( March 12th, 2006)
I left for manila 5am of 24th of February with a sole conviction that I will ace a qualifying exam…I went with Cris, who I laughed with a lot during the flight… we were on board “Asian Spirit“…it was the first time that I had a flight were I can feel the plane battling with the wind as it soared, as in really felt the winds there….that had us awake for 1 hour and 45 minutes..
Cris and I argued all the time, but we went along well. We just had to shout to speak with each other, more of like yelling at each othe..it was not intentional nor was it offensive, we were laughing all the time. When we landed in Manila (the plane i mean), we waited for Anne, a friend of mine from UP, who was kind enough to take us to Ortigas.
Then I saw Emerald Avenue..then Taipan Place…this is where I will be reviewing and taking my exam (i told myself)…all I knew was my neck hurt when I tried to get a glimpse of the top of the building……..then we proceeded to our place..the Mega Plaza…my room was on the 32nd floor. Gary, another scholar, guided our way to the place…
I wasn’t able to get in my room, so I had to store my luggage in the boys’ room. Gary will have to introduce me to my roommates. I was starving to death, so we had to grab something. Unexpectedly, a girl came to talk to Gary. Then I was introduced that she was one of my roommates, Daphny. Thank God she’s from Davao.
Then we went back to the room, I had to take my stuff there. Room 3204…that will be my room…I saw 2 fully airconditioned bedrooms with 4 residents (4 beds)..1 shower area, 2 rest rooms…a sala with 1 huge TV and a family size ref…not bad at all. Then a girl came in, she was Jan…a girl who spoke the Illonggo dialect….to my surprise, Daphny spoke the dialect too.
At the end of the day, I refused to go out with my UP friends…I said I had to meet my roommates…I met Eden and Faith at the GSA office, where we did our review classes. Faith smiled right away, Eden did not – although it was her name that I remembered most of the time. One thing I noticed again, they spoke Illonggo.
I felt so much like a stranger,I didn’t like it at first.…I knew no one. I wanted Cris to be my roommate but it wasn’t allowed. I wish I came together with the Davao Team…i had a blast with them last december in Cebu…
The first night was ok. I went there after dinner and found my roommates preparing to throw the garbage. I was introduced to the rest of the girls, Karen, Reina and Rhea (but I had to ask Daphy again and again for their names)…I began to talk to them, in my own dialect…they were all Illonggos or came from provinces having the same dialect.
The next day was ok .. then I realized they were nice. I woke up seeing them having their breakfast …I was aloof at first as to where I will sit but Faith read my mind well, she told me to get a chair and sit with them. Then little stories were exchanged, I listened most of the time, trying hard to understand them…I couldn’t understand “subong, pamangkot, saot…”… but I tried catching up with them. Then at 8:15, we went down and walked to Taipan Place. Cris had to go with us, but he spoke their dialect well…so did Gary !!
I spent my Friday night with the UP pipol who I haven’t been with for soo long. It was a long time when we enjoyed the nights till the sun rises up…the difference now is that were in the streets of Manila…it was like enjoying each other’s company like no tomorrow….it was like good old college days…i miss it sooo bad.
Then next day I went back to my place and found my roommates studying… I had lunch with them, i couldn’t eat alone and Cris was nowhere to be found…the next day, I went to mass with my roommates. And without me noticing it, the friendship just fell into places. My birthday came and we ate pizza goofing around with one of the cutie waiters..hehehe. Added to what made me soo happy knowing that the 2 most significant persons (who had the biggest impact on me — kinda ) greeted me – one called me and the other just sent a message. It was enough to lit my day…I had a pizza dinner with my roommates and another new friend – Mother Nelson who I call Brijette who became my best ally when I want to relax.. when i had to exhale stress out of my system..
I couldn’t remember how I got comfortable with them, to the most genuine sense. It was so magical how everything fell into place. They are nice and wonderful people…. Sometimes, I felt different from them… but then quickly realized that I was not…When at first i adjusted a lot, at the later part…i was enjoying myself with them. I began to like them so much that going home posed sadness…I will be with them soon again…it was just 14 days with them..and i felt attached already…
Daphny. It was her who made sure that I was comfortable in the room, thanks to her. It was her who made sure that I talk and converse.The first night, I caught her reading the book “ The Purpose Driven Life” and highlighting a lot of lines…she shares with me everything she reads nice about God…I am not used to that…but Daphy gave me lines which are apt to our case. Later on, she became our cook whose so concerned about not being able to go home early and not being able to cook for us.
Faith. I’d like to be like her if I get to be a mother…or when I get to her age. She reminded me of a former classmate. Hannah. Faith has the gift to make people comfortable with her…she can kid around still with a lot of people younger than her. Sometimes, she gets motherly evident but it’s amazing how despite of her maturity , enjoys the company of those who are younger than her ..and vice versa. And I know, she will understand what i’m emotionally battling with right now…
Eden. It was hard talking to her at first because she seemed to be the quite type. But I guess , looks do deceive…hehehe. She was no quiet person, well to us. When she brought her rice cooker in the room, it seemed spooked her. She became a dynamite and suddenly, I realized she was a fun person after all. She speaks to me in pure Illonggo dialect and I could say, it was from her that I learned a lot. I had to remember a lot of the words she used and verify with Daphny as to what it really meant. Cooking with her was hilarious, specially the last 2 nights I was with them. I missed her the night she did not come home, in all honestly. When she came back, dinner was like fiesta…even if we had 2 new roommates. And when she texted me the day I was leaving…i was soooo touched ….
Jan. I exchanged love experiences with her..it’s melodrama sort of. She had this collection of love compo printed from her PC and I fell in love with 2 of them. I couldn’t help sharing with her the stupidity I did for love and how it hurt so bad…and she too did the same. . the honesty was one thing I cherished and her not being judgemental…i like the way we talk about cheating partners…hehehe
Reina. I see myself in her… just tamer. Or better yet, maybe I don’t just know her that much yet… i like the way she holds back her thoughts and the way she does not hesitate saying what’s in her mind.. …i like the way she looks so fragile and modern at the same time..i like her confidence when it comes to her body..i can see it by the way she picks and wears her wardrobe…i love how our minds meet when we talk about relationships and boys…and cheating partners too… hehehe
Karen. I call her bata not just because she’s the youngest but because her small stature projects a child persona. Her innocence is funny like when she talks a lot in the elevator (in her dialect) and it seems no one is ralking coz she’s sooo small, it’s hard to notice her…but her sweetness is undeniably superb. We love teasing her to Rex, but I found out she has a boyfriend. I still think, she’s sad about something…and I have a hunch it’s about her relationship. I don’t mean to pry, but I will be willing to be a big sister to her in case she needs me…she was silent at the later part of my stay, maybe it prompted me more to tease her…but then again, I know nothing..
Rhea. Or is it Ria? One cool girl who was silent most of the time. She’s like my friend Anne . You cannot predict what’s in her head. She suddenly wanted her hair cut ..then in the next days, she wanted to watch movie. It was funny how she answered when I asked about “Pride and Prejudice”…she said, “Ay!! Ok lang… (paused) .love story!! “ I just tease her “tulog ng tulog” all the time…but she aced the exam! Matulog na lang din kaya ako?
Diana and Claribel.. they were the two new roommates we had. They were nice and I didn’t hesitate reaching out to them, not because it’s ethical but because I myself wasn’t treated bad by roommates before. I still yet have to spend time with them to know if we click..but they seem nice.
Gary and Cris. The 2 buddies of mine from davao…I loved them from the time we battled our way to the English Exam in Cebu. I may have not been with them 24 hrs like in Cebu, the loyalty is still to them….
As I remember the time, I was in Manila and I realized, I enjoyed it very much this time….
———— i recall , I enjoyed Baguio with the friends I grew up
with so much (we fantasized so much before going to a trip and the Bagiuo was a dream turned reality)
———– I enjoyed Manila this time with the UP friends who I matured with ( i was here last year but i was so pathetically obsessed with someone before that being with them did not come as a priority — it was a stupid mistake that will never EVER happen again)
…and now I enjoyed professional advancement with the new GSA friends I had, i enjoyed it to the vey sense of the word.. it may just be the first step… but the new friendship is enough for me to look forward to this career path…..in time, I will enjoy the lights of the city and life itself with them.