At last, some free time.

I don’t really have a set format or theme for this post.. this will be some sort of a feels dump, or a bit of therapy. I miss writing. I really do.

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I. On midterms.

Our two-week midterm exam period is finally over.. but we can’t rest just yet: we’ve still got a moot court activity for our International Humanitarian Law subject, and this’ll serve as our midterm exam.

I was originally assigned to be a researcher, but because one of our 3 speakers/mooters had recently been admitted (and as of yesterday, discharged) for a health issue. And he assigned me to take his place – take note that I had already said no to our other speaker when she asked me to take her place earlier this week. To be honest, I don’t want to moot..

..but I guess I have no choice. /shrugs and sighs.

I’ve already prepared my speech, now I just have to get it checked and perhaps add a few more things..

I wonder how I’ll do tomorrow..

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II. On reading old work.

I recently organized some files on my laptop and I decided to take some time to browse through folders which I hadn’t opened in quite a while.

I unearthed some unfinished stories (which have been untouched and unedited since around 2011-2012), and even some chapters from fanfiction that I had written.

In the earlier days of my fangirl self, I was quite active on Rocketboxx, the international fan forum for U-KISS, a K-Pop group that I was really crazy over (and still am quite fond of). In particular, I was active in the Dance Break thread – where a lot of fanfiction stories were written; some even a collaboration between multiple users.

I have always had a love of writing, mainly about things that I love, that I’m passionate about, or even just interest me. I feel that it peaked when I wrote fanfiction – mainly because I would usually write with myself as basis for the lead female character. Hey, a happy fangirl can always dream, right?

I never wrote smut or anything R-rated. The most I had written was what I would consider a PG-13 scenario – I just wanted to try writing something slightly more daring and somehow erotic. It was posted on a K-Pop confessions Tumblog a few years ago, and it got a surprising amount of likes. At least, I felt slightly validated that even if I tried writing in a style that I was foreign too, it turned out palatable for people.

I read through my old writings, and to be honest, I felt a bit melancholy. I felt like I was reading another person’s work. I don’t even remember my writing to be that full of description, so colorful with vivid images; like the South American authors I love so much.

Law school has dulled my writing skills, from a fantastic spectrum of color to text in strict black and white.

And so I feel like I lose a part of myself once again. Continue reading

A homecoming of sorts.

Last July 7, the day after my birthday, my lola (grandmother) on my mom’s side of the family passed away.

Lola Melding passed away in her sleep at the age of 93. The last time I saw her was a few years ago while she visited Dumaguete. The last time I was in La Carlota City (where my mother’s family hails from) was over 10 years ago.

I decided it was only proper to pay my respects and go to La Carlota for her interment and burial.

On July 11 I left for La Carlota aboard the 1am Ceres bus to Bacolod, along with my younger sister and cousin. We arrived at the crossing (the buses to Bacolod don’t pass through La Carlota, so you would have to get down at a certain crossing/junction) at around 6am, and we were picked up by an uncle soon after. Aboard my uncle’s van, I had some time to think and just look at the sugarcane fields that whizzed by. It was somewhat surreal, thinking that the last time I had visited my Mama’s hometown was when I was still a little girl. It had been way too long.

We arrived at our Tito Joelu’s house, and after settling down a bit and placing our things in the spare room, we went to the cathedral (which was a lot nearer than I thought it was) to wait for the casket. It would be brought in from Bacolod, where it had spent the past few days in a funeral parlour; many visitors and relatives coming in and out to pay their respects. The casket arrived at around 8am, and it was only when they brought it in that I was able to see the lifeless body of Lola, all decked out in a Filipiniana-type ensemble, face made up nicely, rosary in hand. It felt surreal. It always does, seeing someone you know already in a casket.

My cousins and I went for breakfast together at Jollibee, then returned promptly to the church. The mass for Lola would still be at 1pm, so we were permitted to go back to Georgina (Tito Joelu’s house.. I don’t know why they called it that) to rest for a while. It was a good thing – I had barely gotten any sleep on the bus ride, not to mention I had not slept the night before.

After a good nap, we had to get ready for the memorial mass. As we went back to the cathedral, there were a lot of people already seated among the pews. I think it was my first time to be at a Roman Catholic mass for the dead. (Mama grew up in a Catholic family, but converted eventually to Protestantism after she married Papa.) I was told that I would be participating in the offering, that I would be carrying a bottle of wine. It was entirely new to me, but I figured I would just follow my cousin in front of me.

The mass was quite short. After the readings, Manang Gaita, who is the oldest cousin in our generation/Lola‘s oldest grandchild gave some words in memoriam. I don’t think there was a dry eye in our family, or at least in my pew and the pews in front of me. The way she talked about Lola made me feel a little envious that I did not get to experience that. I think by the time I would have been more conscious of spending time with her, she would have already been having memory loss. But it was nice to at least hear how she was as a grandmother to Manang Gaita. Two of the clergy (there were about eight priests during the mass) even shared their memories of her, because she was such a devoted member of the church. Tito Boboy, the youngest son of Lola, also gave thanks to everyone for attending the service.

After the mass, the casket was loaded onto the hearse and then we had a procession towards the cemetery. I was surprised at first that we would be walking, but then I was told that it wasn’t too far. It was bearable, though it was hot. The hearse played some Josh Groban songs that really lended to the somber atmosphere. Once we reached the cemetery we were allowed to look at Lola one last time, before the casket was closed and loaded into the niche in the Jalandoni family grave. We threw flowers into the niche before it was sealed. There was a lot of crying.

We had merienda at this place across the church, and everyone was invited. I was able to meet some of my younger cousins, as well as aunts and uncles that I had only heard of but never actually met. It was really nice to be around family.

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I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling 22– plus 2: My 24th birthday!

Last Monday, 6 July, was my 24th birthday! To be honest I wasn’t expecting much; it was a school day after all.

I decided that I would celebrate it on Sunday instead with my younger sister and nephew. We had a late lunch at Gabby’s Bistro (which I forgot to take photos of.. sorry!), then we were supposed to have dinner at Shakey’s at Robinson’s Dumaguete.

I was supposed to just have dinner with Lucille, so when I arrived at Rob I texted her and told her I was going to withdraw money first, then go to Booksale (I like a good rummage through their stock). She kept texting me saying there were no seats, just a big table for around 10 people. I told her we could just stay at an end. It was a bit of a hassle, honestly.

..until I found out it wasn’t just her who was there! Papa had arrived as a surprise!

Papa was here! Plus Tito Ed too. (They are kind of a package deal HAHAHAHA)

Papa was here! Plus Tito Ed too. (They are kind of a package deal HAHAHAHA)

(Papa is the one in the checkered shirt. Tito Ed is sitting beside me, haha!)

We had a yummy dinner of pizza and chicken at Shakey’s – it’s one of my absolute favorite places to eat. Their recipe hasn’t really changed in what seems like forever, and I like the consistency of it. Always nice to come back to favorites!

Papa also had a HUGE bag of treats for me – he called it my “birthday loot bag”. You know when you attend a kids’ birthday party at Jollibee/McDo/wherever and you get a little loot bag as a souvenir for attending? I got something like that – but it came in a giant Duty Free shopping bag! He went to the U.S. last month for an alumni gathering and I had asked him to buy me a few things, he added some other nice things as well since it was my birthday after all.

Needless to say I was a very happy kid.

Needless to say I was a very happy kid.

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On the lighter side.

Or, when I decided to get my hair coloured a light ash brown!

So as some of you might know (via my Instagram, Facebook, or if you personally know me), I had my hair dyed a few weeks ago, around the 18th of April. Yes, I know it’s pretty late for me to be talking about it but well.. I’ve been a bit busy catching up with friends, or doing housework–

Yes, housework! I’m spending my summer vacation doing housework since we don’t have a helper at home anymore. Wenk–

It was a pretty spontaneous decision. I mean, I did want a change for my hair.. but I wasn’t sure I was going to do anything drastic. I had originally planned to get the bottom third of my hair bleached and dyed a bright purple (yes) but then again I wasn’t so sure on how I would maintain it. I opted for the next best thing – going a few shades lighter with my hair.

I had my hair coloured over a year ago, when I was still working as a production assistant at an animation studio. That was a spontaneous decision too – I tagged along to a salon trip and ended up having my hair dyed a reddish brown of sorts. I don’t remember the exact colour.

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Reflecting on school, at the edge of summer.

I know I’ve always complained on how law school is so difficult and how much it saps the life out of me and how much I wish I could just be in a different place than were I am. But then again, looking back on this school year.. it’s been pretty fulfilling.

I think the best part of law school is having a really awesome batch of classmates that I see almost every single day. We’re over 40 guys and girls, from varying backgrounds – there are some who’ve been friends since their undergraduate years, some who’ve been dreaming to get into SU Law, some who, like me, have made the big move to Dumaguete from wherever they’ve come from. There are some who left during the first semester, and a few new faces as we entered the second semester. I may not know the specifics on everyone, but it’s nice to see such a melting pot be able to get along under one roof and learn about the fundamentals and even the intricacies of Philippine Law.

I’m fortunate, I think. Though there are visible groups within our large class which have formed together (like cliques of sorts), I don’t think I’ve ever really identified with any specific one. I’m perfectly content with drifting among the groups and not really pinning myself down in a certain group. I’ve always been that way, honestly – a social butterfly, albeit a quiet one at times. It’s nice to get to know different kinds of people. but of course I miss my friends and family back home. (I seem to have a severe, long-term case of homesickness.)

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Trying to recount my second semester, part 2: Consti 2 and thoughts on the future.

I’ve always been thinking about what would happen if I can’t meet the require 2.3 QPA needed to move on to the next level.

I mean.. first sem grades STILL AREN’T COMPLETE (horror of horrors) and my Constitutional Law 1 grade is pretty much on hold – Atty. Sedillo gave me an INC because I wasn’t able to take the final exam (I would have, if the exam schedules weren’t switched by an inconsiderate classmate – yes I am still bitter) since it was on the same day as my flight back to Manila for BarOps. Ms. Belen (the dean’s secretary) told me that I would have to take the final exam during first sem next school year. Which means I pretty much have to study everything Consti 1 again.

Did I mention I currently have Consti 2? Aha! Funny how I was able to take it even without a Consti 1 grade at the moment.

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