I am happy to be out the whole day. I usually hate crowds but getting tired from outdoor activities beats getting tired from doing nothing — all the time, hands down. I have only come to realize that feel-good truth recently. =)
I met with my cousins and my sisterette for lunch in MOA. They chose to eat in Oki Oki Japanese Restaurant. Since I was late, I enjoyed your usual fare of tempura, sashimi, maki, teriyaki, etc. The food was fine. If I heard I right, my cousin’s a regular of the Oki Oki branch in Makati so we got a huge discount. =) Most notable for me was the conversation though. I don’t think I’ve sat with them and talked to them like equals, as POVs on matters of life were raised. All three of them midlifers have always been like sister, adult figures as I was growing up. Meanwhile, the younger ones, I was amazed to discover, have grown to be pretty and responsible people. I even told one of them (Nico, the only guy) that I last saw him when he was seven. Now he’s 21 and not anymore this playful chubby boy that we only get to see during family reunions.
Like other families who see each other on an irregular basis, anecdotes remain alive whenever we meet. My sister and my cousins were “batchmates” in that they were playmates when they were young, and even if I heard the stories too many times, I still got amused with old stuff about my Ate and Ate Lulu fighting (with toy throwing, rag slapping and pushing involved) while my Ate Florie standing between them, and ending up getting hurt the most among the three of them. =) I guess the repetition of these events was for the younger ones this time.
As for me, I can only remember my misadventures with Laieesha because my immediate cousins were all years older and we were like doted on rather than considered as playmates. Laieesha, whose personality has always been stronger than mine, became my protector and also partner in crime. With our other neighbors, we would pretend to be artistas and most of the time find ways to bully younger kids in the neighborhood (ex. tell them they’re adopted) and in our school service (ex.chide them for being fat and dark, hahaha). Ah, good times. =)
We parted ways in the afternoon but I promised my sister I’m going to see her again before she leaves two weeks from now.
After MOA, I rode a cab to Serendra for my post-Christmas date with Iryn. We had a healthy, fulfilling dinner in Kape Isla. I was actually disappointed at first because I was salivating for their organic pork binagoongan but found out that since September, under their new management, they scraped these rice dishes off their menu! I really enjoyed them the last time I was there. Anyway, we were happy with our sandwiches and salad greens. The restaurant, sharing their space with Echo Store, also carries various merchandise of local producers and artists (Yabang Pinoy, Ilog Maria, Messy Bessy, Z.E.N., Beansprout, among others). To remember that trip, I bought one Beansprout eco-bag to use for my [book] shopping. =)
We had dessert at Marta’s Cakes. Sugar rush, sugar rush! We had chocolate mint pavlova and lava cake. Do you know how immediate it is for me now to get high with sugar? Two little bites of very sweet cakes and I’d already laugh terribly hard at the most random and simple of exchanges! Well, Iryn, I think, was guilty of it, too. Imagine laughing hard (as in close to peeing) at this corny punch line:
Iryn: (the ice cream on top of our lava cake starts to melt) Kainin na natin ito, naglalawa na yung ice cream…
Me: Ay oo nga. Hindi na lava cake, “lawa” cake na yan…
And in the other one, Iryn was busy telling me something when I looked away from her and fixed my eyes on two bottled waters in front of me. One was still sealed and the bottle closer to me was already consumed. Iryn stopped her story, and I know she knows me well enough because she just said, “Iniisip mo kung uminom ka na ba ano? Kasi bawas na yung bote sa harap mo.” I was thinking of the same exact thing! We looked at each other and burst out laughing. Iryn has a very demure laugh, the almost-soundless type, while I laugh like a very amused hyena. I’m proud of it though. It’s a form of release. =)
I also goaded Iryn to go to Dimensione with me to look for Piolo tote bags in Bench Pinoy Lab which was featured by Cecille Van Straten a week ago. It would have been a cool 2009 gift to Rachel and Sheila. =) Unfortunately, they ran out of stock just this morning and they did not know if Bench will still replenish the supply. We ended up buying inexpensive statement shirts.
I’m happy today. I wish to be out more often, whether alone or with people. I have a few dinner dates to go with special people but I can still fit a few more in my schedule. This uncertainty in plans was brought by my mother’s come-and-go desire to go to Baguio. I’m giving her until tomorrow to decide. I would love to spend chilly days and nights there, curled up in bed with books to keep me company (or my current time-waster, see image on the left), but I won’t go if it’s three days or less before I go back to work. I just think it’s not worth the effort to travel. Anyway, I can always go anywhere near to waste my time. I haven’t been to Rockwell in months, anyway.
I know nothing Earth-shattering will happen between now and when I go back to the daily grind this coming Friday but I find it fair (to me!) to make each day count (ohh, drama!). I’m tired of whining na eh. It’s like being in a rocking chair…it gives me something to do but it gets me nowhere. =) Now, I appreciate life’s little lessons thrown my way just by walking along a noisy street or talking to family. More importantly, I love feeling good about little stuff available at my disposal, like, you know, the ones on the left. I actually have to end this sappy post now because I’m itching to watch any episode I feel like popping in the disc player. Doooork! =)