The Best Of 2017

The best ways to describe year 2017: freaking scary, unexpected, life-changing, liberating, love, love and more love!❤️❤️❤️

January. US visa was approved. February. Came back to Coron for a birthday trip. AlDub soap premiered. March. Went by with tapings and endless bashing. April. I was back exploring Polilio Island in Quezon. Barely surviving stress! I’m a monster at work. May. BTS Live Trilogy Episode III concert. Survived! Relieved! Short trip to Baguio City with Demboy and Mamadoy. June. First mountain to conquer in 2017, Mt. Mag-asawang Bato in Tingloy, Batangas. Team building in Shercon Resort and Ecology Park in Mataas na Kahoy, Batangas. Canadian visa approved. Flew to Sterling, Virginia, USA. Bill and I personally met at the airport for the first time. Off we go to Louisville, Ohio. July. Celebrated 4th of July together and I was off with the dela Paz’s to Canada. First stop: Ontario and then the Oribiana’s in Toronto, Canada. Crossed the border back to US. Home bound. August. Art and Roc’s wedding day in Tagaytay. Explored the falls in Bolinao, Pangasinan with Mean. Waiting. Hurting. In pain. Made a life-changing decision. September. Masungi Georeserve trip. Reflecting. Thinking. Still Hurting. First movie didn’t push through. Waiting. Bored. Impatient. October. Happy Project first shooting day! November. Visited Montemaria Shrine, Batangas. Applied for a Schengen visa. December. Schengen visa was approved. Happy Project Team flew to Zurich, Switzerland for the St. Gallen shoot. First snow and winter experience!🙈 2017 is epic!❤️

You Saved Me


Sometimes I hate myself. I hate that I remember you, everything about you, our brief moments together. They were very few but somehow those memories are embedded in my head and in my heart. I can’t seem to erase them no matter how I try to hate you. The truth is I don’t know how to hate you.

You were my first love and my first broken heart and hopefully my last. I always thought I was over you the day you married her. I regret that I never paid attention to you back then. I ignored you pretending things will work on its own. I regret that I never tried to communicate with you because I was too proud and shy to do it myself. I regret that I was not too bold back then, that I never told you I love you or I will wait for you. Maybe it could have made a difference between you and me. Maybe I could have stopped you from falling in love with her.
But after ten long years, even without seeing you or hearing anything from you, my heart still knows you and I don’t know how to stop it from falling for you all over again. You came like you were never gone. You woke my heart from a deep slumber. I was doing fine living in sin. Not caring about what people think of me. I was so determined to fight for the love I thought was love but you waiver my feelings for him and I start to question why am I in this situation. Why am I stuck in a relationship that has no future? Why am I fighting for something that I cannot have and will never have? You made me question why I take all the crap when I deserve better. You made me realize that I am worth more than what I was getting. You asked me why I allowed this to happen to myself and I don’t know the answer. 
My ten long years of sinful relationship crambled little by little because you came back and you made me look at myself differently. Finally, I began to see things the way I should have seen them. I learned how unfair my relationship was. I have always been the least among his priorities and I never did question why. I always understood or say I understand even if I don’t and it was hurting me. I sucked it all up for so many years thinking it was okay. It became a habit that I’m too comfortable to break. 
You said you have a mission to pull me out from this fucked-up situation. I laughed at you pretending it was impossible to happen but I know deep inside that it was bound to happen. You were supposed to be a distraction, nothing more. I kept on reminding myself everytime we talk. I understood when you told me that you love her and nothing will come in between your marraige, not even distance. You were too honest that it hurts but you were an easy prey and I liked the challenge. I wanted revenge for the pain you caused me then and now. I wanted to prove to you that there was something wrong with your marraige. Why would you look for me after all these years? You simply said you wanted closure. You wanted to apologize for hurting me. Yet you hardly remembered what you did that hurt me the most. You told me that there’s nothing to this whether I believe you or not and you promised to leave me alone after accomplishing your mission.
I never wanted to let you go. I wanted to hang on to whatever we have, no matter what it was or how little it was. I managed to drag you into a fucked-up stuation while you tried to pull me out from mine. I never expected it to happen. You were not meant to fall for me. We were not meant to fall in love.
You were true to your words. You left. You never bothered saying goodbye because I asked you to. I knew even before something started that I would beg you to stay, that I will move mountains just to be with you. I never cared about the future. So I understood and I knew you will never give me false hope. You will always say the truth no matter how painful it was. I saw the remorse in your eyes when we were together. I knew you tried not to succumb but I’m glad you did because those moments no matter how brief and few they were, they made me really happy. 
Thank you for saving me. Thank you for setting me free. Thank you for giving up on us when I don’t know how. Sometimes I cry, longing for you but I know what happened was all for the best and I will cherish the pain you left me. It kept me sane and it will probably keep me company until I’m ready. For now, I am looking forward to better days without you…

Baler, Aurora

I went on a trip with my Hanggang Makita Kang Muli Team last July 9-10, 2016 to Baler, Aurora. We were twelve in the group including myself, Jing, Bel, Nicka, Mau, Ecka, Shaina, Karel, Klangklang, Tara, Nathan and Mary Ann. We coordinated our trip to Extreme Outdoor Club Travel & Tours who cater for group trips and offer cheap rates to maximize our trip. For 2,500 pesos per head, we were provided with transportation, accommodation and a tour guide. Some entrance fees were also inclusive in the package. 

We met at 11PM in 7 Eleven beside GMA Network building along Timog Avenue. By 12MN, we were on our way to Baler. Not all were comfortably sitting since we were fourteen inside the Nissan Urvan. 

By quarter to 6AM, we arrived in Diguisit rock formation hoping to catch the sunrise. We just took some pictures then proceed to Arboretum of Aurora in Ermita Hills. It was in Ermita Hills were evacuees ran to save themselves from a tsunami. To get to the cross, we had to trek. Picture taking and sightseeing overlooking the view of the sea. 

We had our breakfast in town where a line of carinderias can be found outside the gate of Museo de Baler. At 60-80 pesos you can get a decent meal. After breakfast, another picture taking on the Baler signage then we went inside Museo de Baler. It’s a small museum where history, relics such as paintings and old photographs of  renown people in Aurora. 

Then we visited Doña Aurora House on the other corner to check some relics and paintings and took pictures. 
We went to Smart Beach House after where we checked in. For a group of twelve persons, we were given treee rooms. Two rooms on the ground floor and one on the second floor. 

By 10AM, we were leaving for Ditumabo Falls, Mother Falls of San Luis. It was a short drive but the trek was an hour to get a glimpse of the falls. It was a rocky trail but on most parts there were cemented trail from the dam. 

Ditumabo Falls is magnificent. Taller than most falls that I’ve visited and surrounded by rocks. As expected, the water was cold. We didn’t stay long. On our way back to the parking lot, it started raining. We had to stop for a while but ended up walking through the rain to get down. 

The rest of the first day was spent in the hotel, sleeping and some were drinking and playing cards. We only went out to get dinner. 

The next day, we were up early because of surfing lessons and swimming. We ate breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant. By 9AM, we were all dressed up for swimming and the guide introduced us to some locals who are surfing instructor. Last year I was also in Baler but I didn’t get to explore it because I couldn’t stay long due work. I didn’t try surfing back then. I dread the water but this time due to peer pressure, I gave in and tried it. It wasn’t that scary mainly because I know how shallow the water was and how small the waves we were riding. 

After surfing, we checked out and proceed to find somewhere to eat lunch. Then we were brought to some souvenir shops.  

Our last destination before leaving was Balete Eco-Park where a huge Balete tree is the main attraction. You can get inside the tree through large openings in the trunk. If you’re adventurous enough, you can also try climbing it. 

It was one enjoyable and memorable trip with my team. Everyone was eager to cooperate with the itinerary. Our 6-hour trip from Manila was worth it. 


Helping Without Really Being Asked For Help

I don’t go around malls watching people or making eye contact. I barely recognize people because I am too absorbed with myself or my intension for going to the mall but today, I don’t know what force came over me. I don’t think I am sad or depressed either. I don’t have a major problem. On the contrary, I woke up happy and excited to go to SM Cubao to
register for voting. 
I must really be growing old to be this sentimental when I hardly know this old lady. I don’t even know her story and yet I feel like crying with her. I bumped into her outside Pizza Hut SM Cubao this morning while I was waiting for the van to pick me up. She was teary eyed and trying to hold hersel from crying. She was probably around 70 to 75 years old. She was alone. She was carrying a small plastic with papers. I assumed they were medical records and prescriptions. I heard her asked a security guard where to find Mercury Drug. I watched her and followed her from a far while she goes in and out from one establishment to another around SM Cubao. I am drawn to her. I don’t know why. It’s like I feel her pain or something. It’s like she’s calling for me and I couldn’t go without talking to her. I was thinking I would really regret if I don’t approach this lady.
From the looks of it, she was asking for help, soliciting money. I stood out in front of Great Image while she talked to a guy inside. She was probably explaining. I waited for her to come out. I know she didn’t get any help when she walked out and proceeded to GQ Barber Shop because I asked the guy myself. I was standing outside GQ waiting for her to come out when the van arrived honking on the other side of the street.
So when she came out from GQ Barber Shop, I gathered the courage to call her and personally ask what she’s doing. She asked me why and told me that she saw me looking and following her. She just said a few words and I couldn’t contain what I felt. I cried before she even became teary eyed. She tells me her son and grandson are both in the hospital and she’s asking for monetary help because she’s the only one left to care for them. I didn’t finish listening to her story, I couldn’t because I feel like I was on the verge of breaking down myself. It’s like my heart is gripped so hard that it hurts. I gave her a 500 peso bill, the only money I brought with me, and held her hand. I told her in tears that I hope they get better soon. She thanks me and I left. I stopped myself from crying on the way to work. I don’t want the driver to question me.
I pray that her son and grandson survive whatever illness they have right now and they be of good health. I pray that more people will notice her and have a heart to hear her story and help her. 

Sharing A Table

I went inside a coffee shop to look for a table where I can charge my dead batt phone. It was full packed. All tables are occupied. I approached a girl sitting alone in a corner table and asked permission to share. I don’t drink coffee but for the sake of sharing a table I bought a drink and something to eat. I never bothered starting a conversation with the girl since her earphones are on plus I’m too preoccupied with my phone. After a while, she finally left and I have the table to myself. 

Suddenly, someone is asking to share the table with me. I wish I could say no. So now I am back to sitting with a stranger but this time it’s a guy. I’m not quite sure about the gender though. I lack the ability to know who is who. Hahahaha!
He started setting up his Lenovo laptop on the table and I just watched discreetly. I can’t decide whether to talk to him or just ignore him completely. I just plugged my phone on the socket so it will take time to charge it completely. Ignoring him is kinda easy. The idea of talking to him on the other hand is making me feel uncomfortable. I would look like a weirdo if I suddenly struck a conversation with him. So I am writing this on my notes as an effort to divert my attention and avoid getting caught staring. It’s rude to stare.
I am bored. Clearly I have been bored sitting here in front of a stranger. I noticed he kinda look smart with his glasses on. Handsome? I don’t think so. At least not in my standards. He’s cute though. He’s busy tinkering his laptop. I’m curious about what he’s typing but I don’t dare say a word. He seemed nice… probably because he needs a table for his work. 

How do random meetings happen? I mean at this age I never tried it. I have always been skeptical and guarded around strangers. I fear meeting a freak or a murderer in the process. I just can’t seem to trust people nowadays no matter how much I wanted to. 
I wanted to get up and leave but I need to charge this damn phone so I’m stuck pretending to be indifferent. He suddenly stood up. I thought he’s going to charge his phone but he said he’s ordering. I need to leave by 6pm to pick up my watch. I’m thinking if I have the guts to start a conversation. He seems harmless.
At 36, I’ve done the scariest things and overcame the most complicated relationships but I cannot handle starting a conversation with a stranger. My emotional IQ is very low. Hahahaha! 
I have 25 minutes left to struck a conversation or maybe create a friendship. I’m over thinking again. I would probably look desperate in his eyes. But why would he think that way? He doesn’t know. I do not know him. How can he judge me. Besides, I never wanted to mingle. I was fine sitting on my own and enjoying the solitude. He approached this table to sit with me.
According to his grande mocha frap, his name is Alvin. Hahahaha! I’m a keen observer. My pride is keeping me from talking. 
I stayed quiet but I am really bored. So he suddenly started a conversation by asking if I’m waiting for someone. I was surprised. I said no. I’m charging my phone and I laughed. I don’t know how but I sort of asked him what he’s doing and if he’s a teacher. He tells me he’s a Sales Manager and he’s finishing his report. I was… “Oh I see.” Just when we were about to talk again, a girl approached our table. She must be a girlfriend. I’m making assumptions. I am so freaking ashamed of myself but I didn’t leave. She asked to sit with us too. I tell myself that I will leave when my alarm rings. She isn’t a girlfriend. I’m guessing she’s a co-worker based on what they’re discussing. I think she resigned from her former work. I am trying to continue writing this story to avoid eavesdropping. Thank God for the noise because I can hardly hear what they’re talking about even if I’m sitting close.
And we’re done! My alarm rang. I suck! I didn’t leave. I gave myself another 15 minutes to watch them. And I am listening to what they’re talking… Hahahaha! 
They’re probably acquaintance. There was no sexual tension between them. They’re comfortable with each other not too comfortable that you’d think there is some crazy romance going on around them. 
They stood and leave together. They’re going out for a dinner if I heard it correctly. They’re dating? Hahahaha! 
Maybe I should to this more often. This kind of experience makes me want to write.