a journal on hiking and traveling around the Philippines

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

My Version of A Great Weekend

Last Saturday, I went to Ultra for my usual weekend jog. I was really excited to go because I only get to jog there twice a week. I considered it as my version of quality “me time” because for most of the week, I’m never alone. However, as I approached the back entrance, this tall, muscular guy in black shirt blocked the gate and asked where I was going. I found it weird because they don’t normally have bouncers by the pedestrian entrance. I considered walking past him but he is almost twice my size and he looked like he can throw me back to my house. As confident as I could, I told him I’ll be going to the track and like a secret password he let me in. He must have thought I live there since there are dorms in Ultra. Much to my disappointment, it turns out that the track is closed to the jogging public until December 5 because there were several events being held. I felt really crushed. I have been looking forward to go there all week. I loved sitting on the cement, watching the sky, the grass, the soccer players, the tall buildings and most of all - the male swimmers by the pool (hahahahaha). It’s one of those places where it doesn’t matter if you’re sweating profusely or if you’re all muddy.

Defeatedly, I sat down by the bench and thought of my plan B. I really wanted to run so badly but I didn’t know where. I thought of running around Ultra but quickly dismissed it since there seemed to be a lot of cars coming in and I didn’t feel like dodging those. I sat on a bench and sent text messages to my friends to rant because I was really pissed - so much for my “Me Time”. Suddenly, ideas breezed through my head – Plan B – I’ll try wall climbing (which is in Power Up near Ultra. FYI – I’ve been wanting to try wall climbing for the longest time but I’ve always placed it at the back of my priorities. I figured that it was the best time to get started when I was really driven for some action. Never mind that I have never tried wall climbing or that I don’t know exactly what belay meant. I’ve climbed trees, cabinets, appliances and oh yeah – mountains. Wall climbing should feel familiar to me. Hehhee..wishful thinking..tsk tsk

Plan C – I’ll text my friend Mau and ask if he wants to go to Sunken Garden in UP Diliman and jog there instead. Freak! I just wanted to sweat! Kahit anooooo naaaa lang! I received a text from Mau a few minutes later saying that he wanted to jog with me. Hmmm…. At least I can laugh and talk to someone else. I decided to go with him so I walked another kilometer to the nearest MRT Station, squeezed my way through the Saturday crowd of commuters and rode another jeep to UP. Geez…so much effort just so I can run. I reached UP in about an hour and it was dark already. Again, I was disappointed. I was really hoping to run while the sun is setting and gaze at nature after my jog. With darkness overpowering the Sunken Garden, the only natural thing I would be able to witness is procreation. Even so, I had a great time with Mau. I jogged, he walked. We were able to circle the Sunken Garden for 50 minutes straight at a turtle’s pace. We laughed and talked about our lives and our plans for the future. It was really stress-relieving. It’s really true that the best things in life are free. I’m normally a happy person and the best moments of my life involved all those instances where I spent talking and laughing with those closest to my heart - over a cup of coffee, on the pavement while running, during a climb, in the pool, on the dinner table, in the soccer field, and wherever!

Thank you Lord for these relationships.

SUNDAY AFTERNOON

Went to Sunken Garden again to jog. I guess my warm-up wasn’t enough because after 20 minutes, my knees started to hurt pretty badly to the point that I was limping already. I would stop a couple of times to stretch and run again (not sure, if that was a good idea though). I was actually planning to run for 60 minutes but I realized it was not going to happen that day. Instead, I aimed to last a few more minutes until I reach this particular post – stretching my limit as far as I could. My knees were really hurting a few meters before that post but I had already set my mind to reach my little goal. I was not going to give up. I realized during the run that if I focus hard enough, my body and mind deviates from the pain. Olympics mode?! Hehehehehe! I really went at it and after a few more seconds, I finally reached my little goal. Wohooo! I realized that this calls for a little celebration despite being alone. Salivating and sweating, I bought fishballs and buco juice at a nearby stall and sat on the grass at the Sunken Garden to eat. Ahhh..sarap! Finally I had my “me-time” for the week. A few hours later, I met with friends and we went to Metro Walk to eat barbeque in Yohoo – one of our favorite places to eat – casual ambiance and great food - the best!

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Waaaahhh! I miss camping and climbing mountains. I miss packing my stuff and getting dirty. Can’t wait for this coming weekend. Manalmon – here we comeeeee!

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