Thursday, December 30, 2010

I was surprised when Mr. LBC guy texted this morning asking me for directions to our house, he said there’s a packet, packet, packet full of sunshine addressed to me.
As he handed it to me, I felt giddy upon seeing the sender’s name. Every year, it is Aldrin’s tradition to give his friends the Starbuck’s planner. I think I was the 12th in his list and I really wasn’t expecting that he’ll be able to send it just in time for the new year. Now, do the math on how many coffee he takes in a day! Yay at the palpitations! 
In the past years, I admit that I had rarely written on my journals. Yeah, for obvious reason— I am too lazy to jot down what’s happening to me every day. Since I think I also couldn’t accomplish Project 365, I promise to just put into account everything that will happen in 2011. I know it’s gonna be awesome! 2011 has got to be awesome! You have to be awesome! Hear that?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Do you have that one shirt you’ve been keeping for so long?



This is my Megastar shirt. Cousin gave it to me in 2005; and whenever I wear it, I cry. I don’t know if it were just some kind of coincidental events, but really, it happened several times that I lost count already. Since then, we called it the Megastar-cryola-depress-depressan-shirt



See, it’s really worn out, color has faded already and it has holes on it as well but there’s something in it that I value so much, I’m a sucker for sentimental stuff. It was the shirt I had worn when I was going through the toughest time of my life, the shirt that had absorbed my tears in 2006; the shirt that I had sneezed on when tissue paper had ran out already; the very shirt that has been with me when friends weren’t there to give me a hug during my meltdown. LOL.
I texted my cousin before doing this; informing her that hey, I think it’s about time… it’s about time to let go of ze Megastar shirt and I just wanna let you know. It was like letting go a crazy, silly piece of us —the years that we had made fun of that shirt being so jinxed and me, getting through my depression days.
I had 5 glorious years with you, shirt, but yeah, it’s time to let go. So sad that mommy’s gonna make a rug out of you but still, you’re of use til the very end. Letting go is good, yes? It means something better will come along, read that, mommeh?


Monday, December 06, 2010

Christmas Wishlist

  1. Moleskine Planner
  2. Technomarine Women's 109004Cruise Mini Chronograph
  3. Looking For Alaska
  4. Fuji Instax Mini
  5. Reva Metallic Suede Ballet Flats
  6. Diamond Pearl earrings
  7. Cath Kidston Laptop Sleeves
  8. Tory Burch Ella Tote
  9. Cath Kidston Spray Flowers Mini Saddle Bag
LOL, ASA! :))

Sunday, November 28, 2010



Dear Mommy,
I wish you’d gimme a decent desk because this old computer table is kind of giving me a hard time already; it’s so huge, and it’s eating up all the space in the room. I also wish that you’d gimme book shelves or if you want, we can have it custom made, I pity my books because they’ve been sitting inside the cabinet for months already. Y’know, I am not really materialistic; I just want what is really necessary. I’ve been a good girl this year, I can sense that I am getting what I am asking for. Haha. So, is it a yes already? NO. K.
Love,
Charmaine

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Carlo, mi love

So, I'm back to working for 2 weeks already and Carlo, my seven year old son has been extra sweet to me these past days. It's funny because my work is just home based, so he still gets to see me on a regular basis, though cuddle times and watching tv together has been limited due to work load plus yeah, he goes to school that's why he can't stay up late during weekdays.

There were times when he would just sit on the bed with me while I do transcripts and he plays with his PSP. I know he just wants to be with me even though we are doing our own stuff. Sometimes, he would bring me chips inside the room, too concerned that his momma might be starving already; and lately, he has this favorite line that he would always tell me whenever I ask him for anything or whenever I assign him with some tasks, he would say "Mommy, wag kang mag-alala, ako ang bahala sayo!", --haha, like everything is under his control. He talks as if he's a grown-up already. Son, I hope you’ll grow up as a fine man. Last night, I told him that I'll be on graveyard shift; he told me that he'll take a nap and he asked me to wake him up by 8pm so he'll have enough energy to pull an all nighter with me. He’s only seven but he continually shows me what it’s like to be special.

Today, I finished my work earlier than expected so we spent Saturday in front of the television over chips and ice cream. He enjoys watching music videos and he loves singing-- he loves it when we sing together; Bruno Mars' Just the Way You Are started playing so I stood up and started dancing, he stood up as well and then he held my hand and we were both dancing happily and crazily. Gad, I couldn't recall the last time I danced with someone. It's ecstatic, I tell you. I love the way he shows me how much he loves me. It’s a nice feeling that in between work, Carlo is there to put a smile on my face. I know I’ve said this too many times already but I just feel so blessed having him in my life. I am overjoyed.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Books Before Work LOLJK!

I’ve been ranting about not having a decent book store here in Santa Cruz, Laguna. How come there’s no book shop here, Governor? 
I was all giddy when the LBC guy called my name out this morning. Yehey, it has arrived! My friend from Manila was so kind enough that she sent me some of the books that she had already read.
For a moment, I thought of telling my Project Manager that I’ll take a day off from work just to smell and read one of the books. LULZ, but yeah, I know I can’t do that to her. Yay! I’m like a kid, so happy with these treasures.
P.S. If you wanna send your book donations to a girl who lives in a town where there is no book shop, please leave your message via Formspring. Thank you! =)

40 days 'til Christmas


Mother asked me to take a photo of this very spot of the house and post it on her fb page y’know, she’s just so proud of what she did. LOL and yeah, you’re seeing it right, there is a Jesus poster behind the tree, grandpops was the one who put it there decades ago and there’s no way I can take it down, otherwise, he might be pulling my legs down his grave.
Well, srsly, it’s nice to see these bright lights at night. Makes me dream of a happy Christmas with my neighbor, yeah, the guy who lives across our house. Hihi.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Daddy and Donuts


When my dad was still alive, I would always make lambing to him to buy donuts for me and Carlo, and being his litol girl and Carlo, his bibi, he would give in to us and buy a dozen of it. Today, I asked mommy to buy some for Carl's baon tomorrow and as I opened the box, I suddenly remembered my pops. He loves Dunkin' Donuts, bavarian filled to be precise. When he was still here, donut is a staple in the fridge because he loves eating sweets especially after his chemotherapy sessions because somehow it makes him feel better.

IDK. Will a daughter ever forget? No, I don't want to forget any part of him. I want him to live within me... because it feels so wonderful remembering him. It's like he's just around the corner, seeing me smile with eyes closed, watching me intently as I go back to those good ol'days that we had.

Our dearly departed


November 1 is like Christmas day in our family. It has been a tradition that we gather at the mausoleum to pay respect to our dearly departed. My lolo, two uncles and my pops rests their bodies here. Too bad, lola has not been here since my dad's funeral in September 13, 2009. She's 95 and kind of weak already that's why her doctor advised that she can't come over  anymore. Anyway, we were there to prepare for everything that was needed for that day and yes, relatives from Manila came all the way to Laguna just to be in this affair. 


P.S. Here's a photo of what Carlo did with his entire day at the cemetery.

Monday, July 12, 2010


Dear Daddy,

It must have been your 61st today, but yeah, things did not go well according to what we really wanted. Happy birthday, Daddy! I super miss you today because tomorrow I’ll be turning 27 already and it feels just like a void not having you around. For the last 26 years, you were always there to make sure we have plans for our back to back celebrations. Our birthdays have always been fun up until the last time that we celebrated it and you were under medication already. See, dad, this would be my first birthday that you are not here and yeah, I must admit that until now, it makes me cry bucket of tears whenever I long for you.

Daddy, I could not wish anything more for you because I know that you are already happy wherever you are. I know my life will go on but in every year that I turn a year older, always know that your Shasha is silently wishing to see you, hold you, hear you and be with you again in another lifetime.

I love you and I miss you every day!
Happy birthday, daddy!

P.S. I chose this photo of yours because I miss the times when we sing together while you play the guitar.Those were the days. Those were the good times that we had. The good times, dad.

Love,
Shasha

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lola Ona



Sa tuwing naririnig ko ang mga samu’t-saring kuwento tungkol ke lola ay hindi ko maiwasang hindi mamangha. Ina siya na ginagawang araw ang gabi at gabi ang araw. Ganun-ganon na lamang ang walang humpay na pagmamahal at pag-aasikaso niya sa kanyang mga anak na pare-pareho namang lumaki na ang Diyos ang sandigan. Pinabilib niya ako kung paano niya napalaki nang maayos ang mga anak niya na nagtutulung-tulungan sa isa’t-isa sa abot ng kanilang makakaya. Madiwara man madalas ay nangangahulugan lamang na gusto nyang pulido at nasa ayos ang lahat.
 Si Leonora Altobar ay isang babae na tinitingala ng mga taong nakapaligid sa kanya. Ina siya sa siyam niyang mga anak at Lola siya nang napakarami niyang mga apo. Sa 94 na taon niyang pamamalagi sa mundo eh madami na siyang pagsubok na pinagdaanan, andiyang nabalo siya at nakapagpalibing na din ng apat na mga anak (kasama dun ang aking ama), na siya namang napakasakit para sa isang asawa’t ina na kagaya niya. Isa siyang napakatatag na babae, supremo na maituturing na nagbubuklod sa kanyang pamilya. Tunay siyang isang huwarang ina.
Hindi ako lumaki na palage siyang nakikita. Bihira lang kase kame umuwi ng Laguna nuong araw. Gayon pa man, hindi pa huli ang lahat, binuksan niya ang kanyang tahanan sa aking pamilya upang dito na manirahan at makasama pa siya sa mga taon pang darating. Lola, gustung-gusto kong nakikita kang tumatawa, nakakataba ng puso makita ang mga kinang sa iyong mga mata. Ang mga halakhakan natin sa tuwing nagsimula ka ng magbiro ay nakakaaliw. Ang mga halik at yapos mo ay nanalamin ng pagmamahal mo sa amin. Maligayang siyam-na-put-apat na kaarawan sayo. Mahal na mahal kita, la! 

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Bus # 7

I transferred to a big school when I turned grade one and being a transferee made me even more timid and scared of the people around me and the surrounding itself. Lolo would bring me to school and there would be do-not-leave-me-here-lolo-whining-with-crying-scenarios. Mommy eventually found a school service for me, but still, Lolo would join me inside the fiera just because I asked to.
Finally, weeks passed and I got used to seeing Lolo Boy, the very nice school service driver, and my grandpa stopped going with me already. At age seven, I became friends with the 30-ish Lolo Boy. He would carry my heavy bag through the gate and would wait for me by the exit during dismissal. I felt special.
Days after my 7th birthday, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit the country. I will never ever forget the horror I felt then. I was inside the classroom when it happened. We were all crying while praying (I was actually praying for mommy or daddy to come to my rescue but I know they were both at work) and then Lolo Boy came. He carried me just like what a dad would do to his terrified child. 
We had to part ways when I turned grade five. I transferred to a new service that covers the route of the neighborhood that we had moved to. In a school year, I shifted to one service to another and another. I was looking for the father figure/savior in them that I had seen in Lolo Boy. Sadly, the comfort I found in Bus #7 is incomparable. Before I went to high school, we bid our goodbyes to each other, it was the last day I saw him.
14 years had passed and I really never had forgotten about him. The earthquake is the most vivid memory I have of him. It was told too many times to my closest friends and relatives, and he has always the big part in the story.
Just recently, I found Lolo Boy’s son, Alex, on Facebook. He said they’ve been in Vegas since 2002. Alex told his dad about me. He never had forgotten me, too and surprisingly, it was also the July 16, 1990 incident he told him.
I know that day really made a big impact to both of us; it was the bond that kept us together after all this time of being apart. It was the day he played hero to a frightened little girl.
Thank you, Lolo Boy, you will always be the hero I once had in my childhood days. You are my earthquake hero.

Goodbye, Quiapo; Hello Lagunuh!


Sa San Juan, Metro Manila (na ngayon ay San Juan City na) ako pinanganak, nag-aral ng elementarya, unang  nagka-crush at napabilang sa isang barkadahan, Seventeen ang tawag namin sa grupo namin (oo na, baduy nga!) Nanalagi kami dun ng 12 taon bago kame lumipat sa Quiapo.

Nalungkot akong manirahan dito nuon, katwiran ko, ang gulu-gulo dun, makalat ang paligid, dikit-dikit ang mga bahay, daanan ng sasakyan, maingay ang mga kapitbahay —malayong-malayo sa kinalakihan kong environment. Aaminin ko, nung una’y kinakahiya ko sabihin kung taga saan ako, siyempre, na-stereotyped na madameng mandurukot at riot dito.
Pero sa pag-usad ng panahon, unti-unting napamahal sakin ang lugar, minahal ko ang magaganda’t pangit na katangian ng Quiapo. Maniwala ka man o sa hindi, tumagal ako dito na walang matatawag na kaibigan, ung tipong kagaya ba ng mga naging kaibigan ko sa San Juan, malungkot nung una pero nakasanayan ko na din. Maganda din dito sa Quiapo, lahat malapit, malapit sa eskwelahan, simbahan, ospital, palengke at grocery. Isang sakay papuntang Makati, Ortigas, Caloocan, Divisoria, Malate, Cubao, Quezon City, Pasay, Pasig, Sta. Mesa, teka, teka, parang sa motel lahat accessible ah? ;)
14 na taon na din pala kame dito. Madameng alaalang nabuo, mga masasaya’t mapapait, mga alaalang nakatatak na sa aking pagkatao. Dito ako unang natutong tumawid ng kalsada, magcommute, magbukas ng gas range at magluto ng pancit canton. Oo, dito ko nagdalaga, dito ako unang umibig, nasaktan, umibig at nasaktan pa nang paulit-ulit. Dito ko nagrebelde at natutong tumakas nang dis-oras ng gabi ng di nahuhuli. Dito ko naging ina kay Carlo. Dito ko nakilala ang sarili ko at ang mga kaya ko palang gawin.
Ngayong lilisanin na kita sa loob ng ilang araw, madame akong mamimiss sayo, ang lumang bahay na naging malaking bahagi na sa buhay ng mga Altobar at ang pag-silip ko sa bintana na ang tangi kong matatanaw lamang ay ang mga bubong ng aming mga kapitbahay, mamimiss ko din pala ang mga nag-vivideoke dito na nagpapatagisan sa pag-awit ng mga kanta ng Aegis at ang epic song na My Way. Mamimiss ko ang pag-upo sa hagdan ng Basilica ng San Sebastian kapag gusto kong magpahangin at mag-muni-muni, o di kaya’y magbasa lamang ng libro. Oo, mamimiss ko ang Decadence cake ng Bakerite; ang Excelente ham na paborito namin ng Daddy; bagama’t hindi kami Katoliko, mamimiss ko din ang pista ng Nazareno; ang underpass; ang SM Carriedo, na araw-araw eh sale; ang mami’t siopao sa Chonam; ang barter mamimiss ko, ilang tumbling lang mula sa bahay eh asa bilihan ka na ng dvds.
Mamimiss ko ‘tong bahay namin, lalo na ‘tong pink at green kong kwarto; mamimiss ko ang bawat halakhakan at iyakan na naganap sa kabahayan na ito. Ang huling ngiti na nakita ko sa mukha ng aking ama, and galak sa mga mata ni Carlo sa tuwing makakalabas siya ng bahay upang makapaglaro, at ang mga palengke momentsnamin ni Mommy sa Quinta. Ibang klase ang nahanap kong katahimikan sa kalagitnaan ng kaingayan at kaguluhan ng siyudad na ito.
Quiapo, maninirahan na kami ng pamilya ko sa Laguna. Maraming-maraming salamat sa lahat na naging bahagi ka ng 14 na taon ng buhay ko. Hinding-hindi kita makakalimutan. Palasak man, pero, oo, muli akong mapapadpad dito, sa muli akong mapunta dito, asahan mo, may nobyo na ko. :)

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