Just testing...unfinished... will try to start writing journal earlier so I have time to finish. Must try to write at least 15 minutes everyday.
Dear Sacha, Ching and John
Today, there were many reasons to come together and celebrate kinship.
In addition to three birthdays (Tito Ric will turn 72 on December 18; his grandsons, Ron Ron and Ranz have recently turned 17 and 5, respectively), we were celebrating a homecoming. Your cousin, Polen, is visiting from Australia with her husband Dennis and infant-son James.
Kathy, Papa and I came almost two hours late since we had to wait for your papa to finish photographing the Marian procession at Intramuros. When we arrived in San Juan, "everyone" was there. Tita Francy wore a pretty red Chinese blouse. Even at 60+, now that she has learned to dye her hair, she remains attractive.
There was a lot of food on the table, but the entire clan seems to prefer to feast only on Chinese lumpia. It was good, but not quite as good as the way Auntie Nica used to cook them.
Auntie Nica could not come to the party. She had a little accident this morning. Tito Jon (John Tan) was busy heating some water and told Auntie Nica to wait for him to assist her in coming out of her room. But I suppose she was eager to see if she could walk unassisted. She did manage to reach the living room. Unfortunately, she leaned on a plastic monobloc table which was not heavy or stable enough to carry her weight, and she fell to the floor. Fortunately, it was not a major fall, and she did not break any bones. She's 70+ and her bones are fragile, as fragile as her health, and her memory. Ate Opu was there but it was obvious she was worrying about Auntie Nica.
Tita Betsy came with Christine, Lexine and Nicole, who came with her husband (I remember his family name - Moro - but not his first name) and her infant daughter, Nikki.
Tita Nancy came with her twins, Charlie and Edward, and their respective spouses and children.
Jo An, Kuya Aboy's daughter, told us about how she "won" her visa to the U.K. When she first applied for a visa she was denied because the consul did not believe that she could afford the trip and that she would come back. She tried to explain her side but she said when she tried to explain, she was always being interrupted by the consul who would say "I don't believe you" or "that's not believable." Very irked, she argued with him, but he was the consul, and at the end of the interview, he announced that he was denying her a visa. But, fortunately for Jo An, British foreign service law required him to tell her that she could appeal her case by writing to the government in U.K. She did, and U.K. ruled in her favor.
She'll get her passport and visa on Monday, but she does not want to leave for England now because she does not want to be there in winter. She's requesting that she be allowed to arrive in April or May instead. I guess that's proof that she does not intend to stay there - she can't and won't stay in England during the cold months. She's still Pinoy.
to be continued...