My Name Is Hope

Hope is a thing with feathers, that perches in the soul.

Watch My Fair Lady

The Department of Languages and Literature (DOLL) of the University of San Carlos together with English Majors Association (EMA) will be offering My Fair Lady. This is a stage play that is based on Pygmalion by
George Bernard Shaw.

Play dates are on—

September 12 and 19 (Saturday):
10:00 am -12:00 nn
12:30 pm -2:30 pm
3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
5:30 pm -7:30 pm

September 20 (Sunday):
12:30 pm – 2:30 pm
3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
5:30 pm – 7:30 pm

Tickets are sold for Php90.00.

For queries and further details about the production you can contact these numbers, 0916-781-1930 and 0920-211-2860 or look for Hannah Aranas at 0915-911-2274.

On the Road to Wellness
Last week was Doctor's Week. I'd spent more time in the hospital than at home and perhaps at any other time in my life. I had to try out CT scan, diabetes panel, BUA, ESR, and thyroid panel. I had to see an ophthalmologist, family doctor, and thyroid disease expert. My savings was definitely depleted.

Yet if I had not done that, I would not have a good idea of what's wrong with me (though none of the doctors can clearly point out the real causes of my issues). It turns out, based on the results, that I have an elevated uric acid and toxicity levels. My blood sugar and cholesterol levels are normal, but they are quite closer to the limit. I could definitely not leave the figures to chance since we are a family of diabetics. My father is already on the pre-diabetes stage, while my uncle and grandmother are already diabetes patients. The latter had just been operated for cataracts (yes, both eyes) several years ago.

So I take it upon myself to bring myself to the road to wellness. In the next couple of months, I have envisioned myself doing the following:
  • Jog or participate in the dance classes in Abellana at least thrice a week.
  • Exercise for at least 30 minutes at home.
  • Rest every weekend.
  • Practice meditation or yoga.
  • Wean myself on meat and start eating fruits and vegetables.
  • Walk whenever there's an opportunity to do so.
  • Sleep early.
  • Drink at least three liters of water every day.
  • Be happy, even if things would surely get rough.
  • Focus on the goals.
  • Detoxify.
  • Stick to the basics.
  • Take multivitamins.
  • Change white rice to other complex carbohydrates.
  • Go out with friends and family more often.
  • Travel.
  • Attend ministries and masses.
I've taken the first step yesterday, and it was difficult. I even feel like I'm on the verge of becoming irritable, seeing Bernard dine on chicken barbecue at lunchtime, two scoops of ice cream at merienda, and hot dogs at night. However, if I give in to temptation, I would only not go larger but I would be putting myself at more health risks.

The road to wellness is long and winding. I know that I would find myself tempted to go back to my old ways. However, I would also look back on the things I've gone through last week and enforce it on myself that health is no joke. I can't have all I want simply because not everything is going to be good for me. 

What's Caviar?

Ever since Gloria Arroyo and her amigos and amigas decided to dine at Le Cirque in New York and got published in Page Six of New York Post, I kept hearing the word "caviar." It wasn't really my first time to hear about it. In fact, it was my brother who unselfishly provided me the information when I was still in high school: it's considered to be the most expensive food in the world. After all, they are sold in ounces, not pounds, and they would never go below a thousand dollars per pound.

Yet I never really knew how it looked like, so I decided to search for a picture in between work. For those who are curious too, this could probably be the caviar they had eaten.

If I were given a chance to spend that much money for this, perhaps I would, for the sake of satisfying my curiosity. For those who can afford to spend as much as $20,000 for a dinner, then good for them. Perhaps it's their own way of rewarding themselves for their hard work.

This also means that I don't see anything immoral or illegal with what Arroyo and Romualdez did on that fateful dinner. If I'm going to take what they said at face value, what they used could be private money. However, I just hope that there was slightest delicadeza. They are public officials. They are leaders. Their lives are dedicated to people. In the list of priorities, their lives should be last. After all, that's one of the prices they have to pay for public service. They need to sacrifice and be selfless.

Yes, I share the sentiments of others. If only they had thought about the millions of Filipinos who lived on dried fish, noodles, and 1 cup of rice every day, then maybe they would have become much better officials of this country--at least for a moment.

PS: Seeing Datu Arroyo and Congressman Romualdez running away from reporters pissed me off. It only means they're guilty of something.

Cory and Me
Cory Aquino and I don't have any relationship to speak of--at first. I was unheard of when her husband died, and I was only two when EDSA Revolution broke out. Democracy is not one thing I would be concerned about--that's for sure. In fact, the most vivid memory I have when I was at that age was blowing my birthday candle.

I was also too young then when she became president. And though I would get to read about her in history books, her memories on my mind would end the moment that I close the texts or when I stepped out of high school. (We never talked about her in college; I only dealt with Rizal.)

And yet she's making an impact in my life for one simple reason: she's a mother. And I also have a mom. I somehow understand the great love she has for her children, simply because my mother also tries to provide such unconditional and selfless care to a brood of three. I also know why she chose to be brave even in her final moments, simply because my mother tried to when she decided not to see a doctor for so many years while her cysts were growing all over her body. No mother would want her children to see her suffer because it would break her heart to see her kids in pain.

Yes, I cried, quite a number of times, not primarily because a president has died. For me, it felt like I lost a mother, a caring one, someone worth emulating. 

Top Ten Trivia about Milafel!
       1. It is impossible to fold Milafel Hope Dacanay more than seven times. (of course!)

       2. Banging your head against Milafel Hope Dacanay uses 150 calories an hour. (Now, I am an exercise machine.)

       3. Only 55 percent of Americans know that the sun is made of Milafel Hope Dacanay. (I am the Ultimate Creator.)

       4. In Japan it is considered rude to talk with Milafel Hope Dacanay in your mouth!
       5. It takes 8 minutes for light to travel from the Sun's surface to Milafel Hope Dacanay.
       6. The Church of Scientology was founded in 1953, at Washington D.C., by Milafel Hope Dacanay. (Yeah, I am Tom Cruise's secret wife.)
      7. It's bad luck to whistle near Milafel Hope Dacanay! (Yes, you'll burn in hell.)

      8. Milafel Hope Dacanay was originally called Cheerioats! (What?)

      9. The first Milafel Hope Dacanay was made in 1853, and had no pedals.
     10. The first American zoo was built in 1794, and contained only Milafel Hope Dacanay! (What an insult!)

Thanks, Swerve, for the link.

Bren Is Coming!
I am sick, but I can't really pinpoint what type of ache I'm complaining about. I am currently having bouts of slight fever, cough, and ear pain. A while ago, I thought my head was going to burst.

Yet I'm here, blogging. Three things are getting me giddy for next month:

1. I can pay my tuition fee in full.

I am not going to school--at least, not yet. It's my tuition I left when I suddenly leave law school because I got tired of waiting for my supposed-to-be law teachers. I just lasted for one night, and now I'm paying the price equivalent to one whole semester. Yes, as my mom said before, it was a very costly decision.

Next month, I would have the money to pay for it, so I can now get my transcript of records and enroll in Cebu Normal University, where I hope to take a year's worth of professional education. I can also start processing my requirements for an exam I will take this October.

2. I am helping out a friend.

It always feels great to help out, even if your contribution is not going to be massive, and I'm glad doing one for a friend, especially upon learning that it's going to be for a good cause. We already have some plans on how to do the online marketing campaign, and by God's grace, everything will push through.

3. Bren is coming to the Philippines.

Heard of Bren Bataclan? He's a Filipino now based in Boston. He's also the founder of Smile Boston Project, where he leaves a lot of his artworks in different streets of the city, hoping that he can brighten up someone's day. For years, he has been traveling in different parts of the world for the same reason: bring out people's smiles.

In Facebook, he just announced that he will be leaving paintings in the Philippines from July 21 to August 10. I just hope some of them would end up here in Cebu, and I will be one of the lucky few who can get one of them. In fact, I sent him a message, suggesting a visit here in the island. :-)

Oh well, anyone who gets it will surely have a treasure.


Dogs and the Irony

It's really ironic. I grew up being scared of these lovable canines. In fact, "scared" is an understatement. I'm terrified. Even just hearing their barks would make my body hair stand. I would suffer from panic attacks, with tensed muscles, heart palpitations, weakened knees, and irrational thinking--no kidding.

Yet, here I am, keeping not only 1 but 6 of them. Sometimes we would take them in and let them play in our bedroom. We feed and shelter them. We baby them. We make sure they're kept safe and warm.

Here's my dilemma, though: they're growing very fast. It wouldn't be long before they would be as tall as I if they just decide to stand up. The requirements would also become bigger. We need more food, more space, and more of everything.

So we are thinking of giving the pups away while they were still young, but then their mother is still around. I definitely believe that she would feel so distraught if her children are taken away. We are thinking of asking help from the city dog pound, but their personnel don't really have impressive record when it comes to handling animals. There are no dog shelters here, and no one wants to take them home. :(

Seriously, I'm running out of options. Right now, I don't think we can handle half a dozen of them. Hopefully, very soon, good suggestions and ideas will come our way. 

A Sad Morning
This won't take long. 

Michael Jackson and Farah Fawcett are both dead. :( They would always be remembered for their contribution to the entertainment industry. Who actually hasn't lived with Jackson's music or adored Fawcett's do?

A Note to Papa on Father's Day
 Dear, Papa, 
For 25 years, I've sent a couple of letters to Mama. But I have never made one for you. I would talk with Nina in Yahoo Messenger, and I would exchange text messages with Alman. But I never dared to talk to you unless when you're the one who's going to pick up on the other line. 
It's ironic how I wasn't really able to tell you how much you mean to me, and yet how you are so generous of showing it to your first-born daughter. I would never forget those many times that you've defended me from Mama or how you always tried to save me from deep embarassment. I hated you every time you did that, because it made me feel like I was inadequate. Looking back, though, I completely understand what you did. You knew that I knew that I made a mistake. It's enough. It's time to bring me back to my two feet with your and Mama's help. 
Pa, I grew up without having you around for most of the time. I remember how when I was eight years old, you left us to work someplace far. You didn't turn your back to look at us again the moment you stepped out of the door, not because you didn't want to but because I knew that the parting hurt you the most. I also didn't want to see you cry, because it would definitely break my heart into a million pieces. Even if you're afar, you've showered me with so many letters that I never get tired of reading, even until now. I remember how you bought me a gown for my first kiddie pageant and decided to iron it, only to realize that you've burned holes into it. Nevertheless, you still exerted effort to give me the most decent gown available. You seldom come home, not because you're too tired, but because we're growing up. You'd rather sacrifice your time with us than not give us money for food and education. 
I admire how you love Mama. I can hardly count with my fingers the number of times you've fought with each other. In fact, there was a time when you decided to leave us. Yet your great love for Mama always brings you back to us. You may appear to be stiff for most of the time, a man with pride, but at the end of the day, I know you're the one who makes the 
first move to say I'm sorry. 
Pa, I miss my childhood days, when we'd travel--just the two of us--from Boljoon to the city and back. It was always a pleasant ride not because I see a lot of things, but because I feel secure with you around. I remember the way you'd let me sit on your lap, or the way you'd let me rest my head on your shoulder when I'm deeply tired. 
Now that I'm married, I'm wishing that I have spent more time with you. I wish I had not grown up so fast and pursued other things immediately. Time flew so fast, but then I know that I'd always be a Papa's girl. It will never change. 
Love you, Pa. 

The "Eat for Less" Is Near
Okay, here we go.

Because Bernard and I felt that we are getting sicker by the day even if we're still halfway through our twenties, we decided to eat healthy. Simply put, it's going to be good-bye pork in the coming days. Perhaps by September, it's going to be "no meat and all veggies" for us. The latter, though, sounds far-fetched. This is also going to be such a long haul for us, knowing we really don't love vegetables wholeheartedly. 

Good luck.


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