Post a Week: The Story Never Grows Old

Tell us about a book you can read again and again without getting bored — what is it that speaks to you?

An uncreated Being
all alone.

Oceans, mountains, rivers, animals
and finally
a being created —
One of His own.

A serpent.

A tree.

Spiritual death to all humanity.

A mission to get His children back.

A chosen people
Men and women falling

A Messiah,
A Saviour to all.

New life to those who believe
Abundant grace
Victory over sin and
The grave.

A second coming
A new world
An era where tears are but a distant memory
Pain and suffering are but fragments
Of a strange dream.

A new world
One reigned by an uncreated Being
And children He calls
His own.


Post a Week: Freaky Friday

If you could be someone else for a day, who would you be, and why? If that seems too easy, try this one: who would you like to have spend a day as you and what do you hope they’d learn from the experience?

I wonder what it’s like to live your life. To take that long, long, long commute to your office daily. To not drink tea, to not drink coffee, to watch what you eat more or less constantly. To head back home when the rest of the world is ready to hit the sack, to sleep long after I had already bid you sweet good night.

I want to feel the pressure you feel there. Maybe, if I do, I’d understand more. I try to understand, to empathize now, but as a tabby cat comprehends the carabao’s toil, so do I comprehend you.

You have so much of my respect. I’d go as far to say that I admire you greatly. It would be fun to live your life out.

Even if it’s just for a day.


Post a Week: Tears

We cry for lots of reasons: sadness, pain, fear . . . and happiness. When was the last time you shed tears of joy?

November 2012. A script, a notebook, a hot pink phone. Frustrated tears roll down my chin as I struggle to verbalize the turmoil of emotions that have been welling up inside my chest for the past few months or so.

I laugh at myself, feeling like a telesalesperson with that sheet of muddled up writings in front of me. You laugh too, telling me you won’t let me live this down.

Struggles. Questions. Misunderstandings. I let my awkward words stumble and tumble out.

Kind words. Apologies. Resolutions and affirmations. The pain subsides and I find myself smiling through a new set of tears.

Tears of relief. Tears of new found joy.

Let’s make this fun, you say. Yeah.

Let’s. :)



Post a Week: O Best Beloved

What was your favorite book as a child? Did it influence the person you are now?

The Elephant’s Child. How the Camel Got His Hump. How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin.

Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling.

For my eight (or was it seventh?) birthday, I got what I believed was the best present ever. We had just gotten home from the beach (our “clan” travels from the mountains down to the sea every Araw ng Kagitingan because it’s a holiday and all) and there was a thick birthday gift waiting for me. I couldn’t wait to open it.

I don’t remember if I opened the package carefully or if I ripped it to shreds. But I can imagine how I must have ooh-ed and ahh-ed, seeing the thick volume with the green and yellow hardbound cover peeking out from under the wrapper.

I loved that book. I loved the stories inside, far-fetched as they were. Did you know that elephants have trunks because the Elephant’s Child had a nasty tug-of-war with the crocodile by the Limpopo River? Did you know that camels’ humps were originally called humphs but the name was changed so as not to hurt the camels bearing them? And did you know that the rhino’s skin is all wrinkly because a naughty Parsee put cake crumbs in it while the poor soul was bathing (without his skin) near the beach of an Altogether Uninhabited Island?

I know, I know. The stories aren’t real, O Best Beloved.

But they taught me to look at the world with wonder. They taught me to believe in the unbelievable. And they taught me to keep careful watch of my clothes whenever I’m out swimming or bathing.



Post a Week: 180

Tell us about a time you did a 180 — changed your views on something, reversed a decision, or acted in a way you ordinarily don’t.

July 31, 2004. Aqua Altria, San Antonio. Los Baños, Laguna.

Me. In my navy blue tee, cream-coloured khakis, large rubber shoes, and onion cut hair.

Him. With His patient forgiveness, unfathomable lovingkindness, and overwhelming faithfulness.

An encounter. One that changed my life forever.

One that opened up my eyes to a whole new world. One that brought me out from darkness into light. One that mended my brokenness and replaced it with sweet, sweet wholeness. One that enabled me to live a life filled with grace and freedom.

180. Thankfully not a 360.

The road is straight and narrow. I shall joyfully continue to press on.


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Post A Week: Seven Days Vacay

You wake up tomorrow morning to find all your plans have been cancelled for the next seven days and $10,000 on your dresser. Tell us about your week.

Dearest Mari,

It has come to our attention that you are in dire need of a vacation. This being so, we have scrapped all your plans for the next seven days. Yes, the guests you are expecting this weekend will be coming on the sixteenth and seventeenth instead. Yes, we have already submitted your leave form. It has already been approved but it will not be deducted from your current number of annual leaves. And yes, you can fetch the laundered blankets and sheets next Saturday instead.

Attached herewith is $10,000 (yes, that’s US Dollars, not Singaporean Dollars) to be used at your disposal.


The Powers That Be

Oh Most Esteemed Powers That Be,

I would like to sincerely thank you for granting me respite for seven days and for even providing the necessary money. I would like to inform you that I have tithed 10% and kept 30% in my savings account. The other 10% I have given to a worthy cause. The remaining 50% I have used for the vacation you have made great pains to acquire for me.

I have opted not to go back to my home country since the political threads between her and my country of employment are currently in a very fragile state. Thus, I have decided to venture into a more peaceful territory. I spent five days in Hanoi. The two days I had to use for travel (thank you, AirAsia).

I shall be sending you a postcard, a key chain, and a T-Shirt soon as tokens of my appreciation.

Again, thank you.

Yours faithfully,




Post a Week: Death to the Alarm Clock

Remember when you wrote down the first thought you had this morning? Great. Now write a post about it.

7:30 AM.

“Hey, hey, dear daughter… I’m so proud to be your father… Each day is like a gift from God…” goes my nameless hot pink Nokia phone.

Ugh. Five more minutes. No make that ten. I hit snooze.

“There’s a million other guys who would leave ya. And when you say that you’re in love they won’t believe ya — ” Stevie Wonder blares out.

No, no, no. Fifteen minutes. I need fifteen minutes more. I hit the snooze icon flashing across my iPad’s screen.

And then Shane and Shane start playing their song again.

Welcome to my daily, one hour battle with my alarm clock — err, clocks, I mean.

In between reaching out for the different snooze buttons, my subconscious drifts back and forth between dreams of a seemingly pagan girl and a Red Tent; between thoughts of my unprepared breakfast and my slowly decreasing bath time; and between expectations of going home, of possibly looking into a pair of deep brown eyes.

I snuggle deeper into my bed. One hand holds my Nokia phone, still.

“Hey, hey, dear daughter…”

“I’m never gonna leave you…”

There they go again. I sigh in resignation. I hit the off buttons, stretch my arms, and let out a cry.

It’s time to get up.



Post a Week: Undo

If you could un-invent something, what would it be? Discuss why, potential repercussions, or a possible alternative.

Thanks for the great idea, rarasaur!

The letters stare at me, cold and emotionless against the glare of my computer screen. “Hello, how are you?” they read. Hello? How are you? Those four cordial words would never be enough to convey all the emotion I’m feeling right now.

Longing. Wistful pining. Heartfelt concern. Love. These deserve more than an email. These deserve more than bytes of pixels sent over secure protocols and SMTP connections. These deserve —

These deserve me seeing you face to face, seeing your reaction as I shakily speak those simple words out. These deserve me hearing how you’d respond, instantly or after a moment or two of thoughtful silence — not after days of Internet muteness.

The next best thing is a real letter, complete with my awkward strokes and tense lettering.

But what can I do? In the end, I realize it’s better not to undo.

I type a few more paragraphs. Hopefully they’ll do me and my heart justice.