On a Crossroad, Again

Quo vadis viatorem?

Just when I thought I was settling into another mind-numbing rut, I suddenly found myself standing on another crossroad. Should I go left, or should I trust my gut instinct (which hasn’t worked all that well lately) and veer right?

I’m not sure exactly how I ended up in this situation again, because all I know is that — there I was, chugging along in my usual half-somnolent pace, when suddenly this chance to retrace my steps came up and I took it, all the while wondering what I would find. Had I been so much in a hurry in the past that I had failed to notice so many important things that could have materially changed my life? I’m still not sure about the answer to that question, but here I am again, contemplating which road to take.

So what brought this on? If I had to put a finger on it, I think this had something to do with that Craigslist writing job that I casually applied to last weekend. The job poster specifically asked for a native English speaker (NES) and asked for several writing samples. I didn’t think much of it then (I actually expected the poster to ignore my message for the most obvious reason — I’m not a native English speaker). So, imagine my surprise when I received a reply. Long story short, the poster said he couldn’t understand how an NES could write like I did. He ended up by asking how long ago I wrote those articles, which included several entries that I posted here at Treats & Treks.

After recovering from my surprise (followed by a string of mild oaths; yes, for some reason, his words felt like an insult wrapped in a compliment that didn’t even feel like one), I sent a polite noncommittal reply and added a short background for each of the blog articles that I had submitted. As exasperated as I was, I felt like I owed him that much at least. He eventually wrote back — without the snark this time — and gave me a link for the test and wished me luck. I supposed I could have completed that test, just to show him I could do the work, but by then I had lost all enthusiasm for the job. It also helped that I had an urgent deadline for three articles.

Another question that has been nagging me lately had something to do with this blog. I’ve been trying to make up my mind whether to pull the plug on Treats & Treks or keep it running for as long as I could. Let’s just say that this is where that backtracking has led me. I’m back on this crossroad, because this is one decision that I have put off long enough. Maybe it’s time for me to stop vacillating and look at those half-abandoned plans again. *fingers crossed*

I know. That sounds grand and awfully proactive, doesn’t it? But let’s wait and see where this leads. Stay tuned. 🙂

 

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Boracay: Third Time’s the Charm

I’ve been to Boracay a couple of times before, and each time I leave I always make a mental note to come back as soon as I can. Yet, for some weird reason I have never run out of excuses to delay (and eventually cancel) those travel plans.

As I was preparing for my third visit to this world-famous island, I began to realize — and finally admit to myself — that my reluctance is somehow predicated on the fact that I did not want to get too familiar with the place by coming here too often. I wanted to retain some of that sense of delight and discovery when I first beheld its white sandy beaches. If I had given in to my wishes and came as often as I wanted, I think Boracay would have quickly lost its appeal to me.

As we prepared to board the ferry boat to the island (from Caticlan), I started to feel better. Yes. I’m glad I came back. It was definitely high time I renewed acquaintance with Boracay. I was surprised to note that I actually missed the place — heck, even the sea air felt like a welcome nudge.

Another reason that made this trip a bit more special was that this time the whole family was coming. This was going to be a meaningful family get-together, a chance to reestablish and strengthen our bonds. We lost our father to cancer 4 years ago, and his absence has been sorely felt since then. Things have been so different without him. My mother, one of the most pragmatic people I know, has been uncharacteristically sentimental lately and is starting to show her age (lost weight and forgetfulness; we’re keeping our fingers crossed that she’ll stay with us for a long time). However, she is rather fond of this place because she has had many happy memories here with my father, siblings, and her grandkids.

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Movie Titles Containing the Word “Coffee”

Two of my main interests are coffee and movies. Although I haven’t been watching movies that much lately, my interest in them remains; and, of course, coffee is part of my daily routine, so there you go.

This is by no means a long list — I am basically focusing on those films whose titles contain the word “coffee” and have been released somewhat recently (and are listed and briefly described here in chronological order).

1. Chinese Coffee (2000)

Chinese Coffee is an indie film released during the 2000 Tribeca Film Festival, and then released officially in 2007. This was directed by Al Pacino, who also stars in the movie along with Jerry Orbach.

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Something Funny Happened at Seattle’s Best…

I needed a quiet place to finish a file (due in a few hours) so I dropped by at Seattle’s Best at MoA. It had a serene ambiance (far from the madding crowd), looked fairly quiet, and seemed like a nice spot to spend a few hours in.

After paying for my order, I settled at a table facing the walkway. Before long, I was deeply immersed in my work, and barely even looked up from my laptop screen. So, you can imagine my utter astonishment when this loud, jarring sound broke through.

It came from the direction of the main entrance, which faced the bay. Heads swiveled from all corners as startled patrons tried to focus on what caused the sound. After what seemed like a timeless pause, we saw — wait for it — that this sleepy-looking guy (in his 30s, I think) had walked (or rather, CRASHED) into Seattle’s Best glass door!

Apparently, the man did not realize that there was a glass wall separating Seattle’s Best from the outdoors and just walked in (or at least tried to) without breaking his stride. His momentum propelled him forward and the force of it made him bounce off the door and rattle the glass wall. For a moment there, he looked supremely alert and a look of utter astonishment settled on his face like a mask.

It was a scene right out of a comedy film or a cartoon feature. I could feel the laughter rippling through my throat, but I managed to gulp it back. Yes, it was pretty hilarious, but I also felt sympathy for the guy. If that had been me, I’d be probably hoping for the floor to swallow me up, and fervently wishing no one would remember my face while beating a hasty retreat from the scene.

Surprisingly, no one laughed. For a moment it seemed like we were all waiting for the first one to actually break the silence, but no one did! And despite the obvious pain he felt — as well as the slight damage to his dignity — the guy went on with his business. After claiming his coffee, he went out quietly.

Umm… it’s kind of crass for me to say this, but somebody did giggle uncontrollably the minute he was out of earshot. And before you start pointing fingers, nope it wasn’t me. By that time I had lost all my desire to laugh. (But I did laugh loudly when I got home and replayed the scene in my mind.)