Do Not Just Repair when You Can Reborn

Ang winner ng lines on this new CreamSilk commercial. I was on my way to have my medical exam when I heard these lines:

Everyone makes mistakes

Do things they regret

But you don’t have to feel sorry…

You can start over.

These words really caught my attention. Oh well, it may be just me but they have a point. I’ll give them a big check for this ­čÖé

Well, you see, whoever the copywriter of this ad is, he was able to connect hair problem to life in general. And for someone who is emotionally sensitive these days like I do, even the littlest of things seem to have a deeper meaning – even that commercial with Heart, Sam and Toni. Haha.

Okay, Repair vs. Reborn (not in reference to the hair thing – i’ll try to be deep on this one, choz).

When we try to repair things, we’re just trying to turn it back to its normal state. As what they say, we can’t fix something that is not broken. So for us to repair something, there must be something wrong with it first before we correct it. And then we’ll try all our best just to bring it to its good condition but we know better than that. Once it’s broken, it will never be the same again.

Also, what if the normal state is not even worth turning back to?

Now, we have to think of the other option, reborn. Well, one cannot really literally be reborn, agree? But figuratively, it’s having a new state of being. A new life. You can choose what would be the new you and you can decide what would be the new path that you will follow – regardless of your past or what you were before you decide to do this.

It’s more than just setting things right, it’s actually the start of living again.

So, let’s take Toni’s advice on this:

Why settle for just repair when you can reborn? Let’s!

Rare Application Tip

I just got back in the Metro and no matter what angle I look at, the future looks bleak for me.

Six months ago, I traded my career and my life here for something that was my ultimate dream as a person.

Six months after, that dream didn’t materialize and I thought I can still go back where I left off. The thing is, there is no U-turn in life. One has to start from scratch – no job, no place of my own.┬á No everything. Just the courage to face this life anew and the hope that things will be better and everything will be okay.

I thought I already had a chance with the first company I tried my luck with. I walked in, passed the first interview, took the exam and then interview with the Sales Director all in half a day – a sign I thought to be the break I’m praying for. But things didn’t turn out the way I was expecting it. I was devastated after talking with the Sales Director.

He said my qualifications didn’t match their requirements and they already hired a lot of people the past weeks. He said I’m already late. And then he asked me If I have questions. I said yes. What are those jobs you think I’m not qualified for? And then he explained. And I told him my experience in those things. And then he asked if I’ve other questions. Yes, I said. Is there any chance you would re-consider? and he said No. That was so heart-breaking.

Instead of riding a cab, I walked that J. Vargas St. to San Miguel Ave. with a blank look and with a pace I didn’t notice. I can’t even remember how I got home. I need to have work. I need something to occupy my mind.

At home, I realized I still have the Visitor’s Pass ID of that company and shoot, I’ve to go back so I can have my ID in return. I seriously don’t want to because I’m afraid I might see the Director again and I’m so embarrassed with my questions. I feel like I made myself look so desperate but I really am desperate.

I prayed and then I lifted everything to God and just entrusted Him with everything. Your will be done, Lord, I said.

When I was preparing the following morning, I was planning where to go next after returning it. Should I apply to the other companies in that building? Or should I just proceed to have my NBI clearance processed? I might as well just do both.

When the guard of the building saw me, I’m shocked he recognized me. Hired na po kayo, Ma’am? Magsosoli lang po ng ID, I said.

I looked for the floor number of the other FMCG company in that building before going to their floor. After returning the visitor’s pass, I went to the other floor and submitted my resume. When I think I already served my purpose, I went downstairs and start hailing for a cab.

Minutes passed and there’s no cab coming. And then somebody waved for me to come over. I’m not sure if it was really me he’s waving at so I didn’t bother. Seconds later, shoot, it was the Sales Director beside me.

He asked, Tinawagan ka na ba nila? I endorsed you to HR for the In-Store Trade Activations Specialist position. It’s field sales also and you will handle GMA area. I’m not sure if he’s really talking to me and I only uttered Po? Thank you. He’s surprised I wasn’t aware yet I was there in their building and then I told him I went there just to return the pass I carried with me home. And then he offered to accompany me to the HR and told me about the offer.

Wow, I immediately thanked and praised God. He is so good only He can do something like that.

Tip: Take home your Visitor’s Pass ID. You’ll never know what returning that the following day could bring you ­čÖé

What a Sip of Your Favorite Cup of Coffee Can Do

StarBucks Iloilo

(Planner Entry dated April 12, 2011)

After almost three months of staying here in Iloilo, I’ve to admit there are a lot of things I miss like having my favorite Venti Hot Caramel Macchiato with extra caramel drizzle. It has been my faithful buddy during toxic times and it reminds me of my precious friends and those touching moments we’ve shared on and off work hours.

I miss it when Lola Erwin Verdejo and I would stay in the office until 5am in preparation for an event. I miss it when Crea Claudio and I have new office buddies to bully, I mean to entertain and to just try to know well :p I miss it after every lunch-out and meeting when we were asked to have either dessert or coffee. I miss it whenever there are some issues to deal with, personally or professionally. I miss how it has become a venue to patch grudges or misunderstandings with an officemate. I miss how it gained me new friends during taste tests and other new promo stints. I miss how a Starbucks planner given with love (Thanks again, Ms. Tricia) can mean the whole world to me.

I think I just miss it primarily because it makes me feel I’m home and it reminds me of people I consider my family – my former office buddies.

Now that it’s finally here, I can’t help but become nostalgic. Chris and I were supposed to do our usual family day – pig out, do some grocery stuff, etc. – but when we saw it already open, pfttt … we’re there in an instant lining up to have our favorite coffee and we just stayed there for hours enjoying every second of it!

I’m surprised with the new look of the cup but the rest remain the same. The friendly atmosphere and of course, the homey feel! The place was also perfectly and nicely designed that Ilonggos flocked the place in no time.

Our family day had a new twist today. Instead of just sipping coffee at home reading newspaper, we did it there and we also happened to discover and appreciate Mango Magazine and discussed some articles we’ve read there. Now this is an interesting day and this I know promises more interesting days (and more interesting reads and people) ahead. I’m just so happy to have found my second home again.

May Asim Pa

I used to hear this whenever Madam Auring is on the news. Well, who would not say so with all those young partners and controversial affairs that she has at her age.

Well, I’m no Madam Auring and I don’t feel the need yet to follow her footsteps but somehow, I felt that asim thingy worked for me, too.

So, one grows up and part of that phase is losing some things or some interest to some things. Partying is no longer fun compare to just hanging out with friends just sipping coffee and catching up on each other’s life. The topics have changed, too! Now it’s more on serious things like career, travel and learning.

Entertaining people also stopped being fun. It has become scary unlike before when someone sending you a drink and paying for your bills seem ego-boosting and confidence-building.

You’ve already experienced all those things that now, those were just part of your past and it no longer interest you. Until one night, after sipping coffee with your girlfriends and while you’re catching up on your whereabouts, someone came over and asked for your number.

And then a tiny, tiny part of your being got thrilled. And it was such a long time since you last felt it. So once more, like a college girl, you gave it impulsively only to realize seconds after that, that hey! you’ve grown past that phase already. But then you thought, it’s your call whether to ignore or to entertain the call and the text.

You were still pondering on that thought when suddenly the guys from the next table called your attention and asked if it’s okay for them to join you and your friend. It surprised you definitely, but you take control this time. You courteously said no, thank you, we’re good and then tried your best to ignore their hirit and parinig.

Now that was remarkable.

You see, having that asim in you is not a bad thing. In fact, you now have all the advantages. You’re wiser now. You can be more in control of the situation. Just enjoy the feeling it gives you and don’t overdo things.

Just look at Madam Auring and how she glows during interviews and all. She’s still blushing and she feels like she’s still in high school feeling so good inside. Okay, maybe Madam Auring is not a good example. But think about it. It will do you good having that confidence back once more.

What are you waiting for? Go out with your friends and check if you still have that asim!

An Elbi Homecoming Filled of Fun


Since I got back, I’m looking forward to this event our resident brods and sisses prepared for us alumni. I’m excited to see my batchmates and my other friends and relive those crazy memories we all shared when we were in college.

Other than that, I’m excited to return to a place that has been my home for five years – Los Banos or Elbi. I made a checklist of the foods and drinks I would not dare to miss when I get there. I already planned my itinerary. I’m so excited I thought it was a good thing. It was not until that feeling overshadowed other important things. So here’s what really happened:

Blooper No. 1 (8:00pm-12:00mn vs 1:00pm-5:00pm)

I left the house lunchtime to give room for a time allowance. I don’t want to be late. And I don’t want to rush dressing up for the event so I thought arriving there before 5:00pm would give me enough time to do that and eat some of the foods on my checklist. Besides, the event won’t start until 8:00pm.

Blooper No. 2 (Dry run vs. Program proper)

I was in constant communication with my batchmate Rav and with the Alumni Relations Officer XienXien and I was told they are still at the venue. Okay, so I thought they were still not done with all the preparations and the dressing-up of the venue.

Blooper No. 3 (Baha Outfit vs. Glam Fasyon)

I went there prepared. I’ve packed five different sets of clothes for that event and I really didn’t mind carrying that gigantic bag with me even if it’s heavy. Kebs. It was raining hard because of the typhoon Mina so I thought wearing a baha outfit (pepe shorts, sleeveless top and soc jacket) while they are still busy with the preparations would be just fine.

Blooper No. 4 (Not being gullible vs. Not reading between the lines)

Finally, Elbi. My heart was beating frantically and the images on my mind of how the night would turn out was playing dramatically. I’m dripping wet because of the rain but who cares? I’m just so happy to be there in SU and to finally see who else are there aside from Popoy, Rav and Ate Jacky.

Before heading to the function room, I stopped by at the restroom to have some minor fix (hair, lips, clothes) and then off to the door with a big smile on my face. I was recognized easily and was welcomed heartily and then Popoy blurted out I ‘Andyan na si Rikki, tapos na’. It was so Popoy and it was so Soc-like, I thought.

Blooper No. 5 (The revelation)

After the usual hug and beso-beso and the usual introduction of some of the new members, I sat beside my batchmate. And then I noticed they were all dressed up. And then there were people on the stage and there were some program going on. And then my batchmate told me ‘Ainaku, hindi masarap yung food, let’s just eat later sa Bonitos’.

Wait … rewind.

So, the event was moved from its original time to 1:00-5:00pm. They were not having a dry run that’s why all of them are wearing fab outfits and Popoy really meant it when he said tapos na.

And it all just sank in to me when we were already being called for the photo ops. Wait, sayang my outfit on my gigantic bag. Besides, it’s never too late!

I immediately changed and there we go. Picture, picture courtesy of Jat. Now looking at the pic, who would say all these bloopers happened? Haha. Smile.

Iloilo Churches that Speak of Old Family Ties and Old Filipino Values

Last Good Friday, Chris and I decided to continue one of their family’s traditions of visiting and praying in the seven churches or what they call ‘coches noches’ (i’m not sure if I named or spelled it right, though).

We started with the farthest one┬á(two long worthy jeepney rides), which is the Miag-ao church, and I was so amazed with its architecture and the way it was preserved. I’ve seen a lot of old churches in Luzon particularly those in Bicol, Quezon, Laguna, Cavite, Mindoro and Batangas┬á(thanks to my hobby of being lakwatsera and being history fanatic and to my history and art classes in UPLB),┬ábut I’ve never seen anything like this one yet.

Photo courtesy of Mr. John M. Reyes

The color is yellowish unlike the terracotta color I’m used to seeing in other churches. It also has a mystic effect on me because upon seeing it, I think I just stood in front of the chuch in awe for a couple of minutes when I suddenly remembered our purpose of going there. No, definitely not a field trip although it came as a bonus, but a meaningful contemplation about God’s love.

Inside the church, I was amazed with the number of people doing the station of the cross and they were all families. Bad thing, we don’t have a copy of the Way of the Cross, so we just skipped it. And compared to other churches, there were no vendors in the church’s vicinity┬á(there were only two and those were across the street). That made our visit there more solemn.

Next stop, Guimbal church. I already visited that last year but there was an undergoing construction and it’s not as beautiful as what I remember it. Or maybe I’m just really biased with things that are old and well-preserved because it reminds me of old ways and old times. I love the air and the smell of old churches. Unlike the first, this one was crowded with vendors. Not really a good thing, in my opinion, but thanks to it, we were finally able to buy a copy of the Way of the Cross and just decided to do it on the seventh church.

Then we went to Tigbauan church. From the outside, it looked as if it was another victim of Mr. Boysen but upon stepping inside, wow – it is one big surprise. Every inch is a work of art. All of the images of the saints and the pictures in each station were mosaic. It was really breathtaking. I can only imagine the hard work and the passion and the dedicaton of those that were behind it.

Then we headed to Oton church. The inside was painted blue and white. Then Villa Arevalo church. And the Molo church and finally, the La Paz church where we did the Station of the Cross. We opted not to go to the Jaro church anymore since we attend and hear mass there regularly.

We started in the morning and it was almost 3pm when we finished. Yes, it was super duper tiring. We were walking under the heat of the sun and we were waiting for the jeepneys for so many minutes because there were only few PUJs operating on those towns but the experience was something attached to my heart that I never felt those things while we were doing them.

It’s really touching to see families doing those things together. I’m teary-eyed everytime we’re already inside the church because I can only wish for it. I’m more than happy because I realized, religious traditions are very alive in Iloilo unlike in some places where families think of Holy Week as the time to go to the beach. I admit I was once guilty of that and now that I am enlightened, I wish I were with my family, too, and we’re all enlightened the same way.

One thing I missed doing with my family, though, is the Pabasa, which we used to do every Holy Week in my mom’s hometown in Bicol, which is one thing I’ve never seen here.

To wrap this up, after visiting those seven churches, here are the things I’ve been reminded of:

1. Love for God and Love for our Neighbors.

No matter how much we think we’ve sacrificed, there is still no greater sacrifice than what God did for us so the simplest way to show our appreciation is to share that love to others.

2. The family that prays together, stays together.

Our family is God’s greatest gift. They are our constant companion no matter what and our constant source of comfort and love be it good times or tough times.

3. Visiting church feels like coming home to your home sweet home.

You talk and you’re sure you’re being listened to. Even when you don’t talk at all, you know in your heart, you’re being understood and you’re still being loved.

One sad realization, though, based on my observation … as the church nears the City, the solemnity and the respect of the people for it as the house of God lessens. There were even vandals on some of the churches we visited. Maybe we all have to remember, church is like a mirror and it reflects the kind of people who dwells in it.