Took this photo just before our final descent. May 21, 2012

Leaving San Francisco wasn’t an easy thing to do. Spending almost half a year in a place where I’ve finally found myself and put the pieces back together, I was hoping it would never end. My trepidation perhaps came from my fear of not being able to love Manila as much as I thought I did and my anxieties over the start of senior year. Was I ready? That I did not know.

However, once I landed, everything fell into place and I can say now that there really is no place like home. No matter how great those six months have been to me, nothing beats the familiar feeling of home, family, friends, and yes–the scorching Manila heat. I’ll be back someday, I will leave this place and explore the world, but until that day comes, it’s definitely great to be back.

Lessons from a $2 ride

Everyday, the MUNI serves as my own little place of reflection. Cliche as this may sound, I have also found myself here. Today, I tried my best to capture the emotions that come alive when I step inside the 5, 28, 38, 31, 14L, 22, 43, or F–and hopefully immortalize the familiar feeling of hope that it never fails to give me once I step off.

There will be moments when you're left alone--and that's okay. We all need our space anyway.
You meet different people who are, just like yourself, fighting their own battles.
At times you may think you're helpless, but others need your strength.
Complicated stops are things you will encounter and overcome.
And in these stops, you will learn when to put your foot down and say "This is enough."
Other people will have finished the journey you are yet to take and you must use this as your source of hope.
Some doors close--
--while some are left wide open.
A lot of things won't make sense, but there will always be light if you just lift your head high.
You will find inspiration in the most unexpected things-- San Francisco's streets speak of a kind of life you never knew existed.
Finding your way won't be easy, but you'll get by. (You may feel the need to call for your mother at times, but this time--you're alone.)
People are carrying their burdens from Point A to Point B and suddenly your problems seem insignificant next to theirs.
But whatever happens, happens. You just gotta hold on tight.

I go click, click

When words are not enough to sum up the week of my stay here in San Francisco, I succumb to updating this blog with a few photos that aren’t even ‘good’ enough to begin with. I’ve admittedly slacked off since the 25th and have hibernated for the past few days. Apart from my short trips around town, stuffing myself with food, and spending hours on Xfinity, I’ve basically just retreated to the comforts of my bed until my tummy begs for a few bites. Buhay baboy is what I would always call it and I don’t think it’s ever gone this bad.

I also want to punch myself for not taking as much photos as I can. Heck, all I have is a low-res shot of my last day in Manila taken with my trusty Blackberry (which I can’t even use now). I hope I get my ass back up before the year ends.

Yes, I have a day left.

Back on track

Although this week has been nothing but a whirlwind of ups and downs, I can definitely say that I am back on track. Coming home from a date with one of my greatest girlfriends, I realized that there are so much more things to look forward to rather than dwell on what has already been done. BBM also changed my life — connecting me with two of the invaluable lifelines I could ever have at the moment. Those, and of course the inevitable support system that is my faith and my family.

A few, quick updates, though, before beginning the week to come:

  1. I am finally watching my first UAAP game in the course of my three-year stay in the Ateneo! Catch the DLSU vs ADMU match tomorrow at the Smart Araneta Coliseum (3pm)
  2. I am back on Twitter after a week-long hiatus which taught me a whole lot about self-control, discipline, and a nifty sense of censorship and propriety.
  3. As much as “quitting” Twitter was a sacrifice, quitting meat a year and two months ago was a huge one, too. But as all things must come to an end, I decided to follow my doctor’s advice to begin caring about my health and to start getting an authentic protein fix. So, yes I am back to eating meat. And yes, I pray that my sickly self will get back in shape as soon as possible. With the academic load kicking in, the last thing I need is a frail and sickly old me.
That being said, anyone want to bon bon the Bon Chon with me?