I took up running again one day before the wedding. My running and rowing routines got sidetracked during the holidays and I must admit that the extra pounds gained hurt. It was an emergency effort to make myself feel good to look good for the wedding. Anyway, I was running along the bay when I overheard this father tell his kids this when I ran past them:
Tingnan nyo. Kapag mabilis tumakbo, umaangat na parang lumilipad.
Wow. My self esteem took a somersault. I didn’t look around though to verify if it was me they were talking about or not. I was certain it was me. And it was enough to lift my spirits.
I have only been to the Bamboo Organ once or twice in the past. I have faint recollection of how the Church looks like and zero idea on how to drive there. Naaaks! Yes! I am already able to drive Natania around, tapang-tapangan style. And being a noob driver, I tend to follow bus and jeepney routes. I was told though that the way I was planning to take would take me a thousand years. So I Googled and asked some more. I’d be coming from Quezon City and the best route I finally determined was through Coastal Road. I captured the route via Google maps just to be sure.
It was my first time to drive Natania through EDSA beyond Buendia Ave. It was also my first time to drive her through Coastal Road. I believe I did fine as a first-time motorist on these roads, albeit the countless cars and motorcycles overtaking me.
The only major major hiccup, however, was that I (repeatedly) missed Las Piñas exit from the Coastal Road! It didn’t help that I asked Rowie, a former co-faculty, to ride with me so I’d have an extra pair of eyes! She didn’t see it too! Well, she actually blamed me for not being attentive to signs but I reminded her, like most of those who ride with me, that my eyesight is far from 100%. I could only read so far and in that instance when I was able to see the sign, it was already late. Too late in fact. I was running at 60kph then and I feared that even the slightest swerving action would send us to eternal life. To my horror, I had no choice but to drive the whole length of the newly-opened Cavitex (Cavite Expressway) all the way to Kawit, Cavite!
All’s not lost though. Cavitex, I discovered was a smooth drive and it has a nice view of the open sea. And best of all, there were not a lot of cars! That’s when the speed monster in me kicked in. The signs say 100kph speed limit and I’ve not even tried running at 80kph! So I stepped on the gas. And then some more. And not before long, I was already hitting 100kph! I was freaking with my lady! Well, not really. While I was jubilant over the additional milestone, she was telling me about how she drove on freeways in the US. (Cue: Don’t tell me not to fly, I simply got to. If someone takes a spill it’s me and not you. Who told you you’re allowed to rain on my parade?)
A chance to turn around came came when we got to Kawit, Cavite. I scrambled for my wallet again as I’d be paying toll fees for the 3rd time. I didn’t mind it though. I was still ecstatic over the speedometer needle pointing at 100kph! And I was raring to do it again! It felt good!
I missed Las Piñas exit again on the way back. But please don’t judge me. I saw the sign but the road where I was supposed to exit was obscure that I mistook for a road under repair. Defeated, I pulled over to the traffic enforcers nearby. I was told that the nearest U-turn is way beyond the toll gates going to Baclaran. Thankfully, when the traffic enforcer heard from Rowie that we’ve been paying toll fees like anything and that there’s a wedding that we are attending, he let us do a counter flow. I said thanks from the bottom of my heart and quickly closed the windows to mute the subtle insinuations for snack money. We got to the Bamboo Organ at 3:00 PM, fully compliant to what the invitation said.
Interestingly, towards the end of the reception program, the newly-weds led those who stayed in opening our souvenirs. It was intended that way so they could see their guests’ reaction.
Everyone got a bag that contained either a lady’s or men’s underwear that had different inscriptions. Here’s what I got when I opened mine.
Wow. Umaangat, parang lumilipad.