Collateral Beauty (Recognizing what’s in the fall..)

“just make sure you notice the collateral beauty..”

It’s a powerful message. At first, i couldn’t comprehend. Howard wrote to Death, Time & Love. He was putting them all to blame for his lost of a loved one.

After hearing all what they have to say and feeling them in me too, i realized i was the same with him 2 years back.

I became an accepting person – maybe if someone ask me something valuable, i won’t have enough strength to resist; believing it should always will be what would be. I’m praying that someday, slowly, I’ll come back to my feet and won’t concede any easily.

Living in sixty seconds, sixty minutes, twenty four hours, three hundred sixty five days, tens of years and sometimes not close to a hundred, I, like everyone, is buying for every breath and every moment of the most expensive commodity that is time. I would like to ask if how much is a time machine to the past. He wouldn’t give me and He wouldn’t sell me any either. He gave the future instead, for free.

And then here is the reason to every why. That even pain exists because of her, calling herself love. I remembered reading “love is not lost, it just transforms..”. We lost her. Pain. Yet, she is the reason why we come together, as if an invisible blanket which keeps us all warm and affectionate. Along with touching the hurt in my chest, i can touch a bigger part of that deep and nurturing feeling she has left. I am glad to share it with every person in the crossroads.

So there. Like the dominos Howard set up, all in the line are taken down by just a single piece falling. That one may have caused the collapse, and gone to be blamed for everything; but if you look widely – enough to appreciate, and put your eyes in the direction of the fall, you will see the beauty that goes with it.

In two years, I am noticing it, not yet all but someday, I will.

 

_RomaPi 06132017

 

#CollateralBeauty

That Moment

**While reading, I encourage you

to ponder on each line.

Read slowly, let it flow

and SERENITY be with you.

Sometimes, I

complain about LIFE

And He let me see

He let me listen

He let me feel…

Leaves falling…

Waves coming and going..

The sun setting and meeting the ocean

Rain dropping

A moon coming out

Stars shining

Lovers dancing

Pianist listening to his melody

Footsteps on a silent hall

Little girls holding hands

Running back towards happiness

Last look

Crying alone with Him

Touching the Earth’s grains

A child’s smile

A baby’s laughter

Parents’ supportive words

A son’s ‘thank you’

Everybody’s care

Someone’s love…

LIFE has too much to offer

He says I should not be tired

Put away worries and pain

And in me, He will always remain.

Reconciliating History and Art – Philippines’ National Museum and Paco Park

“To foretell the destiny of a nation, it is necessary to open the book that tells  of her past.”

(May 29, 2016) I am walking somewhere today I said on Instagram capturing my feet on a reddish cemented floor. There started a random walk along Manila particularly Luneta.

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I planned to go visit National Museum when I read an ad saying that the whole month of May is free entrance. And so, why not? I’ll only spend for transportation and I won’t afford to lose opportunity like that. As always, I went alone.

My initial plan was to attend mass at Manila Cathedral in Intramuros (I haven’t been there. Next stop.) I got into MRT Taft then LRT United Nations. Upon looking at the stations map, I realized that UN comes first before Central Station, where Manila Cathedral is. It was almost 10am and I should get off the train quick or else I’ll be late for the mass. Luckily, I searched through google map the other churches near the area. I found Paco Park at UN station then Gen. Luna St. What gets me excited to see this park is it became a shooting location for Starting Over Again (Toni Gonzaga and Piolo Pascual). I was expecting for the fountain, of course.

I got inside the church just as the mass was about to start. It’s a dome shape and I like how its small space made me feel closer to the strangers around and to God. I walked around after. At the marker of GomBurZa, I saw three men in costume – 2 guardia sibil and 1 like Rizal in black or was he a priest? I don’t know. Just examine the photo and tell me. Then, doves. It was nostalgic because I felt like I was in Boso-boso church in remote Antipolo again. However, I didn’t stay long. There’s still the main thing I have to do.

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I rode a jeep again then alighted at a road crossing the National Museum. I asked the entrance and a man pointed at a building. I approached it. At the door, the guard asked me if I have a companion. I said no. She jokingly told me that she will give me companions and guys behind me overheard the conversation. They asked me to go with them and I said I’m fine alone (haha). I’m not a snob. I just prefer being alone in places like that. I wanted to stare more.

I went around that building (2nd to 4th or 5th floor?). I came across Spanish era, Filipino tribes and Filipinas among others. At the end, I wasn’t able to see what I was there for. Asan ang Spoliarium? (Where’s the Spoliarium?) Mission : A backfie with Luna’s Spoliarium. I asked a guard and he said, it’s in the other building. Whoooah, I was in the wrong building! That shouldn’t be the first (Museum of the Filipino people). Anyway, I went to the main Museum.

A long spiral line was at the entrance when I arrived (2pm). I got inside and yes, the Spoliarium is really glorious! I stayed more minutes in front of it and when I can’t ask somebody to take a photo of me, I decided to go into the galleries. Pure paintings, sculptures, arts are into those exhibits. Okay, I was captured by F. Amorsolo’s sketches. I was inspired somehow with what I sometimes do though, I wasn’t that good. I can do abstract sketches?hahaha

Back to the main exhibit, I really hoped I can get my mission fulfilled. With a glimpse outside, the rain already poured. I stayed longer and just watched people went by.

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I was out by 4pm. I endured my rumbling stomach. And guess what? Mission failed. That’s a con for a soloist. Maybe, I’ll try harder next time. And I might consider one companion, too. I walked under the rain and went the way I was.

I treated myself to a super late lunch (or dunch) and a movie (Love Me Tomorrow) when I got home. It may not be 100% done as planned but hey, I really had fun.

 

Where to next? (I’m still on track with my Tungko Church visit.)

 

–Roma Pi

Church Hopping

The title sounds fun right? Actually, it is called Visita Iglesia. I’ve been doing it in 5 years. I started it last 2010 with my friends in preparation for our CPA Board Exam.

For 2 consecutive birthdays, I’ve done a series from Manila to Quezon city trailing the MRT Line 2. It begins in U-Belt in Manila and would end up in Katipunan, QC.

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St. Francis Chapel (Mandaluyong)
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St. Anthony Parish (Bustillos) which celebrates my birthday(hehe) It’s a feast day actually.
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the Mendiola Peace Arc (@ U-belt)
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St. Jude (U-belt) / where we spent most of our Thursdays when we were at the review
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St. Therese of the Child Jesus (Broadway)
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St. Therese Chapel
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Mt. Carmel Parish (where I like to stay most)
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A wedding was due that day (Mt. Carmel Parish)
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Mt Carmel’s Glass Window
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A Parish in Katipunan where you can offer eggs and donate your pencils after the board exam.
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Sta. Clara Parish

 

It is also by this doing that I did my solo out-of-town trip. I went to Lucban Quezon.

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the Chapel at Kamay ni Hesus (Lucban, Quezon)
And also recently to Manaoag, Pangasinan
Our Lady of Manaoag Shrine

 

Colorful Candles, Happy Life!

The experience was so rejuvenating that aside from detoxification from urban air, I also acquired spiritual purity and restrengthened my faith.

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Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage (Antipolo)
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Boso-boso church (Antipolo) / Along with a friend, I was surprised how far we went just to see it.

I do side trips once in a while like tasting local food, talking to strangers, and a photography habit.

 

If in Europe they enjoy museums, well I suggest for this country with rich religious culture, visit our churches and shrines. They are worth seeing and may be you’ll have an answered prayer (that I believe.:) ).

NEXT STOP..Tungko Church! Who doesn’t like castles?

Bye Summer

In 60 days

of living sunsets
and waking dawn,
we chased

waterfalls,
waves,
boats,
buses,
flights
and most
specially
that feeling
about to fade.

We had
all the
memories
to remember.
We had
the chance
to revive
everything
we lost.
We had the
reasons to
find where
we are left.

And we had
time to buy.

Out of all
the stories
we have to tell,
of tanned weekends
and sunrise met,
of you lingering
somewhere,
this tale,
said to say
has come
to end.

Dearest
April and May,
please don’t keep
me at bay,
I’ll be with
you again someday.

Be the Compass

You have this wanderlust and you won’t be contented staying in one place. You need to go out but friends and office mates aren’t available. You are also afraid you’d be lost somewhere remote or some unprecedented mishaps happen. To top it all, you’re somehow don’t get along with directions. Then, what now?

All things begin with a single step.

I dared. I went to Lucban, Quezon myself. It may not be a big deal for those who normally travel but for me, it is. It wasn’t easy feeling I’d be lost. Actually, I wanted to go to Kamay ni Hesus, a  pilgrimage site. It was a plan over a year and I told myself I should go during or before holyweek. I browsed the web to gain knowledge on how to get there. I came across geejaytravellog and printed the information from the blog. I also read several other blogs for me to know how even being safe going there. I am someone who overthinks that at a point when I step up into a bus, a scene of being rob, on fire or accident is already playing on my head. Anyway, it helps being contingent at the same time.

So there – I set the date, budgeted (time and money), printed a copy of the blog article, readied my backpack and went off. I rode a Jac Liner bound to Lucena in Kamias, QC.It was a bit traffic on a Sunday for me to reach Lucena in 4.5 hours. Rather being bored and stuck in traffic, I busied myself acquainting with local views namely, Mt. Makiling and Mt. Banahaw. It was fantastic how my bus was just like going around these mountains.

Here, take some look on what caught my attention on the way.

Before lunch, I was able to reach Lucena terminal. From there, I rode a jeep to Lucban. I didn’t know how to get off at grotto (I am short of some inquiring attitude that time). Luckily, there were other passengers going there too. The grotto is only at the highway.

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Do you know Fr. Joey Faler? I was amazed when I saw him at the chapel presiding a healing mass. He is the founder of the pilgrimage site.

Aside from the healing mass, I did hiking. Yes, I did. The grotto of Ascending Christ is situated at the top of a hill with 300 plus steps. Imagine going up at 11:30am to 1:30pm. It was a lot of sweat but the experience was worth reaching the top. A 50-ft statue stands tall and a view of Mt. Banahaw welcomed me there. People, of various localities and intentions also warmed my feeling of the holy week.

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On calculation, I decided going home at 3pm. I bought Lucban longganiza and other native delicacies and I didn’t pass to have a taste of their Pansit Habhab – that which you only eat by a banana leaf ( technically eating with your bare hands, but i had fork).

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In 4 hours again, I went my way home – going the way I came. I knew from jeepney drivers in Kamay ni Hesus that there is an other way via Sta. Cruz, Laguna but of course, I didn’t take it. That’s out from my itinerary. Maybe some other time (haha).

Okay, I went home safe and sound. With an idea, an ounce of courage and a lot of determination, I did it. So maybe, you can too. It’s just fine being lost (though I didn’t). All you need is to will it.

Plan.

Grab your backpack.

Get going. 

You have four directions to go. It is your freedom to choose where to head to but don’t forget to bring your common sense and aim to be safe always. The world out there is both wild and nice. There’s no choice but to walk in there or you’ll never get far.

Good luck and God bless on your soon-to-be adventures!

 

Roma Pi

 

The DIY Memoirs

Single

And I have a friend who commented on one of my writings about that one destined for me – the one who without his presence, my life tends to be lonely and empty. It’s a feeling inevitable for one who doesn’t have someone around with She said, “We love being alone but we don’t fancy being lonely.” But of course, I agree. Who wants to be lonely anyway?

Loneliness is a choice. Alone-ness is a choice. But one needs not necessarily follows the other. Loneliness is a state of mind, I assume, while loving the state of being alone is a different story. And as they say, there is power in solitude. I, for one, feel it. It is the mind that may will a focused and reflective thought over unnecessary ergo complications of being alone.

Need I say what it is? Yes? Pity, that nagging part which centers only on one’s self. Why I’m alone? Why no one wants to be with me? And stating all self-fact, I am reasoning that they should chose me. However, this will bring me nothing but bitterness. I won’t live that way. I’d rather be living alone with a sunny day than taking a journey of searching someone who could be with me all the way and with a feeling of incompleteness. I’m not kicking the idea aside and away but for now, let me be.

Gladly, that stated above only happens once in a year (maybe). I choose to embrace the fun of going solo. I focus on strengthening my character through reflections alone. I get more time planning and building what I wanted to have.

My desire of being alone doesn’t shun people away from me. I wouldn’t like to. I consider that I am a social being, as my nature is. It’s just that, as I am currently running my independence, I do things single-handedly.

Guided by the upper hand, I do various activities. Like I am a jane of all trades, I want to try and experience everything that captures my interest. I do them in bold spirit. I crave for freedom in all sorts. I believe that every day is an adventure. Let the stories roll.