The most beautiful thing in life
is the ability to love.
-Brunello Cucinelli ad (I don’t know what the brand sells yet),
[ NOte from NOel : Still no regular access road to the information highway 😦 ]
IF ONLY it were possible / socially acceptable to impose a regime of balloons, thematic costumes, ubiquitous clowns and ice cream cake on one’s birthday, I would be a perennial and diligent exponent of such a hypothetical tradition. I am such a senti birthday person both for myself and others, and that’s why it was so odd / strange / weird (Kiwis reserve “weird” for only the highest level of hiwaga, while we Pinoys use it at the drop of the proverbial hat) last Saturday : we were in the midst of a deadline – conscious house moving, I was trying to prepare for guild exams, while recovering from a semi-serious episode of gout.
If you can believe it, in between stealing glances at Mr Facebook and Miss Yahoo! on Panganay’s laptop ( the rusty desktop had been bundled up 24 hours earlier ), I nearly forgot it was my birthday, and I don’t think that had EVER happened the last 45 years. But no matter. The point I’m trying to make is that I consider it the height of bad ( online ) manners to not express humble gratitude or even simple thanks to the rest of the world for remembering me on my special day.
By now you might have been wondering why I could not perform the simple courtesy of acknowledging such a kindness especially considering the fact that birthdays are usually auspicious to me. 🙂 Well, I won’t allow the lack of internet access (already considered a basic necessity in our interconnected existence) to further delay thanking you. Since they make up the biggest number of the virtual family, friends from high school (and primary school) are denoted by an asterisk. Unless otherwise specified, most of the greeters are based in Manila, and I arranged the names alphabetically, and often by the nickname rather than the given name. Please forgive me if I devote only one line-plus to thanking you, and I will surely make up for it when my beloved internet access returns. Cheers !
Atty Adrian Lecaros, classmate from way back : good health and happiness classmate, thanks loads !
*Alfredo Dee, classmate forever : Thanks for dropping a few lines every now and then Alfredo 🙂
Allan Refuerzo, UP classmate and Facebook friend : thanks for the greeting Allan, we should collaborate soon!
Alvin John B Cenido, pamangkin and awesome skywalker : thanks for remembering Alvin !
Anne Chang, HS teacher : nanwang nin de hao jiaoxun, duo xie Zhang Lao Shi (hope that was correct Mam) !
*Arlene Ayuste, another ultranice member of the Gorgeous Ones : If people teach best by example, then you are certainly a good teacher of life’s lessons 🙂 To sya classmate !
Atty Babes Noriega, a body-beautiful lawyer from UP : Thanks for the greeting Babes, more power to the uplifting workouts !
Benedict B Montenegro, cousin and future co-migrant : thanks for remembering Dick !
Boyette San Diego, stalwart of campus journalism and FB friend : All those years of presswork in the 1980s and I only get to know you now, thanks for the memories !
Atty Butch Saulog, an unbelievable jazz pianist and creator : Thanks for remembering Butch !
*Carmi Sio, a sorely-missed classmate : Your praise and kind words are precious to me. Thanks for wishing kind wishes on my day, Carmi !
*Carol Ng Sy : Thanks for being a great classmate from way way back all the way to high school Carol !
*Catherine Gruba, one of the sexiest businesswomen we know : Thanks for remembering Cathy !
Cherry Thelmo Fernandez, champion of the Visayan community in NZ and UP schoolmate : thanks for remembering Cherry, maayong buntag!
Chichi Abadingo, Auckland-based Filipiniana organizer and Marian devotee : you are a constant source of encouragement and inspiration Chichi ! Daghan Salamat po !
Cora V Rosales, SycipLaw contemporary and SF Giant fan : Thanks for remembering and your thoughtful FB posts, regards always !
Atty Cristina Godinez -Pangilinan, Collegian immortal and FB picture post-er : daghan salamat for the greet and the wonderful pics from yesteryear!
Dely Imperial, a wonderful aunt who’s never forgotten us : Maray na aldao and thanks always for your wonderful words of encouragement Tita D ! Love you always !
Dennis Arroyo, Collegian Kulemate and all-around nice guy : Love your jokes and puns in FB, they make my day! Thanks for remembering !
*Dennis Sy, an IT professional in New York : Our high school memories will last a lifetime. Please continue enriching lives with your talent, brother. Thanks for everything!
Desu Enriquez, Auckland-based kabayan : Thanks for always reading our crazy blogs Desu, stay pretty always !
Usec Diane Reyes, a wonderful classmate from UP : Your kind words of praise are truly humbling Diane ! Thanks for the greet !
Atty Dicky Salazar, an awesome lawyer from UP : Thanks for remembering and for the kudos Dicky !
Didith Tayawa Figuracion of the Ministry of Maori Affairs and a tireless worker for the advancement of the Pinoy community in NZ : Thanks for thinking so highly of us Didith, regards to Clark and Match !
Direk FilNZTV, co-migrant and Facebook friend : Thanks for remembering and the kind words Direk, regards always !
Dr Donald Bautista, a world-class brother : Thanks for always being there for us Doc, love you always!
Easter Bocobo, superpretty classmate from UP days : Your thoughtfulness is appreciated classmate 🙂
Atty Edwin Maquinto, Alphan fanatic and FB friend : Thanks for remembering brod !
Atty Eileen Adaza, UP classmate and Facebook friend : Thanks for remembering Eileen, regards to your bros and of course your esteemed dad 🙂
*Elena Sy – Goddard, youthful beauty from the American West Coast : your memories are truly flattering, and came at the best possible time. Thanks for taking the trouble to put them to (electronic) paper classmate !
Elijah Brent Emmanuel Bautista, brand new Atenean and now taller than his dad : thanks for the greeting anak, love you always !
Erlinda Bautista, supermom and World’s No. 1 Nana : Your text and prayers were extra special Mom, as were you, I love you always !
*Eunice Cobankiat Pascual, surely one of the sweetest and babe-est batchmates around : the prayers always help, and your kind kudos is treasured. Thanks Gorgeous !
Dr Evelyn Venes Catuira, CAL-based dental surgeon and a batch babe : Thanks for remembering classmate, our Paco memories are irreplaceable !
*Feli Tan – Co, one of the truly special members of Batch 82 : That you took the time to wish me a happy birthday was quite humbling Feli. Thanks and stay pretty always!
Franz Diosana, cousin forever : Thanks for encouraging us with your emotional words of praise !
Dr Gan Montenegro, cousin forever : Thanks for remembering Dr Gan, more power to your cable / radio show!
George Bautista, awesome playing-coach : thanks for helping us get into NZ, love you always bro!
*Dr Gerald So, a Dallas neurologist : I am truly humbled by your pro-activeness and your uncanny memory, brother ! Our friendship truly spans the miles and years! Duoxie lao pengyou!
Girlie Acosta Sanchez, UP Manila memorable : your comments and hellos never fail to pick up my day, thanks for remembering Girlie !
Grace Lim, former SycipLaw officemate and outstanding legal secretary : thanks for remembering Grace !
*Harvey Tan, a co-migrant also in Toronto : Your one-liners make my day classmate, 6-E forever!
*Hedy Ong – Soliman, based in CAL & unofficial queen of Batch 82 : You’ve always been there the last few years Achie, I can never thank you enough for that! Maraming salamat to you and Jack!
*Irene Chua, your smile and warmth never fail to make my day, thanks for remembering Irene !
*Jaime Chan, a Vancouver travel industry expert : many thanks for remembering Jaime, our DBMC days live on forever !
*Jenn Chan, a wonderful kabatch from Toronto : Your constant encouragements and responses to life’s challenges inspire me Jenn, thanks for the memories!
*Jocelyn Chan another Facebook source of cheer and inspiration : Thanks for the effusive praise, your students, years from now, will still remember your first-class tutoring !
Joey Flora, a former Marxist – Leninist theoretician and now budding entrepreneur in SF : I’m touched that you remembered bro, yes that icy cold brewski will be waiting !
Atty Joel Butuyan, classmate, townmate of The Answer and FB friend : thanks for remembering Joel, regards always !
Joy Cabrera, SycipLaw officemate and photogenic FB friend : thanks for remembering Joy, regards to our former officemates there!
*Joy Rosenbaum, a showbiz producer shuttling between West and East Coasts, USA : Your e-mails are a constant joy, Joy! Muchas gracias!
Jude Bautista, photojournalist bro : Thanks for all the years of being a great bro and uncle to the kids, and thanks for celebrating my birthday in Manila. Love you always!
*Kathryn Que, townmate of Black-Ops mastermind POTUS Obama and friend of D-Rose : just as the batch remembers my birthday, so does it cherish yours !
Atty Kiko Rivera, A-1 litigation lawyer : Many thanks for the kind birthday wishes Brod !
*Kirby Hartigan – Go, a world-class IT professional and awesome batch officer : Thanks for always being there for the batch Kirby !
*Klemson See, a Taiwan – based memorable : Our basketball days will always be treasured Klemson ! thanks and long live 6-E !
Lanie Ancheta, former SycipLaw officemate and phenomenal stenographer : thanks for remembering Lanie !
Lei Arago, former SycipLaw officemate and accounting whiz : thanks for remembering Lei 🙂
Loida P Mayo, UP classmate and friend forever : Our memories will always be treasured Loids, thanks again !
Lilia Nicole Bautista, may or may not be the loveliest in her circle of friends, but hopefully the smartest : I love you always Ganda, thanks for remembering, will update you soonest when internet returns!
Atty Lilibeth Cueva, NY attorney and dog enthusiast : your wonderful words of praise fuel me always, thanks loads and pls stay pretty as you are !
Lorraine and Del Valdes, Cainta neighbors and best-looking couple I know : My days in Cainta were the best, thanks in part to you! Thanks for the greeting !
*Dr Marcia Bautista, the loveliest pediatrician I know : salamat sa pagbati cousin, you are fondly remembered !
Maricon Windsor – Viaje, a veteran of the pharma industry and cousin forever : thanks for remembering insan, thanks for the memories as well 🙂
*Marilyn Chingbingyong, a lovely from Vancouver Canada. We will always be linked by our May birthdays classmate. That, and our love for laughter. thanks for remembering and happy birthday tambien!
Marjorie Piano – Gonzalgo, former SycipLaw officemate : thanks for remembering Marj!
Mary Ann Reyes Mandap, Collegian Kulemate and FB friend : stay pretty as ever Me-Ann, thanks heaps !
*Mel Asiddao, entrepreneur from SF : Your thoughtful praise and words of encouragement will never be forgotten, 6-E forever!
Menggy Caguicla, Auckland-based co-Maroon : Thanks always for the rave reviews Menggy, stay pretty always !
*Mevelyn Tang, a limitless source of quotes and perspective from the East Coast : you seem to know exactly what to say and when to say it, and you are precious Mev ! To tse nei 😉
*Michael Tan, a thoughtful batchmate who never forgets : I appreciate it always MacTan when you show your appreciation, regards!
Millie Ocampo, UST prof and NZ transplant : Thanks for remembering Mille, your words of encouragement are always appreciated !
*Engr Nelson Tan, an newlywed engr based somewhere in CAL USA : your warmth and pithy humor is always appreciated bro Sonny. Thanks again !
Nigel Paulo Emmanuel Bautista, based in Wellington but always thinking of the Philippines : salamat sa pagbati anak, love you always!
NJ Lising, former co-worker and champion hiphop dancer in Auckland, thanks for remembering NJ !
Noel Pepa, aspiring baker from Lower Hutt City and Cavite : Maraming salamat sa pagbati and pagtulong sa pagkumpuni ng bike, tokayo ! Regards to Cecil !
*Noemi Bolanos, an Arizona – based nurse : you’re one of the best classmates we never had, and you know that’s quite a compliment nhoymssb! Muchas gracias !
Norman Latosa, Pinoy Basketball sa Auckland commissioner and awesome community leader : Thanks for our happy happy days in Auckland Norman !
Atty Pablo John Garcia, another Collegian immortal and brod always : Thanks for remembering and happy birthday to you too!
Peps Inovejas, a UP Manila memorable : Thanks for the memories, and for remembering Peps !
*Pilar Ang – Si, #1 cheer-upper and quipper on Facebook : when people are low and need a jolt of inspiration, you are there for them Pilar. Thanks for that, and the birthday cheer!
Raul Zamuco, news editor & Sydney IT professional : I will never forgot our presswork days together bro, thanks for the memories !
Atty Rosalie Factor, former Syciplaw officemate : thanks for remembering Atty RFF, regards to you always !
Ricky and Maya Montenegro, cousins from Wellington : thanks for all the wonderful memories pinsan !
Rollie Fabi, brod forever and future national leader : Thanks for remembering Brod and I wish you good health always !
Rorie de Guzman, a friend from our UP Manila days : your encouragement and FB posts always make my day Rorie ! Maraming salamat po !
Samboy Concepcion, GOCC lawyer and Alphan fanatic : thanks for the memories Brod, you always look great!
Sherona Sulit, SycipLaw officemate : Thanks for remembering my pretty friend !
Sweetie Montenegro, wonderful aunt based in the East Coast : thanks for remembering Tita Sweetie !
*Teresita Sy Chingkaw, a stewardess kabatch who looks the part : thanks for remembering our special day Tess 🙂
Teddi Jutsen, motivational specialist based in Sydney : thanks for remembering Teddi, and thanks for the memories !
Tom and Ineng Agustin, lovey-dovey cousins in Johnsonville : your kindness in helping us moving into Wellington will not be forgotten. Thanks cuz !
Tim Bautista, first class COO and idea man : Thanks for being a great Kuya, and love you always!
*Stefanie Victorino, do-everything organizer of the Gorgeous Ones : Thanks for always being so thoughtful Stef, you’re always a dear !
Val Asiddao, HS unforgettable and FB friend : Your posts, poems and videos and truly inspiring, thanks for being our schoolmate, DBMC mate and friend 🙂
Veronica Uy , Phil Daily Inquirer online editor and Collegian Kule-mate : I love your Facebook posts and I’m humbled that you remembered Onic, to sya di !
Atty Vicky Suarez, UP classmate and Collegian Kule-mate : Thanks for remembering Vicky, regards always !
Prof Vincent Ty, an unforgettable UP Manila personality : thanks for enriching my life with your friendship Prof Vince !
Well, that’s it. There will surely be people I forgot to thank, but I will not forget again next time. Thanks again, and I hope I can return the favor come your birthday.
Thanks for the memories !
- Notes On A Birthday (ylbnoel.wordpress.com)