Oh how I survived! I didn’t realize it has been a year. Yay!
After a month in NYC and nearly 20 hours of flight from JFK, I’m back in Manila. It feels weird to be back, but here I am.
One good thing happened on my flight back: Cathay Pacific upgraded my flight from coach to business. Too bad, I was already too tired and too sleepy to enjoy the softer and wider seats and more leg room. After downing a glass of champagne and finishing fruits and a slice of cake, I doze off and woke up with just a couple of minutes to buckle my seat belt before touching down at NAIA. Glad I signed up for Asia Miles, which I think was responsible for the upgrade.
Thanks to Mary for showing me around Central Park, Union Square and Bryant Park; for joining me at Sephora and helping me find the perfect foundation and lip color; for taking my photos. Dude, we should have hit Duane Reade first for the much cheapo Revlon/Maybelline stuff.
Thanks to the people from the mothership for endorsing me to the client, arranging the travel and accommodation details and making sure I would survive my first taste of winter.
Thanks to mothership-New York for being responsible for the account and the trip, and for the Christmas party.
Thanks to le client for this wonderful New York experience. The CAs, the bosses and the rest of the colleagues there have been wonderful.
Thanks especially to friend Keng for picking me up at JFK, spending Thanksgiving with me, showing me around Midtown East, taking my photos, talking with me about life’s bigger issues, the dinners, for lending his Metrocard credit and the Millionaire book, for the bag, for being a shopping buddy (I spared him the agony of watching me try on a dozen pairs of shoes), for the sweater (LOL! Good thing you forgot it in the hamper), for bringing me to the airport and…and… everything! I’ve lost count. Sometimes, you just don’t understand things the way you ought until you talk to someone who went through the same experience and felt the same pain. Kitakits ulit, wherever.
Thanks, Scott, for Wintuk and the Radio City show.
Thanks, too, to those wonderful strangers who helped me figure out the commuting challenges as I rushed from New Jersey to downtown Manhattan and back.
Thanks to offshore TDPM for…Hmm…I don’t know. Well, just thanks.
I’m waiting for my pizza and coke order before attempting to nap. I can’t even afford to prepare a decent meal because the apartment looks too depressing, as if a tornado tore through it while I was away. So there’s a note to myself to hire a cleaning boy/lady from the homeowners’ association since there’s no way that I could clean the place without contemplating suicide. I’m not suicidal and I have better things to do in my life.
Things to look forward to: badminton, Christmas break, hanging out with friends, finding the time to read, deliveries and TV series. And oh–January.
Good Lord, it even feels weird now that I don’t have to wrap myself in four layers of clothing to go out. I miss wearing winter boots already. I even miss the sub-freezing cold.
I’m packing my stuff for my flight back to Manila tomorrow at 9AM. I have to be at JFK by 6, so I have to be on the road by 5. I can’t believe I had accumulated an extra luggage-full of clothes, mostly pasalubong for my mom and sisters, plus the two winter coats and the winter boots that I bought, courtesy of the mothership’s winter allowance for its staff who travel to certain destinations where temperatures drop below 17 degrees Celsius. I arrived with a one large luggage and a small bag last month. But thanks to the bulky purchases, I had to buy an extra huge maleta yesterday in Chinatown. It was also my fault, because I brought loooot of clothes from Manila, afraid that I would run out of things to wear. I could have left about half of what I had packed.
As if this was a reverse of last month’s events, Keng would bring me to JFK. I remember joking with Keng a few years ago that I’d be knocking on his door for a surprise visit. We were sharing a bottle of wine and cigarettes at Greenbelt gardens, looking at the stars, dreaming of what life could offer. That was in 2003 and I was well on my way to a full-on quarter-life crisis.
I wished then that it was that easy to get to NYC. In the years between then and now, all I could do was dream, have my heart broken, slog through my days, figure out what I really wanted to do with my life.
Four years later, I got a taste of the dream. A month later, I’m going back to Manila. I miss NYC already.
But for now, I miss my life in Makati–the friends, the pizza-and-wine dinners at my apartment, my sister, badminton, the ideal December weather, the colorful clothes, my cable channels, laptop, my room, my extra gigs, the walk to and from the office, the wind on my face as I walk back to the apartment while listening to my favorite tunes on my mp3 player and dreaming of what could be.
A typical midtown New York street
Inside Grand Central Station
I want one
Grand Central and Chrysler Building
The Christmas tree at Rockefeller Plaza
Brooklyn Bridge from South Street Seaport