(big) family day

it’s not often that my side of the family get to visit us here in manila. so after we had our minor house renovation done and had it blessed last saturday, we had the opportunity to tour my two sisters’ families at Venice Grand Canal Mall.

i’ve been to Venice a couple of years back, thanks to a sponsored training-workshop, and i jokingly told them that “this is obviously an immitation of Venice. it’s too clean!”

but it does have that feel… my sisters’ friends ask on facebook, after posting the pictures, “are you in Macau?” mistaking it for The Venetian Macao hotel. 😀

i’m actually more happy for my parents, who are in their 70s now. they would find it hard to travel and see other parts of the world as i already have. well, it’s just 5 other countries (India, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Italy) but it’s still more than their trip score: 0. even if it’s not the real deal, i’m pretty sure they were entertained how different it is to the common buildings and architecture they’ve seen around pampanga and manila.

after an hour of just lounging around, we head back to pampanga. (i have violin practice the next day)

it was fun having a family day that didn’t involve just the three of us. and as i get older, i wish more and more that these bonding moments we have as siblings will become more frequent. 🙂

 

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musings standing in a bus

matagal-tagal na akong hindi sumasakay ng bus pa-probinsya. simula nung nagkaroon kami ng sasakyan, iyon at iyon ang dala namin tuwing lumuluwas pa-Pampanga. it was probably last year that i did the same. pero weird na di ko maalala.

anyway, dahil (normal na) mahirap sumakay paluwas ng maynila tuwing linggo, pinagkasya ko na ang aking [malaking] katawan sa tayuang bus pa-Pasay. ginagawa ko na yon noong college… (which was over 10 years ago, imagine that! wow!) dahil no-choice at gusto mo na din makapag-settle down sa dorm for school the next day.

na-isip ko, having a good view of most of the seated passengers dahil nga nakatayo ako, may kanya-kanyang mundo talaga sa commute dahil sa cellphone. i didn’t get that impression in the morning trip going to Pampanga because i was comfortably seated beside a window. at that time, mas iniisip ko na na-a-appreciate ko yung view paluwas ng Pampanga because i wasn’t busy minding the road and the other cars. laid-back, chill lang… even if i was running a bit late. heheh…

in that evening trip nga, i saw how much of everything revolved around devices. the girl seated in front of me had a bunch of selfies in her Gallery app. another one was texting her boyfriend she was already on her way. (i wasn’t snooping around. you can’t help but be distracted by bright screens in a dimly-lit bus, OK? #defensivemuch) another girl standing along the isle with me had her Friends episode playing on her phone, while another movie (Nine Lives?) was in the bus’ entertainment system. (well, thank goodness it wasn’t karaoke!)

andami pang may kanya-kanyang bubble sa loob ng bus. most of the young people were the ones who held on to their devices while those who kept them in their pockets, save the occasional loud conversations on a Cherry Mobile feature phone. sabagay, ano ba naman makikita mo sa labas ng bintana kung gabi naman diba?

but then, how about interactions with other people? minsan nawawala pagka-sensitive naten sa mga tao dahil wala na tayong meaningful conversations because we have FB messenger as an excuse…

“nagcha-chat naman kami eh!”

pero i don’t think nothing will replace actual physical interaction. kahit gaano pa kagaling na VR yan o hologram. we’re in a tangible world for a reason. hindi sa The Matrix.

Mourning and weeping in this valley of tears.

endless, endless tears today…

much like when i heard of Courageous Catie, almost a year ago. and today, i’m doing the same thing again with another pair of little angels who’ve earned their wings.

this morning, A broke the news to me about Mighty Eli. and it reminded me that even when my son was discharged from the hospital, a healthy boy, and just turned 2 years old, it is no assurance that you won’t get sick.

Catie and Eli always remind me of that. and that makes me so fearful of the future and yet prayerful that we won’t experience it.

then this late afternoon, a cousin reacted to a post that i just had to click: Natalie was also called home. the words that totally broke me were these:

She’s currently being cleaned by her nurses, and then she’ll be placed in her father’s arms until her last breath.

If I were the father, i would be an inconsolable wreck. If relating to the father makes it already THIS painful, how much more if i were in his shoes…

so, now, i’m crying again at the office. (hope no one tries to check up on me again! haha! how embarrassing!) and i will pray for the little angels again, and for the parents and family they’ll be watching over from now on.