Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Last week a great friend arrived from HK. Bro. A, who I first met many months ago with the brothers and who I correspond through online chat, arrived in the country for a much needed break and of course to meet us! Days before he arrived I was already suggesting places to visit and see, but it was only last Saturday that I finally came to meet him in the flesh for the second time and he's still, well, stunning and handsome I must admit. We met in Robinson's Place in Malate and after the brief awkward moment of this meetup, I quickly became comfortable with him and invited him to lunch coz I could tell he's hungry, although quite excited at that moment to go on our "date." It was actually raining outside so we did not have much choice but to stay awhile inside the mall.
While dining amidst the noisy food court, we were able to share many things about ourselves. In fact, that was the only time I was able to talk to him at length with just about anything - darn! he's such a good conversationalist and my English vocabulary got drained so quickly since I could not speak a Tagalog word - not even an expression. Wanting to learn some Filipino language, he inquired about the Tagalog translation of "I love you." At last, a Tagalog phrase. I answered, "Mahal kita." I threw back the question to him. "How do you say I love you in Spanish?" "Oh, there are two ways of saying it. First is Te Quiero which is a phrase you use when you speak to a friend, a family member, or a relative. Te Amo is reserved for someone special in your life, a lover, a romantic partner." Oh, now I know. After an hour and a half long of pleasant conversation, we hurried straight ahead to our destination. Where? We went to Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center. (I will blog about this separately including the pics I took). In brief, we took the LRT, MRT, and one jeepney ride to get there - a cheap way to show him around the metropolis eh? We were actually hurrying because we have to catch our Courage meeting later in the afternoon and we were like two Amazing Race contestants hopping from one place to the other. It was so fun!
Fast forward to the next day which is the day of his departure. We met again but this time in the five-star hotel for a breakfast on the 20 something floor of the hotel. Wow, magnificent view! From the dining table I was sitting I could see the whole Malate area, the long stretch of Roxas Boulevard, the hotel where I formerly worked in, and the placid waters of Manila Bay. Of course, we had our brief conversation as usual. On that day, we're supposed to visit a "must-see" place not far from where we were which every visiting foreigner must not miss. In short, I was his unofficial tourist guide in the city. The place I'm referring to is the famous Manila Ocean Park right at the back of Quirino Grandstand. It was my first time here and so was Bro. A's. (I will blog about this separately with pictures I took and hopefully the videos as well)
After our brief but fun-filled stay in the Oceanarium we headed back again to Robinson's Place for lunch (chicken adobo) and then went back to his hotel. He showed me his hotel room which is a very cozy place and helped him packed up things. Every good thing must come to an end they say and so we bid goodbye to each other. He does not feel like leaving the country but he has to. I hate it when somebody leaves. I don't like the feeling but who does? I wish I had more time to talk and bond with him coz he's such a great guy - really. I like intimate no-holds barred conversations with people coz it's when I really get to know the real person. Hah! you can just imagine what we talked about during our brief chit chats together! hahaha!
Mi amigo, te doy gracias por el regalo. I hope you'll find time to read the book that I gave you. My only regret is that I was not able to join you from Wednesday until Saturday because of work, but it is great to know that you had such a great time here with the brothers too. I will be looking forward to welcoming you again - maybe this time with some of your friends over there. May Our Lady of Guadalupe watch over you...always.