My second to the last Saturday in the Philippines for this year began -my timeline, not everyone else’s; not considering wee Saturday morning hours- at 4PM. SMS’s were exchanged re an invite to someone else’s despidida, from offiicemates of the last group of people I worked with. Found myself inside a police camp multi-purpose hall around 7PM, eating my first meal of the day. This was a fairly conducted, family-grade event, but news of another event excited somewhere else excited a select few of us. We came from the boondocks to civilization, and we wanted more -crucify me for using the word – hobnobbing.
At the most people-infested part of Ortigas at night, I was inhaling second-hand smoke, and watched others -who belonged to the first account I was with in call center work- begin to get drunk. This was a gathering of people who worked for a US-based ISP, which, as of Saturday, has ceased to render service. I got to shook hands with only a handful who I’d sincerely bother to rub skin with. More than half I’d willfully ignore. So, news of another party further south was good news.
This was probably after midnight; I wasn’t checking the time. Four male, obese, and bald worms -myself included- found a way to get to a relatively secluded street in Makati, near a now-famous rock venue, and had tequila shots for a greeting. I’ve sworn off alcohol for years, but here, former officemates were obviously about to drop dead with a push of a finger. So I deviated from my own pact, but I’ll consider this a lapse. Drunk joy engulfed the rented cafe, so I guess I’d get in a fraction of what the others have been consuming. With DJ music, and several delectable fried-sliced-eggplants-in-batter secured in my system, this was a rather good conclusion to a busy, social night, for someone who isn’t familiar with busy, social nights. At all.
The Bulacan early morning skies were beautiful from my seat on the bus, speeding through the expressway. In my lap was the last local Sunday newspaper I could possess for the year (for sure), covering an oversized male magazine that one of the male, bald worms snuck out from the cafe. There’s a cheesy subititled Japanese film called Devilman being shown, and I took it all in until my stop.