April’s Fools and Other Surprises

Summer 2011 in the Philippines officially started last April 12, right just before Holy Week. The start of this year’s Easter marks the countdown to Christmas at the 200-level. It’s still early to put on some Yuletide decors but a lot of wonderful events happened already such that every time I look at the sun’s deadly rays, all I can see are vibrant colors.

April started with a dinner reunion with my all-time favorite STC Board at Secret Recipe Shangri-la. I miss this crowd so much! One of my super favorite friends.

I’m expecting to meet them again by the end of May. Guys, if you’re reading this, attendance is a must. No kidding. Hahahaha.

The week-start of this year’s summer was spent with some quality bonding with Ian Ken, a good friend and ex-instructor. Elliard, Geoff, Japhet, Kacie, and Hannah were also there to welcome him back. The best way to welcome back a balik-bayan is to eat at a Filipino restaurant (and of course have him treat you haha.) Here’s some edited pictures of us eating to our heart’s desire at Dencio’s Trinoma.

This start-of-summer week was also the week of the 26th Philippine Chemistry Congress (26PCC) I’m at deep regret that I missed it this year as 1) it would’ve been my fourth in a row, 2) I’m a chemist duh, 3) it’s a free chance for me to go home, 4) it’s the International Year of Chemistry for crying out loud!, 5) Dr. Richard Heck is a guest and I would’ve gotten his autograph. So there, I was not able to go. Anyway.

Holy Week was the usual gloomy one. Our family practice of Visita Iglesia was still observed. As added twist this year, we went to not just seven but EIGHT different churches:

So there Holy Week. Then the Octave of Easter. Ian Ken went back to Metro Manila after going home to Iloilo (which was after 26PCC. I joined him (as well as Geoff and Elliard) until he went back to Germany last Easter Thursday. The happy month of good bonding times was about to end.

And as the Octave of Easter was just about to end, a good surprise came in the form of a letter from the Philippine-American Educational Foundation/Fulbright Commission.

BEST NEWS EVER. Well so far. This is just stage two.

And that my friends, marks the official start of me chasing my dreams. It’s gonna be a long run until Fall 2012 and I hope I don’t easily tire out.

I really don’t like it when Lent arrives so late as it adds a gloomy effect to the summer heat. However April 2011 proved to be different. Here’s to hoping for a wonderful life ahead!

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