Shouldn’t have…

Sometimes we fail to see right away what’s going to happen beyond our actions. What initially was thought to be harmless eventually turns out to be harmful in more ways than one.

The pandora’s box of memories suddenly begin to haunt and hurt you. Once again, you get stabbed by the reality of the pain that was thought to be long gone. And only then will you realize that you really shouldn’t have…

Advertisements

I’m back

….at hopefully, regular blogging and at my home. It’s been more than a month since I last set my fingers on my desktop and cleaned this place I call my home.

While I was busy cleaning and clearing out stuff that have accumulated over the past month or so, big thoughts were running like crazy in this little head of mine. I have neglected so much because of the accident and I’m wondering how I can get to run this crazy life of mine back to how it was before. Believe it or not, I’m not an expert when it comes to recovery. It’s a waterloo that I have long ago accepted as part of me.

Anyway, since my physical self is still under recovery, I’m leaving you with the top 10 things that I so want to do when I’m 100% back to my “normal” self. I just wanted to share so if you’re not interested, it doesn’t really matter. I’m still the writer of this entry anyway. Hah!

Top 10 Things I’d Like to Do When I’m Better

01. Go on a spiritual retreat.
02. Go on a road trip – alone (Thanks to Matt for giving me the inspiration to finally be able to plan for this one).
03. Get that botched trip to the Ilocos region back on my calendar.
04. Make sure that I always wear non-slip shoes.
05. Plan and stick to a walking regimen until I can start running.
06. Be able to sleep at least 6 hours each night (I’ll start tomorrow. LOL!).
07. Get all the financial sh*t done.
08. Do some volunteer work (I’m still actively searching for one).
09. Write more.
10. Worry less.

And with that, I say: “Good night!”

Property Hunting

In these trying times, we have to be more careful in the investments we’re making with our hard-earned money. For one, money doesn’t grow in trees so we have to be prudent in our spending and we should learn to take calculated risks in terms of investments that we want to have to secure our future.

Take for example this lot for sale that I saw while browsing through pages of land properties on sale. Corner lots are a little bit pricey than other lots because of proximity and visibility but they are the most sought-after because of its higher value than other lots situated in other parts of the subdivision or village. Though located north of Metro Manila, the location is still considered prime, Pampanga being one of the fastest developing provinces that’s about half an hour away from the city. Accessibility to NLEX to and from Manila, makes it an ideal buy, especially for those who are seeking to build houses away from the daily city life grind but still maintaining that proximity to the greater Manila area.

As it is, a lot of people are already seeing the lucrative side of the real estate buy and sell business due to the fact that it’s one of the most secure investments one could ever have. As most working class people save up for their dream homes, a lot of these real estate agents and part-timers have been very good in offering terms for properties that are appropriate, size- and budget-wise. The real estate business is a booming industry and both buyers and sellers have been getting their way with it.

Knowing how to price a lot for sale or pricing a house and lot for that matter takes knowing the current trends and prices in the market and not just a matter of hunches or estimates. It does include knowing competitor prices, existing legal and registration fees (which vary from one area to another), inflation rate and other financial drivers to ensure that you are offering the best deal to a prospective buyer. Knowing the legalities involved in purchasing properties are also essential in venturing into the real estate business. Knowing the buy and sell business takes time and experience. And it need not be rushed either. Most newbies should definitely ask from experienced sellers and agents and should not be afraid to ask questions. They should also be open to the possibility of making mistakes and learning from them as they go along.

All together, property hunting is tedious but a rewarding experience. In the end, knowing that the long hours you spent at work and saving up your hard-earned money was able to provide you with a home that secures your family’s future.

And China’s will was done

I woke up early this morning so I could catch and monitor the news about the 3 Filipinos who are going to be executed in China today.

Mornings@ANC had, as one of their guests, a former ABC Beijing chief correspondent and he gave very interesting insights about how the Chinese implement their laws and court decisions.

This afternoon, I caught the Ordinario family press con in the news and I was dismayed with the things I heard. I think it’s unfair for Sol Ordinario to say that the government didn’t do its best to save the lives of her sister and the two others who were executed. I’m sure the Chinese High Court dealt with the issue properly and according to what their laws are. Why does one have to use poverty as a reason for them not to be given all the help they deserve? For me, it’s very clear that everything was done. China just has the balls to stand up and implement their laws to anyone who are found violating them. I admire China for that. Let’s all learn from this. Dura lex sed lex. The law is harsh but it is the law.

Don’t get me wrong. I grieve and pray that the families will be healed in time. There are no words to console them who lost their loved ones. This is a big lesson for all of us. I just hope that the government will be able to address issues facing our OFWs and for our judiciary, may you be able to uphold all our laws no matter who the accused is.

Let what happened to the 3 Filipinos in China serve as a challenge to ALL our lawmakers and government officials to create laws that will enhance whatever benefits our OFWs have and protect them whenever they are outside our country. This is also a great opportunity for our airport and immigration officials to look into their current screening process to protect our country and our citizens from falling prey to these drug syndicates.

I pray that we will all be healed from this incident.

“Sent via BlackBerry from Smart”

Mushy Music and Memories

I had a bad fall yesterday morning. I hit my back and head so hard that for a moment there I thought I blacked out. Luckily, I’m still here writing this piece. And as they say, there’s always a reason for everything.

And because I was advised to get at least 2 days of complete bed rest, I have been struggling to keep my sanity intact. I kept on thinking of something productive that I can do while I follow the advice of the ER doctor. Then it hit me to play some mushy music from my iTunes playlist while I do that.

I know how I can be so affected just by hearing one song that I have associated with a certain person or event from the past. Hearing these songs become instant triggers for me to remember the joys and pains of my life. These emotions and feelings from the past remind me of my vulnerability and weaknesses. They remind me of how my lapses in judgement, my slips, my indecisiveness, my ignorance and even my stupidity brought about the person that I am right now and the circumstances I’m in at the moment. After which, catharsis sets in.

And after all the mushy songs have been played and the feelings have been felt again, I assure myself that nobody will hurt me that much ever again.

The Joy Luck Club

Do you recognize the characters in the slideshow? Any guesses??

Earlier this week, I was elated to receive an invitation to join the press night for Repertory Philippines’ newest production, The Joy Luck Club.

Yes! The Joy Luck Club!!! Just last week I was looking at buying tickets for the show and now I don’t just get to watch it. I will have the chance to interview the director and its cast. Woot! Woot!

I read the book a couple of years ago and to be honest, I already forgot the story. It was also adapted on film and was a hit when it was shown in theaters. I did keep the book and although the book has aged, it’s still in my library and now waiting for me to re-read it 🙂

From February 4 to 20, Repertory Philippines will be staging “The Joy Luck Club“. Please read on to get more insights and information on the said production.

“The Joy Luck Club,” the best-selling novel by Amy Tan, which was also made into a movie directed by Wayne Wang, is now a play. Repertory Philippines is staging “The Joy Luck Club” from Feb. 4 to 20, 2011.

The play is a chorus of eight voices of tightly woven stories. It tells of the lives of four Chinese immigrant women and their four American-born daughters. The four mothers create a mahjong group called the Joy Luck Club and audiences will see the stories of the members of this club unfold.

At turns funny, touching and heart wrenching, the play showcases the rich complexity of love between mothers and daughters that transcends age and cultural gaps.

Adapted by Susan Kim and directed by Anton Juan (recent credits include the non-stage, multi-floor production of “Information for Foreigners”), the powerhouse cast includes Rebecca Chuaunsu, Jay Glorioso, Frances Makil Ignacio and Pinky Marquez as the mothers; and Ana Abad Santos, Lily Chu, Jenny Jamora and Cris Villonco as the daughters.

Costume design is by Eric Pineda with set design by Ohm David and lighting design by John Ilao Batalla.

Rep associate artistic director Menchu Lauchengco-Yulo says, “It’s a great way for families, friends and couples to celebrate Chinese New Year, which kicks off the month on Feb. 3. The show will be great for Valentine’s dates as well.”

After “The Joy Luck Club,” Rep will stage “The 39 Steps,” a comedy thriller based on an Alfred Hitchcock masterpiece from March 4 to 20, 2011 where four actors play 150 characters.

From April 1 to 7, 2011, audiences can enjoy the comedy “Shakespeare in Hollywood,” where Shakespeare’s most famous fairies, Oberon and Puck, end up on the Hollywood set of Max Reinhardt’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”

“The Joy Luck Club” will be staged at Onstage Theater, 2nd floor, Greenbelt 1 Mall, Makati City. Gold or Silver season ticket passes are available for these three productions which provide a discount and choice seats at selected dates compared to buying individual tickets for each of the shows.

All Rep productions are available for showbuying and block ticket sales for individuals or organizations for earning extra income or raising funds. All productions are also available for sponsors who wish to reach Rep’s audiences.

Visit http://www.repertory.ph, subscribe to youtube.com/repertoryphils, and add “Rep Phils” in Facebook.

“The Joy Luck Club” runs Feb. 4 to 20, 2011. For ticket inquiries and other information, call Repertory Philippines at 571-6926 and 571-4941 or email info@repertory-philippines.com. Tickets also available at Ticketworld at 891-9999 or http://www.ticketworld.com.ph.

Count your blessings

I have been reminded countless of times to be grateful for all the blessings that I have. Today was no exception.

I wasn’t expecting a visitor today. And when I received that SMS from an old friend, I was both excited and sad. Excited because after 19 years, I will be seeing her again. Sad because I know that she’s going through some very hard times right now and it’s inevitable that I will be hearing her story. This was an unexpected visit but it was just okay.

I prepared lunch for us as I know she will be coming in from a very long bus trip from the province and she needed to take a nice bath for her interview. She made it to my place in one piece. When I saw her, all I could do was give her a real tight hug. She looked way, way older than our real age, probably because of stress and the problems she’s facing at the moment.

As I expected it, my heart was crushed hearing what she has been through after high school. Hers was a very sad life story. I never really expected that somebody I know from high school would experience such a sad plight.

As I was hearing her out, I once again realized that I have been so blessed all my life despite the challenges I have faced and am still facing at the moment. I have true friends and family who are always there for me no matter how harsh the situations are. While my friend? She was abandoned by her adoptive family and had no one to turn to and rely on but herself and some close friends.

After lunch, I dropped her off to the nearest jeepney terminal so she could go to her interview and then after which, she would need to go back to the province to tend to her very ill child. She repeatedly thanked me for everything. I told her not to because that’s what friends do – help each other. Besides, it’s my only way of helping her at this point.

As I drove back home, tears welled in my eyes. I felt her pain. But I know that in my own little way, I was able to help keep her hopes high that God is there working His way through her life in His own brilliant way. I saw her smile and I knew that somehow I did something right for her.

I called up my father and shared the experience with him. I told him that we’re both still so lucky and blessed after all. Then he reminded me to always count my blessings – to be thankful that I have shoes instead of having no feet at all. Indeed, God has been very good to us and I will forever be grateful for the life He has given me. I have all the reasons to be happy about my life and in return, it is but right and proper to share these blessings as they come in my own little way.