a human pendulum

the last week of august till first week of september had me swinging like a ticker due to the series of events which i shared with my family, siblings,  and friends.

topping these affairs was of course my first ultra marathon last august 24. on the same date a sub story happened. this i mentioned in passing at https://wanderingjouster.com/2013/09/04/t2k-unleashing-my-grit-and-balls-as-an-ultra-marathoner/ . i was referring to the 7th birthday of my niece, anne margaret, whom we fondly call garet. 
the celebrator
the celebrator
with her papa, our brother
with her papa, my brother joseph
excited for the blowing
garet, checking on her cake with tita nano
with her ninang teri
with her ninang teri
with her cousins, friends and classmates
with her cousins, friends and classmates
with my boys and niece
with her first cousins – my three boys and tintin
before the blowing of the candle, she had a grand time frolicking in the pool with her young guests including my three boys –  arthur, alexander and lancelot. a post-monsoon rain scheduled party, it was a wish granted to have a sunny day to push through with the swimming at the aqua park, hillsborough, alabang village. 
raring to take a dip
i am raring to take a dip, tita mau!
knight, the second earliest swimmer
rare time for my three kings
play time for my three kings
the princess's  day with the kings
the princess’s day with the kings
this simple celebration became the first happy affair which my brother’s in-laws and friends and our family attended. for the past occasions, we have mingled with them in a bereaved mode. on garet’s 7th birthday, we were all laughing out loud even if at the back of our mind, we were missing a dearly beloved person, she, who i’m sure could have turned her daughter’s party into a one-of-a-kind wonderland.
together for a happy affair
my sister nano, teri, me, and andrei – together for a happy affair
looking at garet, i couldn’t help but be amazed by life’s mystery. seven years ago, she was just as fragile as a crystal in her mom’s arms.
garet, just days old
our first photo with garet who was just days old
seven days after, our family had to attend the second birthday swimming party of the month. this time, this was the 10th birthday of edwin paul “bpaul” peliño. he is the only child of my close friend/high school classmate peter paul/bong. 
bpaul,  looking like his dad at 10
the early birds????
the early birds????
knight with his ninang elvie and ate trish
knight with his ninang elvie and ate trish
the four tribu 86 with chit pelino
the four tribu 86 – gary, yep, elvie and i, with chit peliño
no to swimming this time
arthur and alexander, NO to swimming this time
knight with gary's two boys, still a YES for swimming
the knight , with gary’s two boys and bpaul, saying YES for swimming
from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m., i had the chance to exchange updates and pleasantries with my three other friends/batchmates who came to grace the celebration, held at a private resort which was just a five-minute drive away from our residence. my kumare, elvie alejo, and her daughter came all the way from bicol to join us in that special gathering. being very close to bong pelino and his famliy, she made sure that she would be able to make it just like three years ago even in the absence of bong who was in his overseas work. 
with bpaul at 7
with bpaul at 7
joining the jollibee characters in this photo-op
joining the jollibee characters in this photo-op
elvie and i, with bong's family
elvie and i, with bong’s parents and aunt
come sunday, the first day of september, i was able to do a 6-k recovery run at the manila memorial park. it was also intended as a tour for my visitors,elvie and trish, who finally got to see the resting place of ninoy and cory aquino. for me, it was the least i could do to make their brief stay with us memorable especially for trish. 
first itinerary
first itinerary (image source: https://www.facebook.com/elviealejo)
running for my sons and i, walking for elvie and trish
running for my sons and me, walking for elvie and trish
joining the pack
joining the pack
loving the sweat early in the morning
loving the sweat early in the morning
relaxing stroll for the mother and daughter team
relaxing stroll for the mother and daughter team
eight years ago, trish was just a six-year old little girl who immediately hit it off with my seven-year old twins on her first visit to our matienza abode. they became instant and inseparable playmates not wanting to end the games and chatter.
arthur, alexander and trish (photo courtesy of elvie alejo; taken march 25, 2005)
arthur, alexander and trish (photo courtesy of elvie alejo; taken march 25, 2005)
seeing each other again last august 31 had me witnessing a totally different story. the three of them became strangers to one another to the point of not even uttering a single word. shy glances were exchanged though trish was ever ready to give her charming smile. sigh! with this, i am giving myself an assignment to teach my teenage sons on how to be a gentleman. 😦 😦 
arthur, lancelot, trish and alexander after 8 years
arthur, lancelot, trish and alexander after 8 years
for my youngest son, he still had that innocence which made him comfortable near his kinakapatid. an eight-month old baby on trish’s visit, he had no recall how his twin brothers became “good” friends with his ate trish.
eight years ago, with elvie's nephew - tani
eight years ago, with elvie’s nephew – tani
documenting the "reunion"
documenting the “reunion”
having our breakfast at amber
having our breakfast at amber
monday, september 2, clinched the sojourn of elvie and trish who were also lucky to have a long weekend because of the celebration of simeon ola day (september 2) and the fiesta of albay (september 3). their going to manila for the birthday and “reunion” was perfectly timed.
with my sons in school and a non-teaching day for me in san beda, i accompanied them to alabang town center for the last tour and our lunch before proceeding to the bus terminal in cubao for their evening trip to legazpi city. then, surprise, surprise! our troika was favored by fate when our friend/batchmate, yep, joined us and generously sponsored our lunch at chili’s! yep-eeeeeeeeeeeeeeee…i mean…yipeeeeeeeeeeeee! 🙂 this had us all burping afterwards and hopefully had given indelible memories for both trish and elvie. 
send-off lunch by yep
send-off lunch by yep (image source: https://www.facebook.com/elviealejo)
burp, burp, burp!
burp, burp, burp! (image source: https://www.facebook.com/elviealejo)
as i returned to our house alone and was once again welcomed by silence, i had to acknowledge the big difference someone’s presence brings to us. i sat down and began tapering off as i ready myself for another set of wandering and buzzing around. 


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