Tag Archives: Magic

Travelling is Living

12 Jan

BanguiWindmills,IlocosNorte
Reverie. Bliss. Excitement. Fear. Love. Life.

All of these emotions embrace me with great intensity every single time that I travel. With each place that I set my feet unto brings me a renewed appreciation of how big and wonderful the world is. And with each of these places, I come to realize that I am no more than a speck in the whole realm of creation.

Travelling allows me to immerse in the lush of serenity of tropical rainforest, feast on the bounties of nature, and savour an invigorating scenario which brings nothing but a sense of fulfilment. But travelling doesn’t only allow my eyes to feast on scenic spots but also lets my stomach indulge in tasty treats and sumptuous food offers. The whiff of fresh foods, unlike those in fast foods, stokes a gastronomical delight bringing me into an unknown place of satisfaction and curiosity. I’ve also come to learn about each place’s glorious past thru its songs and dances. The way indigenous people live their lives in the middle of the mountain seems so simple yet very enchanting.

I’ve climbed the second highest mountain peak in the Philippines, explored the deepest chamber of caves, jumped off of a waterfall, crossed one of the longest hanging/ suspended bridge in the country. I rode in a vehicle that couldn’t almost get thru a high-waist mud as it traverses the top of the mountain.  I experienced riding on the top load of a jeepney while overlooking deadly cliffs on our way through.

I did some extreme adventures, too, like that of a somersault in a river with sharp and giant stones around. I got face to face with a python, a crocodile, and even the remaining smallest primate on this planet. I tried walking and hiking for twelve straight hours, mountains after mountains, just to get to my destination.  I rode in a roller coaster where I literally felt my body departed from my soul. I tried living in the middle of a mountain where there is no electricity but a single lamp lighting the whole house. I bathed on a river naked as it is a way of life in that village. I’ve visited museums, centuries-old churches, and unknown sub-villages. And I’ve listened to many stories by old villagers as they unveiled the secrets of the past and the stories of the World War II.

To top it all, travelling makes me a better person. It allows me to appreciate the simple things that I have. It gives me a better sense of responsibility toward nature, culture, and life itself.

So I dare you to go out and discover the beauty of the world. Head off somewhere away from the hustle and bustle of a city life. Allow yourself to get lost in the wilderness. There are a lot of surprises waiting for us to discover. While a lot of references can vividly describe how beautiful a certain place is, I tell you, it is way more beautiful and exciting if you experience it yourself.

Wherever you go, keep your wonder alive. Keep moving. Go forward. Keep your spirit adventurous. And keep it still enough to savour the beauty that moves around you, too. So go travel while you are still able and free.

P.S. Don’t forget to take photographs.

Just like today

11 Dec

When you set your feet on a new environment, on a new place, and feel like everything is fresh, feel it. Own it. When you see a natural attraction just like that of the amazing Banaue Rice Terraces for the first time, immortalize it. If not in photographs, at least in your head. Take some time to let it linger in your mind, close your eyes, and play the scenes over and over in your head. Until it becomes vivid and clear even if you no longer see it.

Just like today.

When you meet new friends at school or at a certain event, take a moment to really get to know them. Laugh with them. Share your stories and listen to their stories, too. Connect with them.  Share a glass of beer together or play the “Never Have I Ever” game. Let the fun flow naturally. And let the friendship stay even if the years keep rushing by. Even if the distance keep getting farther and farther away.

Just like today.

When you chance a moment to be with your family amidst all the hustles and bustles of work, be physically and emotionally present with them. Do anything to make that very moment memorable and full of love that you may keep the happiness in your heart even if it takes another painstaking months before you get to see them again.

Just like today.

When an opportunity knocks on your door, open it; grab it. When you’re given a chance to be a part of an important event, make it happen. Go on the streets and let your voice be heard. Support other people’s advocacy if you think it is what it takes to become an active citizen. Experience a Flash Mobilization once in your life. No matter how simple it is, if you take part in it and lets your voice reverberate throughout then it is, undeniably, fulfillment itself. Opportunities don’t come twice just like lightning that don’t strike at the same place twice.

Just like today.

When you go to a bar and feel like drinking up all night long yet you hesitate because it feels wrong, don’t linger on that feeling. Don’t let what others think dampen your excitement. Don’t keep avoiding that very moment when you can actually do what you’ve always wanted to experience somehow. Dance with the beat. Don’t deny yourself from an evening that could bring so much energy and anticipation, even just for one night. Spending a life avoiding what you’ve always wanted to do only mean avoiding yourself to be just you.

Just like today.

When you meet that someone who keeps your heart beating ten times faster than it regularly does, allow that person in your world. When the universe permits you to be with each other’s arms, hug tighter. When the starts align and lets you experience that spur of a moment once your lips meet, savor it. Close your eyes and listen to your heartbeat while the planet stopped on turning. No matter how uncertain the future is, let yourself experience the wonder of being in love.

Just like today.

When your heart is broken and you feel that burning sensation in your chest over and over again, feel it. When the pain cripples your heart to believe in love again, fight back. When it feels like nothing is going be the same again after your belief in love is crushed into tiny pieces, get up and move on. Pain goes with loving. And so is moving on.

Just like today.

Let go and feel free again. Dream big and chase after them. Stop and start anew. Kiss if you feel like kissing someone who allows you too. Cry hard and smile again afterwards. Keep travelling. Keep doing the things that make your heart filled with happiness and fulfillment. Let you be you. Truly, to get somewhere, you have to be hurt, you have to feel pain, and you have to fail at something. But keep trying. Because just like today, these things might not ever happen again. And they’ll be the days that you’ll surely miss.

12. 12. 12

Make-A-Wish Day

11 Oct

I was very busy today, like I was running for my life. But for every single hour that passed, I found myself smiling remembering the memories of yesteryears and knowing how beautiful life is unfolding before me. Only then did I realize that today is a date that happens only once in a lifetime. And I’m a part of it. WE are a part of it!

October 11, 2012. Happy Day! 😀

The cards and my true love

12 Aug

After a very long time of debating with myself whether to have my future read by a psychic or not, I finally decided to do it.

I entered the room where the psychic was. As the door closed behind us, my apprehension was growing a knot higher each second.  However, I convinced myself saying that it’s all right to do this, that there is no harm in trying it. But for the very last minute, I wanted to back out.

As I motioned to the door, the psychic said: “You are very apprehensive.” I froze and as if in a trance, I found myself sitting on the opposite side of the table, fronting the lady psychic.

“I’m sorry,” I said, my hands were trembling. I told her that this was my first time while saying to myself I actually don’t believe in fortune tellers. She seemed not to mind what I was saying even though it was obvious that I wanted to leave as quickly as she read my mind.

She began scribbling numbers on a paper as she randomly asked questions. For the first couple of minutes, she told me my lucky numbers, my interests, my achievements, my dominant characteristics, and how apprehensive I was to have the tarot cards read my past, my present, and my future.

I picked my first tarot card.

“He’s the person who is in your mind right now,” she said. I was stunned by her revelation.

As she enumerated more things about me, I felt how my uneasiness gradually faded in the background. But while the discomfort dipped down, the fire of fear started to slowly burn up.

I asked, “Do you see us together in the future?” She didn’t directly answer my question. Instead, she told me I’ll be meeting two men in the next six months who will bring significant changes in my life. She also noted that one of them will cause me an irreparable damage of whom I should really be very cautious off.

After she detailed events of my past and my personal background along with amazing predictions for my future, I was incredibly happy and scared at the same time as I left the room.

On my 23rd birthday, I once again asked for another reading from a friend. I asked an almost the same question about the matter of my heart.

“You always love very deeply. But the card says that you may not prosper in finding the one who will love you back the same way anytime soon. But you will definitely realize that you are meant for something more important, something bigger.”

Now that five months have passed after my first reading and almost a month after the second, I find myself reflecting back. While I don’t exactly believe in each of every word they predicted about my future, I still feel that twin excitement and fear I felt right after those experiences. And while I hope that they will be right about a huge blessing that will about to come in terms of my profession and aspiration, I also realistically know that those predictions are just but cautions and reminders that may guide me as I stride through my journey.

I have come to realize that while there are actually people who were blessed with an astonishing talent of reading the future and that our destiny is predetermined by something greater than any of us all, still, majority of what happens to us is within our control. That our journey of finding what makes us happy is mostly dependent on us, on our actions, and our determination to make it happen.

With that said, I know that I will always be looking forward to whatever happens tomorrow, the day after that, and maybe for the next 20 years to come. For it is the feeling of knowing that there is something exciting and very intriguing in discovering the unknown that makes life. . . life.

To the psychics’ credit, however, I must say that I am still on a shaky ground of finding the one. But for the past couple of years, I have been receiving overwhelming blessings that has been filling the empty spaces in my heart. And this for me means more than having that one true love.

19 things for 2012

12 Jan

I must admit I am one of those New Year junkies, failing to actually fulfill what I have set to attain for the New Year (sigh).

But I am not giving up yet. Since New Year’s Eve, I have already mentally noted what my resolutions will be. There has been a grand list, like 50 of them! But just as I start typing them off in my blog, I can’t seem to figure out how not to become another New Year junkie. So after reading some helpful blogs about making New Year resolutions more possible and realistic, I have trimmed down my resolutions to 19 and have given more specifics on each.

  1. Keep organized. Make a separate notebook for my organizations and my tasks in the office. Regularly fill-up my planner, too.
  2. Set priorities. First things first. Never get overwhelmed with whirlwinds both in my organizations and office works. F-O-C-U-S. Refer to my notes always.
  3. Wake-up early. My morning routine usually takes an hour and a half. I often get late since I need to head off to the office every day at 8 am because I usually wake up at 6:45, or worst, 7:15. So now, I should drag myself out of bed just as the hour strike at 6 am. Unless of course if I had a long night, specially working overtime, I still deserve at least 5-6 hours of sleep. Just in case.
  4. Sleep more. During weekends, that is. Since I usually exhaust all my energy and time every single day, from Monday to Friday, I will consider taking more time to let my body regenerate and prepare it for another bloody week at work.
  5. Be more patient. I have always been very impatient especially in waiting for people who have agreed to meet you on a set time; or people responding too slowly. I want things to keep going and beat every deadline as much as possible. And because I have been too wary of time, of deadlines, and of meeting-set-projects, I end up very, very frustrated and all the more perplexed. So this time, I will always take time to review the do’s and don’ts and will always take time to breathe.
  6. Buy myself a television. I N-E-E-D a TV! Period!
  7. A more balanced diet. Eat more vegetables (one vegetable viand thrice a week) and fruits (everyday).
  8. Value breakfast. I am a no-breakfast-fanatic. I only take coffee and head to works straightaway. This time, I won’t skip breakfast anymore. Not regularly, at least two to three times a week.
  9. Cook. I feel like losing my skills in cooking and baking so this year, I should at least cook something special and/or bake some goodies for myself. I could share it with friends, too. Cook at least twice a month (I barely have the time, I swear! My work is so taxing—travelling now and then); and bake sometime in February (Valentine’s Day!) and July (in time for my birthday).
  10. Exercise regularly. Go to gym at least once to twice a week.
  11. Read more books (one book per month). I just finished my first book for 2012—The Devil Wear’s Prada. Am currently reading Paulo Coelho’s “Zahir” and hopeful to finish it before February ends.
  12. Write more. Publish at least one blog per month despite loads of write-ups in the office.
  13. Relax. Find time to hang-out with friends to detoxify from stress and pressures from work. Go shopping or have dinner with friends once in a while, at least twice a month.
  14. Save more. Deposit 15% of my total salary to my ATM account every month.
  15. Learn another language. I should learn Spanish language! If I can’t enroll by June, I should ask someone who can teach me and by December, I should at least be able to speak in conversational Spanish. I should learn at least 20 words per month.
  16. Keep in touch with friends here and abroad. I will make a complete list of my friends whom I should be writing to and send them handwritten letters using snail mail. I was able to send at least 20 mails last year. This should be easy.
  17. Change hairstyle. I just got my hair treated for the first time for this year—long and straight. After seven months, I will get my hairs curled.
  18. Keep travelling. After going to various beautiful places around the Philippines, usually in the south, and being able to roam around New Delhi and Bangkok, I will travel to the north this time—the Cordilleras! Thanks to my work!
  19.  Love again. Majority of my posts in this blog is about what I have gone through in my relationships and how I am working on my self-love journey. I know I have come out a better, more matured person now than I ever was when it comes to falling in love. I might still have some perks and entertain some more stupidities, but I will still fall in love. After all, my heart is built to love and endure pain. Just a little more matured in dealing with this one this time.

I hope my resolutions are more specific this time. So… lemme hear yours, too!

I could be right, too

11 Jan

Sometimes, I loathe my bestfriend for completely nailing me in the head, knowing exactly what runs through my brain cells. But her ability to read me like an x-ray, I guess, is for my benefit.

At times, though, I wonder if she really has this innate psychic ability or if I am just really too transparent that I allow her (and other people) to see me bare and exposed.

But no matter how much I try to debate with this idea, I always end up realizing she was really gifted with reading my mind because she was always right.

She was right about S, my boyfriend for almost six years. It was beyond doubt when she told me that I was just trying to make myself believe that our relationship was “perfect” just because we never had any serious fight or just because our relationship lasted for more than five years. She was right because, really, I have blocked my mind from believing that S can love me as much as he does with his “first love” when signs were so vivid telling me he was just waiting for his “perfect timing” to exit. Of which, after five years and eight months, he finally bade goodbye.

She was right about M, whom I intended to call in this blog as “Mr. Charmer” and “Mr. Heartache”. She was damn right when she said that M will never be the man for me. That while M is the sweetest and most thoughtful man on earth who could make you fall in love in a split second, he is also the type of guy who can break your heart into tiny debris making it impossible to fix straightaway.

She was right about J whom I referred here as “Mr. Insensitive 1” when she gave me that sharp eye saying he is just one of those men who’ll come and go, who’ll just take and take and never minds to really give back.

She was right about P, about Y, and even about every man I eyed on every bar we’ve been before. Of course, I don’t jump right away with her intuitions even though my instincts tell me so. I have always wanted to see and find it out for myself. At the end, though (gasp!), she was always right.

And though I loathe her sometimes for being so right, I still find myself going back to her for my heart consultation—that is when I am being smitten in love. She has always been my eye when I get blinded with the red flags associated with those men I dated or trying to get involved with.

So last time, I told her about this guy whom I undoubtedly have fallen in love with. I told her that even though we seem to have “something”, I really can’t tell yet where our “thing” is going to. I related to her how lofty his dreams are and how he keeps a focus and priority on it. When I told her that I don’t know if it’s too early to tell yet whether we are going to something definable, she gave me that kind-of-stare again. The kind of sharp gaze that would wake me up into my fantasy.

With what she said, I found myself debating with the idea whether to follow her warnings this time or if I should just go on my own way and find it out for myself. But then I realize love is about taking risks. I said, if ever this love I have for him (and the unwavering patience to wait for him until he get decided) will translate into a love story and a concrete relationship, then I’d be happy, very, very happy. But if it goes the other way around, I know I’ll be ready to embrace whatever it will be. For sure I’ll be hurt again and experience that one-million-beat-per-second of my heart causing me to barely breathe nor sleep. But then, I won’t know what will happen unless I plunge into it, right?

And maybe, just maybe, this could be the start of something real.  After all, my instinct is rarely wrong, too.

12 best places I visited in 2011

5 Jan

Capping my 2011’s wonderful and worth-reliving moments won’t be complete without giving them justice through photos.

Being an innate adventure-quencher that I am, I have been to several places around the Philippines as well as outside the country. While most of the places I have been in 2011 were more of a duty,( as part of my job so I can gather stories), I always took time to capture the beauty being offered in every place I set my feet to and immortalized them in photos.

1. Taj Mahal, Agra, India

The incredible Taj Mahal! I failed to visit Taj the first time I went to India and how sad I was. So the second time around, I was very lucky to finally get so close with this majestic, one-of-its kind world's wonder. To my amazement, I even touched every wall I passed through!

2. Bangkok, Thailand

What first caught my attention during my trip in Bangkok was the emanating bright colors of taxis and 'tuktuk' all over its street. These, for me, are simple treats for the eye. They are... lovely!

One, of course, should never miss the food delights on the streets. They are so delectable! Plus they cook the food to you right away and the whiff of it makes the food all the more enticing. This, too, is best to sate the rumbling stomach after a feet gone tired. 🙂

3. Enchanted Kingom, Sta. Rosa, Laguna

The Space Shuttle Ride. It has been a childhood dream to experience the 'magic' enchanted kingdom unselfishly offers. To complete my EK adventure, I summoned all the energy and guts to ride in this space shuttle and for the first time (ever) in my life, I felt how my soul literally departed from my body! It was uber fun, nonetheless!

4. Island Cove Resort and Leisure Park , Kawit, Cavite

Island Cove, Kawit, Cavite. This is a perfect place for a get-away for at least a couple of days after hustles and bustles from work. It offers various exciting activities such as outdoor paintball field, giant chess set, biking, horseback riding and a lot more. And the pool? It is sooooo inviting you'd love to keep your body dipped for hours!

5. People’s Park in the Sky, Tagaytay City

People's Park in the Sky, Tagaytay, Cavite. This is only one of the right places to have a wide appreciation of how beautiful the southern part of the Philippines is. At this view deck, you can see the ever-famous Taal Lake plus the Canyon Woods subdivision on the opposite side. It's a sure eye-treat!

6. Villa Escudero Plantations and Resort (Border of Tiaong, Quezon and San Pablo City, Laguna)

Villa Escudero. This place brings you back to the setting of a rustic Philippines where Filipino traditions come to life and constant appreciation. Riding in a carabao-driven cart serenaded by excellent folk artists are just some of the bonuses!

7. Pahiyas Festival in Lucban, Quezon

Pahiyas Festival, Lucban, Quezon. Being one of the most-awaited summer festivals in the Philippines, Pahiyas never fail, not even once, its spectators as select houses are grandiosely decorated with multitude of colors using 'kiping', a famous Lucbanin decoration made of rice dough. This century-old festival showcases the unequaled creativity of its townspeople as it brings out a lively and colorful festive mood during this prestigious gaiety.

8. Katigbawan festival in Catigbian, Bohol

Katigbawan Festival, Catigbian, Bohol. In this celebration, the kabaws are dressed up to the nines like “kings and queens” using every material available, indigenous as well as artificial. They blaze in all their glory with their painted nails, grandiose ‘gowns’, extravagant head dresses, colored eyelashes, and complete make-up at that. Very interesting! 🙂

9. Blood Compact Site, Tagbilaran City, Bohol

The Blood Compact site, Tagbilaran City, Bohol. Now this one is a true spectacle! This particular site was made in honor of a very important event in the Philippine history done between Miguel Lopez de Legazpi of Spain and Rajah Sikatuna of Bohol. At my back is the Panglao Island which also offers an array of pristine spots one can enjoy to its maximum.

Blood Compact Site

10. Streets of Marawi City, Lanao del Sur

Marawi City. Just some of the snap shots I took while roaming around the streets of Marawi City in Lanao del Sur. All over, one can see buildings like this, the mosque for Muslims.

Marawi City street. And oh, this cute little boy. He is so angelic, isn't he? 🙂

11. Davao City

Durian fruit in Davao City. This city offers unlimited list of things to do and places to visit. But, for me, one's Davao adventure won't be complete without trying this exotic durian fruit. a very extraordinary and really a-need-courage-all challenge for first-timers is because of its foul odor that would make you puke the moment it is stuffed into your mouth. But for the second time around, you'll praise this fruit for it's exotic but mouth-watering goodness. Try it! 🙂

12. Chocolate Hills, Bohol

Chocolate Hill, Bohol. And lastly, my top favorite place--Chocolate hills. This has been one of the world's eight wonders. As to why it has named as "Chocolate hills" is because its lush green mountains magically turns into chocolate brown during the dry season.

And there you go—the best 12 places ever that has completed my 2011 and made it even better. Plus, this is my 70th post. Hooray!

The show goes on

3 Jan

It’s 2012.

I didn’t quite notice how 2011 finally gave in to its exit. The events from the past year seemed to have passed in a rapid-fire pace. And as I try to pen down my thoughts about what happened last year, I can hardly put my finger on it.

Perhaps, I was just overwhelmed with how my 2011 has turned out.

Like all the years that passed, my 2011 was full of unexpected turn of events; some were to my benefit and some weren’t. While remembering the little wishes I didfor myself in 2010, which have guided me toward dealing with 2011, I can see how my life was put on the verge of bursting forward.

My current profession has provided me with so many opportunities and room for further growing up. It has allowed me to roam around the Philippines, going to places which I thought would only happen in my dreams not until I reach 40 or something; those places which a lot of people would dream to set foot unto someday and those experiences that many people have been aiming to experience first-hand.

I have also met and made new friends who shaped my ordinary days into very special moments. They have made me realize how small things like going in a café or simply strolling under the trees could make the bond of friendship grow stronger.

A closer-knit relationship and fondness within my family also grew naturally among us. We have spent more quality time together throughout the year. While we still face old stories of unfathomable events, we are all making efforts to somehow mend the wounds to patch our family back again.

I have also gradually worked out my impatience in dealing with problems and challenges. I have come to embrace stress instead of shooing it away with imperviousness. My sensitivity in dealing with other people’s emotions has somehow pitched a notch higher as try to be always careful of my words and their feelings. I still get a little careless at times though.

AlthoughI already earn my own money, I constantly remind myself that while saving is a priority, I shouldn’t feel guilty for treating myself once in a while like going to spa, munching on expensive chocolates, and buying myself an expensive cellphone. Imake sure, too, that first things first in everything I do specially in my works both in my organization and my workplace.

I also came to develop my self-confidence that I can surpass whatever challenge at hand while recognizing that there are also instances that could be best done with a helping hand. In building self-confidence, I also came to realize, is about feeling good about myself knowing that real beauty is nurtured inside but also keeping in mind that I have to stay beautiful in the outside without the intention to lure men.

Lastly, and perhaps the most important, is that I was able to breeze through the state of my heart a lot easier this time than I have in the past couple of years when it felt like everything was spiraling out of control. I have gotten over heartaches and accepted the fact that there are things that are not meant to last; that my heart is built to endure pain; that my fate in love is not (and will never) be based upon fairy tales anymore; that love will never leave me because I already have the love that I need within myself; that the journey to self-love is never-ending but is worth-taking; and that love will always blossom around me because I deserve it too like everyone else.

It’s 2012 and it is the start of something fantastic. I can feel it.

 


Dear Santa

22 Dec

Dear Santa,

Since I was a child, probably six years old or younger, I have already believed in you. Each time those Christmas lights around our house start to flicker, I stare at it delightfully while waiting for you to arrive and grant my wishes.

During those younger years of mine, I would always wish for a box of chocolates or a giant lollipop. Sometimes, though, I’d wish for a sock full of coins which in return I’ll buy for chocolates or lollipops, too.

Though you never came to hand me my wishes, someone would always come, either in the person of a family or friend, and grant my wish. Eventually, my Christmas would turn merry and blissful.

Now that I am 22 years old, old enough not to believe in fantasies anymore, I still want to believe in the magic that you bring as the hour strike at midnight, welcoming the 25th day of December. Though I still want to receive those giant lollipops, I would wish for something else more than those sweet tooth or tiny silvers in the socks. And though there is only barely three days left before Christmas, I hope my wish list will get its way to you.

My heart was bruised for several times over and there even came a time when I already gave up on love. Though I stopped looking for love, I wish that love will find its way to me. I wish there is really someone in this whole, wide world who can complement my being; someone who can be a reflection of who I am; someone who can challenge me for who I am and love me passionately at the same time; and someone who could make my world go round and give me the love and respect I equally deserve.

While I am also very lucky of getting a job I really love which enables me to go to wonderful places and work with and for people in the countryside, each time I go back to my hometown where my family is, I am drifted to a world very different from where I currently live and work. I wish that even just this coming Christmas, I would feel the essence of what this season really is—and that is to have my family in a single roof, on the same table, eating all together while wishing everyone a merry Christmas even just for a day.

I wish, too, that you could bring back my two cousins who passed away 20 days before Christmas. Bring them back to their families to give them the Christmas they deserve. They were too young to leave the world. And they, too, deserve another Christmas time like everyone else.

Santa, for my last wish, give my mom more strength and faith to go through life. She is the source of my strength and my everything. Let her live longer to live a real life—a life full of happiness, love, and joy enough to outweigh her countless years of suffering and sacrifices.

My Christmas is back

1 Dec

Years ago, which I could hardly remember now, I could already feel the coming of the Christmas season upon opening my window. A cold breeze lands on my face, caresses my cheek and whispers the melody of the yuletide season.

As I stride through the neighborhood, lanterns and Christmas lights were already grandiosely decorated on each house as well as the trees mightily standing on the streets. As the night comes in, the whole stretch of the place, as far as my eyes can see, was vividly lighted. Its glowing colors illuminates to every corner making the night come to fuller life as it signals the arrival of the Christmas season.

Years fast forward, this fleeting moment never came back to the picture again. Not until last night.

While I was still recovering from lack of sleep for nine consecutive days and regenerating from bone-breaking legworks, I still dragged myself to work over the holiday with the hope to finish my proposal and assigned articles. With the long to-do-list I have in front of my computer, I felt ill all the more. For the whole day yesterday, I was shaking inside and out. But I still tried to get my focus and my will won over my exhaustion.

Feeling already wearing out from the day’s toil, I wished for a breath of fresh air. I was itching to get out from my succumbing office. As if the heavens heard my little prayer, a friend asked me out.

As we freely sat on the grounds outside the university, my weariness and fatigue came tumbling all over my nerves. But as I caught that cold breeze again, those monsters of stress fade out all at once.

Having with us a very kind teacher-turned-businessman who is an excellent singer and guitarist all in one package, the bustling night turned into a calm, peaceful mood as he serenaded us with songs from the 80’s and 90’s. While I and my friend were listening to his music, I thought to myself: This is wonderful. This is life. At first, I didn’t know if it’s because of the song echoing through the park or is it because of the presence of that dear friend who sways like a li’l child as the guitar kept on being strummed. Or is it simply the company that is bringing me a momentary relief? Or is it because it was already too long ago that Christmas season passes without me noticing it?

Because I wanted to cherish every split second of this wonderful moment, I lied down on the grasses, not minding anyone else around the park. As I gazed up the sky, I can’t contain how happy I was feeling at the moment because finally I am star gazing again, which is a simple thing that never fails to bring enormous happiness to my heart. Just by looking at the stars and locating the small and big dippers (which are the only constellations I am most familiar with), I feel peace and serenity. The universe is extremely huge and full of exquisite wonders, I thought again to myself.

As I tossed to my left side, where my friend R is, I asked him: Is Santa Claus real?  I know I was kind of stupid in asking that question but maybe I was just under the spell of the magical night that made me ask a question that is somewhat not quite too fitting to a 22-year old woman like me. But to be honest, I still want to believe Santa Claus is real even If my friend gave me a quizzical look upon throwing such question.

I was further bewitched by the moment as I noticed children play around the park, hugging the 6feet tall Santa Claus figurine and taking pictures with it. Oh how wonderful is it to be like a child again… carefree and believing in Santa Claus without ever getting that quizzical stares from anyone.

The park was also surrounded by Christmas lights and several lanterns ready to be lit up tonight as December 1 takes off. And oh… those bold, whimsical letters saying Merry Christmas. And the Christmas carols ringing all over the place. And… I was snapped back to Kuya Nine, the singer, and my friend R who are already tapping their pants to shun off the tiny grasses that were stuck to it. As they rose, I knew it’s time to leave and call it a night.

As I and R headed home, I felt how that night, how that one hour moment magically turned my heart at peace once again stoking that little flame of hope that Christmas, the old Christmas way I used to have, is back again.

Merry Christmas everyone!