned with my goals for the New Year.  Energy level:  high-five!  =)

Madam Margaret Thatcher, The King and I, and BFD

The Iron Lady and the Hopeless-Romantic Me  =)

Euro-cultural immersion – done!  I was homebound, aboard a CX for a good 13-hr flight.  I said good for I had plenty of time to catch up on some interesting films, including The Iron Lady, a Margaret Thatcher biopic.

There’s one scene from The Iron Lady, that I wished to experience in this lifetime (I tried to be specific with the timeline).  I never want to become a Prime Minister; the scene I’m referring to is Denis’ and Margaret’s date in a theatre – they were enjoying a lively scene from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The King and I.  That idea of a date is both classic and classy.  I’ve always loved the theatre…I used to act / write / and direct plays back in school, and I (then secretly) wished – that I’d end up with someone who would also appreciate the theater…oh, and a date in a theatre production of any Rodgers and Hammerstein’s classics.

I was aboard CX, 30th April 2012…and five months later, 30th September 2012…I was at the Newport Performing Arts Theater enjoying that same lively scene – the King of Siam and Mrs. Anna – singing, dancing, and what would appear – falling in-love…Shall We Dance?  BFD reached for my hand…exactly what Mr. Denis Thatcher did, as depicted in the biopic, The Iron Lady.  =)

Shall We Dance? =)

The King and I at the Newport Performing Arts Theatre, Resorts World Manila

The King and I is a stage musical based on the 1944 novel Anna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon, derived from the memoirs of Anna Leonowens.  Anna became the governess to the children of King Mongkut of Siam in the 1860s. Anna was hired to support the King’s drive to modernize Siam.  The story depicts cultural conflict with some political undertone, and a love that neither the King nor Anna was able to express.  (source:  Wikipedia).

Photo grabbed from the King and I Resorts World Manila’s official website.
http://www.rwmanila.com/the-king-and-i/

What made Newport Theater production extra-special is that it’s all-Filipino!  The production showcases world-class Filipino talent, top-billed by Leo Tavarro Valdez (King) and Monique Wilson (Anna), directed by Mr. Freddie Santos, with performances by the Manila Philharmonic Orchestra and the Philippine Ballet Theater.  Oh, and I just have to mention the lovely gowns designed by Rajo Laurel for Monique Wilson! =)

We’ve got Resorts World Manila to thank for producing the show. It is indeed a very ambitious project, but the all the effort that went into is every bit perfect for bringing out a truly stellar stage production.  The Newport Performing Arts Theater is as modern as its name implies – acoustic and lighting are superb.

As of press time, the play runs every Friday at 8PM, Saturday at 2PM and 7PM, and Sunday at 2PM.  Ticket price starts at P1000.00.  For more details, you may visit Newport Theater’s official website:  http://www.rwmanila.com/entertainment-at-resorts-world-manila/newport-performing-arts-theater.

Photo grabbed from the King and I Resorts World Manila’s official website.
http://www.rwmanila.com/the-king-and-i/

Seven years and counting… =)

It’s October – my anniversary month @ SM!

I treat October as if it’s my biological birth month; I commemorate my birth into the SM organization – where I practically spent a big chunk of my waking hours in the last seven years.  It’s a fun-crazy-challenging work life, but if I could sum up the experience down to a single word, then it’s gotta be worthwhile!

Celebrating my 7th year at work – it’s like having two birthdays! =)

This is the first time I’m posting an account of my career – other than those facts which could be viewed in my online CV.  I’m excited to be writing about my more colorful experiences at work, in parts or sequences, attuned with my anniversary month.

In the beginning…

I’m fresh out of college…12 years ago. Five years into building a professional career, I was job hopping – I wanted to believe that I was good / flexible / go-getter / but-so-not-a- supermodel, so I seized up opportunities ala-Tazmanian devil, until I landed an opportunity to establish my career at SM.  Joining a retail giant was never part of the plan but fate had its way of bringing me here.  Just like any other job applicants, I had to undergo several interviews.  The recruitment process I chose was one that was (decidedly) longer.  I got an offer in July, I joined in October.   It took my former boss 3 hours to discuss the final offer, and it took me a week to sign it…I was excited and (so) scared at the same time.  I badly wanted the opportunity, but the responsibilities were daunting – the most difficult was to build an IT organization!  It was a make-or-break situation, and I never expect to reach such a point quite early in my professional life.  I was a clueless yuppie.  I only had guts, a pending MBA thesis, and an ECE license.  Are these enough to warrant success?  I was never a fan of the idea of failing – a standard which I deliberately ingrained in my head.

Now reminiscing about how it was seven years ago,  I requested a meeting with one of the corporate consultants before I signed up.  (I’m very fortunate that he has become one of my mentors).  I asked him several questions in a way that could have been regarded as a folly for a yuppie like me.

Consultant:  I heard that you have a concern about the opportunity at hand.

Me:  Yes, sir.  May I ask for the updated job description (JD), including the qualification?

The Consultant gave me a two-page JD.  I carefully read the text.  First item under job qualification, “+10 years relevant work experience in retail…”  I paused, to ask the Consultant a very honest  (bold) question in Tagalog…

Me: Sir, sigurado po ba kayo na ako ang iha-hire nyo?

Consultant:  Of course, we are.  Why are you asking me this?

Me:  Sir, five years pa lang po ako nagta-trabaho.  I don’t have a solid background in retail.  I only know retail in the context of CRM and BI.  That’s about it.

Consultant:  The technical aspect of the job will be very easy for you to learn.

Me:  Sir, this is a make or break situation for me – the experience is entirely new, the responsibilities are tougher, and I don’t know how to play management politics. As much as I’m up for the challenge, I’m also afraid to fail.

Consultant:  I see.  Your concern is valid.

Me:  By the way, sir, may I also ask for the table of organization?

Consultant:  Only this one, the rest you have to build.

Me:  Do you think I can do it, sir?  I don’t want to fail.

At that point, my former boss showed up at the Consultant’s office.

Consultant:  We will guide you through.

AGF:  Sign it, Ann.  We promise you, we will not let you fail.

They had interviewed a lot of applicants before, but may be the scenario of an applicant bringing up her fear of failure is rare…I attended a number of job offer-meetings in the past, but it was during that meeting with the Consultant and AGF where I truly felt the organization’s commitment to my growth as an individual – It was not just about the organization that I would be supporting.

I took a deep breath. In my head I said, ‘this is it, Lord.’  I signed the offer.

I would be forever grateful for that day – a sanctifying grace.  =)

A Very Special Love Letter

I admire people who are prayerful, and in that same level, are living up to the Christian way of life.  I wish I could do the same.

A nun, who used to play the guitar for our choir group told me that singing a prayer is like praying 10x.  It takes some amount of emotions to sing, and I think that makes singing and praying more special.

In my case, grief and special petitions warrant a different kind of prayer – I write down my prayers.  Most of the letters, I keep; quite a few, I would seal in an envelope to be read exclusively by the Pink Sisters, and spiritually or figuratively – the thoughts in those letters, I offered to Him.  Yes, the Dragon Lady (that would be me, or if you want to call me a sinner, so be it) also need the support of a community known as the Holy Spirit Adoration Sisters. Their church and convent in Tagaytay City has been one of my sacred sanctuaries over the years.  Secret out!  If you’re curious, then why not pay them a visit?  It’s worth a try.  =)

Adoration Convent of Divine Mercy
‘Pink Sisters’, Tagaytay City, Philippines
Photo by: BFD

Last month, BFD and I visited the Adoration Convent/Chapel .  The gratefulness I felt compelled me to write a letter to the Lord, through the Pink Sisters.  In the not-so-distant past, I thought I was heading for a life of single blessedness (which I gladly accepted, to the point that I was living that life already), but the Lord sent me another blessing that changed most of my thoughts about how I intend to live my life.  About two weeks after that visit, I received a beautiful letter which talks about love and prayers from Sister Mary Scholastica of the Pink Sisters.  The thoughts are too beautiful that I’m moved to share it here, and I hope this letter reaches out to those who might need it most.

——————————————–

Getting there:  Here’s a map – grabbed from http://www.tsikot.com.

For commuters: There are buses, jeepneys from Manila and Batangas plying Aguinaldo Highway – a major highway in Cavite.
The chapel is a well-known landmark in Tagaytay City. When in doubt, ask around for directions from the locals (‘Pink Sisters’).

Gains and Losses

Life is good. Gain.  Life is not fair.  Loss.  It’s a matter of perspective – sometimes easy; oftentimes, challenging.

For more positive chi to flow, I should be writing about, ‘life is a beach,’ or something as hip as ‘politics/stock market/traffic – it’s more fun in this country.’  Today I’m more keen about bursting some bubbles, so it really is tempting for me to write about, ‘life is a bitch’ or ‘haters get a life’, instead…oh, but I do have some positive comments about the stock market!  Talk about balance between good and evil.

Source: MSOffice Clipart

I’m about to spend the next couple of minutes writing about musings on personal/family relationships, mundane stuff like weight gain, somewhat-annoying political thoughts – things which I need to bounce off the wall called blog (and it’s right here!).  I haven’t been so keen about keeping this kind of ‘stress’ list, but I should be able to jot it down so that the counting of sheep – something I do before bedtime when sleep becomes elusive, is kept in its state of effortless peace.

On a more personal note…

1.  Gain : Strong and promising lifelong friendship with five people.  High five for honesty and open communication.

Loss : falling out with two people whom I used to look up to.  Hypocrisy and lies are never good elements of a healthy relationship.  Over it!

2.  Gain : Weight.  Uh-oh! The worst in 6 months, following a hospital confinement…the positive side – I can start training for my third full marathon after almost 6 months of rehab.  I’m at it!  Weight loss is underway.  Hopefully.

Loss :  I need to defer plans for a 50km ultra marathon, shoulda-woulda-coulda first half of 2012.

3.  Gain :  We successfully fought a terminal illness in the family, as a family.  My aunt made a big come back with a stronger testimony for her Christian mission.

Loss :  Sleepless nights, wondering how the treatment was progressing – a scenario in the family wherein everyone was face-to-face with the big, bad ‘C’…but faith is much, much greater than any illness.

———————–

I also think about this country.  To me, this is home.  I’m sooo here that it is warranted, I be called ‘a dumb citizen’, should I fail to notice news or issues at the level of national consciousness.

4.  Gain :  Philippine stock market index!!!  It’s a concrete measurement of the sentiments of investors towards the Philippine Economy.  The market has been enjoying growth, rising from a 3K+ last year, breaking the 5K barrier,  and now maintaining its position at the 5K+ index for months…and the outlook remains bullish.  Stay invested!

In 2011, financial institutions like BPI and BDO went all-out with their campaigns to draw people to avail of managed funds.  These funds cater to several investor risk profiles :  conservative – moderately aggressive – aggressive.  It sure is a new way to earn passive income while leveraging on the growth our stock market.

5.  Gain :  Confidence on the President, most recent rating,+ 67%.

Though, I’m not particular about the label ‘yellow army’,  but a positive trust rating of 67% earned by the President fuels a certain feel-good attitude towards the government, and relevant sectors are motivated to pump-prime the economy.   I’m neutral when it comes to political parties, I support whoever is duly elected and proclaimed President.

Loss :  (Untimely) demise of a great public servant – Sec. Jess Robredo.

Loss : Political divide; many haters still – those people trying to bring down the Administration to its knees, but hey, if you happen to be one of them, I hold no personal grudge against you, but I wish that we be aligned in this thought :  words, including those translated into propaganda are meaningless, until we match it with collective actions to push for reforms.  Talk is cheap.

Loss :  (Figuratively) headless, selfish people from all sectors of the society who are deliberately trashing the environment.

Loss :  Unresolved territorial dispute among China and other ASEAN States over the perceived oil-rich Spratly Group of Islands in the West Philippine Sea.  I wonder what the UN is doing in order to effectively implement the provisions of the UN Convention on the Laws of the Sea (UNCLOS).

———   List ends here. For now.  =)  ———-

Part IV – Alam Na (final installment)

Sana naman ay ganap nyo nararamdaman ang lagay ko ngayon sa Mundo ng mga Keso.  Ang Parts I – IV ay aking nailathala dahil na rin sa mga pamilya at mga tunay na kaibigan na malayo sa akin.  Nais ko ibahagi at ganon din ang excitement nila na magkwento ako na para bang magkakaharap lamang kami.

Hindi magtatapos sa Part IV ang kwento namin ni BFD, pero sa blog, hanggang Part IV na lang dahil baka sumunod pa ito sa mga yapak ng mga Pinoy movies na Shake, Rattle, & Roll (pero laging pang MM Filmfest?), Tanging Ina (pang-ilang ‘last na ‘to?), at Mano Po (sa mga blood chem naubos ang mga huling patak ko ng Chinese blood, kung ako man ay nagkaroon ng marami nito).  Same formula ang plot, na pinaulit-ulit dahil sa commercial success ng mga nasabing pelikula.

Ilan sa mga Pinoy movies na madaming installment.
Photos grabbed from Wikipedia.

Paulit-ulit?  Medyo taliwas ito sa mga nangyayari sa tunay  na buhay ko sa ngayon.  I challenged a team of 77 people early this year – that if they are desperate for change, they must be prepared to do things which they haven’t done before.  Ito ngayon ang syang challenge ko sa sarili ko.  Practice what you preach nga naman.

Possible pala na ang Manila-Singapore-Manila, ay maging parang Manila-Pampanga-Manila – as a way of embracing the altruism, ‘follow your heart’, but no banging of head against the wall this time around?  Nasa Terminal 1 ako isang umaga, gagawin ko yon kasi alam ko na doon ako magiging mas masaya.  Parang sa palabas na Shaider na tumatawag ng Time Space Warp ang babaylan na si Ida, nasabi ko sa harap ng laptop, hatinggabi bago ang aking flight, ‘Eroplano, ngayon din!’.  Kaya mainit-init pa ang plane ticket at hotel voucher ko noong umagang iyon – mas mainit pa sa ‘rush photocopy’ sa mga tindahan sa U-belt…mas mainit pa sa extra hot na double espresso…mas mainit pa sa ulo ko nang gawin nilang isang malaking parking lot ang Coastal Road dahil sa hindi pag-usad ng traffic.

Matapos ang halos sunud-sunod ko na travel mag-isa, pati ang pagtakbo ng full marathon sa SG nang mag-isa, I made a decision – I will open up myself to love…sana for the last time, pero hindi basta-basta love…ung love at relationship na talagang pinag-isipan…may process, hindi basta naramdaman na lang…a love story wherein two people made a whole-hearted commitment to make it work inspite of their differences…yung dalawang taong same wavelength, may shared values, parehong self-actualized….partners, yung tipong they bring out the best in each other…symbiotic, hindi parasitic…Ayoko na ng same ‘ol, boring, pathetic sh–, er, story! =)

Isang pagbalik-tanaw:  In one of my visits to the Pink Sisters Chapel in Tagaytay (2007),  I was having a hard time coping with some major changes, and in grief, I wrote a letter to the Lord through the Pink Sisters Congregation.  The content came from another letter which I wrote back in college (1998).  I was very specific when I wrote my intentions.  To sum it up,  He was supposed to write me a beautiful love story.  Minsan nga talaga mas alam natin ang gusto natin when we were younger.  Over the years, we tend to forget or masyado na tayong nagiging jaded kaya akala natin hindi na pwedeng magka-totoo.

The Pink Sisters’ Chapel – Tagaytay City
Photo by: BFD

I almost forgot about those letters, until last month when I went back to the Pink Sisters Chapel – first time to visit with BFD.  Before that, we were tossing several questions particularly about the ‘timing’.  BFD and I attended the same university, and he was only a year my senior.  We used to chat about running for over a year, but none of it seem to have made sense.  We ran the same race routes/categories, but we did not care as if there was an imaginary banner, ‘just-another-face-in-the-crowd.’  Who would have thought?  Maybe, we were born with a ‘homing’ device; that one, which is automatically triggered when the right time comes, and nobody knows about the exact time. Ang galing, parang magic, di ba?  Ni hindi ko nga magamit dati ang salitang ‘magic’ dahil pakiwari ko para lamang ito sa mga bata na naniniwala sa fairy tales; kulog, kidlat, baka kainin ako ng lupa. Uh-oh.  =)

Dahil pare-parehas din naman tayong busy, tapusin na natin ang Part IV.  Here’s to share the last part of those ‘special letters’, which I’ve mentioned in this blog –

              “…and wherever we are, he will always make me feel that – I’m home.” 

Altar – Angels’ Hills – Tagaytay
Photo by: BFD

Part III – ‘Pako’ (English: Nail; not another MMK episode)

Photo: http://www.sonomachristianhome.com
Try to imagine me running like this in a concrete jungle called MOA Parking Lot.

Naka-dress pa naman ako pero kailangan ko tumakbo.  Hays, hassle!  No choice, hindi ko sya matawagan sa mobile number nya ‘cannot be reached’ sabi sa line…Kaya hinawakan ko sa magkabilang gilid ang dress ko para hindi ito tumaas habang tumatakbo.

“Kaya ko ‘to. Runner ako.” Ito na lang ang sinabi ko sa sarili ko na para bang mahirap ang 100-to-300meter-dash compared sa 42.195km marathon distance.

Buti na lang may tsinelas sa kotse, at least ‘barefoot’ feel ang pagtakbo ko…

Target:  kailangan ko mahabol si BFD!

“Daves! Daves!”, sumisigaw na ko baka sakaling marinig nya ko…bakit kasi ang bilis nya maglakad?  O sadya syang tumakbo palayo sa ‘kin?

Takbo ulit ako…kailangan ko tumawid, at biglang huminto ang dalawang sasakyan sa harap ko sabay senyas ng mga driver na tumawid na ako.  Pinagbigyan nila ako makatawid, naawa siguro sa ‘kin.  Sumenyas naman ako na katumbas ng ‘Thank you!”…ang aking mala-alamat na ‘politician’s wave’.

Malapit na ko sa MOA IMAX.  Mahirap din pala tumakbo ng halos barefoot pag hindi sanay, kaya sumigaw na ko ng todo…

“Daaaavvvveeeesss!!!”, siguro naman nararamdaman nyo ang pagsigaw ko nyan, ang haba ng spelling ng ‘Daves’ ha.  =)

At parang isang eksena lamang sa MMK, nakatayo na lang ako sa kabilang kalsada ng parking lot, medyo (feeling) pagod sa paghabol…ako na ang damsel in distress!!!  Isang role na hindi ko kailanman na na-imagine gagampanan ko sa tunay na buhay…sa aking tunay na buhay, mind you!

Ang long-hair na si BFD ay huminto sa paglalakad, at dahan-danang lumingon sa aking direksyon.  Sa sandaling iyon ay bakas sa kanyang mga mukha ang pagkagulat…marahil ay dahil sa isang katulad ko na literally humahabol sa isang katulad nya (Queue El DeBarge music, circa 1986:  “Someone just like me / Running into someone just like you / An accidental touch / Turned into a gentle kiss of two…”).  Mas masaya pag cheesy!  =)

“Daves! FLAT TIRE!!!  Flat ang gulong ng kotse ko!  May malaking pako!”, yan lamang ang aking nasabi at lumapit na sya sa akin.  Takot ako na hindi makauwi agad nang dahil sa flat tire.  Gabi na rin kasi yon.

Naglakad kami pabalik ng parking para palitan ni BFD ang flat na gulong ng aking kotseng si Migs.  Halos humiga na si BFD sa parking lot, kahit madumihan ang damit nya basta maayos nya lang mailapat ang jack at maiangat ang gulong na papalitan. Hindi sya vain…at sa isang dako, parang mabubuhay kaming dalawa kahit ma-trap kami sa isang island (saglit lang yan pumasok sa isip ko…ayokong lagyan ng malisya).

Sample photo: Ilovecostco.com
Walang sinabi ang Potenza GIII ni Migs sa walang awang pako.

Sa mga sandaling yon ay ‘My Hero’ ang dating ni BFD sa akin, pero natuwa lang ako.  At least, makakauwi na ko, okay na ang gulong ni Migs.  Nagpasalamat ako kay BFD, at nag-offer pa ako na i-treat sya sa Starbucks pero tumanggi sya at hindi naman ako nagpumilit.  Madali ako kausap. Ayaw mo, huwag mo.  =)

Meron akong realization:  Okay naman pala friend si BFD.  Hindi ko naman kasi alam kung ano ang purpose nya, at ayoko itong pangunahan.  Kung friendly lang talaga sya at naghahanap ng kausap, well, hindi naman masama maging friends kami.  Natuwa na ako na may bago akong kaibigan.

Ni-report ako ni BFD sa mga kaibigan ko:  Muli naungkat ang kwento ng ‘flat tire’ nang ipinakilala ko na si BFD kila Kris, Jenny-Vi, at Atty. Cashmer.

Ito ang kanyang report –> Hinatid nya ako sa parking lot.  Magkahiwalay kasi kami ng parking area.  Pagdating sa kotse, hindi ko pa man nabubuksan ang pinto, ay ‘pinalayas’ ko na (daw) sya sa pagsasabi ng “Sige, uwi ka na!”  Napaka-inggrata ko daw, hindi man lang ako nagpasalamat sa kahit ano…basta pinaalis ko na lang sya…kaya malungkot syang umalis sa parking area…hindi nakapag-moment man lang kagaya ng kanyang original plan…At matapos nyang palitan ang gulong, hindi daw ako nag-insist man lang sa Starbucks…gusto pala nya, pinilit ko sya…oh, well…may ganon???  =)  Isa lang ang sabi ni Kris kay BFD nang ito ay magreklamo, “It’s so Ann!”.

Ang ‘wicked’ version nila Kris and Jenny-Vi, at ni Atty. Cashmer:  Pag-alis ni BFD sa parking, tinawag ko (daw) ang Guard, sabay sabi ng mala-kontrabidang instructions, “Eto ang pako, tatakbo ako papunta don sa lalaking andito kanina.  Siguraduhin mo lang na pagbalik ko ay flat na ang gulong ha…siguraduhin mo ha…sige, simulan mo na, tatakbo na ko…”

Photo: Wikipedia.org
Parang kasing wicked ko ata si Cruella sa flat tire version nila Jenny-Vi?

Nanghinayang kami ni BFD ngayon sa ‘pako’.  Dapat pala pinakuha ko sa vulcanizing shop…nang dahil sa pakong iyon, a few days after the ‘flat tire’ episode, may natanggap akong message kay BFD…

“Sagot ko na yung movie tickets sa Friday, wag mo lang ulit ako pahihigain sa parking lot (para magpalit ng flat tire).”

Pwede… 

Part II – Si BFD. Walang Malisya. (not another Derek Ramsey movie)

Paunawa

Kailangan mailathala ang Part II upang mabisa nating maitawid ang kwento sa Part III.  Paunawa sa mga babasa, napaka-wholesome po ito na kwento, walang bahid dungis o pagkahumaling (whew!), kaya isantabi nyo po muna ang alam nyo na (wag madumi isip)  Je je je   =)

Part II – Si BFD.  Walang Malisya.  (not another Derek Ramsey movie)

…nakilala ko ang isang runner / blogger na may initial na BFD (parang blind item lang dapat sa una)…at parang wala lang syempre noon.  Chill.  Deadma.  Ni hindi man lang pumasok sa isip ko na palitan ang aking major crush na si…Derek Ramsey!!!

Actor Derek Ramsey – sya na!!!
Photo credit: No Other Woman – Star Cinema

Dumating ang pagkakataon na naghanap ako ng ibang sports maliban sa badminton…napunta ako sa running. Nagsimula ako sa 5KM hanggang sa umakyat ng 21KM…at hindi ko din akalain kakayanin kong tapusin ang 42.195KM last year.  Naging sobrang addict ako sa life.  Sa level ng energy na meron ako, parang wala ng bukas.  Badminton 2x a week, running 3x a week…at syempre andyan ang aking trabaho na kailangan din seryosohin dahil mahirap kumita ng pera; lalo na isip ang puhunan ko sa trabaho, hindi katawan (kung pwede lang sultry actress ala-Anne Curtis).

February 2011 – Naghahanap ako ng resources noon sa internet tungkol sa running hanggang sa mapadpad ako sa isang website – http://www.barefootdaves.com  Ang website na ito ay aking sinundan (‘follow’ ang term dito sa web, hindi po ako stalker) para updated din naman ako sa running.  Madali makilala ang owner ng website na ito sa mga road race ‘pag Sunday.  Ang haba kasi ng hair ni Barefootdaves (BFD)…lalaki sya, okay!  =)

Minsan na ako nagtanong kay BFD sa website nya.  Hindi naman sya suplado, pati sa Facebook friendly naman .  Ilang buwan ko sya naka-chat pero bihirang-bihirang-bihira at tungkol lang lahat sa running….SOBRANG WALA LANG.  WALANG MALISYA!  Hindi ako defensive…pero kay BFD ata baka may malisya.  Tanungin nyo na lang sya.

Sa RU3, November 2011, 32km category – mula Buendia palabas ng Roxas Blvd may maingay na nag-uusap sa tabi ko…medyo annoying nga eh.  So tumingin ako sa left, pati na rin sa right, at nakita ko si ‘long-hair’, este BFD na naka Team Alpha 1 singlet!  Aaminin ko sa world wide web sa pagkakataon na ito na somehow, ‘starstruck’ ako sa presence ni BFD (slight lang ha)…pero walang malisya, isa nga kasi ako follower ng kanyang blog (pwede mag-explain).  Sa ilang pagkakataon na magkatabi kami sa kalsada, naisipan ko mag ‘hi’ or ‘hello’ pero hindi nya ko napapansin, ni hindi man lang sya tumingin sa ‘kin…kaya nasabi ko na lang kay Jay (SM Runners) – “kasabay pala natin si Barefootdaves.”

Tumingin ako sa left, pati na rin sa right…si BFD!
PEG: Nakita ko lang. Hindi ko crush. Walang malisya.

Nagsimula din ako mag-blog last year para magkaron ng online backup ng ilang mga alaala, resilient na ang web compared sa Alzheimer’s kaya mabuti na din na may online backup.  At sa isang post ko noon November 2011, nagulat na lang ako nang may magpost ng comment …walang iba kundi si…hindi si Derek (ayyyyy)…kundi si BFD!!!  Wala pa itong malisya.  As in, chill lang kami pareho.  Flattered lang ako sa idea na isang kilalang runner-blogger si BFD, na para bang ang trivial ng blog ko sa runner na katulad nya pero heto sya at nag comment pa!

At dahil sa mga pag-comment na yan sa blog, naniniwala na ako ngayon sa sinabi ni ADD ng SM Runners…”para-paraan lang yan!”  Wink, wink….

At kung sa paanong paraan, itutuloy natin mula sa Mundo ng Running patungo sa mga Keso sa Part III….  =)

Part I – Single, Happy, Sexy and I Know It (not another John Lloyd movie)

Paunawa

Ang akdang ito ay nakalimbag sa wikang Tagalog.  Sa mga hindi sanay, ang matagalan pagbabasa ng mga ganitong akda ay maaring magdulot ng pagdurugo ng ilong (nose bleed).  Basahin lamang kung iyong kakayanin.

Sa mga taong tumatangkilik ng mga pelikula ni John Lloyd sa Star Cinema, akin lamang pinapakiusap na huwag ihalintulad ang post na ito sa kanyang mga pelikula.  Moment ko ‘to!  So please sit back and relax!

Halimbawa lang ng isang John Lloyd Movie (Star Cinema and Viva Films)
Year 2009

Part I – Single, Happy, Sexy and I Know It

Sa pagkakilala ng mga taong naka-trabaho ko na, ako ay may kakayahang magpalit ng anyo – from tweetums to dragon lady sa ilang segundo lamang.  Pinangingilagan ako ng mga taong hindi alam ang ginagawa nila dahil sinasabi ko ang mga bagay na kailangan kahit ayaw nila marinig…in my most kontrabida tone, “Because I can. (eyes roll)”.  Hindi naman ako lumalabag sa karapatang pantao, ngunit ganun pa man, ‘intimidating’ pa din ang aura ko…kaya siguro hanggang ‘dating’ lang ako dati, hindi umaabot sa ‘in a relationship.”  (Yun oh!)

AVP = Assigned to Various Positions, Assigned to Various Projects
PEG : BUSY AKO!!!

May ilang eksena din naman na sinasabi ng ilan na nasa akin na siguro lahat maliban sa true love (well, ako na!!!)…hindi ko ito tiningnan na kakulangan…ang katwiran ko kaya nga may bokasyon na ‘single blessedness’ para sa mga taong katulad ko na may bracket na papasukan – kung may aliping namamahay at aliping sagigilid nga, di ba???  Think, Araling Panlipunan 101.

Hindi naman siguro ako si Bitter Ocampo para sabihin na hindi din lahat ng ‘in a relationship / in an open relationship / engaged / married’ ay totoong masaya…eh di sana, totoo ang mga katagang ‘…and they live happily ever after…”

Hindi din naman po ako ang proverbial Iron Lady.  Si Madam Margaret Thatcher yon, hindi si Meowth (ehem, ehem).  Meron din ako mga eksena na masaya sa una, pero bad break up sa bandang huli (mga tipo ng it’s-not-you-it’s-me). Yun ang mga panahong nilunod ko din ang sarili ko sa alak at pagnagmamaneho ako pauwi ay para bang All By Myself ni Celine Dion at Alone ng Heart ang mga awitin ng aking buhay. Sob-fest!  Ang mga bagay naman na ito ay nabanggit lang ngayon, at ganap ko na nalampasan ng bonggang-bongga!

Madami pang masayang mga bagay na pwedeng gawin sa buhay.  I did just that.  Nagpakasaya ako sa buhay, pati pag reach out sa mga anik-anik na bagay, ginawa ko din at nag-uumapaw naman ang puso ko sa saya.  Ilang beses ko din nasabi sa sarili ko na kaya pala ‘single blessedness’ ang tawag dito, with matching smile in my heart ito.

PEG: I work hard. I play harder.

Single, happy, (at blog ko ‘to) sexy and I know it.  San ka pa?

Habang nadadagdagan ang aking edad, nababawasan din ang investment ko sa dating/getting-to-know yada, yada/potential relationship.  Mas gusto ko pa mag-invest at mag-ipon para sa retirement ko para naman may pambayad ako sa nurse na mag-aalaga sa akin…realistic lang naman ako.  As if wala na ata talagang true love sa panahon na ito; peaceful co-existence, pwede pa.  Yan na halos ang dumikit sa utak ko na parang sticky note hanggang sa…  =)