Saturday, April 30, 2005
I had to contend with a lot of deaths this month. Not only did famous people die (Pope, Prince Rainier, Dr. Punongbayan), but our family was beset by deaths as well.
I went to the wake of Dr. Echiverri the other day. Not only to represent our family, but to meet my aunt (the sister of my mom). It was a bittersweet meeting. I was not able to exchange much pleasanties because the other siblings of my mom arrived to pay their respects. I wanted to stay and chat but it was too emotional for me. I was not comfortable with the way they were looking at me (a look of pity and questions) and I made my excuses to leave early.
Maybe it was just me or I was too emotional. It did not help that I learned that my favorite Idol, Constantine Maroulis was voted off that morning. Leo was teasing me mercilessly the whole day about it (did I mention that it was our 1 year and 2 month anniversary last Thursday as well?).
Yesterday, my paternal aunt sent me a text message saying that the sister of our grandfather died too. My gulay.
Monday, April 25, 2005
Ah well. It's such an old feeling and I try not to think about it too much. But when an officemate and I talked about it today, he actually encouraged me to move on. It's going to be difficult but I will indeed try (hint hint hint). He was moreover surprised when he learned that I've been stuck in the same department for five years already! I REALLY need to move. No wonder I feel like I'm stagnating.
I also got my grades today. Good news is I passed Management Accounting although barely. I got a 2.0 whereas I got a 4.0 for Production Management (fyi, passing for MBA is 2.0 compared to undergrad's 1.0). Not bad although there goes my chances for graduating with honors. Kina-career ko pa naman ito eh palpak pa. At least Leo got a 3.0 which still makes him a candidate. I hope he'll make it.
On a morbid note, it has been a weekend of hospital visits and deaths. I was tasked to look for a flower shop yesterday to send out condolence flowers (?) to the Abalos daughter who died last week (we're related to them by marriage. Long chain but it's there). I ventured to Araneta Avenue with my brother and sister-in-law and bought two wreaths, one from our family and the other from my aunt (who's related to them) from the US. My mom emailed me again this morning to send out another wreath to the same family who experienced another death yesterday (brother-in-law of my aunt was shot). It's such a shock for all of us. I pray that God will give their loved ones the strength to get through these trying times.
Last Saturday, I visited my grandmother who's confined at Osmac (Ospital ng Makati) due to Stage 1 Pneumonia. I hope she'll be ok. She's been a pillar of strength for all her children. I know how much she unconditionally loves her children, even sacrificing so much for their welfare. My aunt asked me to send her flowers as well. Somehow, I balk at the task because, call me superstitious, I don't like the trend that is showing with regards to my flower-sending.
Oh and last Friday, I visited an officemate who was suddenly confined at Makati Med due to face numbness. We hypothesized that it could be potassium deficiency or sinuses or whatever. When she came back to work this morning, the doctor's initial finding is that there's some sort of shadow on the right (or was that the left) side of her brain. She had a blood test where they took 3 vials from her, to rule out aneurism and the such.
Gosh, what a trying weekend. I hope this week will be better.
Sunday, April 24, 2005
I know it doesn't sound extraordinary, but cleaning my room is daunting task. Nevertheless, I managed to accomplish it.
It has been very productive. Not only did I sweep out 2 years worth of dust, but I managed to rebuild my book database as well. I now have 500+ books. I packed 269 of them in a big balikbayan box and stored it in my closet. It was very difficult because I did the whole thing (including the heaving and lifting of the box) myself. Now, my back, thighs and arms are hurting due to the exertion.
See my new room:
The bookshelves have less clutter now and I placed my study table beside it.
I also cleaned my laptop table and tried placing it right beside my bed. But there was not enough space for my reading lamp.
Time to get some sleep. My body is screaming for rest. Too much exertion. (sigh)
Friday, April 22, 2005
Due to public opinion, I'm changing my template. But I"ll get to that sometime this weekend. I'll be spending the day tomorrow with my SO. Probably on Sunday. Although I intend to clean my room on Sunday. I would need to rearrange all my books and pack all those which I haven't read for quite some time. Probably start on my database again (suggestions on what program to use in making this database is very much appreciated). Friends have been telling me to sell some of my books, but I can't seem to do that. Though I think I've breached the 800 mark last year, I can't bring myself to part with these stuff. These are my treasures.
I've been visiting a dermatologist these past few weeks. My face has dark spots on it especially on the muzzle area--I blame my latest allergy on that. Even if the doctor's fee is covered by our health care provider, I still have to shoulder the medicines--which is a lot! Every week, I spend an average of 2kphp for the medicines. And to think I've been seeing her for only 2 weeks! I don't intend to return since our contract with our HMO will end on April 30 and our new HMO won't cover her fees. I'll ask for a recommendation from our new HMO. I do need some skin treatment done (warts for one).
The other day, an officemate was playing instrumental music of movie theme songs. It was entertaining because I would guess the movie from where each theme came from. The oldest that I heard was Top Gun (I think). Titanic was there too! I tried looking for this CD in Music One and Tower but the nearest thing that I found was "Richard Clayderman plays your favorite MOVIE THEMES." Not exactly what I wanted but it's the nearest.
We went shopping last Sunday for baby stuff. We bought a stroller/carrier and a crib/playpen. It was also a crash course on babycare paraphernalia. We're eagerly waiting for the arrival of our first nephew/niece. Yes, my sister-in-law is almost nine months and regardless of the 3 ultrasounds that she had, we still don't know the sex of the baby. Looks like he/she likes keeping us in suspense.
Wednesday, April 20, 2005
Anyway, let me make some more changes to get this new website to function like my old site (jumpsite for the other websites that I visit).
I'll update more once I get to program this properly.
Sunday, April 17, 2005
If there's something "different" that I love, it's listening to chorales/choirs. The first CD of a chorale that I bought was that of The Philippine Madrigal Singers "Madz in Love". Afterwhich, I bought the Bukas Palad Album and another Madrigal CD.
An officemate who is familiar with my love for chorale music recommended to be Ryan's 2004 CD. I already saw it before but I thought it was just instrumental music. But she said that the San Miguel Chorale is part of the CD too. So upon my visit to Music One yesterday, I snapped a copy.
For those who loves OPM music, this CD is something for you to listen to. Their rendition of "Tuwing Umuulan at Kapiling Ka" is so majestic. My favorite is "Paraiso". It reminded me so much of the old Smokey Mountain group when they won in Japan singing this piece.
Even if this CD only has 13 songs, it will not leave my CD player for quite sometime. It used to be Nina's CD but my sister sequestered that.
I wish I can listen to this group sing live. Heck, if I can listen to any chorale perform live, I'll be happy. I guess I miss singing with a choir.
Anyway, go listen to Ryan's music. It will uplift your soul.
Friday, April 15, 2005
On a lighter note, a got this link from Mindy's page.
It took awhile but the farthest I got was 36 meters.
Just move your mouse from left to right but do not click. It's really funny :)
I knew that this day will end in a bad note when I learned that one of my American Idol favorites, Nadia Turner (picture from Idol On Fox Image), was voted out. I loved her performance (and her hair), although her latest ones are not up to par.
But what really made this day as a Disaster Day was after I took my Management Accounting final exam.
I knew that I should've taken a leave of absence today. I needed the day to focus my thoughts, but as it may, I had to go to work (my immediate supervisor was on leave and I had to be there). I was almost late going to school since I had to attend some sort of informal meeting with a VP. When I got to school, the prof was not yet there so I just sat there and waited for the whole thing to be over. When the prof arrived and I was handed my exam questions, my mind went blank. I just blacked out and I could not understand what was on the paper. I had to check my notes (at least it was open notes) and restudy everything. I panicked more when at 830 pm, people were submitting their papers (SO was the third person, I think, to submit his paper) and I was just done with question number 1 (the test comprised of 3 LONG questions). I had 30 minutes to finish the last 2 questions and the pressure did not help.
After the exam, I just handed my paper and took my frustration and anger at myself on my SO. Poor Leo. He wanted to talk about the exam but I refused and even snapped at him for trying to do so.
He took me home and I was not speaking to him the whole time. I was really feeling so down and depressed because my dream of graduating with honors will never be realized. I know it's such a farfetched dream, I mean who would take a girl who graduated with a CGPA of 2.3 from College seriously. No wonder I was waitlisted! This was really such a disaster.
I guess I was expecting too much on myself. I thought that I can do this but I don't think I can. It's either I have too much faith on my abilities or I'm just really not meant to be here. Maybe I should just quit this whole thing and save my money instead? I mean, who am I kidding? What is my objective to finish this thing? It won't assure me of a promotion. It won't definitely make my work easier.
Leo told me that it's not the end of the world if I do flunk and it's not. However, with so many things that are failing in my life, I hold onto every little thing that gives me a semblance of success.
Oh well, as what we say at work, LET GO. It's over and there's nothing much I can do about it right now except cry (at least it will make me feel better). If I do flunk, then probably I'll take it again. I'll just take refuge on the fact that I did well in my other subjects and accounting is my waterloo. Maybe I'll strategize better next time.
Tuesday, April 12, 2005
There's this chatroom where I read the posts and I sometimes wonder how ironic life can be. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry after reading this specific post. I decided to be irritated since I do not have the patience to be understanding. If I could just get a stick and bash it on a person's head. But hey, I'll be bashing it on my head as well because I remember I was that stubborn too. Durn. Didn't realize I was that frustrating.
Nevertheless, I've been taught to keep my mouth shut if I don't have anything good to say. I don't think that's a good idea though because it prevents us for being honest with another person--especially if that person is our significant other. It was the biggest thing that I had to overcome when Leo and I became an item.
I was a big supporter of "silent treatments". I justified my actions before saying that I don't want to say anything hurtful when I'm angry. I learned my lesson though, and so did he. We learned how to get around that and for me to be able to say what I feel without the worry of saying anything hurtful.
Monday, April 11, 2005
Left and right, friends are either getting promoted or being pirated, while I'm stuck in the same old job and no forthcoming promotion to speak of.
I am so frustrated when it comes to my job that I've stopped hoping that something "good" will happen to me in my current company. Whenever I would rant about this to my friend, she would tell me that at least I have Leo. A lot of our friends who are moving ahead in their respective careers are not that "happy" because they're alone.
That made me stop and think. Yeah, I do have this special guy by my side, but that does not answer the need for fulfillment when it comes to my work.
I guess all I can do right now is to wait it out. I have imposed a deadline on myself. Two deadlines actually. My five year anniversary is coming this July and my graduation from my MBA (2006?). We'll see what happens then.
Sunday, April 10, 2005
Yesterday, Newsweek and Time featured him on their respective front covers. Instead of buying just one issue, I bought both. This morning, when I served at the Archbishop Palace, I broke into tears in the middle of communion when we sang "Tell the World of His Love" (World Youth Day'95 theme song). When a person close to Cardinal Sin joined us during breakfast, we interviewed him and asked about the Cardinal and how was Pope John Paul up close. I've heard all his answers before but it still feels different since I heard it straight from the source. I just can't seem to get enough.
It can be difficult to understand my devotion bordering to fanaticism over this person. Regardless of his trappings, the Pope is still a man. Besides, I haven't personally met the man and the closest that I came to him was during World Youth Day '95, and even then, I was in the sidelines and not even close enough to touch the Popemobile. But there is something holy about his aura that can move a person to tears. His humility and holiness reminds me that I am a sinful person and should ask for forgiveness. His smiling face exudes peace and can calm a soul and after all the hardships and trials, having someone to look up to can make you go on.
I know I can never be considered a saint (I can hear my friends sniggering), but I still aspire to live a good and peaceful life. To be able to give without expecting anything in return, to love without prejudice and to love God above everything else. It's a difficult task, but if the Pope was able to do it, then maybe, just maybe, I can do it too.
Thursday, April 07, 2005
It's been a long time ever since I read a book that made me break out in tears and literally made me weep.
PS, I Love You, a book by Cecilia Ahern made me do just that. I started reading it yesterday while I was at the salon getting a pedicure and I continued reading it last night and finished it this morning (I'm a speedreader. Can finish a 450 paged book in less than four hours).
When I first saw this book at Powerbooks, I had second thoughts of buying it. I mean hey, who wants to read a book about a young widow trying to get on with her life? But it was sensitively written and full of warm insights about love and life, that it made me want to recommend it to any friend or relative who recently lost a loved one.
I admit, there are some parts wherein you just want to whack Holly (that's the widow) on the head, for not wanting to get her old life back, but I guess it's easier said than done for most people. You'll never really know how it feels until you're there.
Another thing that I liked about this book is the setting. All the pop fiction that I've been reading are set either in the US, or in England. This is the first time that I read something where the lead character lives in Ireland. I could hear the way they speak and there are sometimes, that I think I could speak with their accent as well. At first, I was thinking whether it was set in Australia or England, but it was later on that they made it clear that it's in Ireland (I assume it's Ireland since Dublin is there, right?).
I remember that there's a Sweet Dreams book that I read in high school with the exact title and almost the same premise. In that Sweet Dreams novel, the guy is still alive and struggling with a terminal illness. I remembered crying buckets after reading it since it's my first romance teenybopper book and it had to be a sad one.
If you want a good laugh, and a good cry, go read this book (my gosh. I just read the bio of the author. She's freaking 22 years old AND the daughter of Ireland's prime minister....ooookkkk).
Here's the book's summary found on the back cover. They could have not said it any better:
Holly and Gerry are the kind of married couple that others envy. Then, at the age of 30, Gerry is diagnosed with a terminal illness. Holly doesn't know ho wshell go on without him, and in truth, she doesn't want to. But Gerry has other plans for Holly. Months after Gerry's death, Holly receives a package of letters that he's left for her, instructing her to perform a series of unexpected tasks. With the help of the letters--and her fun, quick-witted girlfriends and a raucously endearing family that smothers, loves, and drives her crazy--Holly wobbles, weaves, and jokes her way toward a new life, even larger than the one that she'd been forced to leave behind. PS, I Love You is a tender, funny, unexpectedly romantic novel that readers will treasure in their hearts and minds long after closing the pages.
Sunday, April 03, 2005
This time I was prepared, but I still can't help but shed a tear when CNN kept on showing pictures of him. He will definitely be a tough act to follow.
I decided to hear mass at the Divine Mercy and lo and behold, it's the Feast of Divine Mercy. There were so many people milling about and the church was packed! I managed to find a seat somewhere in the front left side. Typical of Divine fiestas, they booked bishops to say mass the whole day. Bishop Bacani was the priest presider on the mass that I heard (he was also the one who presided over my confirmation). People flocked around him after the mass. Everyone was trying to get his blessing, up to the point of grabbing his hand and pressing it to their foreheads and/or lips.
I caught a taxi outside the church and proceeded to Megamall where I bought some items and had a massage. I have a regular masseuse over at David's Day Spa and she was very pleased to see me after such a long period of absence.
After that very relaxing massage, I had lunch at Greenwich all by myself. It's a Sunday so there were so many families or couples milling about. Some of them even looked at me with question and/or with pity. They were probably wondering why I was alone. It does not bother me.
In fact, I used to go out by myself all the time even before Leo and I became an item. I got to go where I wanted to go and I actually got so many things done. I had to go home though before I exhausted my budget once again.
In case you're wondering what I'm doing by my lonesome when Leo and I usually spend weekends together, we decided not to go out this weekend due to the amount of papers and reports that we have to submit by the end of this week.
Oh yeah, it's Leo's birthday on Thursday. Do greet him, guys!
Saturday, April 02, 2005
January 1995. It was this year that His Holiness, Pope John II came to Manila to participate in the World Youth Day. It was a very memorable time for me. Not only did I get the chance to be a volunteer (the handicapped delegates were entrusted to our care), but it was a chance to get as close as I can to the most charismatic person that I have ever known.
January 1995 was also a traumatic time for me. That's why I only remember bits and pieces of the event. It was during these World Youth Day celebrations wherein my first boyfriend and I broke up. Talk about selective amnesia.
Anyway, I've been closely monitoring CNN (cnn.com and cable tv) regarding news about the Pope's health. JP2 (as we fondly called him during his visit in Manila) has been stricken with Parkinson's and it's taking its toll on his frail body. Just seeing him bent and shaking from the disease makes me break out in tears. How can somebody who is so full of joy and love end up in such a state? Nevertheless, even in his condition, he still emits the old peace and serenity that influenced people around the world.
Last Thursday, Vatican came out with a press release that the Pope's health is deterioriating with the onset of a urinary track infection and high fever. It's already Saturday and the Vatican is due to come out with a briefing in half an hour. I can't help but feel anxious with what they will report.
Because of this, I don't know how to word my prayers. Part of me wants the Pope live so he could spread the miracle of the Lord's faith to more people. But I don't know if he is strong or even young enough to recover from such an ailment. In His age, he deserves to rest and prepare himself for his meeting with our God.
I remembered reading a news article wherein he was a subject of a failed assasination attempt in the 1980's. After recovering from the bullet wound, he visited his would-be assasin in jail and forgave him. I cried after reading that article. I was so touched because he exemplified Jesus' commandment, "Love one another as I have loved you." JP2 loved his would-be killer and he loved him enough to forgive him. That shows character. That is what real love is all about.
I haven't personally met this man. However, I have known him through my whole conscious life, as the successor of St. Peter. His name is uttered in masses and he usually makes news with his strong statements and influential missives. His goodness, peace and obvious love for God and His people inspires me to be a better Christian.
Death is imminent for this once-energetic person. I wish I could stand by his bedside and personally wish him farewell and thank him for touching my life the way he has, or at least be one of the hundreds of people at St. Peter's Square. But all I can do is stay here, pray and pay homage to the person who is loved by so many, and no doubt, is well favored by our Lord God.
JP2, we love you. May you peacefully go and meet our God. No doubt, He Himself is waiting there by Heaven's gates, ready to welcome you Home.
Thanks to popejohnpaul.com for the pictures.