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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Pit, fish, pet

Although my sister AJ has willingly accepted the unspoken responsibility of taking care (i.e. cleaning, feeding and the like) of the tiny fellas housed in a glass that occupy one corner of our living room, I decided to be nice and offered extra pair of hands to help her arrange their place Sunday morning.

It only took us a handful of white shells and dark colored stones and a bagful of creamy pebbles to add some oomph and character to it...

...and here goes the finish product:

Right side view:

a closer look..

Left side view:


To date, there are 17 fishes in the aquarium and 7 baby fishes in a separate glass.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Tongue in cheek!

How can you give a good whacking to a misbehaving toddler who cleverly wriggles his way out of a possible sticky situation by passionately covering your face with very wet kisses and unabashedly saying Bah-bu* over and over again until he hears the expected I-love-you from you?

Pleeeeeeaaaase. Tell me. Because I am going nuts with this gentle maneuver.

It is really so so endearing that it always works! I’m always blown away with this tactic.Completely.

* Bah-bu is my son's way of saying I love you.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I am also thinking...

Right now, here are some things that occupy my mind:

1) Home security. After the Saturday incident (I am just thankful to the Greater Being in heaven that at least all of us in the family are unharmed), I am considering the possibility of increasing the height of our fence and installing a burglar alarm system (which may dissuade people with bad intentions from trespassing our property but will not really stop them);

2) I am thinking of brown havaianas slippers I saw in the mall a week ago. To buy or not to buy…

3) The discoloration on my back, arms and shoulders. Is a result from my gardening session last Saturday morning. My hand, they overrule my mind sometimes and before I knew it, I was already thumping ang puffing, pruning, planting and digging deeper on earth;

4) Diapers and how to dispose them. In this country, we have 3 popular ways of disposing our garbage. First, we eternally wait for the collector with their rickety-rackety trucks, that seemed to pass our way only once a year. Second, we burn them, and purposely forgetting how this can be hazardous to one's health damaging to the environment.Third, throw the garbage in some uninhabited piece of property/land (Some even throw trash right at their doorstep! Yikes!);

5) After that Saturday incident, I really, really need to de-stress. A salon trip perhaps?

6) I am thinking that I really should run and get going. Go back to that macro, be its slave for a few hours and finish it...So off I go NOW.

Bath buddies

I already have the loads of goodies from EQ Dry . Yipee!

The two pouches separately containing the Frog bath accessories (mat, robe, slippers and sponge) and another one Tiger set (which I will be giving to a nephew since one set for Matt is already enough) were handed to me yesterday by our ever-reliable guard.

(The mats and Matt's pair of froggy slip-ons; not included in this pic: frog robe -still wet and the sponge - at large!)

(update! already found the smiling frog sponge)

I traded in and sent the wrappers I've saved for like almost year, a couple of weeks ago. (I was also able to redeem some premium items last year, by just sending the heaps of the plastic wrappers I accumulated since Matt's birth.).

Being a packrat isn't so bad after all... Plus. I'm being friendly to the environment by properly "disposing" these plastics, ayt? Let's just say it's good riddance!

Anyway, my son loves his Froggy set. He's having a blast stomping and tapping his feet in those soft froggy slip-ons, and he's treating the smiling frog sponge like his best bud (he kisses and hugs it, making it impossible for me to use it as a sponge just yet).

(Dear tot with his very green slip-ons)



And just thinking, how many babies, toddlers out there who wear diaper? And how many in a day? A week? A year? A decade? Tons and tons of diaper trash must be piling up everywhere around the globe. Millions and millions and millions.

And how do we dispose these?

Monday, May 28, 2007

When your home is no longer HOME

I always feel secure and safe in my parent’s house. It is not big but it’s homey. It lacks the trappings of a 21st century house but it is comfortable. It is my home and I practically live here all my life. (I do not live in a subdivision or some posh village but our neighborhood presents amiable elders and all too familiar faces). It is my refuge, a little haven from all the noise and disorder that characterized a city.

But just last night, this belief was shamelessly shattered.

Unknown to us, “some activity” was already underway just outside our house (but still within the property’s perimeter) while we – my father, mother and I- were seated around the dining table with every intention to sup (Matt was already asleep). The pitter-patter of the rain provided the perfect cover.

My sister (AJ), who came home just in time to witness this “activity,” stopped in her tracks, so shocked to even unlatch the gate. Frozen. At the sight of my sister doing the motions of opening the gate, this intruder retreated, scooted off and took flight ober da bakod, with some of our wet garments in tow.

Ashen-faced AJ then nervously called my father and said that she saw somebody, whom she initially thought was my father, hauling off the clothes we left hanging outside to dry during the day (we didn’t have the time to tidy this up earlier because some relatives turned up in our doorsteps as soon as we arrived from our barber trip).

Gasp! Aghast. We were horrified when we heard this (And it was not even 8PM when this happened).

Instinctively, I secured the locks of the back door. My father shot off the front door, outside the gate to the dark night in record speed, barefooted. My mother darted off to check our clothes, or what was left of it. Through, the commotion, I was able to bring my father his slippers. Someone, maybe it was my sister (or was it my mother?) brought out the flashlights.

We didn’t track down the thief (but we didn’t expect to anyway). But we did recover heaps of clothing and some unmatched slippers (mine and my sis’) haphazardly scattered just outside our fence. He must have left all these in his hurry to flee, scurrying in the dark with only few pieces of wet clothing. But had it not for my sister's arrival, all these would have been a part of somebody's wardrobe!

I felt so harassed. So violated.


And today, on my way to the office, I cannot help but feel concerned and apprehensive at leaving family members at home. OMG, I hope I can dispel this feeling of being unsafe in my own home. Indeed times are hard. Ahh, so disturbing thought. So stressful.

Dear Lord, protect us. Ug ikaw na bahala sa adtong tawhana.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

The needle

The previous days off I had, I was trying to stitch and repair some of Matt’s PJs and shorts. (Yup, I do know how to sew, I even consider sewing as a form of relaxation, next to gardening). But because I ran out of time, I carefully stuck the needle through the remaining unpatched PJ, folded and stashed it in a corner in my sister’s room, with every intent to get back to the task as soon as I could smuggle some time (I always store things in my sis' room, esp. those which pose imminent danger to a very curious toddler).

Thursday night had me looking for the previously tucked garment. But it was nowhere in sight. Gone. Not on the table, the bed, no, it was not in all the four corners of her room. Panic slowly gripping me by the throat, I asked Mama if by any chance she’s seen it (knowing that she sometimes cleans my sis’ room when it gets too messy to the eyes). Said, she’s not sure but she must have found the garment (obviously without the needle) and laid it among Matt’s clothing. Maybe. In his cabinet!

I gritted my teeth. Try as I might, but I did blow my top, I snapped and said totally not cool things to my mother ( I know, I know. It’s so wrong and I’m sorry..). But all I could think of then was the possible harm it could bring to a one-year-old child.

So distressed was I that I examined my son’s sleeping form, head to toe, (took off his shirt and pajama) to see if there was a sign of puncture. All clear, thanks God. I also ransacked Matt’s cabinet and inspected all of his garments, piece by piece. Without much success, I hit the sack feeling defeated. Troubled. The next day’s search proved to be fruitless too. Fretful, I tried not to dwell much on the "could-have-beens" but instead hoped that it was anywhere else but in our room.

Saturday morning. I was preparing my son’s bag (because we’ll be bringing him to the barber later in the day) when I came across a neatly folded PJ inside it. Unfolding it revealed a very thin and tiny, silvery form of the needle still stuck through it, in the exact postion where I left it! So there it was all this time!

*Sigh* You cannot imagine how relieved I was. And you cannot imagine that a very tiny object, a little-over-an-inch in length, could cause me so much worry.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Times and times like this..

I prefer that the blog entries I post are all original. Almost always. ( No, wait a sec. I am not blowing my own horns here. Far from it really.).

But then originality is too broad in context. And too ambiguous. Because one cannot really conceive something alone, right. We are affected with what goes around us. Stimulus. And sometimes, we feel and think and act the way we do because of what we see (and experience) others do. Even emotions are too base and natural, that they are not original. Get the drift? So.. But I will not be talking about these things..

What I just want to say is all these entries are my own. My own thoughts. Like it or not.

***Although I try not to sound too assertive, intolerant, discriminating and mean in the way I express my thoughts but maybe along the way, I made a lapse. If I did I claim sole responsibility over these comments and opinions. I tried and am still trying. To be positive at all times. Yay.

And some topics may come across as irrelevant and trivial. Silly, maybe. Boring at times. But hey, give me a break, this is my little nook in the cyberworld. ***

Take your pick. And accuse me of anything then. Presumptuous. Proud. All, except piracy. (Until now. But can you really call this piracy? Another issue, huh.)

But really, I made an exception today. By posting a message I received in my email which I found oddly interesting and quite funny to some degree. (Posted this in a blog dedicated to my son, so I will remember to read it to him by the time he can understand these things. Or he may read it himself. Whatever comes first. I hope Blogspot will still be alive when that time comes.)

Did I just break some law? I hope no one fires a gun.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Diarrhea in print

Over the week-end, someone told me that reading has poisoned my mind. Ouch. (And it didn’t help that it came from a loved one. Because the people we love most also have the power to hurt us most, right? A cliché, but is totally true)

Maybe you’d have expected tongue-lashing that ensued after receiving this comment. But no, there was no such scene.

I found it reasonable to stay silent and put things in proper perspective first (I always try although there were times I fail at this resolve), rather than act out in an impulse and out of some negative emotions.

I could have easily ignored the comment like what I did in the past but I’ve been mulling over that statement and I would really like to clear things out. Once and for the last time. And maybe let off some steam the better way (?).

So here’s my 70 centavos' worth:

Thanks for the honesty. For mustering enough courage to tell me what you thought straight to my face. You may have reasons for coming up with such remark.


It was quite unfair. It really is unfair, because you have not even read what I’ve read. Or maybe you’ve read some, but it still is unfair to make generalization.

Reading has always been my way of entertaining myself. And excuse me if I’m more drawn to reading “life” materials (I always classify books this way: fiction for non-real life stories like pocketbooks; food for materials that tackle kitchen maneuvers like cookbooks; life for materials that cover topics about living like inspirational books, how-to topics and health subjects; technical for materials that cover a specific field, i.e engineering, IT.). Reading real-life experiences interests and amazes me. It gives me a glimpse of a world I have not experienced, of feelings I have not known, of places and things I have not seen, of the sounds I have not even heard of after 29 years of existence, of tastes and scents. Maybe I do not bury my head much on technical matters (like you do), but please do not take it against me that I like to learn about some subjects that may not be that important from your standpoint

has helped me. Helped me put things - emotions, thoughts, actions - in proper perspective. Helped me resolve personal issues, with the negativity within and around me. It is helping me. Period.

It also gets me informed about some topics. I cannot say how well or how big the chunk of info I get and absorb (because I don't think I am not one of those lucky fellas whose mind works like a sponge), but at least I learn a bit. Even just a bit. The unknown really scares me. And all the more so with the thought of not knowing anything. At all. It just scares me off my wits! And I didn’t “poison” myself with these infos so I can be Ms Know-It-All. Just chalk it up to my being human, thus, the innate hunger for knowledge and the endless quest of it.

So I dunno, maybe it’s the way I ask some questions. I apologize for coming out too strong. Maybe you find my asking offensive, I’m sorry. But puhleeeease do not mistake it as suspicion at my end. I am only trying to verify some of the things I’ve read. And I am also interested in your ideas, your opinions. So consider it a compliment and be flattered that I am more than hinting my interest in how your mind runs! I am showing it, for God’s sake!

I hope you understand.

Oh, one more thing. I saw this book I gave you years ago, it still looks new and the same from the outside –still neatly wrapped in its original plastic. Please do me the favor of tearing down the plastic, and reading the book. I would greatly appreciate it. (And if it is not possible to carve the title in your heart, just promise me you will always remember it because it’s an absolute truth. Mwah.).

And I really hope I am not being mean now.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Think about..

The conversation below had me thinking.

Me, referring to Matt's vegetable-eating attitude: Matt has definitely outdone you.

Hubby, in a kidding manner: Kids always outdo their parents. Don't you think so?

Picture this: a software program or maybe a hardware design. After sometime, there comes an enhanced version, something better from the previous one. Maybe appended with a patch that fixes the bug or defect in the previous one. Then, there's the latest version that has exceeded the last one. Improved, with more add-ons.

Okay that's that. But that's not what I'm talking about here.

Humans. Generation after generation. Do we, the kids, offspring, really become the "improved and enhanced" version of our roots?

Lemme tick off some aspects and compare myself to my parents or maybe one of them.

In academics, maybe yes. I've become an engineer (but in the first place, that's because of them. Because they sent me to an institution to get a degree. But that's not in question here, aaryt..).

Economics. Let's just say I earn a little more than one of them did. And still if we sum both of my parents' salary. But what meager income they earn, my Pa (with Mama) was able to send us to school. All of us 5 sibs! And I still cannot speak if I can do that to Matt (and the coming kids) as well. My will is there. I hope and I pray. But we'll never know what the future brings, right? Or whether I'd still earn much decades and decades from now. Or how much moolah do you need to be able to pay for the tuition fees then? Or does a burger still cost 20-30 bucks years from now? **my heartbeat is racing when I consider the last few sentences I made here..ahh, anxiety...fear**

Asset-wise. Maybe. Investments, appliances, a lot ( smaller than the land where my parents' house was built and still without a house yet). Far from being so way ahead of them really. But maybe with the few material possessions I have acquired. ... (trailing because I am hesitating in making this a part of my consideration..)

But in character, am I an improved version of my parents? Mentally? Physically? Spiritually? Socially?

Does my genome (total genes) gets mutated to make me a better human being?

I cannot tell. I have no answer. Even the slightest.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Oh, man..

Yesterday, we received a sad news from my brother, who went back to his assignment a couple of days ago. (And who also taught my son the term away* in his brief week long vacation because he'd constantly and playfully infuriate young Matt and bring him to tears.)

The junior officer who was (who graduated from PMA in 2006) assigned in Abra, in another company (or was it battalion?), died. Gunshots from encounters with a number of guerrillas from the left wing that left numerous casualties, he said was the cause.

You bet my mother is being a MOTHER! And a worrywart mother at that. Worried of the safety of my brother. Of his life in the military service. Of what is happening in this country... Of other countless things only a mother worries about.

So glad, he'll be off from possible counter-attack measures for a little while because he'll be studying somewhere for three months. However short it may be, it is a welcome respite. (We really feel that it's too short. And I kinda wonder if he could extend his studies to years. Or couldn't he just be in a military school for like forever? )

Note: *away as in inaway (Tagalog) or gi-away (Bisaya) or heckle (English).

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


We have new inhabitants in our house, which the dear tot at home candidly calls "pit."

Last night, my sister and my cousin finished setting up a "room" for them in the house.

Here they are:

There are over ten of them in the house (but still I am not sure if I can use the term "school" for them).

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Great mornings!

Waking up every morning is lovelier this time of the year.

Reason: Son.

I still wake up to the usual cluttered bedroom. Books. Clothes. Toys. Strewn on the floor.

Reason: Son.

But really, I have more reason to call every morning beautiful. Because Matt is learning to start his day right and making me start mine right as well. Every morning, he would call out my name, once, twice.. And if I stay motionless (sometimes I'd do this on purpose) and unable to keep my eyes wide open (always do), he would hold my head and give me a very long wet kiss (because he does it with his mouth wide open). Saliva, everyone. But it is so sweet, I could cry.

And every time he tells me "Bah-bu" (his way of saying I love you), all my sore, tired muscles and other aches just go away.

Although I am not sugary sweet, I try to hug and tell him I-love-you every so often, conquering my inhibitions (in showing affection) at the same time. And looks like I am already seeing the first fruit of what I've sown, of teaching by example.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Already scribbled the ballot

Today, I exercised my constitutional right to vote. Hoping that this one vote would make a difference. Period.

***As I am saying..err, writing this, I am tempted to write more. There really is a whirlwind in my mind. Oooops. Halt, halt. Half of me is prodding myself to say it, aloud. And to write it, boldly. (Breathing deeply).

But I am willing myself to stop, and stopping myself, I really will do now. So I am ending this sentence with a 'period' that really means period before I explode into torrents of thoughts, and bore everyone with an endless blog entry about the (depressing) political climate in this country. Maybe some other time.(Sigh) ***

A salute to all mommies!

For all the matter what, we , children , could never repay.

The expected and unexpected sacrifices..ahh, the monogram of motherhood.

The undeniable pain and hurt we -children- have caused you..that started perhaps even before giving birth.

For the overflowing basket of guidance, strength, courage..and sooo much more.

And the endless bet that it is unconditional!

Thank you. Happy Mother's Day!

Sunday, May 13, 2007


Finally. I have seen BORAT. And I'm so glad that I was able to watch the film (in the office!). At last. Alright, alright, I'm kinda late. But better late than never, so goes the cliche.

Anyway, the film is about a Kazakh journalist who was sent to the great USA to observe and learn about its culture.

When I saw print ads of this film on the newspaper months (or was it a year) ago, I was intrigued. And honestly, I couldn't quite get it off my mind. But movie watching was out of question, given that I have a tot to care of and time for some silverscreen viewing was and is the least of my concerns. So I missed its showing in the local theater. And time for home viewing is limited, too. But I was able to read reviews of this and needless to say, I'm all the more intrigued and silently longing to get a copy and watch it. Hah, at last.

Wacky, crazy film. Silly. It is pretty hilarious.

A dash of sarcasm here. And some toilet humor there.

Oh well, a little slapstick in some ways but you will not miss the sarcasm in the way the film tackles sensitive and controversial issues, like the war with Iraq or the race issues (about the Romanian and the Jews). Ironically and unexpectedly, it is witty in that sense too. (The film is full of ironies).

A carefully crafted satire. Mind blowing funny! Two-thumbs up!

I love it. But I don't think I can recommend this to nerds who don't have the humor nerve to laugh at themselves or at life's awkward moments, and maybe in all circumstances.

Starring Sacha Baron Cohen

Thursday, May 10, 2007

The verdict

The result of the driving accreditation I took a week ago came yesterday.

The recommendation I got was 3 months buddy driving for a total distance of 2000km.

Tsk. Tsk.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Bro and his magic tabo

The last time I saw my brother (and his magic tabo) was in January. He was home for the (post Christmas) holidays and was home for just a week.

His being in the Army is the reason of all the absence and distance (his present assignment is somewhere in the highlands of Abra) , but to which we have long accepted and expected. Because he is barely home, every homecoming is always something to prepare for and worth celebrating.

So when he announced days ago that he will be visiting us, we were so excited (we are still excited) . We anticipated his homecoming. And we also anticipated for his tabo. The one he brings with him anywhere he goes. For some reason that eludes me (and my family). Unusual, huh? Imagine, traveling some thousand miles, boarding buses and a plane, from the mountains of Abra all the way to CDO, carrying a tabo. Eccentric.

Swear, it is eternally in his bag. And he carries it in his backpack so that wherever he goes, if he has his bag, it goes with him too. Like a constant companion. Like a spouse or in his case (because he is still unmarried), a girlfriend. Like a shadow.

Apart from the possibility that it is used as holder for pens, even toilettries but which I find strange because one could opt to use a smaller, space-saving and handy pouch for such purpose, I really am clueless as to his reasons. And so, I call it his magic tabo. A recycled car lubricant/oil product container made of plastic material. And from memory, I believe it is black, maybe gray in color.

Any idea, anyone? If you have, please do not hesitate to comment :=)

Note: Tabo (in bisaya, we call it kabo) is a mini-bucket. Some are made of plastic material, others are tin (from tin cans). It maybe used as a water dipper (minus the handle).

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

The Holiday

Stars: Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet

Hubby loves it. And he brought me a copy during his recent visit. (Thanks, mwah!)

And I was lucky enough to have hubby to attend to kid (thanks again, mwah, mwah!) which gave me enough time to watch it. And I love it too (but not because hubby loves it).

It's a story about two heartbroken women who decided to switch houses, with one in LA and the other in Surrey, S.E. England.

It's cheesy, mushy, sweet, poignant - it made me shed some tears (but then I cry even with films like Cheaper By The Dozen), but some parts were pretty dragging- maybe boring. But in its entirety, it's a nice one.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Part of..

I am a mother. And being one plus oh, the unexpected part of mothering requires me to be a wanna-be nurse like today. No, my son is not ill, thanks God.

I just spent the entire afternoon (being my day off), bandaging and stitching up the wounded.. uhmm, books of my son with the ever reliable Scotch tape.

In their worn-out and tattered state, it is almost unbelievable that they are only in my son’s possession for nearly a year, some a little over a year. And looks even more impossible to salvage them. The oldest acquisition of them all was the Nursery Rhyme Book I used to read to Matt long before I have given birth to him, that was nearly 2 years ago. And looking at its hideously over-used pages (that one would probably think I have it with me for ages), brings memories of my pregnancy. Oh forgive me dear for getting melodramatic but it really is my favorite as well as my son's.

So here comes Mama with a Scotch tape in hand and a pair of scissors in the other, and a dash of resolute determination to boot. A trick here and there and I might just improve their state.

Hours later, after doing everything that I could, I believe I repaired most of them to almost mint condition, some to their functional state.

Saturday, May 05, 2007


I flunked the driving accreditation and I wanted to shrug my shoulders and flippantly say I'm good, I'm okay but I know that wouldn't come out right.

I did flunk the driving accreditation.

The what?!@!. C'mon now, don't make me feel so bad more than I already am. Sniff, sniff. I am already down with the "greens." Kermit says it's the "greens" so blame him for the term. Obviously, I've been watching more than enough Sesame Street these days. With the ever active tot Matt. Anyway, I am getting ,in human language, bluer and bluer I could pass up as a wallpaper of the sky or be the sky and not get noticed that it has taken a human form. I just feel so defeated, so sore. Depressed. Miserable. Low. Sad. All that and more. (Maybe theatrics but partly true.)

Yup, I failed the goddamn actual exam. I rarely cuss, next to never but just lemme have my time now. I lost it! Flunked! Arrrgh! No official email was released yet but I know I must have been recommended for 10-year development plan in driving!

What happened? I was in the office at almost 10AM, my father drove me to the office in mad rush. When I came, the guys had just started taking their turn with the wheel. So I waited. Lunch time came but the line of guys for accreditation wasn't even halfway through. So I ate my lunch and waited again. 1 PM...2 passed quickly as it came... 3 went by. A little over 3, I was all nerves thinking that I'll be having my turn anytime now. But the fellow incharge said he'll have to make a go for the city driving with the guys first. Kaboom. I could have yelled, do you want to give me my chance or what? But I don't want to screw up my chances. (And did I mention that I was the only female specie to queue for an accreditation then? Uh-oh). So I retreated in silence, fuming, nevertheless. I waited again. 4PM came and there was still no sign of getting my turn. Might as well sleep.

And sleep, I did. Really did. For over an hour. Rested, oh yes. But grouchy as old Max. And irritated to say the least, because (can you believe it?) the car (used for the accreditation) was still not parked outside as I had hoped. No, not even its shadow. Kablaam.

Bummer, in a major way. So you see, even before I took the wheel, I was already having the time of my life.

After what seemed like ages, I finally took the driver's seat. Because I am barely 5 ft tall, I made major adjustments to the pick-up seat so that reaching the clutch pad when I flex my ankle is possible. (Never mind that it's not comfortable, it could never be when I had to flex my legs and ankle all the way every time I step on the clutch, which is always!). And its mirrors, so I have at least a vision of the motorists and pedestrians around me. As I took hold of the steering wheel which dominantly and menacingly occupied all spaces, I had this silly thought of a 3-yr old perched on the dump truck's driver seat. (Really, the odds are far more than I expected. I couldn't stop thinking I stand a fair chance if I drive a sedan for accreditation but that would be dreaming for the moon).

Anyway, I went past through the gate to the road without a hitch. Without a hitch, all right but guilty as hell of committing a sin of omission-- of forgetting to use the seatbelt! In my frantic state to get over the exam, I completely forgot to fasten my seatbelt, which was silently dangling by my side like a miserable fool. Major sin! (I always use the seatbelt despite the example of around 99% of the drivers this side of the globe who don't seem to know of its existence or if he does, never use it. And just when my life depended on it. Urgh, some good impression I made there!). But it's never too late to correct myself, so after my initial err, bewilderment, I stopped and put the belt in place.

I was already revving to 2nd, then 3rd gear. Through the crooks and bends, I saw myself driving like a girl worthy to be in a James' Bond movie. Suave. Cool and.. At this opportune time, a party of our canine friends chose to cross the road and I hit hard on the brakes. Kaboom. The fellow in the passenger seat then opened his mouth and gave me a dose of the animal rights lecture. He was saying respect over and over again as if I'm some animal serial killer. I wasn't going to hurt anybody, was I? And that's why I put the brakes into good use, right? One more comment and I would have retorted. Good thing, he must be a mind-reader because he shut his mouth at the right second. Haaay, I could only roll my eyeballs skyward (and to think that I was driving!).

But I did find time to redeem myself. The drive way back to the office was fairly smooth, I almost congratulated myself. If not for that stupid stone the size of a regular baseball cap that appeared out of nowhere and sat in the middle of the road some hundred meters away from the office, I could have nudge the fellow beside me and coaxed him to forget about my previous blunders. But it must have been my lucky day and lucky me that at this very important day, the stars chose to shower me with cute little surprises in neat packages called obstructions, distractions, difficulties, and whatnot. And trust me, I never run out of ways to make a mess of my chances (if there had been any from the start). And oh the stone, it caught me by surprise and in my confusion, I miscalculated my way, hitting it maybe by the side of one wheel and making it fly under me. I would have imagined the finale of this ride was a thunderous applause like in the movies but no, mine was an audible metal clunk. Toink!

So the moment I parked the truck, I carefully disengaged myself and walked out of the car without speaking a word to that fat, short guy in the passenger seat. I came home feeling dejected. But as if the humiliation I've been through was not enough, my number one critic, who is also called Papa, enumerated a totally looooong list of what to improve in my driving that I could only pant and gasp for air. I just wanted to cry and tell him to patronize me just this one time (although I've always been into the do-not-patronize-me advocacy all the time). But in my glum state, I found it reasonable to just keep my mouth shut this time, albeit with so much difficulty and retreat in my private mental space. In the verge of tears. Haaaay. What ever happened to the Bond girl wanna-be, I can only guess!

Friday, May 04, 2007


The recent visit my husband had at home was a blast. I had my time for some film watching. He had his much-needed bonding time with Matt.

And judging from my son's reaction at times his father's gone out of his sight for bladder break or bath or for some reason, I can very well say that his shrieks and wails were enough indication of his attachment. And looks like he's become even more fond of Papa because at times, he needed more than just my hug and my "It's okay, Mama's here" line, which always soothe him in the past.

And one time, while hubby was on the phone, Matt blurted out "bah-bu" which is his baby-talk version of "I love you."

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Comic relief

Let me share this one photo taken end of April in the Waterfront Cebu.

There I was attending an otherwise boring event had it not been for this person who perked up the mood with his seriously funny adlibs.

Ever heard of the comic duo, Ariel and Maverick? (Who? )The comedians who have their faces plastered on a billboard along North and South Expressways. The vintage car collectors, so I heard.

So that's Ariel with me. (Who, again? I heard somebody ask, do I suppose to know him? in the background). Umm, they are not mainstream popular but they have their share of fame. One of the dynamic duo, commonly known for their outlandish and uber colorful outfits, also stars in a TV show with partner Maverick called Totoo TV at ABC5. And recently I learned that the long-haired Ariel also has a daytime job with one telco in the country, our mother company. I saw his name listed in our database, whoa!

Man, believe me, it was a riot when he showed up. The uncanny odd pieces that made up his whole get-up, like his ring with a diamond stone the size of a fist that one could see it glitter from a mile distance, were already tickling the funny bone. On top of that, I think the crowd just couldn't resist giving in to his astonishingly funny comments in laughing fits. You could see everybody's tonsils! And I was laughing so hard bordering to hysterics that tears popped in my eyes. A barrel of laughs, really!

I rarely go up to famous personalities to have a picture taken with them or have an autographed signed (I'm sort of the type who try to play it cool or pretended to be) but hey, for somebody who made a difference that night, I think it's all worth it.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Must be..

I was supposed to post an entry about my encounter with a comedian in showbiz last night had it not been for a head-splitting headache I got which prompted me to go home 4 hours earlier than usual.

By the time I got home, I barely had time to eat dinner before I retired to bed. I was too darn tired and a little sick. I must have been asleep even before my head hit my pillow. Ah, jetlag. Must be jetlag. No other explanation to this rather strange over-exhausted feeling.

Just this morning and few minutes after 9AM, we - my colleagues and I who boarded a 48-seater plane from Mactan, arrived at CDO airport. Safe and sound and too relieved, thanks God!). When I got home, I was too happy to see my son, who stalled some of his sleeping time just to see me. Since I was not in the mood to play with him, I was relieved that he's also too sleepy to demand playing or reading with me. After the initial hugging-kissing moments, that ended with the two of us flat on our backs on our bed.

Two hours later, and less than an hour to prepare, with Matt still peacefully asleep, I dragged myself off the bed to work. Muscle-aching, head throbbing and all.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

food for thought

Today I learned that the unemployment rate in the Philippines is 7.3% (October 2006) from 7.4 (December 2005). (

And although poverty incidence has gone down from 27.2 percent of families in 2000 to 23 percent in 2006, according to the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB), this is still a good 19.9Million of the country's population. ( source: Philippine Star).
Sunday night, we - along with some colleagues traveled to Cebu for a company event. My husband was also with me because he's visited us for the weekend and was going back to Cebu.

This is the sight that greeted the passengers aboard Trans Asia last Monday in Cebu port. In the Philippines, this is a usual sight when approaching seaports, very ordinary and expected. In fact, I would have considered it very unusual and strange if upon approaching a port, they are nowhere in sight.

Aboard these wooden bancas represent a part of the poverty-stricken population of this country. They would eagerly meet maiden voyages approaching the seaports, hollering at the passengers and motioning them to throw coins. This is their way of living, their livelihood is swimming for the coins thrown off to the waters by curious turistas and ordinary passengers alike.

At one time, I was a participant to this begging-giving scene. Curious at how they would "catch" the coins in the water. But later on, like this very early morning, I only watch them silently with a flood of contradicting emotions.

I thought I have turned jaded. Maybe I have. But I also cared that a number of our countrymen lives this way. You cannot believe how many whys I would always juggle back and forth in my mind when seeing similar situations. And this instant is not an exception, no matter how many times I've seen this thing.

For one, most of these bancas have a baby on board. An infant!

Being a mother, I am always taken aback with this totally heartbreaking sight. But the initial shock of seeing infants on deck is slowly replaced with more powerful emotions. For one, I feel angry at how these people use an innocent baby to their advantage, like a props to be brutally frank. I am very well aware of what it is, a strategy to elicit sympathy from onlookers. They are really capitalizing on this and banking on the thought that passengers would throw in more money with the sight of an angel onboard. I am also sad, even depressed that they have to resort to this tactic.

But oh, call me anything you like when I do not throwing coins to them. That is not what they need. They need more than that, they need another from of livelihood. If no one throws a coin, I'm sure this will discourage them from this way of living.

I might go on wondering of the future of the babies aboard, but I also sharply remember the cliche that says, give and you will teach them to beg but teach them how to fish and they will be better off (or something similar to that effect). (But do not think that I am not feeling guilty at having said (or written) these thoughts because I am. Guilty because I could not do anything about it. I am helpless as they too are helpless.

And I must admit that seeing them again, made me think long and hard. Like the first time I saw these party of "seafarers", I am still half-amused at their quickness and agility. Half-awed at how very good swimmers they are. But at the back of my mind, I am pondering at the hard truths of living in a country like the Philippines. This also conjures up images of the rich partying, shopping and dining in extravagant places in the country. Such is the irony of life. Such is the reality.