Anyone who knows me knows that I dislike going out. I generally work from home so I only go out when I really really have to. I’ve been like this since coming back from Cambodia. I think the desire to live like a hermit is one of the last vestiges of clinical depression I have yet to shed.
As my luck would have it, I managed to get not one but two appointments over the weekend. Attendance to both events was not a requirement in the strictest sense of the word but I have made a commitment to attend so I have to show up, if only to protect my integrity.
My first appointment was on Saturday. I attended the orientation for a writing workshop that I recently got accepted to. In the orientation the ground rules were set by the workshop facilitator, which were very basic and manageable. Our facilitator is a popular media person, she writes a newspaper column and makes books out of them. I have an ex who is one of her rabid fans. I like her enough to follow her blog and I like to think I’m one of her regular “commenters” but this assumption is debatable. It was held in Makati in the afternoon and my biggest worry was getting a cab home. This somewhat distracted me from soaking in the spirit of the event. The coffee went cold before I could partake of it and it dampened my spirit further.
However, the books from the book swap and from joining a translation group gave me joy. They will give me hours of reading pleasure, I’m sure. I think, among the participants, that I’m the only person from Manila. By the time I managed to say good-bye, it was past 6PM and raining lightly. It took me about 40 minutes to get a cab and the resulting traffic from the rains added about 30 minutes to my trip home.
My next appointment was on Sunday. I went to a get-together with my co-fellows from the 1996 Dumaguete workshop. We reconnected back in 2011 with dinner and coffee and last year there was another that I failed to attend so this year I made sure I did. This time we planned a long, relaxed lunch in the home of one of our co-fellows. Her home is in Pasig and fortunately, I caught a ride from another co-fellow who lived somewhat close to my own home. It was also a potluck thing and I promised to bring some pasta salad. Seven of us originally confirmed attendance but only 4 of us actually made it. The 3 had to cancel because of work-related reasons. Thanks to technology, another co-fellow managed to join the lunch virtually, through the internet.
For lunch we shared my pasta salad, some roast chicken, paella negra, and an assortment of baked goods. Over coffee and then wine, we read out loud our latest writing projects/ outputs, discussing as if we were back in the workshop–only we were much nicer than our original panelists. Hehehe. At the end of the afternoon we did the last part of the reunion–the exchange of gifts. And I got a beautiful journal and a good book!
This past weekend was particularly tiring and stressful but looking at the rewards (not just the books but the chance to make new friends and/ or catch up with old ones) for my effort, well, what can I say except for… it’s all good! 🙂