December 31, 2009

Top 50 Things That Changed My Life This 2009 (Part II)

The continuation of the long list :D hahaha!

Let us have a recap of the previous entries. haha :D
40. Tumblr
39. Kuliti
38. Backmasking Frenzy
37. Gapan, Nueva Ecija
36. Plurk

35. O2Jam
O2Jam is the first online, full-screen game that I have ever played. Haha :D I saw this game first on our trip when I was a Sophomore at Philippine Science High School, and it was re-introduced to me by Jefran and Claudine around August this year. I love this game, for the music was outstanding. Never have I heard remixes this happy, and O2Jam songs are unique in style. Natal Angel, Brahms, Festival of Ghost and V3, who wouldn’t like these songs?

With O2Jam, I guess my hand speed went faster, as it required my hands to press keys instantly. I guess my mind and body coordination improved with it. The falling bars caused me panic at first, but now, I manage to handle the situation most of the time. My appreciation to music grew more with this, for I was introduced to different genres in playing this game. Woot. And I love classical music because of this (though the songs on O2Jam are more on remixed versions..)

Sad to say, O2Jam Philippines is dead, and I gotta stick to O2Mania for the rest of my life to play this game. It is now one of my favorite pastimes. :D

34. Friendster
Friendster is the ultimate social networking giant in Southeast Asia (that is, without the coming of Facebook). For more than five years, Friendster has dominated the internet scene in the Philippines, and the summer of 2009 had made me addicted to it, earning it the 34th spot.

My profile was self-dubbed as “the longest profile in the world”. After knowing some tweaks, I began pimping my profile like crazy. Haha. It was like everyday I am opening my Friendster account and editing its CSS and Media Box. At one time, my profile got so long because of words and pictures that it will take two minutes before it can fully load. I had my blog there, my videos, my songs – almost my life there. Haha.

I never thought I wasted so much time there, but on the process, I have discovered great sites in website development. Websites that counts your visitors, that can put flash games on your profile and countless other cool sites. My view on website programming has never been this wide.

Moreover, I got addicted to comments, and I received my 1000th comment around April. Wahaha.

33. One Town – One Product
Though this is one of my life’s greatest unreal fantasies, it has still managed to grab the 33rd spot on this list. One Town One Product (or OTOP, as it is known nationwide) is a project of the Department of Trade and Industry that aims for one organization to enhance the product of one town for the benefit of the residents there and at the same time, gaining profit for the company.

Our school, Systems Plus College Foundation, participated in this OTOP, which is also an international contest. This contest aims to pick the best One Town – One Product, and then, the winner will compete in the international stage at Brazil. Well, that is their introduction to us.

That introduction happened one February afternoon, when a college student excused us from our class and brought us to the small building in front of the ILI building. They told us that we’ll go to their host community (some sort of a Sitio ___ situated near Clark) and help in the making of the product, that we will be joining in the selling and business planning of the product, and that we will go to Manila for the introduction of the product to the panelists.

They told us that they need us to introduce the product, and that will be our main role on their team. They also colored our minds with imagination when they told us that if we won, we’ll go on a long vacation trip to Brazil for the international contest. Whoa. And that was heavy for my light mind to comprehend. Haha.

Unfortunately, ten months passed and nothing happened. Haha. The end of the fairy tale for me.

32. Jesus Our Victory Church

Now, this was Christine’s church for the 32nd spot on my list. We are from Ate Jov’s apartment, when Christine asked if we can go to their church. At first, I thought people would not even pay serious attention to it, so I thought that majority will not go. Religion is not that of a big thing inside the classroom (that was back then.)

To my shock, after our Antigone session at Ate Jov’s, all of them followed Christine, and before I knew it, we were crossing MacArthur Hi-Way and walking to their church. It was really awkward entering their church, for it is a new atmosphere for me. As their afternoon fellowship went on, it got more uncomfortable for me when they sang (because I am not used to it). But when their pastor stood up and started saying his preaches, that’s when I realized that what I am in was something right. There was even a mini-stage play.

The church was really happy to see us. They greet every new guests with smiles, claps and handshakes. After the fellowship, we were asked to enter one room, and two men talked to us, along with Christine. They told us that they were from other religions before and their search for truth led them there.

It was my first time to be inside the church of a religion other than Roman Catholicism, and it was an experience of a lifetime. They opened my mind that there are other possibilities in faith, that we shall not be confined to what we were raised to believe. We need to find the way God has chosen us to go into.

31. Pagemaker 2009
This is one of the things that made me very busy this year – the Pagemaker, which stands at number 31 in my chart.. This year, I am the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper, and that is a very heavy responsibility to have. And it is like this year, I typed so many words for the newspaper that if I laid all of them out in a straight line, it will go all the way to Manila. Haha.

From the Divisions to the submission of the newspaper, I am very busy. Starting from the Organization Day of July, (when Ma’am Carbungco asked me to do another impromptu speech in front to explain the benefits of Pagemaker), to the final day of the Regionals on December, waaa.. Pagemaker was one of my top concerns.

Before the Divisions, we are having Wednesday classes in the library. For the first time in my life, I felt that I have the need to organize all these faces that I do not know. Ma’am Carbungco frequently stays at her room for a long time, leaving me all alone to handle things. Chica is the president of the Drum and Lyre, and I could not ask for his help because I know that he is busy there. And I still have the need to chase over Annabeth and Ian, and at the same time, entertaining those waiting students in the library. What a drag. Good thing to note, I gained many friends here. :D

Then, the preparation for the Division goes on. We even had our Saturday seminars, aside from our intensive pull-out. After the division is one of the busiest months of my life T_T – the making of the newspaper. We need to finish the newspaper so that we can qualify for the Regionals. For long nights, I have been typing articles, and for long days, I am asking for people to write articles. I walked inside classrooms to ask for contributions, and I walk back to collect them. I freeze inside the library to think of things to write, sometimes even requiring Saturdays at school and Sundays in front of Microsoft Word. Ultimately, it required me to go to Sir Antonio’s house (and that was my first visit there), answer countless calls from Ma’am Carbungco and Sir Antonio, send stuffs through his e-mail, and cut classes to go to the printing press.

Job well done. Woot.

Up next.. for posting tomorrow :D
Top 30-26 \:D/

Top 50 Things That Changed My Life This 2009 (Part I)

Top 50 things that changed my 2009
And this is my year-end special. Here are the 50 things that changed my life this 2009… the 50 things that had the most influence, either good or bad, and had the most impact in the course of my life. Starting from January, down to the very last days of December. I'll start from the 40th :D It is all listed here. :D I’ll appreciate you reading this post.

40. Tumblr

Yes, and the 40th spot, and the first to be mentioned in the list is Tumblr. I knew it just a few days now but it’s impact in my life is now highly visible. Tumblr is now my new MWR (Mood Weather Report) where I post my daily log or diary entries. It became my new burnbook where I post everything I think. It replaced Plurk as my daily timeline update beacon. I guess I am getting hooked to Tumblr.

One Tumblr caught my eye even before I joined this. It was I was amazed at how she inserts words artistically into Photoshop, and I envy her T_T haha. That’s why I am on a quest to learn from her styles. I am also addicted to the reblogs of pictures with heartwarming, and sometimes funny quotes or stories. I always get my daily dose of laughs and inspiration at Tumblr. :D

It was also nice customizing my site. (another site, another focus). Woot. Looking forward for more readers.

39. Kuliti
Idk what is the English of this eye infection but the kuliti have wreaked havoc on my face this year. I had five kuliti’s this year if my count is right, shifting from the right eye to the left eye and vice versa from September to November. I have the coolest eyes on the planet with these infection.. the others seem to be bites from creepy crawlies, while the others seem to be just bacterial or viral infection.

The worse of this inflations was the fifth one, when it bulged on the lower eyelid of my left eye. Bulges on the lower eyelid are rare, and if they occur, they are extremely painful and uncomfortable. This made me jerk liters of tears. Every blink is painful, and I almost wanted to keep my eyes open even at sleep. Haha. :D

Anyways, a kuliti became my trademark. It became a usual sight on my face. (and what a trademark?  )

38. Backmasking Frenzy
Nothing gave me goosebumps greater this year than backmasks, which grabs the 38th place in my Top 40 list. To inform everybody, backmasking is a process wherein the songs are played in reverse, (similar to rewinding but in a normal playing speed), that when done so, a hidden message from those twisted deep sound waves becomes audible. The messages are mostly Satanic, vulgar and obscene in nature. Some may tell you to have sex, some may tell you to commit crimes.

There is also this connotation that backmasked message urges you to do things out of your consciousness. Once you get addicted to that song, you get to absorb its backmasked message into a command. If the message tells you to kill somebody, then you’ll be a potential murderer. Creepy ei?!

My frenzy on it rose at its peak around July and August, when me and my classmates go to Youtube to hear backmasked songs. The voice is deep, demonic and horrible, and the lyrics are equally evil as well. I hate it (and as I am typing this, I am having goosebumps.) I never knew that musicians would incorporate such evil things on their songs. Even Eraserheads has one. Goosebumps already? Type on YouTube: Backmask. Even Wikipedia confirms its valid existence.

That’s when I started to dislike Eagles, Beatles and Eraserheads. The reason: their songs. I hate it. Every time I listen to songs, it always gives me the chills that this song might have a hidden message.

37. Gapan, Nueva Ecija
Woot! Gapan City is this year’s host of the Regional Schools Press Conference (RSPC). RSPC is an annual contest (usually on the first week of December) of campus journalists and school papers who have won and qualified to represent their division. 17 divisions will compete in 14 individual writing contests, radio broadcasting categories and school paper contests.

Every year at the Regionals is a new experience. My first was at Subic, and my second was closer at home, at Angeles City. This year was at Gapan, and my, oh my, experiences had filled me once again.

Gapan made me swallow my first dose of red eggs and tomatoes. I have never eaten them before. That was also my first time to be under attack while I am asleep. Our building is situated near a squatter’s area, and every night, someone will throw on huge rocks to our window or roofs and disrupt our silence. That is a big safety issue.

And there I met Sherwin, who defined a new brand of comedy in my ears. Haha. And I also met Gilbert Teodoro there, (though not actually met, but only seen. Whew. And he is a big man.) I also saw there my first big tornado encounter. That vortex was larger than a human, but not that destructive.

There is also this woman, while Annabeth and I are walking at night in search of food, who was screaming (like for help?) in the middle of the road. The road was empty, no vehicles are passing, when suddenly, she fell like she was unconscious. Some seconds of silence after, her head tilted and faced us, piercingly look at us, stood up and ran away like crazy, though his dress was that of a normal human. Weird?

36. Plurk
This is another website that got me addicted last summer – Plurk, number 36 on my list. Plurk is the 42nd most visited site in the Philippines. It is a portmanteau of “play” and “work” and also serves as an acronym for peace, love, unity, respect, and karma – five things that the Plurk community campaigns on.

Why have I gone addicted to this site? It was on May 2009 when I started plurking, and its tagline is “Your life on the line”. I guess that line got me hooked, and I started plurking everything on my life out there. Events, happy moments, memories, quotes, pictures and some random greetings – everything is literally there! Haha :D besides that, they got a scoring system called Karma, that gains every time you plurk, gain friends or earn responses, and falls down after 24 hours of inactivity. That means that you gotta be active on that site!

Plurk kept me updated on stuffs that I have never thought of getting updated in before. It also introduced me to some of my online buddies, which only one survives in existence until today. Haha. That was like my first Twitter. Haha. Currently, my Plurk is Karma freezed but I cannot update it regularly anymore. Now, my karma is at 86 out of the possible 100. Woot. Nirvana. (they call the karma level 81-100 as Plurk Nirvana. And that’s the main goal of every plurker.)

Next post: Top 35 to 31 :D

[Edited: January 2, 2010]
and "stye" is the English word for "kuliti".. haha. thanks to a guest who PM'd me 10:18am. :D I was not able to reply sorry, for my father was sitting at the computer back then :D.. and it is stye :D

December 27, 2009


What makes you click nearly 1,500 consecutive times on your mouse? What makes you wake early in the morning? What makes you sit in the computer for long? As for me, the answer is the freakin’ Farmville.

Sort of a shocker to me, Farmville is the biggest game on Facebook. It has over 20 million daily active users, people who share the same sentiments with me, 9 million fans on its fan page and 70 million monthly users. I never expected that such a stupid game like this can get a third of the Facebook population hooked up?!

Farmville was introduced to me by no one. I just saw it being posted by some of my random Restaurant City friends. Then, as weeks pass, my real life friends started playing it and started to post level-ups, lost animals, item purchases and crop masteries. At first, it was irritating to see all those alien-eyed characters clog my news feed. The Farmville logo does not bite me, and it is not as catchy as the logo of Restaurant City and Pet Society. I am a Playfish loyalist, and Zynga is not my type.

At the classroom, buzzes will start flying around of seeds, plowing, animals and other farming stuff that I thought was for our Home Economics subject. It was kinda weird to here farming when our topic was food management. Soon, the word Farmville became the talk of the town, and I became an outcast, not knowing a single bit, except for the lame logo and the bulgy eyes, about Farmville.

Going back in front of the desktop, my news feed is being jammed again by the following words: “**Facebook user** has given up city living and started his own farm…” That was Farmville’s way of welcoming new obsessed and ill-fated farmers.

Another day at the classroom and the frenzy for that farming simulation game is getting wilder. My classmates are screaming the words “pagift” several times. They say they want lemon trees, cherry trees, horses, and not the whitewash fences and the topiaries. “What the heck were those?” I just thought to myself.

Farmville’s first impression to me was an overly childish game with very poor graphics quality. I think the gameplay is as sour yet addicting as Tetris, and good for a human whose brain capacity can be compared to a floppy disk. They say the music is cool, with the sounds of the farm animals circulating your home. I hate moo’s and oink’s, and who would be crazy to play those sounds at home. I’d rather play a recording of the Holy Week’s pasyon on our computer all day long than turn the toggle on for the Farmville music to play even for just a minute.

But since everyone is hooked, I tried.

The loading is screen is awfully unattractive. I am missing the wavy loading action of Playfish games. The first games that I played on Facebook were Playfish games. I got hooked to Who Has the Biggest Brain, Word Challenge and Geo Challenge back during the summer break, and later, I tried my food management skills in Restaurant City. I also have my Pet Society, but that did not fascinated me so much. I felt bored seeing my pet walking around like a silly voodoo doll.

“Farmville Beta…” it says. I could have read those words a million times before the loading bar gets filled.

Finally, it opened and it prompted me to choose my gender. After it, I saw my character standing in front of 4 to 8 plots, some of the plots were fallow land, some were plowed, some with plants ready to harvest and some with plants still growing. The tutorial was fast and cheesy; not a drop of sweat was used.

I harvested, I plowed and I planted, and the first crop I planted was the first seed on the list – strawberry. I never thought that Farmville was such a boring game, that you have to wait for hours just to harvest a crop. Unlike in Restaurant City wherein when you are logged in, you are already earning money. In Farmville, it is different. Plant today and earn tomorrow.

Days passed and my enthusiasm for Farmville grew. I was the fastest leveling person in the classroom at that time. I jumped 13 levels on my first three days as a farmer on Farmville, and they are all shocked by my progress. Now, I am in my quest to be the top 1 on Farmville.

I give gifts and gifts, so that I can receive gifts as well. I added neighbors, lots of them, so that I can have many people to help, and that gives me XP. I plant strawberries or blueberries, these are four hour crops, and by my calculation, they give the most XPs out of any other crops.

Earning money is fun. Unlike in PS and RC, money is so rare. Here in Farmville, one harvesting session can earn you a hundred thousand coins, and that allows a farmer to buy amazing and cool stuffs. The only thing expensive in Farmville (except for those items in Farmville cash) are the buildings, but the rest, the decorations and the animals, are all centavos in price.

With that, zoom zoom, I got passed my classmates and is now on the top spot. Haha. I am now the King of the Plow! Haha! Farmville XPs and levels had become a competition in our classroom.

But Farmville has given me more burden than joy. Farmville has caused me more failure than success. No one can ever get success with those virtual coins anyways.

Farmville is the ultimate schedule wrecker. Nothing can make me click almost 1,500 times a day, and during my blueberry planting heydays, 4,000 clicks a day, than Farmville. Clicking, and waiting for those processes to be done takes time, and the time being taken is a time that is supposed to be for sleep or doing projects. It takes me 30 minutes to farm my 24x24 farm today, and because I am so rushed always, I do not harvest my trees and animals anymore.

Harvesting trees and animals is a burden more than a profit. Imagine clicking two times for a hundred coins?! These are one of the many complains I have in Farmville, why can’t they have a “Select All Ready Animals” so they can be all harvested at once. I’m quite glad at their approach at chicken coops and dairy farms, but those efforts are not enough.

Another that puts me at wit’s end is the synchronization issues. Once you have clicked the 400 plots and the processes starts to running, a message will appear in front of you, “Code a4, out of sync with the server, refresh the page.” Yes, I know you share the same complaints with me if you are a Farmville player, and these messages makes me wanna bang our monitor into pieces. I want to suck the liquid out of this liquid crystal display that they are telling me, and I wanna tell the management of Farmville that they need a new set of programmers now!

Another message that sounds familiar to the 70 million monthly users is “Farmville has enhanced, refresh the page to continue.” That message makes me wish that Farmville should have always stayed the same and never enhanced, for after the million clicks that I have made they will just put it to waste?! They are downright merciless! I hate it! Seeing the dialog box is a sign that my efforts are wasted, for there is no other button than that green “Refresh”. Clicking it is never refreshing, in fact, it raises the temperature inside my head. A question in my mind: Why is it that when I refresh, I see no enhancements?

Then, there is an aid for all those clicks. They introduced to everyone their seeder, harvester and *I forgot how they call the one that plows*. One click lets you do a certain task to four plots, making your work four times faster. But merciless Farmville won’t give convenience that easy to its players, they have incorporated fuel refills to their system.

One fuel refill lets you harvest a third of your farm, and once you have your refill unfilled, you have to wait two hours for the fuel to be full again, or buy a fuel refill worth some hefty Farmville cash. Buying a fuel refill is a waste of money, and waiting for it to be full again is a waste of time. So, in other words, you still have to click the remainder of the plots, not to mention clicking the whole field two times again for the plowing and planting.

My classmates are now using AutoClickers, their cheating devices that they say are just for convenience. And I, I use my hands, just bare hands.

Going to my Facebook home page, I can see that I have requests stucked and unapproved. I have 80+ Farmville gift requests and it sometimes zooms up to 100, the maximum number of pending requests one can have. It is tiring to approve all the gifts. It takes two clicks, and between those clicks is the boring loading time for the page, for you to approve a single gift. Do it a hundred times and I’ll be as old as the Earth itself when I finish.

Withered. I hate it when my crops go withered. It is the ultimate bankruptcy a farmer can have on his farm. It is like putting Ondoy on the screen to flood the farm, followed by the intensifying global warming to dry the leaves up. It will be a total disaster since you have your money going to waste. Just imagine nearly 500 plots, each with seeds nearly 200 coins in price, giving you a deficit of 15 coins because of plowing? That’s pain in the pocket. That’s why, Farmers will even disrupt their biological clocks, their class schedule, their eating and sleeping time, and even their brothers’ and sisters’ happiness just to harvest those delicate crops.

Farmville is more boring than it should be fun, and the only reason I got into it was because of my classmate’s pressure, and that is also the same reason on why I am continuing farming. Call me a Farmvillain?! Call me. haha. I’d rather go cooking at Café World or Restaurant City rather than waiting for my peas to grow and be harvested.

Oh wait, it’s time to harvest my crops. ‘Til then. Bye :D

December 26, 2009

Tinig ng Torpe III: Mga Palamuti't Pangarap

Tinig ng Torpe III
Mga Palamuti’t Pangarap

Ang kampana ng simbahan, tayo ay ginigising na
Pagkat ngayo’y kapaskuhan at sasamba ang balana;
Sa gitna ng kasiyahan, ako’y naiwang mag-isa:
Mukha mo’y nasa isipan, patuloy na umaasa.

Malamig na ang amihan; Pasko na nga’y naririto;
Sana ikaw ay mahagkan, sa gitna ng lamig na ‘to.
Tayo ay sabay hihigop ng umuusok na sabaw,
At sa iisang talukbong, tayo’y iinit sa ginaw.

Sa labas ay may bibingka, bagong luto at mainit,
Ngunit iba kapag yakap ang sa iyo’y humihigpit;
Wala ng ibang panlaban sa gabing malamig
Kundi init sa katawan ng nag-iisang pag-ibig.

Isang laro sa mga mata ang kulay ng banderitas:
Matitingkad at pambata, isang obra sa itaas!
Pero ang kulay ay kulang para ang puso’y matuwa,
Sa mata mo ay sulyap lang, buong buhay, di magsasawa!

Simbang gabi’y bubuuin kung ikaw lang ang kasama;
Probinsya’y ‘di iisipin, hawak mo lang ay madama.
Sa kaarawan ni Kristo, ang tangi kong panalangin,
Kung magtapat ang torpeng ‘to, sana ay iyong sagutin >:]

Pero kailan magtatapat ang takot at torpeng puso,
Taon na ay mag-iiba’t magpapalit na ng uso.
Bago yata magsalita, pundido na’ng mga bituin,
Ang tinatagong pagsinta, kapag nahuli’y aanhin?

Kumukuti-kutitap na, wari’y mga alitaptap,
Mga pampaskong bumbilya, tila langit ay natatap;
Gumagapang, patay-sindi, sari-saring mga takbo,
Nagliliwanag sa gabi, mga mata’y nililito!

Pero Pasko ay madilim kung ika’y wala sa tabi;
Ngiti mo ay nagniningning, ang tanging ilaw sa gabi.
Sanlibo man ang Christmas lights, tuwa’y ‘di maaaninag,
Dahil sa aking Silent Night, ikaw lang ang siyang liwanag.

Punung-puno ng palawit ang mailaw na krismas tri,
Mga bola’y nakasabit, garland, pinecones at reindeers din.
Ang iyong larawan sana, isasabit ko sa puno;
Sa paskong ako’y ulila, ikaw pari’y nasa puso.

Ayon sa Banal na Aklat ay isinilang si Kristo,
At dahil sa sila’y salat, at sakay lamang ng asno,
‘To’y nangyari sa sabsaban, kasama ang mga hayop;
Ligtas ang sangkatauhan, tayo ay napagkaloob!

At kahit saan nga naman, mapasabsaban o kalsada,
Tunay na pag-iibigan, anumang lugar ay ramdam.
Basta’t ikaw ang kasama, saanman ay tutunguhin,
Lahat ng daana’y magiging paraisong hardin!

Ayon pa sa kasaysayan, isang tala ang gumabay,
Sa tatlong may nalalaman sa pagsilang ng Messiah,
At kanila ngang narating ang bagong silang na sanggol,
Na payapang humihimbing para magbigay ng handog.

Wala ng ibang bituin ang sa akin ay gagabay;
Ikaw lang ang mamahalin; puso ko sayo ay alay.
Ikaw ay aking susundan, tungo ko ang iyong puso;
Ang tala sa kalangitan sa gabi ng aking Pasko!

May kakatok sa pintuan at magsisimulang kumanta
Para lang aming limusan, aawit ang mga bata;
Minsan aking naiisip na pagbukas ko ng pinto,
Sana ika’y nakasilip, sa harap ko’y nakatayo.

Wala ng mas tatamis pa sa boses mong makalangit;
Tunay kong ikatutuwa ‘pag ngalan ko’y ‘yong mabanggit;
Kumatok ka lang sa amin at bukas ang aming pinto,
Ikaw ay patutuluyin, ibibigay kahit ano.

Ako naman ang kakanta, mangangaroling sa’yo,
Hiling ko’y iyong pagsinta, mapasaakin puso mo.
Ang salapi’y di kailangan, nasa ko’y ang iyong ‘oo’;
Pagmamahal ko’y suklian, ibigay mo ng pamasko.

Aanhin ang sobreng pula, aanhin ko’ng mga kahon,
Kung ikaw naman ay wala, kasiyaha’y mababaon?
Ang hiling ko ngayong Pasko, walang iba kundi ikaw,
Sana ako’y may regalo, Pasko ko’y bigyan mong ilaw.

Santa Claus, ikaw ba ‘yan at ako na ay hihiling?
Wishlist ko na ay lalagyan ngunit hindi pupunuin,
Tanging ang iyong pangalan ang isusulat sa papel;
Sana ngayong kapaskuhan, ako ay magdilang-anghel.

Sa gitna ng palamuti, ako’y muling nangangarap,
At sa hiling kong mumunti, nawa ay aking malasap
Ang pag-ibig ngayong Pasko, yakap sa gitna ng lamig,
Kasiyahan sa aking lungkot, kalma sa gitna ng nginig.

Ang Pasko ay pag-ibig daw, panahon ng pagbibigay,
Pero tapos na ang araw, ako’y puno pa ng lumbay.
Ako sana’y isang parol, nag-iilaw at makulay,
Sa isipa’y walang gulo, masaya sa kanyang buhay.

‘Yan na ang mga paputok, nariyan para mag-ingay,
Sa pagmamasid sa usok, sa puso ay mayrong aray;
Habang nagkakatuwaan ang buong mundo sa Pasko,
Narito ako’t luhaan, nakaluklok sa may bangko.

Sisindihan ang kandila, aking malamlam na ilaw,
At sa aking Noche Buena, laman ng isip ko’y ikaw.
Ito ang tinig ng torpe, at sa Pasko’y aking hiling,
Magtapat ang aking labi at ikaw na’y makapiling.

December 20, 2009

For Antigone IV

It was odd for me to see their living room lonely, for I am used seeing my classmates there. I do not know if I’ll sit on my favorite sofa set or if I should wait for Alvin standing. Of course, it is improper to sit without being asked to do so, so I stood. Alvin went down, wearing loose gray shorts and a loose shirt with the label “Polo Sport”. He seems really stressed, and I greeted him with a smile.

He sat, and I was left standing. Following him was his nephew.

“O, where is Chica?” he asked.

“I do not know. he said that we’ll meet at 11:00 am, and I waited for about 45 minutes for them. And since I do not know what to do, I proceeded to the school and asked about Chica. I described him as a semi-bald man carrying many things, but the guard said that no one like that entered the classroom. And then, I asked about the boy scouts, and he said that you already went out of the campus at 10:15. That’s why I went here.”

“No, we went out at around 11:00 am,” and he laughed, “haha! semi-bald man, ei?! And it is already 1:00!”

“Yea! And when Chica arrives here, I’m sure he’ll suffer death!” I jokingly said.

We continued to chat and he told me what happened on the camping. He was the cow leader, for they were divided into three crews on their camping: Baka (cow), Baboy (pig) and Kambing (goat), and he was the crew leader of the Cow Crew. They were titled as the Overall Champion and he was happy with that.

“Where are the videos?” he asked.

“Chica has it,” I said.

He said that he had received a GM (group message) from Kervy that he is looking for Chica, and that he could not contact Chica. Some minutes after, Chica arrived, and I was happy to see him, for at last, we can at least start.

Then, his sister told something about “Sponge”. I have no idea on what was it, but Alvin stood and inserted his hand inside the plastic and pulled out a chocolate-flavored Sponge crunch. He opened it and put it in the table. At first, I do not know whether to get a bite, but since Alvin knows that I am a food-o-phile, I got pieces for myself.

Kervy soon arrived, and we are all complete. Kervy’s arrival should be the signal to start our shoot, but we have other things in mind. Chica does not want to shoot anymore, for it is really tiring. As for me, I am watching those funny bloopers from Julia’s camera. We are all talking to Alvin and we are describing what happened on GPR. “Nawalan kami ng puri!” was our eternal line. We told him that there are many killed and missing scenes in our play and that we have lots to do. Alvin showed a surprised and lonely face, for after his “happy sufferings” in the camp, he’ll have another set of sufferings on editing.

Chica said that we still need to narrate the majority of the scenes, and insert them between the available scenes. Chica wants sound effects, special effects, a killer introduction and many many more. Alvin was just staring at Chica with eyes open yet very emotionless. He was tired, and yet he have many things to do.

And that’s when I opened the topic about staying overnight. Alvin laughed as if I was joking. I never thought of it as funny, but Kervy and Chica joined in the laughing. I was speechless, and I just joined their laughter, pretending that I told that as a joke. I just told them that I’ll go home at 9:15pm. Kervy said he’ll go home at 7pm, while Chica volunteered to stay until 8pm. What? I’ll stay alone with Alvin for an hour, and go home alone? That is fine but of course, it will be finer if I have some companions with me. I persuaded Kervy to stay until 9, but he said that he is not allowed. I really do not believe him at that time, for a man as tall and as mature as him, won’t be allowed by his parents to stay until 9? I am sure they know that Kervy can handle himself, and he is old enough to get out of trouble.

I cannot say that I’ll also go home at 8, for I already said that I am allowed until 9. Besides, I feel pity for Alvin. He is from a tiring camp, and he told us that he hasn’t slept for three days in that camp, and yet, he will be the one to spend another sleepless night for the editing of the film. I firmly stood to my decision that I’ll stay until 9.

For fun, I opened the stories that Alvin told me before, that he saw someone being stabbed to death in their street at night, and I said that I do not want to be a victim. Alvin and Kervy laughed, for they thought that I am really afraid. (Dang… another misconception of my words.) I just continued my jolliness, and asked on how often does the killings happen. Alvin replied, “Ahm, just once a year.”

“And I might be the lucky victim this year!” I said.

Fast forward once more, after talking for hours, we went upstairs and I was holding the chocolate sponge Crunch that Alvin left unattentively. We were at his “desktop” computer and he was opening his kayabangan (boastfulness) program of Adobe Premiere CS4. Then, we asked for the videos from Chica, and he said that he does not have the memory card reader for it. Alvin asked his family if they have a memory card reader for the type of memory card that Julia’s camera have, and yes, they have.

They copied all the videos from all memory cards, except for Julia’s. Julia’s memory card cannot be read, and Chica asked us to go to Julia’s house and ask what is the problem.

“Not me,” I said, “I was the first to go here and still I’ll be the one to go there?”

“I do not know where Julia’s house is,” Kervy said.

“Me, too,” I said.

Chica was the lucky person again, for he was the only person in the house who knows where Julia leaves. He left and borrowed Alvin’s cool striped folding umbrella for there was a light drizzle.

The three of us, Kervy, Alvin and I, just sat down and watched some of the videos. Kervy asked things about video cards and central processing units for they are planning to buy a set this coming month.

Then, I saw Alvin's brother, staring with fire-sparked eyes.

Next: For Antigone V :D haha!

[after so many years, at last, I have updated this story. haha.]

December 16, 2009



This is my cry.. my thoughts.. I was planning to join the Fourth Year Chorale for the Musikahan but was unable to do so because I was at the Regionals Schools Press Conference. When I went back to school, I was just informed that the auditions are over, and that the choir is already full and would not accept any students anymore. Sad.

Alone in the empty woodlands,
I walk as my world starts crumbling;
No one can fully understand
My long, solitary weeping.
Those chanting voices I have heard
Singing carols from afar,
Oh painful are those piercing words,
Their cheerful lyrics bring me harm.

In my dull eyes, I see them form:
Straightly postured, happily lined;
Then voices began to be born
As the conductor gives the sign.
Their singing tongues started to move,
And the music is pacing up,
The whole world is starting to groove,
And all the people started to clap.

Somehow, a glow abides in them,
A guiding light to victory,
As they sing their Christmas anthems,
They step close to their full glory.
I should be happy for their song,
But I scream envy and sorrow;
In my heart, there is something wrong
Like there are no bright tomorrows.

Why is the glow among the choir?
Why is it away from me?
Am I hopeless, worthless and dire
For that glow to not shine on me?
True, they say the world is unfair,
And fate is an evil player;
Chances will knock when you’re not there;
Time is luck’s ultimate slayer.

As I was sleeping in the woods,
Dreaming of my deep fantasies,
Somebody’s taking off his hood
To sing his charming melodies,
And as I intoxicated
Myself in my sleep’s wandering,
The few slots are being granted,
And my chances are vanishing.

And I can never tell myself
That everything will be alright,
When I know I’m in need of help,
When there is danger in the night!
In this hostile, gloomy forest
Lives a strong, restless enemy,
Able to put me in distress
And give me endless miseries.

Sooner my fate will turn again,
A wave of mishaps will approach;
It will bring even greater pain,
It is my lonely life to poach.
One night that I have slept too much
Will bring me three months of darkness;
Never can I have a slight touch
Of the gladness I once possessed.

Every beat is an agony:
Aiming at me, a deadly dart.
Every note is a misery,
Whose goal is to crumble my heart.
Every pitch is a helpless cry
That nobody can comprehend.
Every word is a curse to die,
Oh when all of this have an end?

They will be called; I will be left;
Only with me is my despair.
All my joys had already slept
And abandoned me in nowhere.
In the next room, they will enter,
Leaving me in my endless frowns;
And those voices, they will be heard;
Their melodies bring me deep down.

They will be all talking of it,
Their happy moments in practice,
They will sing with many repeats
Their medley Christmas choral piece.
I will sit there, all out of place
As they chatter in full power,
It is a big slap to my face,
It makes me sad when they converse.

And then I realized one thing
As they greet me with sincere smiles,
I realized that when they sing,
All of my world is now defiled.
The moments I see them happy
Makes me contented deep inside.
Even I lost their company,
At least I see their smiles so wide.

What is sorrow? What is envy?
All of these are just mere evil.
To myself, I shall not pity,
I should focus on what is real.
We all have our share of trials,
But we shall have the will to smile.
My problems will not burn my time,
I’ll make each second more worthwhile.

I am not the only person
Who is experiencing bad luck,
Be glad I am not in prison,
Be glad my vision is not black.
Just think that I am still lucky,
Amidst the hurdles that abide,
Move on and think positively,
Just take a look at the bright side.

December 13, 2009


New lines from my old mind. Wot.

The night sky gives nothing but gloom
Where brightness die, where darkness loom.
The clouds are thick over my head;
The stars are gone, the land is dead.

Cassiopeia! Cassiopeia!
Be with me in this hysteria!
Queen of the night! Heaven’s empress!
My love to you is the highest!

Atop the clouds, I know you’re there;
Below the trees, I’m in despair.
I want to see your splendid face
To light me up in this disgrace.

You are my jewel in the sky;
You are the glow of all fireflies.
The constellation of my heart,
To you my love will not depart.

Cassiopeia! Cassiopeia!
Be with me in my lone drama!
Queen of the sky! Heaven’s empress!
Give me your love in this distress!

Why do I still look at the sky
To see your face, to see you smile,
When I know that you’re deep in me,
I’ll just hold my heart as it beats.

You may be covered by the clouds,
Still inside me, you’re safe and sound.
Throbbing, twinkling inside my mind,
My happiness to you I find.

Cassiopeia! Cassiopeia!
Read my feelings in these stanzas!
Queen of the night! Heaven’s empress!
If I confess, would you say yes?!

December 4, 2009

Tinig ng Torpe II: Masakit na Masarap. :)

Tinig ng Torpe II
Masakit na Masarap

Sumisigaw aking puso, ngunit walang dumidinig,
At sa aking pagtatago, dilim ang s’yang naniniig.
Lungkot ang s’yang sumasakop sa puso kong nag-iisa;
Bakit nga ba nagpasakop? Bakit ba nag-iisa?

At ngayon ika’y titingnan na puno ng kagalakan
Ngunit ang aking isipan ay may pinagsisisihan;
Sayang lang ang aking oras kung ako’y hindi kikilos,
Sa pag-amin ay iiwas, mga araw inuubos.

Ako ay sasama sa’yo saan ka man paroroon,
Gaano man ‘yun kalayo, anuman mga panahon;
Ika’y aking tatabihan, bumagsak man ang mga tala,
Magpahanggang kamatayan, pag-ibig ko’y walang sala.

O bakit ba ang pag-ibig, masakit habang masarap,
Nakapapaso sa bibig, pero saya ‘pag nalasap?
Marami ang tumitikim, marami ang sumusubok,
Ang sakit ay iaatim para ang puso’y tumibok.

Maraming luha’ng tutulo; ang mundo ay hahagulhol,
Pagtatalo’t pagkatalo sa pag-ibig na masahol;
Nag-uumapaw sa sakit ang sarap ng pagmamahal;
Ang pighati ay kapalit ng kasiyahang bubukal.

Tuwing makikita kita sa dantay ng ibang tao,
Ang puso ay nasasaktan, ang loob ay kumukulo;
Nakangiting nakasandal sa balikat na ‘di akin,
Tila ba sakal na sakal ang pusong mapanibughuin.

Ngunit sa aking isipan, may tanong na naglalaro;
Ano ba ang karapatan magselos ng ‘sang tulad ko?
Isang sampal na mahapdi sa pagmumukhang makapal,
Ano ba ang magagawa, e iba ang iyong mahal?!

Masakit nga kung titingnan na ‘ka’y sa kamay ng iba,
Sa akin din ang kasalanan, sa iyo ako’y sino ba?
Kaklase at kaibigan, kasa-kasama paminsan,
At hanggang doon na lamang ang pagsasamahan.

Pero bakit nakangiti ang mukha kong may hinagpis?
Hindi nagdadalamhati sa likod ng sobrang inis,
Bagkus ay nasisiyahan sa tanawing nakikita,
Ano ba’ng napagmamasdan at natutuwa ang mata?

Mga mata mo ay perlas, mas makinang pa sa ginto,
Ngiti mo ay lalabas, sino ang ‘di mahuhulog?
Kahit iba ang kasama, makita ka lang masaya,
Kagalakan nadarama kahit ‘di ramdam ‘yong yakap.

Kapag ika’y pumapasok sa isipan kong magulo,
Ako ay mapapalunok, mapapahawak sa panyo,
Mapapakapit sa buhok, sabay isip ng malalim,
Sa sarap na inaalok, sa katumbas nitong dilim.

Bawat alaala mo ay isang kurot na mariin,
Paghihinagpis ang bigay sa isipan at damdamin;
Sa oras na nasasayang, sa oras pang sasayangin,
Ang nakapanghihinayang, ‘di ko pa kayang sabihin.

Bawat alaala mo rin hatid ay sobrang ligaya:
Mga gunitang sa atin, mga araw na kaysaya,
Ang ating pagsasamahan, mga kwento mo sa akin,
Lahat ay nasa isipan, tinatago ng damdamin.

Lahat ng litrato natin, aking tinitingnan lagi,
At doon sa bawat tingin, sa isipa’y sumasagi,
Just edit sa’king Photoshop kapag sumapit ang gabi,
Pagkaraan ng ‘sang iglap, kami na ay magkatabi!

Lahat ng ‘yong alaala hatid ay sakit na sarap,
Hinanakit na ligaya, pagdurusang alapaap;
Ewan ba sa’king sarili at kaytagal nagtitiis
Na ang pagsinta’y ikubli at mag-isa na tumangis.

Sana sa daigdig na ‘to, lahat ay pwedeng sabihin
Nang sayo’y walang babato, bagkus ika’y pupurihin,
Pero ang pasya ng mundo sa’king pagsinta sa iyo,
Ikimkim lang at itago hanggang sa ika’y lumayo.

Sino nga ba ang nagsabi na ito’y ‘di pwede’t bawal?
Wala! Walang imposible sa lalaking nagmamahal!
Uunahin ang pag-ibig sa sariling kapakanan,
Ang torpe ay nadidinig ng buong sangkatauhan!

Pero ang pagkakaibigan, siguradong masisira,
Kaytagal pinaghirapan, bigla na lang mabubura?
Roleta ng tadhana ko, ano ba ang pipiliin,
Kaibigang sigurado, kasintahang alanganin?

Kayhabang pagsasama ang nakasaalang-alang;
Isang taong mahalaga, magagalit, maiilang.
Aamining pagmamahal, kapag hindi mo tinanggap,
Sa iyo ay isang aral na lumayo sa’king yakap.

Ako’y tatahimik na lang, pagmamahal ikikimkim,
Para ako’y ‘di lubayan, makalapit pa ng lihim;
Ngayo’y sasamantalahin, pagkakaibigang ito;
Bawat sandali’y dadamhin habang tayo’y magkatoto.

‘Pag sinabi ko sa iyo ang nararamdamang ito,
Baka ako’y iwasan mo at iwang durog ang puso,
Pero sa pagkakaibigan, tayo pa’y nagkakatabi,
Ika’y nakakabiruan, mga gusto’y sinasabi.

Ang pagmamahal kong tunay, napakasakit itago,
Pero ngiting iyong bigay, sa mundo ko’y nagpabago.
Dahil sa tinig ng torpe, akin ngayong nalalasap,
Dumudugo, humahapdi, ang masakit na masarap.

November 13, 2009

For Antigone III

I boarded the jeep, with my eyes pointing to nowhere. Around Mountain View, a couple and their friend boarded the jeepney, and they are talking about restaurants. Oh, I remember my Restaurant City again. Haha.

The uncoupled man showed his wallet and paid the fare, and I know for sure, that he paid with the woman looking. The man even informed the couple that he already paid for them. This woman, after three minutes, pulled out his purse and her money, and tried to pay. The man stopped him, for he already paid, and the woman, without a word, just pocketed her purse again. I was surprised by how the woman acted. She still wanted to express that she has the capability to pay the fare even though generosity was already showed to her. Oh people will really do anything to make their social status higher than it seems.

Now, they are talking cheap. They saw a newly opened restaurant that offers a P100 promo – “Eat All You Can”. “Uhm, mukhang masarap! (Ummm, looks like it’s delicious)” the woman said. The man who paid the fare said, “Oo nga ‘no, at mura pa, one hundred pesos lang o?! Kain tayo minsan diyan? (I agree, moreover, it is very cheap. Only one hundred pesos?! Let’s eat there sometimes.)”. I kinda laughed when the husband of the woman said, “Sige, pero mas mura pa rin sa Ikabud, P99 lang. (Sure! But still, Ikabud’s charge is cheaper, P99 only)”. Wow, a difference of one peso makes the change, ay? We are really easily fooled by numbers, we regard P149 as much much cheaper than what is P150. Haha!

Time for me to say “Para!” The jeepney stopped and I unboarded it. I tried to take a peek first if there is anyone who is on the steel benches, but there is no one. Together with my annoying plastic bags, I approached the gate and saw a new guard. I entered the chromed gates and asked the guard. It is lucky for me that the guard is considerate, and does not push me outside because of my attire.

I asked, “is there anyone who entered here with a semi-bald hair, high school, with lots of things with him?”

“No one,” he said.

“Or didn’t anyone enter the school?” I just asked.

“There are a group of students who tried to entered the campus but I did not allow them because they do not have a permission slip.”

“How many are they?”

“About eight.”

“Uhm.. Or has anyone left the campus?”

“Except for the teachers, the boy scouts have already went out.”

“All boy scouts?”


“About what time did they go out?”


“Thank you. ;D “

Though Chica is not present, I got a valuable information, Alvin is already home! Woot! But what if he is asleep, err, maybe I’ll just say to his parents to just inform him when he wakes up that I went there. With that, at least, there’ll be evidence that I exerted effort.

I rode the jeep on a route that is unusual to me, Angeles-Mabalacat. I do not know exactly how much the fare is so I just paid P20 and waited for the driver to give me the change. The driver asked me on where am I going and I just said Camachiles, Alvin’s home barangay, for I do not know on which general area does Camachiles belong to.

In front of me, there is a man with a watch, and I easily saw the time, 12:15! :D wtf. Am I really that late. Maybe Chica will scold me and sungalngal me because their costume is in me, and they could not start the shoot without me.

Fast forward, for I am not yet getting in the middle part of this blog and yet this has taken already six pages in Microsoft Word at a font size of 12.

I unboarded at the tricycle terminal at Camachiles and walked on the path that I remember that leads to Alvin’s house. I turned right at Dona Anastacia Subdivision and there, towering among other houses, I saw their giant pinkish house.

I stood in front of the metal red gate and pressed the doorbell. I saw an unfamiliar face on their porch, and I just called and said, “tao po!” Hiding behind the pillar stood his mother, being pedicured by that unfamiliar face I saw. I asked for Alvin, and he asked if I was Kenneth. I wonder why he know my name? Am I that famous? Haha! :D

She screamed “Alviiiiiiiiiin!” and said to me, “Ah, he’s maybe asleep, he is very tired from the camping.” I was trying to say that I’ll just leave and I’ll just leave a message for him, but she continued calling and she asked me to go inside. Oh, Filipino hospitality! But is Alvin awake?

watch out for "For Antigone IV" ;)

November 6, 2009

For Antigone II

My hopes are clinging on me. I am talking to myself as if I am someone crazy, and I am conversing myself in English. I am saying things that how I wish Chica was here, or Kervy, or Alvin, which was a great impossibility for he informed me before his camping that they’ll be dismissed at 2pm.

Chica also said to me that he WILL go to the school to try to ask their scouting leader if he can dismiss Alvin earlier than the rest, for he is the person in charge of editing the film. I said that it is not possible because it is a camping, and it is part of their fulfillment (oh great, I used Jefran’s word again: fulfillment!) on their scouting and on their P.E. grade.

I continued waiting, and my thoughts started to crumble crazily. I said things like this: I’m gonna wait until the sun’s rays reach my foot, by that time, I’m sure, it is really late and I should go home. Or maybe, I should just wait before those group of children go home, and that means that I stayed here long enough.

Continuing my thoughts, here is what I said: “Oh, I’ll just pass time by watching the clouds, or maybe watch the wind blow the leaves from the trees, and mock people passing by, similar to what I did earlier as I was waiting for Taho. But that was different! I am in front of our house and the spot where I am standing now is about seven kilometers away!”

I cannot stay on one sitting position. Over time, my butt, thighs or arms get tired and I need to change in position. People come and go under the giant hat, but still I am there waiting hopelessly and idly for two persons.

“I know, I’ll look at that cloud. It is fun to look at the clouds, and give imaginary shapes to them. That one looks like the letter T. Ah! I know, I’ll wait until that T disappears, blown by the wind, until I’ll go on and have my plan.” Not more than three minutes after, the cloud has disappeared, and I never expected that clouds vanish as fast as that.

The lone girl left, maybe her American or European boyfriend have already responded to her text message; the dancers have also left, after a single, dull performance. The preaching class is still there, happily sharing experiences with each other, and the speech choir has already decided to eat their lunch. They ate their lunch after setting off a productive hour. I watched them as I waited for Chica and Kervy, and it was weird to hear the words Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and the sound of gunshots on their Tagalog speech choir.

Now, I’m already giving up, and my mind came up with these thoughts:

“OK, am I going home now? Where the hell are they?! it is like I have been saying bad words here for almost thirty minutes and yet those words did not mean a thing to them. Well, assuming they heard it.”

“If I go home, I just said that this shoot might make me go very late at night, for it was really my plan to go overnight. I memorized my mom’s number prior to my departure, so that I can text her that the inevitable has come onto me, that I’ll sleep on my classmate’s house. If my mom saw me going home early, she’ll say that I cannot go on other practices again, for I am not that important for they have left me! Or, I could just say that it is postponed, and if she asks me why, that’s when everything will flunk out. If I say because only few went, she’ll say that I should not sacrifice and be a martyr and I shall be included to the majority who did not attend.”

“Maybe Chica is at school, for he told me that he’ll fetch Alvin. But I cannot go there! I am bringing these dirty laundries and the fare will be an added cost! What if he is not there, then I just wasted more money. It feels already that I wasted P24 just by going here, am I going to waste P14 more?! And besides, the guard will not let me in. I do not have my school ID with me, and I am wearing shorts! I am also wearing slippers, and that is unacceptable in the dress code. I’m sure Chica is wearing pants and rubber shoes, and he can easily gain access inside.”

“I’ll go at Alvin’s. But argh! He is at camping! He said that they’ll be dismissed at 2pm, and yet, it is just around 12pm at my estimate (I don’t wear watch). And if I go there, and Chica is not present, I am certain that he is fast asleep. I am a boy scout on my elementary days, and I know how it feels like to be in the aftermath of a camping! It is very tiring and I was like a dead meat when I went home, I slept with my face facing the bed and my knees touching the flooring in front of my bed. It will be shameful in part of their family if I’ll disturb the sleep of Alvin.”

“Agh! Where should I go? But I should not give up! I am already here! There’s no point in turning back! Besides, a little amount of money is just small compared to a shot at success. What is the point of being in here if I won’t continue to do this? This is just a challenge, and I shall take it! Never shall I be under the roof of laziness, for sometimes, I should knock out of my shell and go into the sunshine of initiative!”

I paused and said, “wtf? Did I just say that?”

Continuing my thoughtless thoughts, “Stop thinking of the negative stuffs Kenneth! Think of the positive! But, maybe they ate at Robinson’s, for I am sure Alvin is dead hungry and Chica is dead thirsty. Err? But I am sure Chica would not waste time and Alvin has packs of food on his bag for the camping. They are not there.”

“Now, I’ll go to Systems! But, what am I going to do there… I’ll just ask the guard. Then, if I have confirmed that Alvin and Chica went out of the campus, I’ll just head straight to Alvin’s! Ok? Go? Ready?”

And at last, after about 15 minutes of second thoughts, I decided to leave the giant hat. I left it with a fake smile, for assuming that they have already texted me to go there and that my waiting there is not pointless. I do not want to appear despaired in front of many people even though I am carrying those pesky plastic bags with me.

... (For Antigone III. up next.)

November 3, 2009

Tears (Luha by Aegis)

If at first I was tagalizing songs, but I haven't posted those things yet on my blog, I have ventured into the world of translating Tagalog songs into English. oh wow. First to have a taste of it was Luha, the epic karaoke theme song of many Filipinos, and a favorite among amateur singing contests, which was sung by the famous Aegis. :) waahaha. enjoy.

At first I thought that now you are mine,
Faithfully until the end of time.
But when I approached to hug you,
You’ll disappear without a clue.

To you I tried to be a friend so close,
Because to you my love I will show.
But all the sacrifices I do,
Does not mean a thing to you.

You are my one and only true love
My witness is our god above
But I thought, I thought that I have been such a fool,
Wanting a man as worthless as you.

I do not need you anymore.
Please go away, walk through that door.
My everlasting love is now forever no more.
And this, you, liar! Remember!
My heart will love you, no, never!
To me do not go near,
Even if I see a tear,
I do not want you here.

I do not want to be lost.
I do not want you to speak
I do not want to be killed!
It is too much pain for me.
Oh the wheel of fate,
Life continues to just rotate.
Yesterday I had my downfall,
When will I finally find love to stand tall

Oh the wheel of fate,
Life continues to just rotate.
Yesterday I had my downfall,
Someday I will overcome failures through it all.

November 1, 2009

Apocalyptic Love :)

The planet may come to an end;
Our situation may be dire.
The whole island may break and bend;
Our world may be consumed by fire.
Our time may all be lost and spent;
Our fate is hanging by the wire.
Then I find my saving heaven;
You’re the only girl I aspire.

As the meteors fall from the sky
To give the Earth a giant boom,
To you I fall; my heart would fly;
We’ll share our thoughts amidst the doom.
Nuclear wars light all our nights,
What great mishap to our Earth looms.
I do not care; I’ll be your knight;
I’ll be with you amidst the gloom.

Earthquakes may rock the whole planet;
All humans running so frantic.
Your memories I won’t forget,
I’ll stay with you in this manic.
We may die as volcanoes jet
Lava, rocks and pyroclastics,
But baby I would not regret
Joining you amidst the panic.

Typhoons may come and bring great floods,
Break up dams and sweep away homes;
Droughts may set in and dry up lands,
Killing forests and burning tomes.
Any weather I’ll still be glad,
Whatever deadly danger roams;
A paradise in battered lands,
Your company is my one home.

Famines may kill the human race,
Cripple us down to our own flesh;
It may spread in the fastest pace
Bring us to ground into ashes.
But my girl when I see your face,
I feel immune to viruses,
Your light smile gives me strength and grace,
You’re the vaccine to all diseases.

An alignment of all planets,
The galaxy and our own Sun,
And the Mayan Calendar is set
To finish its long cyclic run.
But I would not give a moment,
As long as we are having fun.
I won’t cry if the world will end
Unless your presence will be gone.

Oh death is inevitable;
It will come creeping unto us.
But I don’t think of it at all,
I don’t care what’s going to pass.
Our bind is indestructible
Whatever Apocalypse will lash;
I’ll be with you; we’ll rise and fall;
A death with you is life at last!

Revelations have predicted
The Anti-Christ will come and rule;
With you, my girl, we’ll be protected
From anything evil and cruel.
Our love will lead us untainted
From Hell’s burning and fiery pool.
To the heaven, we’ll be supported
Away from being tricked and fooled.

Our end may be catastrophic,
Fate may be apocalyptic,
The world may end
Death it may send
Though it will be cataclysmic,
One thing will remain romantic.
In the end we’ll reach the skies above,
Come and accept my apocalyptic love.

October 30, 2009

For Antigone I

And here I go again, writing another blog entry on my desktop. Speaking of the word “desktop”, I remember Alvin, who refers to his personal computer as desktop: correct but different as what people always say – PC or just plainly computer.

August 15. We are at the last Saturday shoot of our school movie, which was a “partial fulfillment” (as coined by the boastful Jefran, haha) on our English IV, which comprises about 1.5 units of our more than 10 units in our senior year. It was a tiring day, for we started working at morning, and ended up going home late at night. Actually, it was not really late at night, but since majority of my classmates have strict parents, due to the fact that most of them are girls, they consider 7 pm as very late at night.

Our leader, Chica, asked us to have our shoot tomorrow, because we left Grand Palazzo Real with many of the scenes unfinished. Grand Palazzo Real (which was mentioned on my blog entry “In The Tropics”) was a very beautiful place, and was our shooting place for the movie. I got quickly used to its beautiful landscape, and the transportation in going there, for almost every weekend of the month of August, that includes Saturdays and Sundays, we are always going there to shoot, and at times, we also include the remaining hours before sunset after classes.

We were really out of time, and we are as rushed as an ant on a rainy season, desperately finding for food even though he knows that he is too late. Only three out of the fourteen scenes were taken, and the submission is on two days. The editing, on average, should take two days, and at the rate we shot the three scenes that we are able to shoot, we should be given five more weekends to finish them. Guess what, we are going to pass that project two days from that day.

Chica asked us to go to Salakot, the never-dying and the very legendary meeting place of our batch, at 10 am. Kervy explained, and said that he cannot miss a day on his church and that the ceremonies or mass (I don’t know how they call it on their religion) will end at 10 am. Chica listened to Kervy and moved the meeting time at 11 am sharp. Take note of the word “sharp”. (wtf?!)

The moment I went home, I slept almost instantly. (Yuck! Haha! This only explains how tired I am that day) Prior to that, we ate at Chowking with Chica bringing the giant styrofoar and I bringing the costumes in a hideous-looking laundry bag. Charlotte is also with us, and I have nothing to tell about her things.

I woke up at 7 am, and the sun was firmly on the sky already. I went fast in the front of the PC and started to open all my accounts on many social networking sites. I opened my Restaurant City, for I was in a chase to pass Claudine’s Chu-chu Restaurant. Then, my sister screamed at me. She heard the sound of Taho! (It is a Filipino food and I do not know how to describe it. All I know is that it is a very popular breakfast in the Philippines that comes in different flavors, but usually, sellers have only one – the classic white flavor.)

I ran outside and downstairs, and was disappointed to see a blank street. The TahoMan has left me, and my chances to sip through the hot cream of it are lost. I waited for about three minutes, watching as the clouds pass by and as the wind blows the leaves on the trees, changing position time after time.

I went up, losing hope, for I do not have a plan anymore to wait for the TahoMan. I sat in front of the PC, when my sister screamed again that the TahoMan is back. To my excitement, bringing the big glasses, I went down. I saw the TahoMan giving delights to the happy children less than half of my height. They are like party children asking for colorful balloons from a balloon man.

At last, the taho was served to me and I consumed it almost instantly. Argh, ten pesos today does not really get you too far. After sometime surfing the Net, I was shocked to see that the time is already nine o’ clock. Using the computer really consumes time, and a friendly tip, if you want to kill time fast and with a smile, surf the Net, as long as you are prepared to pay the hefty electric bills. If not, do the medieval style of passing time, having children, parenting, writing classic literature, and merrymaking with homemade wine on streets all day long.

I ate my heavy breakfast, for I was not able to eat my dinner the night before. I took a bath for “how many?” minutes as I left my RC running.

I chose my outfit for today, which didn’t take long because I only wear shorts and t-shirt, the typical casual wear fit for going on the other street. Haha. I left the house at 11:00 am, and I am deeply worried that may have left me for I am late. As I have said on my entry “On Board Bus Number Zero”, jeepneys in our residence are as rare as humans on the moon. While waiting, I just tried to memorize the first stanzas of my declamation piece, “Ako ang Kriminal”, for I do not want to waste time waiting for those rare resources.

After 15 minutes waiting for the jeepney, bringing the crazy laundry with me, which I separated in two more decent plastic bags minutes before, at last, my long suffering is over. A jeep is approaching. I boarded it, and the ride was smooth and fast. I sat at the front, and I was making a fantasy music video of Gravity on the jeepney.

After 10 minutes, we reached Main Gate, the starting point and endpoint of all jeepneys on the route that I am taking. Some 200 meters away is the Salakot, and I walked fast to get there. The heat of the tropical sun was baking me, and I really need to get under the shade of that giant hat.

To my dismay, no one was there. Except for a group of college students from HAU practicing a dance number, a group of children on a petty preaching session, another formation of students practicing a what I see as speech choir for the Buwan ng Wika and a woman sitting on the metal railings while texting.

So, I waited.

I waited.

I waited for a long time.

October 2, 2009

Tinig ng Torpe x_x

Ang pinakamahabang tulang Tagalog na tumagal sa akin. Haha :D Pinaghirapan ko ito ng 5 oras siguro, na putul-putol sa loob ng tatlong araw. Gusto ko pa sana habaan, dudugtong ko na lang kapag gusto ko pa. Haha :D Pamagat nito... "Tinig ng Torpe..."

Ako nga ay isang pipi: sa sarili’y nakatago;
Damdamin ay kinukubli, puso’y nakabalatkayo!
Ang sigaw ko ay tahimik; ang yakap ko ay anino;
Ang paghaplos ko ay hangin, bakit ba torpe ang puso?

Ang puso ko’y nakabukas, at ang labi’y nakasara;
Kailan ko ba ibubuka? Kailan ba magsasalita?
Nand’yan ka na, abot-tanaw, paminsa’y nakakasama;
Tila ba nangingibabaw sa’king sarili ang hiya.

Ang aking mahinang tinig, ang sigaw kong walang lakas,
Sana ay iyong madinig, mabanaag o mabakas.
Bawat gabi’y nananalig sa Diyos na nasa itaas,
“O kailan ba maniniig ang pag-iibigang wagas?”

Tanong ko ay walang sagot; utak ko’y walang pahinga;
Isip ko ay lumilibot, hinahanap kung nasa’n ka.
Kung ikaw lamang ay abot bawat minuto at araw,
Ang puso ko ay sasabog sa sobrang pagkatuwa.

Bawat araw na dadaan, sarili ko’y tatanungin,
Sasabihin ko na sa kanya? O ipadala sa tingin?
At sasapit ang ung u, hindi ko na masasabi,
Oo, aking sinasadya na padaanin sa hangin.

Paghiga ko sa kama, sa sarili’y maiinis,
Ano ba ang ginagawa? Pagkakatao’y umaalis!
Ako’y haharap sa unan, pagtapos ay magsisisi,
Mapapangatngat sa punda sa sobrang paghihinagpis.

Ako ay mapapangiti ‘pag ika’y ginugunita,
Kunwa;y magkatabi, nakahiga sa damuhan;
Sa labi’y namumutawi, matatamis na salita,
Hanggang sumapit ang gabi, kamay nati’y magkahawak.

Pangalan mo’y ulit-ulit na lumalabas sa bibig,
Wari’y ‘sang batang makulit, ‘di mapigilan ang kilig.
Isang mahabang pag-impit sabay ng kabig ng dibdib,
Ang mundo ay lumiliit sa aking mumunting silid.

Sa bawat magkasintahan na aking napagmamasid,
Sarili’y nakukulangan, kailangan ko ng pag-ibig;
Sa ngitian at akbayan, ako’y sadyang naiinggit,
Napapasok sa isipan, hiling ko sana’y tayo din.

Para bang napakasarap kung mahal ka ng mahal mo;
Parang nasa alapaap kung kayakap mo mahal mo;
Ngunit sa pangungulila, ginuhit ang tadhana ko;
Ang torpeng nagpapaawa, ngunit ‘di man kumikilos.

Ang puso mo’y nakasara, ang pinto’y nakakandado;
May iba bang nakatira? O ayaw mong magpapasok?
Puno ng kaba at hiya, ayaw ko namang kumatok;
Paano ko malalaman ang sagot sa aking tanong?

Kaysarap mong tingnan lagi, ngunit hanggang tingin na lang.
Kay tamis ng iyong ngiti, ngunit pangkaibigan lang.
Telenovela ang dating, cheesy’t OA ang tauhan,
Ang buhay nga’y parang TV, napakadaming eksena.

Kapag ikaw ay ngingiti, magkukuwento tungkol sa’yo,
Bawat buka ng ‘yong labi, napatutulala ako.
Anuman ang sabihin, makikinig ako sa’yo;
Lahat ng iyong babanggitin, itataga ko sa bato.

At sa tuwing umuulan, ika’y aking maiisip?
Ano ang ‘yong kalagayan? Ikaw ba ay nilalamig?
Anuman ang kalamidad, hahandugan ka ng himig,
Ika’y aking tatabihan sa gabing mahalumigmig.

Kung ikaw ma’y walang payong, walang panlaban sa ulan,
Halika’t dito sumilong, ikaw ay proprotektahan,
Ipo-ipo man o bagyo, ika’y aking sasamahan,
Pwede na ‘kong mapahamak, ikaw lamang ay mahagkan.

Kapag ikaw ay pupunta at lalapit sa’king tabi,
Ang sarili’y mawawala at mapapakagatlabi;
Sayo’y gusto kong humiga, maramdaman ang iyong init,
At ako ay matitigan na para bang umiibig.

At ikaw nga ay tatabi, puso ko’y tumatalon;
Sumisigaw ang damdamin ngunit labi ko ay tikom.
Kailanma’y di magsasabi, sa tubig ay di aahon,
Kailanman ay ‘di aamin, ipalitis man sa hukom.

Pero kung ako ay bukas sa damdamin ko na ito,
Ano kaya ang siyang wakas ng love story ng buhay ko?
Masaya ba ‘tong lalabas o magiging kwentong bigo?
Sana lang ay mayrong lakas magtapat ng pag-ibig ko.

“Sa huli ang pagsisisi,” sabi ng salawikain,
Baka nga ito’y mangyari kung hindi pa ako aamin;
Sa pagdadalawang-isip, akin na lang sasabihin,
Anuman ang mangyayari ay hayaan na lang natin.

Padadaanin na lang ba, maraming pagkakataon?
Palilipasin na lang ba, mga umaga at hapon?
Puso ko ma’y malulumbay, mangungulila man ako,
Isang masagit na aray – pero ang sagot ay oo.

Tila ako’y isang multo na hanggang paramdam lamang,
Hindi masabi ang gusto, hanggang pasenyales lamang;
‘Pag may ilaw nakatago, sa dilim ay lumalabas,
Torpe ba ang espiritu dahil ayaw magpakita?

Ang sigaw na walang lakas, boses na wala sa baga,
Salitang ‘di binibigkas, ang tugtuging walang kanta,
Isang tulang walang sinasabi at hindi pinapakinggan
Ito ay tinig ng torpe, sana’y iyong maramdaman. :)


September 11, 2009

My Public Street Bath III

It was really raining hard, and I have repeated this statement many times to show the emphasis of it. Kacielyn went with Chica, and they sheltered on the left side of the road. I shared the umbrella with Claudine.

The moment I went down the jeep, there was an adrenaline rush on my head. What the hell? FLOOD?! On the second that I stepped my foot on the floor, the water came rushing in. I did not complained about it, but instead, we desperately searched for a shelter. The wind is strong, so an umbrella is no protection for my pants.

Claudine’s small umbrella is not fit for us, so immediately we got wet. And then, as I was running on, I did not notice a waterfall flowing from the fabric roof. The waterfall smashed on my head, making me really wet. Argh! It’s like taking yourself into the shower with your school uniform on!

We find permanent shelter in front of a sidewalk stall. Like us, people are wet and stranded. Many are running in their futile escape from rain, and many are just waiting infinitely for the rain to stop. [TGU] The wind was blowing the water to us, and we are like helpless ants under the mercy of the wind. I shielded myself with Claudine’s umbrella.

We are thinking about Kacielyn and Chica? Where could they be? Are they OK? Or have they engorged themselves on rain?

Soon, thoughts of a 10-hour torrential rain came to our minds. What if this rain won’t stop? In my mind, since we got already wet, why not feel the rain? What is the difference? If you’re wet, be wet, for you can never be dry again.

Then, in front of me, a man bought an umbrella worth P50. An idea mutually struck us and then Claudine said that she’ll buy the umbrella. The man tested the umbrella and opened it, then Claudine gave the P100 bill. I have no umbrella, so he gave that cheap umbrella to me. Upon receiving the umbrella, Claudine went away, leaving her change. I grabbed for her change and I followed her.

I thought she is going to do her sweet escape, but instead, she just transferred to another place. I followed her, and I accidentally placed my open umbrella in front of many people, with a strong column of falling water sprinkling from it. They all became partially wet because of it. The mob looked mad at me, and I said sorry.

There we saw Kacielyn, along with Chica. I decided to fetch Kacielyn. I did not care anymore if I’ll get wet, for I know that I am already wet. I stepped on the part of the road with the deepest flood, ignoring the liters of dirty water entering my shoes. I looked side by side because I do not want to be hit by a car in a rainy day. I have approached them.

“Where did you get the umbrella?” Chica asked.

“We bought it.” I said.

I said my goodbye to Chica but he said that he’ll still remain there. I and Kacielyn crossed the road, but as for any bird, she was very noisy and panicky. She frequently shakes my hand, which makes me out of focus in holding the umbrella. When we are together, we also walk very slowly, for she is pushing her weight on me.

After a short period of rest, we decided to walk again. This time, it was a short walk. We are now on the terminal of jeepney near the famous Cuevas bakery, 200 meters away from the jeepney terminal that will lead us back home.

We are standing on the sandy soil as the wind continues to batter us. I can see the wind patterns on the big raindrops on the sky and as the raindrops fall on the ground. The wind is like a sweeping fan of death bringing the poisonous rain to everyone.

We stood at desperation thinking at how long we are going to walk. Claudine said that we should shelter on the green house that stands near the terminal. Without any second thoughts, we raced there. There was a raised platform where people can get away from the floodwater, but there was no more place for me to step on. My feet remained inundated for 30 seconds.

On another fast thinking, we attempted to cross a highway. Kacielyn was screaming throughout the walk for she is constantly stepping on deep holes that brings her foot down. Then, upon crossing the pedestrian lane, there was a slow truck passing by. We almost wanted to push that truck so that it will move faster and we can pass quickly, but of course, we can’t.

I just cannot imagine how must have we looked like crossing the streets. I guess we look like poor people with no home crossing a lonely road. We must have been mistaken for waifs in neckties and long sleeves.

Upon crossing the road, I sighed a great relief. The dangerous part is over, now, all we have to do is find a shelter quickly. I know that the seats on the shed of the taxi terminal is seldomly full, so I thought that it will be a great place to spend some minutes.

Kacielyn was still screaming and shaking my hand. My bag is overly wet; my hair is overly wet; my face is overly wet; my pants are overly wet; my uniform is overly wet – everything about me is overly wet.

Then, tougher winds began to blow. At a distance, I can see Claudine running for her life. If that was an ordinary day, Kacielyn will laugh out at her lungs seeing Claudine run at that manner, but at that time, there was no time to laugh. It was national disaster in our mind. We are holding tighter on my weak umbrella. The wind makes it more difficult to hold, and sooner or later, my umbrella will be swept away by the wind.

And that moment nearly came. The wind gusted really hard, and one of my hands loosed grip of the umbrella. Kacielyn also loosed her grip, and my other hand was pulled by the umbrella towards my back. In a split second, I managed to pull back the umbrella again.

For the first time, I knew what it feels like to be in a disaster zone – to be caught in the middle of a typhoon. It almost felt like our life is hanging on the balance, and one wrong move, and you’ll be knocked off your feet – thrown in the thunderous skies above. Before, I only see people moving difficultly in the middle of a typhoon in the television, but on this day, I experienced it firsthand. This is certain, no one can paint my ugly face at that time.

We took shelter under the waiting shed of the taxi terminal. The taxi terminal goes anywhere on the ten-thousand square mile island of Luzon, and I am amazed at how they are going to know they’re way. Going back to the rain…

The sky is dark, yet it is noisy because of the torrential rains pouring down. Amplifying its noise is the wind blowing hard: rustling every single leaf on every single tree, and making all ladies scream to their horror of being wet. The wind is really punishing, and we are really under the mercy of the wind at that time.

We stayed uncompletely sheltered on the shed for about 15 minutes, and we are asking ourselves if we should take a taxi ride. Claudine complains that we need that ride, but upon asking the driver at how much the ride costs, the driver says 300, compared to the P10 on the jeepney.

Kacielyn urged Claudine not to take the taxi ride, and instead, she should just rent the whole jeepney. That option is much cheaper, for it only costs 100-200 pesos. If we won’t rent the jeep, we will be stinky bags in front of many passengers, and I do not want my face to be blemished with that kind of reputation.

After minutes of deciding, and mourning over Claudine’s wet cellphone (okay, I forgot to say the part of the story regarding the cellphone…), we concluded that we should rent the jeepney. We reached the shed, which was 50 meters away. From there, I first saw how we really look like. That was the first shed that we had with a bright fluorescent lamp, showing all of our wetness and dirtiness. Dang, we are a total mess.

Luckily, the jeep was not totally full yet, and the only passengers were three students. One almost wet, and the other two partially wet. We boarded the jeepney and they jokingly and friendly teased us that we took a shower out of another house. We just ignored the joke and laughed about our wet faces.

Claudine paid the whole jeep, which the driver said costs P150 – half the cost of the taxi ride. The jeepney, with a capacity of 18, was started with only six passengers aboard. Good thing the jeepney ride was fast, and we managed to reach our houses in 15 minutes.

At the jeepney, we were laughing. I have never seen Claudine and Kacielyn squeezed their skirts as if they are hired clothes washers. I have never seen them dry their hair in the jeepney as if they are in front of their house mirror or the electric fan. Haha.

We went home wet. Luckily, none of us were scolded. Woot. And that is the day I took a replenishing and refreshing street bath.

September 9, 2009

37 inches

Here is another poem of mine, written two days ago during our noisy MAPEH time. My classmates were watching Antigone as I am mute and thinking. 37 inches seems to be small distance, but if it is your distance to someone you admire, I have never thought of this before, but it really seems like a mile.

Winter nights have never been this frigid and cold;
Loneliness have increased a hundred thousand-fold.
You're present in my sights but so far from my touch:
37 inches, this seems to be so much!

The bright smile on your face shines brightly from afar;
Your happiness glimmer like a small distant star.
Oh yes, it is distant, and I can't get a grasp:
37 inches, the measure of the gap!

To all the jokes, I laugh; to all the fun, I cheer;
And though you are so far, I think that you are near.
Through the great distance, I try to show a smile:
37 inches, oh it feels like a mile!

At the table you stare, to you I stare behind.
Shall I wink or approach or present you a sign?
The gap, unbearable; the space, I cannot grab.
37 inches, hoe can I show my love?

***THE END***

September 6, 2009

Mula sa Malayo.. :D

Waah. This is my first Tagalog post on my supposedly pure English blog. :D Hehe. Iba pala talaga kapag may motivation, nakakagawa ka ng tula in 20 minutes. haha :D start.

Nalulungkot ako 'pag di ka nakikita;
Naaasar ako 'pag ika'y gunita.
Bakit ba ganito aking nadarama?
Pag-ibig na ba 'to o simpleng pantasya?

Sa aking pagtulog, 'di mapakali,
Ika'y naiisip, araw man o gabi.
Iyong mga mata at ang iyong ngiti
Nagbibigay sa'kin ng munting kiliti.

Pananaw sa mundo ay biglang nagbago
Nang ika'y dumating sa puso kong tulog.
Gabing habambuhay ay biglang naputol;
Araw ay sumikat, pagsinta'y umusbong

Nung una'y hindi ko matanggap na ikaw,
Bakit 'kaw pa ang laman ng aking pantasya?!
Kahit na pilitin ang puso't isipan,
Tawag ng damdamin, 'di mapigilan!

Pag-ibig nga ito, ako'y walang laban.
Isang mananakop sa lupang dayuhan.
Kahit anong pilit nating itago 'yan,
E lilitaw din yan at matutuklasan.

Kapag dumaan siya, ako ay tulala,
Parang gustong hagkan pero di magawa,
at habang palayo, ang kanyang galaw,
Sa 'king mga mata, ay magandang sayaw.

Tatawanan niya ko kapag siya'y masaya,
At ako naman ay ngingiti sa kanya.
Sa isip ko'y iyo'y malaking bagay na,
na siya'y ngumiti't aking napasaya.

Ngunit kapag hapon, sa punto ng uwian,
ako'y nalulungkot; oras ang kalaban!
Siya ay uuwi na, kailangang kawayan,
Paalalang mag-ingat, magbigay paalam.

Lulubog ang araw, ako'y maiiwan,
At sa pagmamahal, ako ay ulila.
O sinong aampon sa puso kong bukas?
Hiling ko lang sa'yo, sana ay ikaw na.

Sino ba ang nagsabi na ako'y magmahal
Damdamin kong likas, o, puso kong hangal!
Pag-ibig nga naman, iba ang gayuma;
Walang kagamutan, wala ring bakuna!

Ako'y isang pipi, may pusong tahimik
At ang pagsinta'y dinadaan sa hangin.
Sa ganitong paraan ako ay kuntento...
Titingin na lang ako mula sa malayo. :|

the end.

August 30, 2009

My Public Street Bath II

Driven by shame, I turned back, along with Jefran. Chica, Geraldyn and Kareejil continued their walk. Then, a man riding a yellow motorcycle stopped to talk to us.

“Do you have an appointment here?” the man asked.

The man was talking to Jefran, but Jefran just responded with a scratch on his head and went away. For the man to not treat it as a disrespect, I said, “No, sir.” [Note: that the conversation was carried out in Tagalog, I just translated it for the sake of World Wide Web.]

“Then, why are you here?” the man asked.

“We just went here to see something.” I said.

“From what school are you from?” he asked as if he was interviewing.

I was troubled by that question. The possibility of him calling our principal and complaining about trespassing students is high, so I hesitated to say it. I looked at Kacielyn and realized that I need to say it. Our uniform is very distinct, and he can even read our school name in our ID laces.

“Systems Plus College Foundation.” I answered.

“Why are you exactly here?” He asked again.

This time, there was Kareejil to help me out, and she told the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. She said that we have a play in English and that we are asking permission if we can shoot inside. She also asked if we can enter the function rooms, and what are the things that we are going to do in order to be allowed.

He parked his motorcycle in front of the café for a while and made us wait around the fountain. I was amazed by how beautiful the venue is. The fountain is part of the entrance to the main hall. It is surrounded by a splendid garden and ten foot pillars. The fountain is covered by a translucent dome, making the sunrays spread among the splashing waters of the fountain. Chica is wow-ing really loudly.

Kareejil asked if we can see what is inside the hall, and the man granted us an all-access trip inside the hall. He opened the white royal door. The door has big golden handles, and opening it is like entering in a palace.

The towering mermaid statue standing on a circular pedestal in front of the hall went out of the view when they already closed the door, but the next scene was more breathtaking. Everyone said a “WOW” upon seeing the interior. The ceiling was unreachable in height, and the length is endless. There are many sculptures, mostly golden, and the walls are decorated with Da Vinci-like life-size paintings.

There is another room, and upon opening it, another world turns to life. In it are dozens of tables, each with a dozen bronze chairs. There is a stage near the middle of the room with two seats. Still, everything inside is Greek!

The next room is a dream. The man opened the lights and on the seemingly endless ceiling appears a mass of floating candles – a chandelier! There are four chandeliers in the room, and when alight, they lift the mood of the whole room. The third room is filled with Greek furniture – a brass mirror with a winged god’s statue below, a table with different images engraved on its edge and a room surrounded with stained glass, both in the ceiling and in the walls.

The whole trip is a journey onto another world. I have personally seen for the first time the world of the rich and famous and how far their world is they from us. Moreover, it seems that time had stopped, and that my eyes were suddenly filled with images. The thrill of being in a new place is very extreme – it is like every step you take, there is a sigh that you will release.

We went out, and of course, our trip will not be complete without a picture. The view is spectacular, and I was taking tons of pictures all the time. After the breathtaking view, we took a picture in front of one of their mystique doors. One, two, three.. CLICK! What we don’t know is that rain clouds are gathering from afar, and we are in great danger.

We walked from Grand Palazzo real to a terminal of jeepney with a clump of half-naked men chatting on the grass. The danger was there, but we ignored it. Jeepneys are less frequent at this time, and we can see that the skies have now darkened. We asked ourselves if we should just split into two separate jeepneys, so that we can go home earlier, rather than waiting an empty one for all of us to fit. Fortunately, a jeepney arrived, with a fair number of vacant seats. It is not enough for us, but since we are in need of going home, we just boarded the jeepney with some of my classmates sitting in the lap of my other classmates.

Kareejil unboarded the jeepney first, then a few minutes after, we followed, leaving Geraldyn and Emy on the jeepney. Along with me is Jefran, Claudine and Kacielyn.

From Jefran’s instruction, we boarded the C-Point Hensonville Holy route. He was with us throughout the trip. We were all tired, and then I was delighted upon seeing the almost dried up Abacan River, because it signifies that I am not far from home.

Jefran unboarded the jeepney first, and right after he unboarded the jeep, the incredible twists of fate happens. It was like one of the most embarrassing days of my life. Promise me, see me after the damage has been done on me, I look terrifyingly terrible.

Rain began falling hard – really hard. The whole world was like pouring the whole Pacific on one small spot. After the rain, the jeepney began to stop. The wheels are not spinning, but the driver is pushing the “gas” pedal. He tried for almost two minutes, for he does not want his trip to be cancelled, because that may mean a cancelled dinner for his hungry family.

Fortunately, the jeepney moved. But unfortunately, the fortune did not last long; the jeepney had stucked again. It was terribly raining, and the driver tried to push his luck for another two minutes.

Soon, he gave up, and asked us to board the jeepney behind. I raced the other passengers so that I can be the first to sit in the empty jeepney. I’m dreadfully wrong. As I was holding my bag on my head so that my head won’t be wet, I saw that the jeepney is reaching its full capacity. I just sighed a bad word in my mind and still continued my walk to the jeepney.

Everyone was selfish, as they do not want to take a bath in the rain. Monsoon rains are really punishing, a second’s bath at it will cause you wet hair and wet uniform. Make it two seconds and you’ll get a totally wet look.

I asked the woman to give me some space to seat, for I noticed that her sleeping daughter has so much space beside her. She moved over, but only just a little bit. Of course, I do not want to spark a war inside the jeepney, so I just sat uncomfortably. Claudine is racing frantically. Of course, no one wants to be left alone in the rain in an unfamiliar place.

Claudine just sat in Kacielyn’s lap, and Chica sat in front of us. They were all noisy, as if they have escaped a volcanic eruption. One old woman in front of me sighed, “Like an evacuation center.”

As the jeepney moved, the weather worsened. Floods are extensive on the streets, and everywhere the jeepney turns, there will be a river going downstream. The driver’s windshield is merciless to the countless droplets of water blurring the view, and the wheel is being endlessly tortured with floodwater.

Chica said, “Here we are,” and he told us that it is time to unboard the jeepney. He tried to ask if the jeepney will still go to Main Gate, but he is not.

“Claudine, prepare your umbrella,” Kacielyn told Claudine, the only person among us three with an umbrella on hand…..