"a caterpillar doesn't just grow into a butterfly. a caterpillar must undergo metamorphosis, and a cocoon is where a caterpillar risks it all: enters total chaos, undergoes total rebuilding, and is born to a new way of living. only in taking the risk of entering that inert cocoon can the caterpillar go from dormancy to potency, from ugliness to beauty."

Wednesday, October 27, 2004


home, for me, is a combination of a taxi ride, an airplane ride, another taxi ride, and a bus ride away from the dorm. last weekend, i headed for that destination with three bags bursting to the seams... TWICE.

now, the story…

going home is a welcome thought after five months of being away, and i was naturally optimistic earlier that day, which was last saturday. but lo!

my luck!

the first leg of my trip went awry! the taxi ride from the dorm to the airport, which could eat up a little more than 30 minutes on a good day, took almost two precious hours. putik na traffic! why, oh, why.

by the time i arrived at the check-in desk, the supervisor wouldn’t let me in because “all seats have been taken”. apparently, they gave up my seat and the seats of all others who got caught in the @#$%@! traffic 25 minutes before i got to the airport. yeah, 25 minutes too late. parang kanta! buhay nga naman! my luck! the flight was scheduled to depart at 1:15pm and my taxi got free from the traffic at 12:50pm. like i had the choice?! oh boy. added to that, the 1:15 plane was the last flight that could take me to cagayan de oro that day. oh boy times two. i was really pissed...and at no one in particular. the experience was like an irritating déjà vu.

i don’t like airports!!!
they always make me feel miserable.

anyway, back to the story. there i was, suddenly feeling as if the entire world finally closed in on me but not quite. along with the other “latecomers,” i was advised to rebook. as i walked to the other building for the rebooking, i felt the weight of my bags. i didn’t realize how heavy they actually were until that time when i had to contemplate the sort of luck i was having.

at the other building, i had to wait for my turn before i could schedule another flight. in fairness, they have a nice queuing system… but being assigned the number 92 when they’re still at number 20 wasn’t something to be feeling nice about. i was hungry, i was tired, i was feeling drained, i was sleepy and i still had to wait before i could go back, despite my own liking, to the dorm with its deserted and loneliness-inducing sembreak atmosphere! some test of patience!!! after i informed some people about my weird luck, roommate’s text message came through to comfort me and to remind me that it’s a weekend. tsk. tsk. tsk.

trust murphy’s law to manifest itself on my life if it’s a weekend.

i don’t know how long i waited for my turn at the airport’s booking office. it must have been quite long as i forgot about being pissed and eventually moved on to noticing how disgusting the airline’s lady employees’ uniforms look. (oh, the style was okay, but the cloth looked like it was ripped straight from some old table. hahaha.) their janitors’ uniforms even look better, trust me. by the time i got a rebooking and got back to the dorm, i realized that the traffic i encountered earlier that day cost me about PhP600 (about 200 for the taxi ride to the airport, 200 for the rebooking, and another about 200 for the taxi ride to the dorm.) i lost PhP600 and got nowhere near home. tsk. tsk. tsk. para na rin akong na-hold up ha.

i refused to be further put down for the rest of that day. after depositing my bags in my dorm room, i left for the mall, determined to relax and enjoy the rest of the day despite my sleepiness. at the mall, i splurged on food (yeah right! better believe this) and went to see sky captain and the world of tomorrow. later in the evening, i went to greenbelt with cinema buddy to watch run, lola, run. (naaaa... i didn’t spend the rest of the day trashing and throwing fits.) by the time we got back to the dorm, i only had about 2 to 3 hours before heading for the airport again. my flight was leaving at 5:10am, first flight to cagayan de oro. determined not to miss another flight, i left the dorm still sleepless at about 2:10am. by 2:35am, i was back at the airport and was welcomed by its misery-inducing atmosphere despite its state of the art facilities. i immediately checked in and spent the next few hours catching some sleep while waiting for boarding time. hmmm...i was almost home. gamay na lang kulang.

my plane ride was okay. it made me notice again how black the cloud over manila is. it’s a disturbing sight. shucks. i also had an aerial view of mayon volcano, with its almost perfect conical shape. actually the volcano stands out from the rest of bicolandia as it is the only mountain which looks symmetrical from above. by the way, i was given a window seat and the seats next to me were empty, so i had the three seats all to myself, bwehehehe... that made sleeping more convenient. i went zzzzzzzzz some minutes after we took off.

i arrived at cagayan de oro at about 6:20am. after claiming my bags, i went out of the airport’s arrival area and chose a cab to take me to the bus terminal.

“200 ra ba ang minimum namo dinhi”.

just when i thought i finally ran out of my weird luck, the driver told me that the minimum fare’s PhP200! “taka ka lang! dili oi!” was my bratty retort. stupid driver for trying to make me stupid!

driver: lagi, miss. 200 jud.
me: hala! ayaw ko binuangi. taka lang man ka oi!
driver: 200 naman jud. magansi man mi kung mas ubos pa ana.
me: dakong binuang! ako pa jud imong binuangan. miski pag metrohan, dili jud na moabot 200. please beh!
driver: sige, sa lain na lang ka.
me: maayo pa, kay maglalis lang ta anang 200. taka lang jud ka.

and so, the driver, who insisted on carrying one of my bags despite my protests, led me to another taxi. upon dropping the bag at the back of the taxi he led me to, he said “miss, naa kay traynta dinha?” to which i retorted “para asa man ng traynta?” without answering my query, he walked away scratching his head. he must have finally understood that he couldn’t make me shell out money just like that. apparently, the thirty pesos he was asking for was for labor services. hello???! had he not stupidly insisted (much to my discomfort, by the way) on carrying the bag, i would have carried it myself! hay naku! an extortionist driver in broad daylight. first, he had the nerve to tell me the minimum taxi ride to the terminal costs PhP200. then, he had the nerve to ask for PhP30 for carrying a bag i could single-handedly carry. drivers like him ruin the reputation of cagayanons. shame! it was a good thing the other driver didn’t make me pay 200, even confided in me that 200 is really an exorbitant amount, and was even shaking his head when stupid extortionist driver asked me if i had 30.

mabuhay ang mga drivers na may dangal!

a bus ride after that, i was finally back in iligan. 9:10 am. then, at about 11 o’clock, i traveled to lanao del norte with my family to visit my grandparents. i didn’t realize until then how weak my lolo gary has become. he's weaker than the last time i saw him. he cried upon seeing me. he cried some more when he saw my other cousin whom he also rarely gets to see. seeing the grandchildren he rarely sees lately must really be too overwhelming for him. tears could now easily take over his once tough-looking façade. i hope he gets to live a lot longer. a kind great man like him ought to live longer.

“you got home to be sick.”

how nice. that was the text message i received from cinema buddy after i informed her of me being sick and befriending the bed. looks like she’s right. as another friend would say, “you’re home, you’re sick. you’re... ”homesick”? he he he.” i think this must be due to the vitamins and the food supplements i have been taking in since i arrived home. somehow, my system is no longer used to them and must be adjusting this way. i’m sick. i’m sick.

Friday, October 22, 2004

written in crayon

my side of the room has this collection of blue and yellow post its, torn pages from a notebook, small greeting cards, and other what-have-you's -- almost all of which bear my roommate's handwriting. you see, my roommate usually writes me notes and that's something i really appreciate. she writes to tell where she's going, who she's gonna spend time with, what she's gonna do, what she's feeling, what she just learned, and the things that she knows i would want to know and be informed about (basically just anything under the sun which we both care about even if other people may find them super trivial).

last wednesday, october 20, she posted this 8.5" x 11" white bond paper on my cabinet door. her cool crayon marks said:

Why I like my roommate:

1. She's smart and she knows it and she doesn't brag about it.
2. She has a sense of space and respects it.
3. She has a sense of humor and shares it.
4. She has a sense of empathy and lets me know when I need it.
5. She's nerd and weird and doesn't make a big deal out of it.
6. She puts up with my sappy-ness.
7. She puts up with my fashion sense.
8. She puts up with my insomnia.
9. She sings songs with me and gets excited about it.
10. She likes Conrado and Ate Lourie.
11. She said she'll get sad when i leave ahead of her...

naks. heartwarming. fun. worth sharing. perfect timing. a little bit breaking, too. it's already the end of the semester. roommate and i don't know for sure if we'd still be sharing room next semester although we're both praying and willing we'd still be.

the note she left on my laptop today said:
Bon Voyage
sana magkasama pa tayo

our room now feels deserted, just like the rest of the dorm. i am alone as i type. roommate is currently in los baños for work. i may or may not see her before i go. i'll be leaving for home tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

blasts from the past

last night, cinema buddy and i's talk about ninja movies that we used to watch when we were li'l kids paved way for what i'd refer to as blasts from the past: memories of tv, movie and drama-on-radio mania of the 80's and early 90's...

he-man and the masters of the universe.



care bears.

rainbow brite.



batibot. bulilit. chikiting patrol. ang tv. pandakekoks. dayuhan. regal shocker. lunch date. sama-sama together (s.s.t.), si goot da wanderpol (waaa...i don't know if i'm spelling it right!). boyoyoy, the wonder boy. milyonaryong mini. that's entertainment (and the sheryl-romnick, manilyn-janno, tina-chris tandems). young love, sweet love. adorra, diyosa sa makiling. niño, ang batang... (i forgot what's next. is it gamhanan?) kini ang akong suliran. handumanan sa usa ka awit.


sarah, ang munting prinsesa. mara clara. villa quintana. ober da bakod. kate n boogie. lovingly yours. kung may katwiran, ipaglaban mo. shake, rattle, and roll.


flying house (and the superkids craze).

karate kid.


teenage mutant ninja turtles.

child's play(hi! i'm chucky, wanna play?..*grins wickedly*).

fido dido.

beetle juice.

omaigulai! i'm so good at reminiscing, i'm humiliating myself! bwahahaha...

wait. isang hirit pa...

isang tulog na lang, jollibee na naman.
ang araw lulubog, bukas mabubusog...
sa chickenjoy manok at hamburger bilog.
i love you sabado, kahit buong linggo.
hintay ka lang, jollibee, and'yan na ako.
panglasang pilipino, at home sa jollibee!

nope, i'm not advertising. i'm simply reminiscing.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

before i go

oh no. i'm not going to die. well, at least, not yet. i hope. i'm just going away for awhile, and that means i'm not gonna be able to blog...uh...well...for awhile, thus the title.

so now, i'll just blab a little...


i just need to get some things done and then i'll be spending quality time in tagaytay this friday, saturday and sunday. oh yeah baby!!!


"Superman stands alone. Superman did not become Superman, Superman was born Superman. When Superman wakes up in the morning, he is Superman. His alter ego is Clark Kent. His outfit with the big red S is the blanket he was wrapped in as a baby when the Kents found him. Those are his clothes. What Kent wears, the glasses the business suit, that's the costume. That's the costume Superman wears to blend in with us. Clark Kent is how Superman views us. And what are the characteristics of Clark Kent? He's weak, unsure of himself... he's a coward. Clark Kent is Superman's critique on the whole human race." -- Kill Bill, Vol. 2

photo from http://www.capedwonder.com

the superman is dead. ain't that sad?

aside from being the superman that he was both onscreen and offscreen, i'll remember christopher reeve as richard collier in that beautiful haunting love story, somewhere in time.


the cold nights are finally here!!! yipeee!! i already smell december is fast approaching. it's really not too far!

my labpartner and i walked our way back to our dorm just tonight, and having been used to warm air greeting us everytime we exit our well air-conditioned lab, we noticed how cold the night air is. the outdoor cold seeped to our bones and made us shiver, but in a good way... yipee!!! gone are the warm nights!

and i now have a nice excuse to add more jackets to my collection.

but really...wow, i already feel december. i'm getting excited, i feel like i'm so happy!

Monday, October 11, 2004

a note to self

~ Desiderata ~
Max Ehrman (1927)

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly, and listen to others,
even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements, as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career; however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with imaginings.
Many fears are borne of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the Universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be
and whatever your labors and aspirations.
In the noisy confusion of life, keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.

Be careful. Strive to be happy.

i unearthed that old poem and put it here in my blog because...

today i finally stopped and made some serious thinking, err, reflections.

i realized i've been going, going, and going on for sooooooooooo long and i've done so many detours: i think it's right to say that for years, i've been going in circles inside a maze of my own making. how stupid.


i've sensed that for some time now. i mean, i've long realized i'm always on the go but never really getting anywhere...and today is when i finally willed myself to stop and said, "owkey. val, enough of that. you're wasting time by raking in so much from all over, and what for? you're inviting crap."

so now, i'm going to try my best at a new slate. God bless me.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

quoting st. augustine

and i mean literally. so here goes...

"Faith is to believe what you do not yet see; the reward for this faith is to see what you believe."

"Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know about nature."

"People travel to wonder at the height of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars; and they pass by themselves without wondering."

"If you would attain to what you are not yet, you must always be displeased by what you are. For where you are pleased with yourself there you have remained. Keep adding, keep walking, keep advancing."

"Too late have I loved you, O Beauty so ancient, O Beauty so new. Too late have I loved you! You were within me but I was outside myself, and there I sought you! In my weakness I ran after the beauty of the things you have made. You were with me, and I was not with you. The things you have made kept me from you - the things which would have no being unless they existed in you! You have called, you have cried, and you have pierced my deafness. You have radiated forth, you have shined out brightly, and you have dispelled my blindness. You have sent forth your fragrance, and I have breathed it in, and I long for you. I have tasted you, and I hunger and thirst for you. You have touched me, and I ardently desire your peace."

"A thing is not necessarily true because badly uttered, nor false because spoken magnificently."

"Do you wish to be great? Then begin by being. Do you desire to construct a vast and lofty fabric? Think first about the foundations of humility. The higher your structure is to be, the deeper must be its foundation."

"The world is a great book, of which they who never stir from home read only a page."

Saturday, October 09, 2004

paranoid indeed!


to the poor souls who earn my ire...
to those who unluckily have to endure lashings by my mental whip...
to those who unfortunately receive cutting remarks from my acerbic tongue...

i know you think i'm somewhat sick, and i think so, too.


as a sign of goodwill, here is a gift:
¤ ¤ ¤ Personality Disorder Test Results ¤ ¤ ¤
you should know,
it's not easy to earn my trust.
if you want to,
you have to remove your mask.
don't play me for a fool;
i assure you, it's not cool.
don't ever take me for a ride;
lie! and i'll cut your hide.
when i sense a fake
and one which i can't take,
i proceed with the test
just like i do with the rest.
those who don't survive
belong to unworthy archive.
treat me with honesty,
if you wish to be worthy.

with much concern,
your sick, sarcastic paranoid friend.


hehehe. sabog!

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

somewhere i don't wanna be

City of God. Cidade de Deus in Portuguese.

I don't wanna be there.

Wait. I'm not talking about religion nor a heavenly city of God. I'm talking about a ghetto in Brazil.

The movie City of God is about that ghetto. The movie's title is the name of the ghetto itself, which is so ironic. Cidade de Deus, "a housing facility for the poor started in the 60's", is a very dangerous place. If you think Saray of Iligan is dangerous enough, think again! Cidade de Deus is by far more dangerous. People live there in a culture of too much violence and the trade they know of is that of guns and drugs, all illegal. It's normal to smoke joint. It's normal to see somebody being shot dead, every single day. Children there play with real guns with real bullets and with real people as targets. They dream of being fearsome gangsters and they start early. They prefer stealing and robbing than going to school. Even at a young age, they know how to kill people. They know how to kill people as if people are merely chickens. *Bang* *Bang* *Bang* Bullets would often fall all over the place like rain.

so young and so happy.
so young and so trigger-happy.

City of God depicts "the humanity of a world apparently condemned to endless violence".

You'd think it's just a movie, but no, THERE REALLY EXISTS A CITY OF GOD IN RIO DE JANIERO. I feel fortunate that I wasn't born in that part of the world and I feel sorry for the people especially the kids who are there. Watch City of God (if you haven't yet), so you'll understand me better.

all the things they said

here are a dozen and three things i got from my interactions with people:

"I know you. You two are alike. You have many secrets, but I know."

"Your hair smells good. It really smells good, but it does not look okay."

"Slow down. Slow down. Whatever happens, you know I'm here."

"Tumaba ka na ba?"

"Oi! pumayat ka!"

"Take my unsolicited advice: Allow the guys to court you, ok? Tsk. You're breaking too many hearts."

"Para kang bata. Para ka lang bata."

"Ang titigas ng ulo n'yo. Ang tigas ng ulo mo. Magpartners nga kayo."

"Ang malas mo naman."

"You're witty. They chose you because you're witty."

"Napaka-high naman ng standards mo. Isn't (sic) it (sic) stressing you??"

"Ngano man jud ka, 'teng?! Nganong contrabida man jud kaayo ka? Na na na."

"Sorry. I will not entertain your childish acts."

"Pahamak na babae at nakuha pang tumawa. Pahamak ka na babae. Hahaha."

"Oh, you're having backpains. That means one thing: you need to get laid!"

be careful, folks. you might be the ones i'll be quoting next time (*winks*).

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

highly recommended: my sassy girl

It’s clear to me now that I have been moving toward you and you toward me for a long time. Though neither of us was aware of the other before we met, there was a kind of mindless certainty humming blithely along beneath our ignorance that ensured we would come together -- The Bridges of Madison County, Robert James Waller

my sassy girl. people who’ve watched it rave about it.

i couldn’t relate. not when I haven’t seen it myself. that was then.

last weekend, i spent some hours sitting on a comfy mat while watching the movie, and i finally understood why so many people like it. finally! a love story on film that one could watch over and over and over again without getting sick of too much boring mushiness.

it’s soooooo funny. it’s sooooooo crazy. it melts your heart. it breaks your heart (and mends it right after *sighs*). most of all, it makes you really, really laugh with all your heart. it’s a great take about “meeting someone from the future” and “building a bridge of chance for your love.” my sassy girl definitely has more to offer than just a super pretty female lead.

watch it. watch it. watch it. watch it over and over again.

from the movie

10 rules:
1. Don't ask her to be feminine.
2. Don't let her drink over three glasses. She'll beat someone.
3. At a cafe, drink coffee instead of coke or juice.
4. If she hits you, act like it hurts. If it hurts, act like it doesn't.
5. On your 100th day together give her a rose during her class. She'll like it a lot.
6. Make sure you learn fencing and squash.
7. Also be prepared to go to prison sometimes.
8. If she says she'll kill you, don't take it lightly. You'll feel better.
9. If her feet hurts, exchange shoes with her.
10. She likes to write, encourage her.

I believe that although you are gone this cannot be the end, can it? I believe that your journey back to me is just delayed, isn't it? I remember so well that I hurt myself. As I cry, I hope you don't cry as I do. I hope you won't cry as you leave. I know you will return someday because I believe. I will wait for you, just you. I believe you should not cry when you think about my pain. I believe my tears will bring you back to me. My eyes cannot forget that it is you who make them cry. I hope you don't cry as I do. I hope you won't cry as you leave. I know you will return someday because I believe. I will wait for you, just you. My tears will bring you back to me. My eyes cannot forget that it is you who makes them cry. Before I met you, the world was not so beautiful. Beneath the same sky, all alone I cry but I will wait here, just for you. Even if waiting is hopeless, it's already enough to think of love. Time means nothing to me. I will wait for you, just you...just you.

for those who are beginning to raise their eyebrows:
go ahead, accuse me of being mushy. i am. so, what? you don’t understand.

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