Monday, September 24, 2012

MY UP CIRCLE BRUNEI FAMILY ( I WILL BONGGANG BONGGANG MISS EVERYONE!)

I'm on my last week of stay in Brunei Darussalam, the Abode of Peace. With a few days left to pack my balikbayan box and explore Brunei, left and right send-off dinner, party or celebrations keep my schedule oh-so tight.

I had a jaw-dropping send-off last night. I was supposed to be out with Ma'am Betsy and Ton for a dinner in Gadong when I suddenly found myself in shock at the Curaming's Residence. I was so naloka with UP Circle Brunei's surprise send-off party for me. I was so clueless that such well-prepared and appetising celebration is dedicated for me.


As early as last week, I already finalized my dinner with Ma'am Betsy and Ton. As Ma'am told me, Ton and her will treat me as a despedida. I confirmed my date on 23 September, on a Sunday.

I was supposed to swim at Ma'am place. But since I was soooooo (uber!) busy with trying to fit all my stuff inside my LBC balikbayan box, I finished at almost 5:50. I texted Ma'am that I'll be late in our 6 pm meet-up.

By 6:30, I was already at Ma'am Betsy' place. Prior to reaching her place, Ma'am told me that we have to pass by a bakeshop to buy a cake for Sir Rommel's son.

As agreed, we passed by at Mum's Bakery. As the staff prepared the cake, I suggested that a dedication should be put on the cake. Ma'am interfered and said that "Di na kailangan kasi nga late na rin." With a consideration on the time as we have to go to Sir Rommel's place first before looking for a place to have dinner, Ma'am, Ton and I immediately left with a "dedication-less" cake.

When we reached Sir Rommel's place, I was surprised that there's a set-up of bonggang bonggang food. A boat of Sushi, a tray of pancit, packs of kutsinta, and a lot more were on the table. I just said to Sir Rommel, "Wow, may handa si Roj! (Sir Rommel's son). Honestly, I never thought that the set-up is for me.

Few minutes passed by and I asked Ma'am Betsy on where we'll go. Bongga, even before Ma'am Betsy said a word, Sir Rommel requested to have my picture taken in their living room. Since I'm sooooo game na game sa picturan, I said okay. I started to pose and then Sir Rommel asked me to open the door to the other receiving area. BANG! When I opened the door, Miss Jing popped out (super di ko ito makakalimutan) and said, "Bulaga!" I was sooooo stunned.

Eventually, other UP Circle Members came out of the dark and I was speechless. Hindi ko alam kung ano ang nangyayari, kung ano ang sasabihin at kung ano ang dapat gawin. Ms. Lea and her kids even made a "Bon Voyage" Banner! Super na-touch talaga ako. Then the group started to sing Auld Lang Syne. Super muntik na akong maiyak (nagpigil lang). At mukha akong ewan kasi hindi ko talaga alam ang gagawin ko.

After the gulatan, everyone went to the dining table, offered a thanksgiving prayer and ate. On my part, lutang pa rin talaga kahit ang sarap sarap ng kinakain. Eventually, nang makalma ko ang sarili ko,  I had a great time having a picture taken with my UP CB family.




On the side, I was so impressed with how everyone planned the surprise send-off party for me. Days before last night, I was exchanging emails to UP CB members on a meet-up with a delegation from UP. In my mind, the dinner meet-up will also be the last time that I'm gonna be with UP CB members. Little did I know that something's big and exciting was in preparation. Super touch na touch talaga ako. Ni hindi ko nakitaan si Ma'am Betsy, si Sir Rommel at ang lahat na meron palang kasiyahan na inihanda. Ka-lo-ka! Nalaglag panga ko (pati underwear!)!

After eating, we all went to the receiving area. The "HOT SEAT" segment began. Questions were thrown to me na bongga ko namang sinagot (as usual in a funny and sometimes serious way). Someone asked me, "Sa kabila ng sunod-sunod na tagumpay, ano pa ba sa tingin mo ang wala pa?" Hello, tahasan ko itong sinagot. Sabi ko, "love life!" Everyone laughed.  Someone asked me about some tips on shining in one's academic sojourn, I said "Isa lang ang maipapayo ko: Study Hard. Party Harder!" Eveyone laughed again especially the children of UP CB members! Adik ako noh? Masamang impluwensya. On a serious note, I shared my sentiments on surviving a single and blessed life in Brunei Darussalam. I thanked everyone, especially every family in UP CB, for supporting and inspiring me to reach my dreams.

Picture taking with each member took place after the "HOT SEAT." I also had a grand time (as usual) singing with a videoke. Kaingay ingay at concert kung concert.

By 10:30, we decided to leave and went home. I was just overwhelmed and I felt so blessed and loved. As I said, I will surely (mega over) miss my UP Circle Brunei family.

Let me share my pasasalamat.

Para kay Ma'am Betsy.
Maraming maraming salamat po sa bonggang pagkakaibigan. Sa mga araw at gabi na puno ng chikahan, food tripping at inpirasyon na magsikap at tumulong sa kapwa, salamat. Bilib na bilib ako sa inyong katatagan sa lahat ng pagsubok na dumating sa buhay niyo. Idol!


Para kay Ton.
Salamat Dong sa kuwentuhan at takutan sa Mar'azmala! Magsikap at magsipag para sa bonggang bonggang future!

Para kay Sir Joey.
Maraming maraming salamat po sa imbitasyon sa akin lalo na nung Pasko. Salamat rin po sa pagpayag na mainterview ko for my MA paper. At higit sa lahat, salamat po sa pagiging isang humble na tao. Isa po kayong inspirasyon!

Para kay Ms. Jing.
 Maraming salamat po sa mga chikahan na puno ng aral. Aliw na aliw ako pag nagkukuwentuhan tayo kasi kalog kayo. Inspiring din po ang inyong mga words of encouragement.

Para kay Ms. Lea
Salamat po for boosting my morale. Una ko pa lang kayong nakilala sa bahay ni Sir Joey eh na-feel ko na po na magkakasundo tayo dahil malumanay kayo kausap pero kuwela rin pala. Love na love ko rin ang inyong energy at naguumapaw na tips!

Para kay Sir Rommel
Salamat po for supporting my ambitious PhD dream. Kung hindi dahil sa inyo eh hindi ko i-pu-push ang pinapangarap. Isa pa po, salamat for encouraging me to submit my paper for publication. Lo and behold, naging book chapter!

Para kay Divina
Hindi ko makakalimutan ang tawanan at chikahan. Maraming salamat for always sharing ang matatamis na ngiti with bonggang stories!

Para kay Ms. Debbie.
Salamat po sa pagsali sa akin sa UP CB. Kung hindi ko kayo nahagilap sa choir, wala ako sa UP CB. Salamat din po sa mga oras ng chikahan sa simbahan. Nakakatulong ang mga pep talk para maisulong ang masiyahing pagkatao.

Para kay Sir El.
Salamat po sa suporta at mga makabuluhang kuwentuhan. 
 
Para kay Sir Allan.
 Salamat po sa inyong kuwela pero seriousness na mga banat! Nagpapasalamat rin po ako na makatrabaho kayo bilang Chairman ng UP CB. Nakakainspire din po ang inyong pagseserbisyo sa simbahan. Magandang huwaran!

Para kay Ms. Len.
 Salamat po for always sharing happy moments with your ngiti and stories! Thank you rin po for your words of wisdom at (gaya ni sir Allan) ang nakaka-inspire na dedikasyon to serve the church.

Para kay Sir Egay.
Salamat po for all the support at lalo na ang biruan. Isa po kayong ehemplo ng taong may higit na dedikasyon at kasipagan sa trabaho. Salamat din po sa bonggang gift. Idol, Mark Bautista! hehehe


Para kay Ms. Joanne.
 Salamat po sa bonggang bonggang suporta sa anumang aspeto - mula personal hanggang sa UP CB eklavus. Salamat din po sa regalo niyo ni Sir Egay. Kita kits po sa Aussie!

Para kay Ms. Cky
Salamat po sa chikahan at tawanan na talaga namang sikreto ng inyong young aura!

Para kay Tita Lyna
Honestly, para kayong nanay ko kumilos. Namiss ko tuloy bigla. Moving on, salamat po sa mga nakakatuwang encounters sa church. Happy ako pag napapasiya kayo sa aking responsorial psalm singing.

Para kay Doc Ed and Ms. Bambz
Salamat po sa kasiyahang hatid niyo sa tuwing magkikita. Nakakainspire to see how you nurture your growing family. Salamat din po for supporting my garage sale!

Para kay Lisa.
Isa po kayong blessing sa aking buhay. Sa saya at challenging times, you're always there. Maraming maraming salamat po. Kulang ang space to thank you. I will never forget yung gabi na you offered a ride kasi nasiraan yung taxi na nirent ko. Salamat!

Para kay Kuya Rhenee.
 Salamat po sa inyong gabay. Salamat din kuya sa masasarap na handa sa tuwing magkikita. Kabusog!

Para sa lahat ng miyembro, maraming maraming salamat sa suporta.

Mabuhay ang UP Circle Brunei. Keep me posted.

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