Paalam Manila*

MPen 1.4.17b

*(Goodbye Manila)

Once again I part ways from my beloved Manila, but this time with a heavier heart than usual. It is the first time I move away and my parents were not standing at the doorway to bid me farewell, bless my forehead, and hug me before I got into the car. I passed by the columbarium to say goodbye. Earlier today I took the time to go across town to the Ateneo de Manila University and sought the blessing of my beloved Jesuit mentor Fr. Balchand, SJ. Like my parents, I never move away without a blessing from him.

The last 48 hours have been a test of my patience, strength, and courage, as I wrapped things up here, and came to terms with having to be apart from my dear cat Champagne for the next 90 days. I know it’s all relative, and that the time will fly by, but for her who doesn’t understand what is going on she was miserable this afternoon. And I don’t blame her.

In the absence of my parents, I surrounded myself with those I love and care for, and that has given me the stamina.

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