2015 is ending, and this year, I have gone through many ups and downs of life. Allow me to share my experiences with you.
- I met my favorite author!
James Frey, the author of The Lorien Legacies by the alias of Pittacus Lore, was my favorite author of all time. He was so cool, a great writer, and did I say cool? When I learned that he would visit the Philippines to promote his new book, Endgame: The Calling, I immediately fangirled, purchased the book and persuaded my parents to allow me and my friends to go to Manila. I hugged him and got my books signed. I swear it was the best!
2. I got to attend a concert for the first time!
As I have said in my About section, I have many interests, but many of them are far away from ever visiting the Philippines. Luckily, One Direction was one of them, and they were gonna visit our country for the first time. I did not have the funds to spend a whooping 18,000 pesos for them, so I purchased a General Admission (Bronze) ticket for only 1,500 pesos. I was also featured on national television because me and my bunch of friends were crazy. It was a great experience, but note to self: Don’t buy Bronze tickets again.
3. My group grabbed Best in Thesis!
It was an honor to clinch the Best in Thesis award. Our group worked very hard and spent long hours trying to make it perfect, and bagging the Best in Thesis was just a bonus for what we have learned all throughout our journey. We were very pleased, receiving much praise from the judges, and was jubilant on the result.
4. I made my Instagram and Twitter account!
5. After four long years in high school, I have finally graduated!
I was also thankful that I was the Salutatorian of my batch. I had the courage to deliver my rather emotional salutatory address at the center stage, which in tradition, was reserved for courageous individuals. Nah, kidding. My dad had also attended the ceremony for the first time after 7 years, being an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW). Overall, I was pretty proud of myself for finishing this stage. More stages to conquer!
6. I passed the entrance exam of my dream university!
University of the Philippines (UP) was the premier university in our country. I originally wanted a pre-med course in UP-Manila (UPM), but I was assigned to BA Organizational Communication (BA OC). Even though I also passed other top universities in the country and with a pre-med course in store for me, there was nothing more important to me than studying in my dream university.
7. One member parted her way from my high school circle!
We decided to exclude our friend, Alexia, my very first friend since pre-school, from the group of friends that I belong to. It was sad for all of us, because she was the one friend we had fun most of the time, but we decided that we could not be close friends with her anymore. That is high school — you hurt one friend from the group, the whole group comes back at you, and more.
8. We lived the teenage life at a condominium!
My high school group has a name — from PEMMGAJJ, to PEMGAJJ, and finally, PEMGJJ. Woah, it was hard to modify a group name when you take the first name of every member, eh? They are my closest friends, so I am most proud to introduce them. Pat, the crazy leader-athlete-artist of our group, Ellaine, my friend since forever and the mother-knows-best, Melanie, my little best friend and our comedic adviser, Jerico, my special someone and our bigatilyo (mustache man) photographer and more, and Joshua, my tall best friend and turtle model! Anyway, we had loads of fun at a condo, courtesy of Pat. I, the group’s goddess of the chicken nuggets, surely had fun!
9. I was enrolled at a swimming lesson!
Unluckily, I did not learn how to swim. It was Pat teaching me, and all we did was laugh. I think I did not have the guts to plunge in the water, yet. Maybe next time?
10. I got to teach kids at church!
Vacation Church School (VCS) is an annual program organized by our church, United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP) – General Mariano Alvarez (GMA). Last year, I was only an assistant teacher because I was not that active in our youth organization, Christian Youth Fellowship (CYF). For reasons we shall never know, I got elected as the President. So, I was a main teacher of children 9-10 years old. It was a fun experience, and it was also my last because my vacation next year would not be aligned as the elementary level vacation. I was thankful that I experienced the feels.
11. I have traveled alone for the first time!
Even though it was only traveling alone at the airport from Philippines to Hongkong to Bahrain and back again, I was pretty pleased with myself. It was my dad’s treat for me for a school year-end celebration, and it was great! Spending a month in another country excites me every time because of the thought of seeing their culture and experiencing it.
12. I have learned how to bike!
In my age, maybe it was shocking that I did not know how to bike before. I am what you call a “taong-bahay” (house person, who did not want to spend her time outdoors). That was why I did not get to learn many things, including this. The place was huge at the Prince Khalifa bin Salman Park at Hidd, Bahrain, and that was the historical place where I learned how to bike. Thanks, daddy!
13. I have celebrated Father’s Day with my dad!
For the past seven years, we do not get to celebrate it with him in person. It was always through Skype. Thankfully, lucky number 7! It was also my first time bowling — an embarrassing and awesome experience.
14. I got to live alone!
Not really alone, I have a roommate that I met on enrollment day. She’s Zyra from BA Social Science (BA Soc Sci). I also go home every weekend when school stuff was not that stressful. It was only a two-hour commute, so I was fine. Living in a dorm and minding my own business, like food, laundry, and cleanliness of my room was a fun (but not that really) experience for me.
15. I tried going to the mall in my pajamas!
My dorm was like, a minute away from Robinsons – Manila. Late-night pajama party at the mall, anyone?
16. I got to meet new and awesome college friends!
I know that UPM was home to many interesting and equally-competitive friends, and I was glad meeting my clique this semester! Abbie, who has lots of good stories and saves our group from loads of writing assignments, JM, who always has a green joke or a poetry piece in mind, Janessa, our classy chorale girl who just always knows how to persuade us, and Ayra, our theater girl and “Mama Mary”. Together with me, their most awesome, charming, and beautiful unicorn, we will embark our quest to not get a cinco (5.00, failing grade) on every subject!
17. Three years and going strong!
Jerico and I are in a complicated relationship. We were not exactly together, but we were M.U.’s. Our three-year mark in our relationship had come, and we spent it together at the Rizal Park, my first time. We had loads of fun. Anyway, anything is fun as long as I am with him.
18. I went on a book fair for the first time!
Me and Zyra went to the 36th Manila International Book Fair at the Mall of Asia. Bibiliophile as I, I shopped all the way! That was our nightlife — instead of doing crazy stuff in the clubs, our nightlife consists of late-night book hoarding.
19. I got to show support by cheering my university!
Together with my college friends, I went to the Mall of Asia to watch the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) men’s basketball game of UP vs. Adamson University (AdU). Sadly, we lost. But, it was all right. Utak at Puso pa rin!
20. I went on a road trip with my high school clique!
We were incomplete, and only Melanie, Jerico, Joshua and I were free. Joshua drove with their new pick-up, and we went to all sorts of places to just unwind for the stressful college life.
21. I experienced being immersed in an indigenous community!
In our Social Science I subject, we had our first off-campus fieldwork in an Aeta community. We had so much fun, knowing different cultures and traditions and meeting friendly indigenous people. My personal experience can be read here and if you want some bits of Aeta culture and tradition, feel free to read here!
22. I got blamed for something I did not do!
It was very disappointing that my roommate, Zyra, would blame me for theft. She was all-crying to our landlord when I got home. Of course, I denied taking the money. She also blamed me for everything that she noticed, and I realized that she had that bottled-up anger for me. Storming out of the room after that, I was sad for the recent events. Our friendship was soiled, and I do not know if I want to go back to the way things were before.
23. I traveled to UP – Diliman alone!
I suck at directions, but because my final exam at P.E was a Fun Run at UP – Diliman, the next city after Manila, I was forced to travel alone. Luckily, my instinct on where to go did not fail me this time. I also passed the 5k marathon, so it was great!
24. I decided on my favorite restaurant!
8-street Bites, the best ever. Affordable for students, yet has very delicious foods! I have dined there with some of my college and high school friends, and they also loved it! Will be planning to take my family there next year.
25. I missed the chance to see my favorite stars!
I was heartbroken at Click Play: The Social Media Festival. When I learned Ryan Higa, a YouTube Legend and Ki Hong Lee, The Maze Runner actor was coming, I immediately bought VIP tickets. Unluckily, a week before the event, we had a History I field trip on the same day, organized by my terror professor. Because I believe in the saying Grades before *insert anything*, of course I chose my academics. I was on a tightrope with my grades in that subject, anyway. I sold my ticket through meet-up, which is my first time, and also missed the chance to meet and hug Ki Hong Lee, where I have a meet-and-greet pass! I can just hope for a second chance.
26. I went on a Christmas outreach program alone!
Alone, as in having no friend there. Not really my personality, but it was time to try for something new! I had fun, and you can read my adventures here.
27. I got to love BA OrCom!
Never in my life had I thought to pursue a degree in Communication. But come to think of it, my high school mentors and friends said it was very fitting for me. Now that I am in this course, I felt like I belong here. I would now try to have fun and do my best in this course!
28. My nationalistic personality intensified!
I have learned that every student here has a say in every national issue. Back in high school, I was interested in the socio-political affairs concerning our country. Studying here, I have found students with the same interests as me— the student’s strong love for our country, being an eye-opener of many and the voice of the masses. Serve the people!
29. I realized that college is way, way different from high school!
I got notified that high school geniuses would soon learn that they are not that great in college. Boy, I was right! Of course, my college friends, who came from different schools where they were the big fish in their own lake, too, also learned that they are just algae in the sea. Ouch, but yay, so much competitive spirit in the air!
30. My interest in blogging materialized!
One night, a sudden thought popped up in my head that told that it was time for me to have a blog. The influence of my friends, books and the much-needed platform to release my bottled-up thoughts were the perfect combination to start it.
2015 was great. I learned many lessons, experienced many things and met different people. Hoping next year would be filled with lots and lots of everything!
Photo taken from: http://www.eiu.com/public/topical_report.aspx?campaignid=Industries2015