Thursday Thirteen Week 12

I can’t believe that I’m on my 3rd month already as a Thursday Thirteener. It has helped my brains come up with something I’d like to share and write about every week. I sure hope I have become more “real” to everyone who stumbles upon my blog every so often. And it sure has been a wonderful learning and getting-to-know-other people experience for me.

Last Monday, I said that I’m sad and depressed. The comments I received helped relieve that feeling knowing that other people care and others simply “absorbed” what I’ve written. I am still feeling low and depressed but I have been occupying myself with work and some other things to help ease that feeling. So for this week’s TT, I will be sharing with you the things I’ve been doing or have been trying to do to keep my sanity intact.

Thirteen Things I’ve Been Doing To Fight Sadness and Depression

01. The Fags – I know that in a couple of years’ time, I might have lung cancer because of smoking (and I’m high risk for cancer because of my family’s history). But it does help me to stop the “moment” for at least 10-15 minutes. It sounds crazy but time wasted on each fag does help me get on with the feeling of always having a VERY long day.

02. Text Messaging – It’s expensive, but I don’t care. It still pays to here from your friends wherever they are. Even though it seems like I’m just talking to my mobile, I’m just glad to hear it beep on the sound of a message that came in. I feel better knowing that there’s someone out there hearing me out.

03. E-Mails – E-mailing friends keep me grounded. Just like text messaging, receiving and sending e-mails have kept me going. It’s a way for me to express myself and to let my significant others know how I’m doing at the moment. Knowing that someone’s listening and/or reading about my thoughts even from far away makes me feel much better.
04. Blog-hopping – I haven’t done this for quite a while and I do keep myself busy by going around the blogs I have in my blogroll. I feel much better when I read about good things or even other people’s ranting. I realize that I’m not the only one in this world feeling the way I do. And more often than not, other people are facing even bigger stuff than I have been facing and dealing with.
05. The bus ride – I used to hate the 45-minute to 1-hour bus ride to and from home. However, the past couple of days, I turned around and treated it as an enjoyable thing to do. I encounter different kinds of people everyday during the trip. And as I do my usual people watching and observe their behavior, I realized that I get to meet a maximum of 20 different people in one trip. So that makes it 40 in a day, 200 in a week up to a maximum of 800 different people in a month. Wow! The numbers overwhelm me and the excitement brought about by it makes me forget, even for just a moment, the sadness I’m feeling. And it also makes the bus ride shorter.
06. Accounting Work – I have a degree in Accountancy but I never practiced it the way Papa did. I didn’t even take the board exams because I wasn’t too keen on working 8+ hours a day with numbers after 4 years of doing it in university. But then, I’ve come to appreciate it now. And despite the work taxing my brains out, it kills my time in my cold and quiet office and I’m drawn away from the morbid thoughts that I have in my mind.

07. Watching TV – I am no TV addict but I have started to watch TV again these past few days. Just last night, I couldn’t help but glue my eyes to Test Drive My Girlfriend and The Ricki Lake Show. Personally, I feel that these aren’t really great programs because of their content but I just felt that I have to watch something amusing to keep me from thinking about my problems even for just a short while. These 2 programs did amuse me so much that I went to bed at half past 1 this morning. LOL!

08. Julia Roberts’ Movies – I am no die-hard fan of Julia but I am a die-hard fan of the movies she made. The other night, I watched Notting Hill on DVD for the nth time. It’s one of my feel good movies and it did its purpose when I watched it. I used to just tell myself that I’d like to go and see where Notting Hill was filmed when I first watched it in 1999 and fast forward to July 2006, I was there at Portobello Market, walking the path where William Thacker and Anna Scott walked. I’m just a real sucker for romantic and mushy movies – and these kind of movies make me feel better. Maybe this weekend, I’ll go and see My Best Friend’s Wedding and Runaway Bride again.

09. A bottle on some nights – I wrote about giving up binge drinking more than a year ago in one of my earlier TTs. As a result of that, my tolerance for alcohol has gone down and just a bottle is enough to knock me out (depending on the drink I’m having). I’ve had 3 bottles for the past 5 days since Sunday and sleep for me was just okay. Drinking didn’t give me the time in the night to brood and cry for I was ready to go to bed after the last drop of beer and the last hit I have from my fag.

10. More work – I’ve been working longer hours the past 2 weeks just to keep my mind off from the problems I’m having. The more work I do, the longer the hours I get on my time sheet, the more money I receive by the end of the week and that leaves me less time to think about whatever worries I have. At the end of the day, my mind is busted and I just get a drink then snooze off.

11. I write and doodle on my Starbucks diary – My Starbucks diary has been my companion – it has the record of almost everything I’ve been doing and spending. I scribbled down some of my thoughts for the past couple of days on there and it was therapeutic for me to let it all out. For the moment, it’s for my eyes only but who knows? Maybe one day, I’ll publish it here in my blog.

12. I pray – I’m sure I’ve irritated Papa Jesus again for the past couple of weeks with my never-ending sighs and complaints about my life. But actually, all I’m asking for is guidance, wisdom, enlightenment and patience for me to be able to get past this stage in my life. I talk to Him while having a fag, or taking a bath, but still, I know that I talk my heart out to Him when I can hardly bear it. Talking to Papa Jesus has helped me so much not to take my depression to a more difficult level. I don’t have many friends over here – I only have acquaintances. And it helps to know that I can speak to someone about my fears, thoughts and feelings. He may not be beside me or face-to-face with me, but I feel better whenever I’m able to cry out to Him.

13. Looking at Basti’s picture – I have in my wallet the last photo that I took of my Sweetheart before I went to the UK. It was one of his best photos to date. I am always teary-eyed whenever I see that picture because it makes me miss him all the more. But I’ve managed to turn that feeling into something positive. Looking at him while wearing his most precious smile gives me the strength to carry on and try to live through the challenges I’m facing. He’s one of the reasons why life is still beautiful and I won’t let sadness or depression to totally ruin that.

I guess that’s it for now. Thanks to everyone who sent their words of encouragement. Don’t worry, I’ll get out of this sinking feeling very soon.

I will be doing my rounds in the TT blog ’til Saturday. 🙂 This week, I’ll try to visit 150 sites. 😀

It’s chilly and autumn’s very much here already – and I love every minute of it (except for the drizzles).

Lastly, I hope my friends in Manila are safe and well. Papa rang me this morning and told me that a storm hit Metro Manila straight on and the place is under signal #3. I hope everyone’s safe and dry. I know there’s a blackout and hopefully power will be restored soon.

As I always say, Happy Thursday!


Learning and A Realization

I learned a new meaning for YMCA last Saturday…

YMCA – Yesterday’s Meals Cooked Again

Last night, while I gazed at the dark sky with my fag on the left hand and a bottle of Stella Artois on the right, I came to accept the reality of the true feelings I have inside of me…..

I’m sad and depressed.

I’ve been tagged…and then some…

I’ve been tagged by the sexy artist, Jac, for my 7 songs. I’m just gonna write down whatever pops in my head right now.

1. (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life by Jennifer Warnes and Bill Medley
2. Wala Nang Hahanapin Pa by the Apo Hiking Society
3. Swing by VST and Co.
4. ‘Til They Take My Heart Away by Clair Marlo
5. Photograph by Ariel Rivera
6. Hotel California by the Eagles
7. Last but not the least, and forgive me for thinking so, the Wowowee Theme! LOL!

And I’m tagging Cess, Wrigley, Jo, Bambi, Ate Girlie, Ate Sienna and Markie.

It’s a Friday today and I’m hoping to get a good day today. I’ve been multi-tasking since 9am so I’m a little bit behind schedule. Definitely, I’ll be finishing my report today and submit it to the boss! LOL!

It’s another weekend and I still haven’t finished hopping around the TT blogroll. I’m hoping to visit at least 100 blogs for this week’s edition. Dear me, really! LOL!

I’m looking forward to a wonderful weekend. I might go out tonight, I don’t know. We have plans of visiting the Gower tomorrow but that is subject to availability of funds (as per usual). It’s BIL’s birthday tomorrow and he’s working (what a bummer!).

Autumn is here and I’m lovin’ every minute of it!!! I have to remind myself to start bringing Sly with me for photo opportunities.

Happy weekend!

Thursday Thirteen Week 11

The feel of the crisp chills of the blowing wind and the noise of the leaves that are starting to fall from the trees tells me that autumn’s just around the corner; and I’m enjoying every bit of it.

I’ve been quite busy the past few days and I don’t really have much time to sit and think about what to write. Right now, I’m actually trying to pull this off by multi-tasking! LOL!

Last weekend, I was in Cardiff and met up with Bling’s gilrfriend, Anna, who is on a business trip ’til next week. It was a very cloudy day in Cardiff while there were rains in Swansea. But of course, my itchy feet wouldn’t let me stay at home so I grabbed my bag, Sly and some cash for a day out.

I got there by midday and was starving. We found a nice restaurant in downtown Cardiff and ate a good lunch. I really begged off from anything fastfood even just for that day. We all enjoyed a quiet and conversation-filled lunch. After which, we dilly-dallied on entering the castle because Anna and her group will be touring the place during the week. So instead, we decided to go on a city sightseeing to tour the area by bus.

I was amazed at how beautiful this city is. The architecture of the buildings are just wonderful and while listening to the tour guide, the place indeed had a very rich and interesting history and culture that is continuing until today – at least in most parts of it.

The last stop for us was the National Museum Cardiff. I was allowed in with Sly (my good ol’ camera) but I had to sign an agreement that whatever photographs I will be taking inside the premises are not to be published online, in papers/magazines or wherever and are STRICTLY for private viewing and archiving only. This is an international agreement that can land me in jail anywhere in the world I am so I can’t show or share the photos that I took; so I’m sorry about that. We enjoyed going around the museum and a couple of things that may interest you are the Faces of Wales, Death of Wales and the History of Wales. Anyway, we do have a number of photos taken outside the premises and around Cardiff that you will find here.

Now onto my 11th Thursday Thirteen. For this week, I decided to write about the 13 people who, in one way or the other, are or were significant in my life. I will write about them in no particular order after the person I’ll put in at Number 1. Header for today came from Mandy. It sure makes me want to grab a cup from Starbucks – but I’ll save that for later.

1. Papa – My very own father. He’s not just a father to me, he’s my friend, my sugar daddy (LOL!), my mentor and most of all, he’s one of my sources of strength and inspiration to face all the challenges I have and have had in my life. If there’s one person that I owe every good thing that I am now, I owe it all to him. I love you, Papa!

2. Basti – My one and only Sweetheart! I will give up my life for him if need be. We may have been separated for the longest time now, but everything that I’m doing right now is for him. His coming into my life made the wait, the expenses and the complications all worth it. I just love my “Bruce Wayne” to the max! I love you, Son!

3. Nikki – She’s a darling and everyone says that she’s my mini-me – only with the American twang and bred in America. She’s very intelligent and very vocal about her feelings. She makes you stop and think when she starts asking questions. But she’s one helluva sibling whom I’m very proud of! I just hope she doesn’t grow up to be the stubborn girl that I am! LOL!

4. Kimberly – Kim’s my ever sweetest kid sister in the whole wide world! I love her to pieces – even when she asks the dumbest questions I’ve ever heard (e.g. “How do you sleep if you are awake?”). But when she gives me the tightest hugs and the sweetest kisses on my cheeks, she’s just one American darling that makes my heart melt.

5. Pam – She’s the best friend I wish that I grew up with. After being betrayed by my best friend of 14 years, I met Pam during the time that I was trying to live a new life in Canada. She made me realize that not everyone is a traitor and she made me learn to trust people again. It’s been almost 5 years since we became friends and now I can’t imagine living life without her even though we’re thousands of miles away from each other. We literally have a long distance friendship but because we love each other, we were able to bridge the gap and she’s my “bestest” friend ever! I love you best friend!

6. Francis a.k.a. Dhong – He’s my soulmate, my “bes”! I call him my soulmate because I read somewhere that soulmates can never marry each other but they will be there for each other whatever happens. He’s that to me. We’ve been linked to be lovers but all were just rumors and no more than that. He can walk naked past by me or vice-versa but we’ll never put malice into it. Our relationship is the perfect example of a platonic relationship. We love and know each other very, very well that we could never be together as more than friends or that will be the end for us. He levels things in my head when they go beyond comprehension for me. He knocks me out of my temporary state of insanity when need be. Most of all, he’s a trusted confidante just like Pam. He takes care of me in ways not even my partner would care for me. I love you bes!!

7. Dexter – My special brother. He may not be able to relate to us the way normal people do but I’m sure he knows that I love him very much. I just wish I could do more for him and I hope to do that in time.

8. Reggie – One of my closest girl friends in the world. We may not get together often, but she’s still one of those who never fails to put some sense in my head when I need it. I’m just thankful that she came into my life as a sincere friend.

9. Ricky – Another one of my closest guy friends in the world. He’s always there for me when I need a wiser person to speak to (that goes with age, I guess! LOL!) and he shares my love for coffee. 🙂

10. Suzanne – She’s my online best friend! I’m just grateful that there are still true people that abound the cyberworld. I met her through a parenting e-group and we just hit it off very well in the end. She was the one who re-introduced me to the wonderful world of Neopets. We’ve shared each others’ happiness, worries and problems and even though everything was just primarily online for us, the bond of friendship has strengthened and I’m looking forward to more years of having her as a friend. I can’t wait to meet her person real soon (I hope!).

11. Ex #1 – He was a childhood crush who eventually became my first boyfriend. He was everything I asked for until 5 years after, I fell out of love and which caused the relationship to end. He was very patient with me, very loving, very sincere, and a gentleman. He respected who I am and the most we could do was kiss and touch hands. He was ridiculed by his friends but took it with a grain of salt. He was also the most loyal boyfriend I’ve ever had (don’t take this wrongly, I’ve only had 4 :p). He was not just a boyfriend to me, he was a friend as well. He was devastated after the relationship but we were able to maintain friendly relations until today. Our relationship just proves that lovers can be friends after all.

12. Ex #3 – He was the guy I almost married and I almost killed myself for. We started out as friends but I ended up hating him. He was everything I wanted and needed after coming out from an abusive relationship only to realize that I was mentally, financially and emotionally-abused by him too. He was the guy I gave up everything for but ended up with nothing. I have forgiven him since but I still remember the pain he and the relationship caused me everytime I talk about it. I still can’t look back without being teary-eyed. I loved him dearly but I guess he did not really love me that much in the first place. One very good thing I learned from what happened was leaving something for myself and to love myself all together. It’s no good giving and loving someone with your whole heart without loving your own self. I thank him for teaching me to love myself and to give worth to myself. And I know that if ever our paths should cross again, I will still be able to look at him straight in the eye and say “Hello!” without fear and without hesitation. That is something that I’m not sure that he can do.

13. MH – Oh my! Of course he is significant! He and I created Basti! LOL! Seriously, most of you know that our relationship is on the rocks and we still haven’t had the chance to sort it out yet. Maybe when I go back, we can do it this time. I don’t know really. But I’m still hopeful about it. We have the weirdest of love stories and he’s the most insensitive and uncaring guy I’ve ever met. But still, we’re together for reasons I’m trying to understand myself. My whirlwind life with him makes it significantly interesting and challenging.

And that concludes my entry for today. I hope everyone will have a wonderful and enjoyable Thursday!

Updates and some more…

It’s another weekend and I haven’t had the chance to update my blog so I’m gonna do it right now. I’ve been sick the past couple of days due to a mild migraine attack. I’m just glad that it wasn’t my usual debilitating attack so I still managed to go to work and finish some stuff I needed to do. Middle of the week, I had to excuse myself from work because I could barely stand up and do anything. I’m feeling much better now and even if it’s a Saturday, I’m here at the office doing what I can to catch up on the things that needed chasing.

I was surprised to see a message from an old friend that he sent through Friendster. I actually searched for him but since his whole profile can’t be seen by me, I sent him a message asking if it was him that I was looking for. Luckily, he replied and confirmed that it’s him and he updated me about what’s happened to him for the past few years. It’s been almost 10 years since we last saw each other and I was just ecstatic to have heard from him again. This is one of the reasons why I love my Friendster account 🙂

I’m still dilly-dallying on going to Cardiff today after work. Anna, Bling’s girlfriend, is arriving this afternoon and it will be nice to see her again.

I missed out on posting my Thursday Thirteen Week 10 the other day but it’s better late than never so here goes…

Thirteen Songs That Make Me Cry

Songs are an essential part of my life. There will always be a song for me to remember a certain person or a certain event. These are but a few of the songs that give me a tear or two or lots in my eyes. I won’t elaborate on the details but I just picked out parts of the songs that have meaning to me.

01. Even Now by Barry Manilow – “Even now, when there’s someone else who cares, when there’s someone home who’s waiting just for me…”
02. Hiding Inside Myself by Kenny Rankin – “I’ve been so alone all my life, I couldn’t give my heart to anyone..Hiding in myself was a man, who needed to be held like anyone…”
03. Ikaw by Regine Velasquez – “Ikaw ang bigay ng Maykapal..tugon sa aking dasal…” (English translation in my own words: You are the one given by the Lord, the answer to my prayer)
04. If You Were Here With Me Tonight by Barry Manilow – “If you were here with me tonight, this time I’ll never let it end…we’ll find those feelings we once had and feel them all again…”
05. Of All The Things by Dennis Lambert – “Of all the things I’ve ever done, finding you will prove to be the most important one”
06. Tell Me by Joey Albert – “Tell me, where did I go wrong, what did I do to make you change your mind completely”
07. Ikaw Lang Ang Mamahalin by Joey Albert – “Kung kulang man sa ‘tin itong sandali, alam ko na tayo’y magkikita muli…hangga’t may umaga pa na haharapin, ikaw lang ang mamahalin” (English translation of title in my own words: You’re The Only One That I’ll Love”)
08. How Deep Is Your Love by The BeeGees – “How deep is your love, I really need to learn, ’cause we’re living in a world of fools breaking us down, when they all should let us be, we belong to you and me”
09. After All by Gary Valenciano – “I’ll be standing here even though it’s through, I’ll have a space in my heart for you, I don’t know how to fake it and I doubt if I can make it…and if you get to realize, just turn and look into my eyes…’cause then you’d come to know that it was me after all…”
10. Looks Like We Made It by Barry Manilow – “There you are, looking just the same as you did last time I touched you…and here I am close to getting tangled up inside the thought of you…do you love him as much as I love her and will that love be strong when old feelings start to stir…”
11. Say That You Love Me by Basil Valdez – “Say that you love and show me that you care, say when I need you, you will always be there…but if you go and leave me, this I swear is true…my love will always be with you…”
12. Kailangan Kita by Piolo Pascual – “Kailangan kita, ngayon at kailanman, kailangan mong malaman na ikaw lamang ang tunay kong minamahal, ang tangi kong hiling ay makapiling ka lagi…”
13. The Way You Look At Me by Christian Bautista – “‘Cause there’s something in the way you look at me, it’s as if my heart knows you’re the missing make me believe that there’s nothing in this world I can’t be, I never know what you see..but there’s something in the way you look at me…”

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

Happy weekend everyone!!!! Off I go to blog-hop and check the TT list.

Remembering 9/11

When I woke up this morning, I said my usual morning prayer of thanks for another day ahead of me and I said another prayer for the victims of that fateful 9/11 attacks in the US 5 years ago.

I still vividly remember how we glued our eyes on CNN that night as they aired the coverage live on cable. We were horrified and teary-eyed. Then Papa remembered that they went up the twin towers just the year before for a holiday. We looked at the photos that they had of the place when terrorists have not yet invaded a supposedly safe and attractive building. So many people appreciated its beauty and 5 years later, it’s now called Ground Zero where a memorial lies for the thousands of people who died when the towers were attacked and eventually collapsed.

5 years have gone since it happened and yet I still can’t seem to understand why these terrorist groups still opt to wreak havoc into the lives of other people all over the world. What kind of kick do these people get out of bombing airports, sending suicide bombers to anywhere in the world and killing thousands of innocent people? With what they are doing, do they get the same kind of heavenly feeling when I have a cup of my favorite coffee at Starbucks? Or maybe they feel ecstatic when the brains of people are blown out and when their lives are put to an abrupt end. Any way I look at it, I can’t see any justification for these terrorist activities. For me, they are simply senseless, absurd and insane.

I don’t want my son to grow up in a world that’s filled with hatred, fear and terror. I want him to enjoy life and live it. But how can he and other people of his generation do it when heartless beings interfere with our daily living? 9/11 is a solid reminder that we live in a place where there are ruthless and selfish people who don’t care and will never care about other people. They may escape the punishment here on earth and carry on being the soldiers of death that they are. But in the end, God will still be our sole judge and these people will pay the price.

Let’s say a prayer for all the victims of terrorism and war, especially those that died on September 11, 2001. I am also encouraging everyone to visit 2996, a site put together by volunteer bloggers to pay tribute to the victims of this horrific day in history.

Have a great week everyone!

Quiet Sunday

The past couple of days have been very nice for Swansea – all sunshine, no rain and with that cool breeze on the side. It’s great to be going out in this weather but I have to set it aside for some other day.

As I’ve been having fun reading British novels, yesterday, I finally finished reading Clare Brown’s, The Creation Myths, that I borrowed from the library. I had so much fun reading it that I really did what I can to read it in just one sitting. The complexities of the characters and circumstances are just hilarious! This writer is very prolific and just glued me to my seat. It’s worth the read, the cups of coffee and the fags!

MH sent me some of Basti’s photos from last month when they were at Starbucks.

My Sweetheart’s a big boy already and I do miss him so much!!!! I just can’t believe that he’s turning 3 very soon! How time flies and I can’t wait to be with him again.

I know most of you have been wanting to see the photos from my recent travels. I haven’t updated the captions yet but I’ve already uploaded all of them. Feel free to comment and I hope you enjoy viewing them:

Oxford Trip
London Trip
Balloon Festival-Margam Park, Port Talbot
Justin’s 2nd Birthday Celebration
Trip to the Bristol Museum

Have a wonderful Sunday!