Posted on December 5, 2013
Choose to be optimistic, it feels better.
Dalai Lama XIV (via creatingaquietmind)
Choose to be optimistic, it feels better.
Dalai Lama XIV (via creatingaquietmind)
Just the other night, Tessa and I were talking about how tired we always felt or how we have lost the seemingly inexhaustible energy we had when we were younger. That no matter the number of hours of sleep, we never seem to recuperate. Youth is indeed wasted on the young. Haha.
But last night, it felt like we were college students again. We were giddy and rowdy. We acted like we did not care. We were annoying diners. We had fun though, unadulterated and non-adult fun. We just laughed at ourselves and at how much we lacked manners whatsoever.
All is good in the land of Banawe. It will survive despite our social ineptness and the dumplings will continue to thrive.
Thanks Pau, Mark, and Tessa! I had a good night!
They say plans never work out when we do not work on them.
I have been on hiatus for a month now. Had there been no plans made prior to this break, I would never drag my lazy self outside of the house. I have so much time now, one thing I always anticipated, and had so many ideas as to how I would spend. But now that time is upon me, I do not want to work on it. I do not want to work on anything just yet. I just want to enjoy the canvass, the emptiness, the blur. Often times though I feel guilty for not doing anything, for idly letting time pass me by, for not following through with whatever it is that I was looking forward to. But guilt I try to avoid; it is not the most wonderful of human nature, though necessary.
They say we should enjoy the battle and the calm. I should do that. I have enjoyed the battle, now it is time to enjoy the calm.
I think I confuse calm with boredom though. Boredom habitually visits me now. A good thing about boredom is that it affords me the platform to sort into piles what I want and what interests me from all else. If not now, then not now or never. Boredom makes me look forward to things that are designated to happen in the future- like working again, moving out, building an independent life.
Through the battle, calm, and boredom, this I pray - blessed grace.
Hemingway knew the secret. I mean, he was a lush and a bad man in many ways, but he knew the secret. You get up and, first thing in the morning, you do your 500 words. Do it every day and you’ve got a book in eight or nine months.
Bill Gates’s favorite author, who has published more than 30 books, attests to the power of work ethic, echoing E. B. White’s contention that “a writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word on paper,” Chuck Close’s assertion that "inspiration is for amateurs – the rest of us just show up and get to work." Tchaikovsky and Jack White would agree.
Or, as Isabel Allende aptly put it, "Show up, show up, show up, and after a while the muse shows up, too."
(Source: , via explore-blog)
Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.
Miyamoto Musashi (via heartmindawakening)
Block B headed to Batangas for a post-law school, post-bar outing. We had no plans other than to have nerd-rated fun. We stayed overnight at Balai Isabel. We practically had the entire place to ourselves, and of course we took advantage! We owned the place, or pretended to.
Past bedtime we played Life. Everyone was super competitive and colluded against the player who had the most enviable life. We concluded that the strategy to a good life is subtlety (ninja doctrine!). If one broadcasts his achievements and acquisitions, expect to come under attack. It is the premise of the game. We were ruthless against castle-owners and politicians.
Since we had no itinerary for the next day, we proceeded as we pleased. Only at this one instance that Block B had no plan, no program! But it was a good thing that we gave in to spontaneity. The whole trip was relaxed and easy-going.
Our first stop was the convent of the pink sisters in Tagaytay. The place was so serene. It silenced and emptied my mind.
For lunch, Biboy brought us to Mohogany Market. I absolutely loved it! I loved the vibe of the place. It was an experience to eat right beside the market where the eateries source their ingredients. Even being persistently offered by vendors to buy pasalubong was an experience in itself!
Our next stop was Sky Ranch. The place was not much, but we did not want to miss the opportunity to ride the country’s tallest ferris wheel. It was just a short ride. I did not even notice that we were already done with our cycle. Haha.
Our last stop before buying pasalubong was the newly-opened Starbucks. Same coffee, but the place was not crowded. It looks so modest outside but is actually a two-storey shop with spacious interior and viewing decks.
That was our perfect pre-weekend to a month and half more of weekends and weekdays that feel like weekends. Days now blur and merge. It was nice to have some of it spent with the best people in law school.
I have never been more at peace post-bar than when my blockmates and I visited the pink sisters of Tagaytay. We went there with a common petition that no underbar need ever verbalize but which occupies our minds 24/7.
I proceeded to the first pew, knelt down, and thought I knew what I was to pray for. But in the attempt to organize my thoughts, there was a deluge of concerns, mostly trivial. I could not focus, and the thought of this inability consumed me.
I then looked at the solitary pink sister in front of the altar. I could not get my eyes off her. She was in deep prayer. Her life is a devotion to prayer. I marvel at her ability to focus on a single task, to rid herself of the mundane and trivial, to devote her life to a singularity that is the alpha and the omega of her.
I talked to myself and to my God. In a moment of clarity, I deciphered what I desire vis-à-vis what I need. It was not easy to let go of something I have been clinging to. But I had to surrender. For the first time in three weeks (since I have lost any control), I surrendered. I let go. Because I knew what I want, but now, more importantly, I know what I need: faith and trust in the Lord.
For a group that never cut classes, we felt so badass going on an out-of-town trip on a school day. But of course, we are already done with school. Hehe.
The first order of our fifth Tagaytay Brat Family Trip was lunch at LZM, our all-time favorite. What made this trip extra special (aside from Mary’s birthday) is that Carlie (the super adorable brat baby) joined us! And just like her ninong, ninang, and titas, she likes her bulalo!
Since our Korea plan remains as a plan, we just made a short trip to a Korean grocery. Haha.
After our heavy lunch, we headed to Puzzle Mansion. We were amazed with the size of the collection and the intricacy of some of the puzzles. Some of the puzzles took 1,000+ hours to make. It takes that much dedication. Mary and Cy bought Carlie two puzzle sets to start their family’s collection. As for the rest of us, we bought Coconut Cream Pie! Haha! Cy loves cream pie! Haha!
For dinner, we went to Amoroma. Throughout the dinner, we were gushing over the food and kept on saying “masarap!”, a favorite brat word.
We then headed to Aboy’s place to watch some movies, which we partially did. We did not finish a single film. We also had plans of drinking, but we never did. Haha. Our excuse: we were too sleepy from eating too much. But we did manage to put on facial masks before our beauty sleep. Haha.
The next day, we had late breakfast at Bag of Beans. I love this place! The place was wonderful, the food was “masarap!”, and we had fun talking to a bird. Haha. We should make this our regular stop when we go to Tagaytay!
Afterwards we headed back to Aboy’s place to rest (from eating. Haha.) and to watch movies. Instead, we discussed history! I do not know how and who started the conversation on the history of the middle-east- I was just dumbfounded at how nerdy my friends truly are!
We attempted to watch The Conjuring, but did not finish the movie because it was already lunch time! Again, we headed to LZM for bulalo! As already established, LZM is our favorite place.
Brats, ang corny natin! But I love how we are so similar in our interests and how tolerant (and supportive) we are of each other’s mild craziness, we just have so much (too clean) fun! Next time, let’s discuss the history of Russia over bulalo and chicharon bulaklak!
Any self-respecting traveler would have swayed his head in disapproval with my approach to this latest trip. I made no preparations, no itinerary, no research. This was not because I wanted to be spontaneous. I was just too preoccupied with my reality for the past six months, that planning felt like another task. With that, my mantra was to cross the bridge when I get there; thus I literally crossed borders when I got there. I took it day by day, street by street, step by step.
This is chartered territory; hence, there was no compulsion to plan ahead. There was some comfort in the familiarity with the ways of the place. It was foreign still, but there was no panic of “wasting time” or ”getting lost.” We did not mind the time nor worried about missing out on the sites. We just lingered as we pleased.
Macau felt like a giant theme park for me, and I am not really fond of theme parks. I am also not drawn to blinding lights, casinos, and luxury brands- and these Macau had plenty of. Everything felt so foreign; not because it’s a different place so uncommon, but because I found so little of things and sites that piqued my interest. Good thing Macau has the Ruins of St. Paul where my dad and I hanged out to talk of anything and to watch people as they carried on.
The tranquil outer areas of Hong Kong has a charm quite different from its busy pulsating streets, but no less engaging. Hong Kong is a mix of busy and steady, modern and traditional, cosmopolitan and local. It has flare for flamboyance, yet has affection for subtlety. So many places have been branded as a melting pot of different cultures, but none so committed to such a title than Hong Kong. The divergence of cultures do not just melt together, it drips and flows through every vein of the city.
Whenever I get to be with friends, it is almost always to catch up on what each is busying himself/herself with. The notion of catching up does not appeal to me; it implies a chase, a race. It implies something left unfinished that needs attending to because time permits it now, and only now. As if we move in parallel lines tangentially but do not quite intersect. Thus, we race; we try to catch up. That should not be. We do not move along lines; rather, within the same circle.
I think I am past the restless youth stage. I just want to stay put and rest. Though travelling all over would be nice, my thoughts now are on growing roots and establishing a routinary life. I guess there lies the beauty in routines; we get to have breaks to look forward to and a life to return to. We do not always have to act on whim or impulse to have a life or to feel alive. Life is where we settle.
I have not adjusted yet to this feeling and fact of full freedom. A part of me still clings to the need to do something, which means one thing, I need a hobby. And a better perspective, literally. I want to climb a mountain to feel so small, and conquered. To shed excess emotions and thoughts. I want to take a long deep breath, and exhale all excesses. I want to feel life in every part of me (because I have not moved for the most part of the past six months).
For now, I have more than enough comfort that family brings. I could not thank them enough for seeing me through, for pushing me when I stall, and for carrying so much of the weight off my back.
To my kuya who brought me to and fetched me from school whenever dad was away. To my sister who let me sleep in her room with lights turned off, even if she is afraid of the dark. To my younger brother who bought me baon for the bar weekends (and whom I secretly hope would take up law because he would be so much better at it than I am). To my mom who prepared all my meals, who reminded me to always pray, and who held my hand every night before an exam day to make me feel safe and secure. To my dad who is my fan, who always told me stories even if I tell him I am too tired to listen, and from whom I take after even if I deny it.
Thank you. I hope to make you proud.
Thank you. In a world that could be unkind and unforgiving, you give me something so true and genuine. Never have I to worry of being or not being. You just let me be. With differences and insecurities, you just let me be. You do no judgment nor questioning. You cheer me on. You believe and maintain my faith in innate and unmasked humanity. You make a kind and forgiving world possible.
My dear friends, thank you.