The one with the Roaches

One of the things I hate the most are roaches. Any kind really. I just hate them. Call me a cry baby but I cry and scream at the top of my lungs at the sight of a roach. I’d ask the nearest person to me to kill it for me and take it away from me.

Always.

But as always, things change. LOL

I will mark February 13, 2018 as the day when I was able to kill the most roaches by myself. 6 in fact.

Yes. I will share this account with you only because I want to.

I live in a condo with my best friend. He is a neat freak. Sort of. So whenever our place was on the brink of stinky filthy, we stayed home and cleaned it together, thoroughly. So, there were seldom times when we encountered roaches running around. Which was a good thing. Really. I thank God for that.

But of all the places I’ve stayed in, this latest condo gave me the biggest scare of my life. In this condo, I was able to face my fear and kill a bunch of those disgusting roaches alone.

It all started after I came home from a very long meeting. No one was there but me. So I decided to settle down and dress up to work out for once. I took my workout clothes and went inside the bathroom to change. As I was undressing, I spot a slim pair of antennas just moving inside the roll of tissue paper by the sink and because of my instinct I hit it enough for Roach number 1 to crawl out.

By then I was half-naked, inside a closed bathroom. The roach was sitting there in between where I was and were the door was at. I tried making loud sounds for it to crawl away. To my dismay, it just stayed in place, waiting, like it was telling me “Hey, you are so stuck in here, let me just hang a bit more to scare you”. I searched around for something to hit it with and again, NOTHING. Just a few bottle of shampoos.

I took a long breath, wore my shirt and took my shampoo bottle and threw at it. It moved, far enough for me to reach the bathroom door without Roach 1 jumping on me. I quickly ran out of the bathroom and opened the kitchen cabinet to retrieve the most reliable weapon I had, BAYGON, a small can of it. How I wished it were bigger. Nice choice woman.

I sprayed long and hard feet away from it. It ran like crazy, went out of the bathroom while I continued spraying. It zoomed passed me and looked for a way out, it disappeared somewhere inside the storage room we had. And of course I knew there were only two things that could happen, Roach 1 DYING on its own or It disappearing inside the drainage, falling til its death.

Then again, maybe it survives, like almost all the roaches in the universe. I remember my teacher telling me that the cockroach was the strongest animal in the world. That it can survive a nuclear fallout and can crawl under the thinnest areas you can imagine. It’s on the tube if you don’t believe me.

So take a breather, and started my workout in the sala, when in the corner of my eye I see Roach 2 crawling on the wall from the bathroom, towards me. FUCK. it was a different roach, seemed like a teenage one. I grabbed my slipper and hit the wall with all my might, I hear a crunch. I know it died. YES. I said.

I texted my room-mate “WHEN ARE YOU COMING HOME?” I wanted him home so he could save me from this.

He answers, “Later”

Great.

I go back to the bathroom and find another Roach ( hopefully the first one) lying back first on the floor. It’s probably dead, poisoned to death, I said, a few steps away I spot two baby roaches on its backs too.. tiny.. dead.. WTF… WTF!!! Did I just kill an entire family? Alone???? IS THERE ANYBODY ELSE???

Now paranoia was creeping in… WHY THE FUCK ARE THEY CRAWLING CLOSER TO ME.. AREN’T THEY SUPPOSE TO RUN TO SAFER GROUNDS MEANING THE DRAINAGE INSTEAD OF INSIDE THE CONDO?????

I was scared to my core, I went out of the bathroom, I turn to see a frantic Roach number 5 ( if the one I killed in the bathroom the 1st one) trying to look for somewhere to hide. I think I sensed me looking at him. I take my spray and started spraying, it goes back inside the storage area, I follow it, I hear it slowly stopping, I know it’s dying slowly… hopefully. I spray some more and closed the door. Whatever.

What was up with tonight, why the number??? Was the condo that filthy? There were barely things or junk inside our place… seriously and it was like what… 11:30 PM????

Don’t they usually come out in the wee hours of the morning, when everyone is sleeping???

I cleaned the places up, threw them in the trash, happy and calm.. again alone.

See, it is true what people say, once you use bug spray on something, there is a high chance of it reaching other bugs and eventually they will start coming out from their hiding places, in a panic. And that leads me to my next scene.

I go inside my room to use the computer, when I hear movement above me. I look up, nothing. Maybe neighbors, I thought or a dog from upstairs walking around. Then again, that was new. Never really hear that kind of movement… ever. I stand up and walk closer to the wall. Still movement, to and fro.

I must be crazy, I say to myself, half laughing. At the back of my mind, I thought to myself, maybe I should buy a new can of bug spray, just in case…. Nah. I said.

The noise continued as I typed, I look up at the ceiling, when above me, where the light was I see another set of antennas moving. FUCK REALLY???? I scream at the top of my lungs and run out of my room. Roach number 6 had wings.

SHIT! It’s the MOTHER!!! I screamed. It flies around room. FUCK, I say. Its spraying fucking eggs! and it’s headed towards me!!!

I look for my spray, SHIT, I left it inside my room. Roach 6 was walking around faster than usual and flew to the curtains, crawling up.

I sprint inside my room, grabbed the can, I shake it, Shit…its almost empty, I grab my slipper, my jacket, my wallet!

I won’t be able to sleep!!!!! I shout at it, like it could understand me. It crawls up and jumps to the next curtain, it falls to the floor and run towards me.

WHAT THE FUCK!!! I’M SORRY I KILLED YOUR FAMILY!! I scream spraying the last bit of spray I had.

I prayed to God at that point. PLEASE just let it die, I cried

I look around for it, I couldn’t find it. SHIT! I said. Great, now I’m definitely not sleeping.

I text my room-mate again, “PLEASE COME HOME”

No reply.

I wear my slippers and start walking, I see Mama Roach, on its back, wiggling. I spray some more, the bottle finally empty. It stops moving.

I call my best friend while walking to 7-11. I had to get a new can of bug spray, a bigger one. She laughs at the other end of the line as I recount the ordeal I went through minutes ago to her.

“Its Karma.. you left me the other day.” She says.

“Are you kidding me??? really???” I raise my voice, of course it wasn’t true, still I was annoyed.

“Just get yourself another can and clean the place” she says again. I thought about it, maybe tomorrow I say. I get the biggest can I could find. 200 pesos well spent.

As I was walking back to the condo, I contemplated at what I just experienced and I realized a few things.

One, there will be battles that you must fight alone.

Two,in the end, every obstacle makes you a better person.

and Three, buy a bigger bug spray.

I remember a quote by Zig Ziglar, he says,

F-E-A-R has two meanings:

‘Forget Everything and Run,’ or, ‘Face Everything and Rise.”

I did both.

My experience ended at 12:30 AM on February 14. Fuck.

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My Year Ender

I remember my mom telling me that out of all the groups of friends I would encounter in mylife, it was my high school barkada that would stick around.

I couldn’t agree more.

As I got older, I’ve gotten quite distant from my friends. My work schedule never seemed to leave room for even a quick coffee date with a long time friend. I was always tired, sometimes broke and the little free time I was left with was saved for recovering from hours of shooting movies and spending time with my parents.

Of all the get- togethers I try my very best not to miss is that one of with my High School Friends.

Just like any other high school group ( or so I would want to believe), my friends and I called ourselves the Chums. It was because back in high school, we shared our love for this high sugary juice drink called Fun Chum, the school served during lunch.

Every end of the year, The Chums would set up a date to meet up over food and drinks. We called it the year-ender. We would sit and munch and talk about almost anything.

The most recent year ender happened just after New Years.

Funny.

Funny how things have changed. Usually, our day would start with a trip outside the city. Sometimes in Tagaytay at one of our friend’s house. We’d drop our bags, take a few pictures, race up the stairs and get the best bed in the room, and head out for some coffee and food.

Now, we stayed home, where the cook in the group offered two prepare lunch for us. Instead of sodas, we brought wine, instead of the usual friend chicken, we had cold cuts and cheese.

It’s funny how things have changed.

Back then we would talk about the latest gossip. Who got pregnant, who’s not talking to who. Who went abroad and married the unlikely type. We would talk about our favorite memories of High School and open up the photo album laughing at how “little” we all are.

Now it was all about our struggles and concerns. How the we were all feeling the “adulting stage” seeping into our daily routine. How taxes are so unfair and what kind of insurance should you get. How our ovaries are starting to complain. How we are not sure if we wanted to have kids, because we still can’t afford it.

We shared some pauses. I took quick glances at my friends whenever we stopped talking about a certain topic and I could see how they absorbed things to themselves. We talked about our current relationships, both with a boyfriend or family. How families are sometimes difficult to be with and how dating is still complicated. How boyfriends are still boyfriends.

We shared the same sympathies. How we wanted to earn more money. How earning more money seemed so difficult already. How time was going so fast we wished it would calm down a bit.

Now it was all about toasting to our triumphs and failures. Each toast we gave, we gave a loud laugh and clink. We finished 9 bottles of wine. We even called one of our friends who  lived in the US and shared stories with her until we said our goodbyes.

My high school barkada is one for the books. They are one in a million really.

We still dream of living together side by side til we grow old.

 

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Practice The Pause

If there was one thing I want to learn in 2018, I want to learn how to be patient.

It’s not because I never am, but majority of my days are spent rolling my eyes and exhaling deeply while complaining inside my head at times when the universe isn’t cooperating with me.  Long lines and people cutting lanes. Noisy teenagers taking forever to choose their meals. Old people walking. Servers who get your order wrong… stuff like that. We live in a society where people are constantly busy and who are constantly trying to make things go faster because we need to be faster.. because everything else seemed to be going faster too.

I want to be patient with those little and mundane things because there will never be a human being who will never go through some kind of version of the same irritable thing ever.  You get what I mean?

So when I woke up on the 1st of January, I said to myself I’d practice patience. As much as I can.

I was having dinner with my family at this pretty sassy buffet place on the very first night of 2018. As expected, the lines were long and the place was packed. The girl by the podium took my name and told me my number was 37, before I could even ask what number they were serving next, the guy with the talkie said “Walk In Number 20!”

I looked at the girl in front of me… she was waiting for me to give her some attitude. but then I remembered my goal for the year. So I smiled at her and took the number. She said thank you.

We waited for more than an hour, so did a few groups of 4 to 10. Some left, some paced back and forth, some just sat there and stared at the people inside taking their amazing time trying to digest the food they just ate. I wanted to start a fit, tell my parents that we should pick another place and start a heated debate on why we had other dining options when obviously everywhere is full. Then I paused once more. I looked around me, I wasn’t the only one hungry, tired and everything else. Maybe another 20 minutes would make my buffet worth it. So I waited and kept calm so my parents would be calm too. “Number 37!” the guy said. We smiled and hurriedly said thank you and ushered to our table.

There was SO MUCH PEOPLE! The serving dishes were almost always empty waiting to be refilled. I was about to complain again until I stopped and looked around me and saw the chefs and cooks running around trying to refill everything else only to have a number of hands digging in. One server saw me looking at the sushi bar before saying “Miss, wait lang po ha.” I snapped out of my quick pause and looked at the tired looking server and smiled “Sige lang.” I said. After about a minute, he gave me a plate of salmon sashimi before saying Enjoy.

On the first night of January, I kept my cool longer than usual. Yes I did have a slight rolling eyes moment while we were watching a movie (I might just write about it soon) but I was proud to say that I was able to practice patience that day.

If we could just try to pause every time we start a usual impatient fit then maybe things would flow a little bit more smoothly, a little bit more slowly.

So in the next few days… I will Take it Easy and Practice the Pause.

 

Dear 2018

In every person’s Facebook feed, there is always an end of the year status.

A “Thank you (Insert current year and in coming year)”. A full length enumeration of the unforgettable memories they’ve shared in that year. A collage of pictures of their best moments that year and so forth. Goals, Regrets, Promises and Prayers. Some will even take the time to send you personal messages via every possible way you can imagine and you respectfully answer to it as early as you can.  Some would just post a check in update… where they’d be at the countdown to the New Year.

As probably a personal tradition to the said special day… What do I want to do… say for the upcoming year? Should I write down my goals which I know I’d forget as the days will pass? Should I make a shout out to everyone I know about how next year would be great?

Okay… Lets’ try this out.. One last time.

2017 has been all about crazy. I’ve had the best of my best movie projects, working with amazing people. I’ve stumbled into one that almost cost me my career and have finally tried working away from my comfort zone.  2017 has taught me to have time for myself… it has truly showed me that I’m a fucking adult already and all the damn adulting things I can no longer avoid will haunt me until I face them. This year has been a very emotional for me and not a lot of people really noticed that.

What about 2018?

 

Dear 2018.. Make me work double time. I promise to be even more effective and I promise to bring back my love for writing and reading. I’ve been so distracted with so many things that I’ve often forgot my other passion which is writing. Dear 2018... remind me to make time for friends. I’ve missed out on a lot because choosing career seemed the obvious choice, but I’ve been so lonely in 2017 and have kept that hidden from everyone. I’ve missed on reunions and birthdays and simple coffee dates which I set and had to cancel on and I don’t want to do that as much next year.

Dear 2018, keep me sane, remind me to be adventurous, to book that flight I’ve always wanted to take. To hop on a bus and visit the beach I’ve neglected last year. Help me not be scared of the unknown and push me to do the impossible.

Dear 2018, make me a better adult. A better friend. A better daughter. Bring me to places that would teach me things I’d be grateful for.

Dear 2018, help me write each day starting tomorrow about stuff around me. If I were to choose my top three things I’d do for the next 300 or so days next year it would be these:

  1. To write
  2. To Mediate/Pray
  3. To Live

Too good to be true: Yvan Navy Burger

Every now and then I get this sudden craving for a burger.

Today was one of those days. Thankfully, a friend of mine introduced me to a burger joint just a walk away from where we were working. With two hours to spare, we visited Yvan Navy.

 
Don’t let the name fool you. This burger joint may not look much but once it opens its doors at 1 in the afternoon, people start lining up and orders start piling in.

Their menu is simple. Burgers, Pasta, Kebab and sides. Their prices will make your mouth drop because its affordable and budget friendly.

  
At 100 pesos, you can enjoy a half pounder  burger to your delight. Each burger is cooked on the spot. So expect a little waiting time. Patties are made fresh so its advisable to order bulk orders ahead of time. Cooked to perfection, their burgers are both juicy and tasteful at every bite. I even tried it with their chilli sauce, at it works well too.
 
Now imagine if you ordered the double quarter pounder for an additional 50 bucks? Dare to try? 

  
Definitely a burger place to visit again. Seriously.

Yvan Navy is located at Sct. Tobias corner Sct.  Fuentabella. They have other branches too. Open from 1pm to 1am.