[Paunawa : So heartwarming to know that we’ve struck a chord with so many people, Pinoy wives and otherwise, with a previous blog. Please allow me to thank kabayan in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin, Invercargill and everyone else in both the North and South Islands of our beloved adopted home, as well as kabayan back home, who’ve clicked their way to an all-time high for us in one-day visit totals! Mabuhay kayong lahat, and you’ve given me a lot more inspiration on blogging about Pinoy living in NZ!]
IT’S no big secret. Because I’m such a crappy gift giver, I hardly expect gifts anymore. Laziness and the luck of a budget force me to give gift vouchers, the occasional banknote or worse, a christmas card, when I know people deserve better. But because the people I love and who I love back haven’t given up on me despite my shortcomings gift-wise, especially during the holidays, I have to show my gratitude somehow.
This holidays have been particularly awkward for me as I have practically received a windfall from both here, Auckland and back home in the Philippines. Loved ones have taken the time not only to set aside hard-earned coin but also the effort to select what they considered (correctly) presents I would enjoy and cherish. Here are a few of them, in no particular order :
New Balance Minimus Trail MT10 (pictured above). Fourth Brother and his family upstairs in Auckland have somehow got it in their heads that I’m headed towards running my first half-marathon at age 50, and bless their souls, they’re halfway right. I’ve done the hard yards, and I’ve nearly convinced myself to run the Round The Bays, especially since son Bunso has agreed to backstop me and pace me throughout the 21 km. Beforehand, I read that this particular pair of shoes is not typically a marathon shoe, but is great for midheel support, particularly if you’re running on cinderpaths or off road trails. Now I can find out how good the model is, because Fourth Brother has sent the pair to me as a Christmas gift, what a surprise! Thanks so much kapatid, even more since I know the pair costs a pretty penny. I’m grateful.
I Think, Therefore I Am. After biographies, thrillers and Stephen King-ish genres, I’m beginning to read up on philosophy books. Again, son Bunso, with whom I share a love for reading, has apparently read my mind and given me an interesting book, entitled I Think, Therefore I Am, along with a lovely pair of socks. How could you not love Bunso, with such thoughtful gifts?
Whitcoulls voucher. Whitcoulls is like the National Book Store of New Zealand. It’s the largest chain, with branches in all the major cities. Daughter Ganda and her boyfriend have long known my love for books and reading, and instead of buying me a book that I may have read, they have thoughtfully given me a gift voucher worth roughly the price of a paperback novel. Awwww, thanks loads and love you Ganda and boyfriend!
Avanti Giro 1. I cycle to work partly out of my fitness regimen and partly due to my not having a driver’s license yet, I know I know it’s kinda embarrassing, but it’s really not that far between work and home, and I’m gonna take the restricted exam soon. In the meantime, wife Mahal has given me a flashy new bike, supposed to make me ride like the wind and therefore get to work earlier. It’s not something that makes me go head over heels, but it’s definitely an improvement over the China-made bike I’m using now (no offense to Chinese bikemakers), and no grannies are gonna overtake me now.
Like I said before, I’m such an awful gift-giver that just giving me gifts should make me happy. And I am happy with the gifts I have, just that I’m so guilty about getting them. Because I’m gonna enjoy them.
Thanks Brother, Bunso, Ganda (and boyfriend), and Mahal, and thanks for reading!
PS. From the Philippines (and thanks to Fourth Brother, who kindly brought them), we’ve received gifts from Eldest Brother, and as soon as I can, I’ll update you. 🙂