Willing to be Illuminated and Pierced

Archive for December, 2016

The Wrong Gift

My eyebrows were twitching with horror as I glared at the huge box before me. By the looks of it, it did not contain the book I had asked for in my Christmas wish list. The moment I ripped open the green, Christmas wrapper around it, I was even more horrified.

I had received a pair of sandals in our office Kriskringle.

“WHAT’S THIS?!” I cried in dismay, my voice ringing around the office. “I DID NOT ASK FOR A PAIR OF SANDALS THIS CHRISTMAS!”

I realized my embarrassment when a bespectacled guy approached me. He was the one who had picked my name. He explained he could not find the one I was wishing for so he looked for anything that’s connected to my interest. He thought the sandals would be good for my hiking trips, but I am sorry they could not help my feet maintain balance on assaults. I’d rather have highly-expensive shoes to ensure footing on such trips.

He offered to replace the gift since I did not like it. 

I meekly and guiltily returned the box to him. Such was the episode of receiving the wrong gift.

But that was not the first time I had received disappointments on such occasions.

For the past two consecutive Christmas parties at another company, I had never – as in, never – had the privilege of receiving any of the three gifts I had listed on our Kriskingle wish list. The guy who had picked up my name gave me disappointing gifts. He explained he had lost the list…and lost it again the next year because he was the same guy who had picked up my name. He seems to be at the habit of losing wish lists.

My friend warned me that men usually don’t take the time and effort to look for what was listed in the wish list of their monito or monita. But I am careful not to do that to keep from ruining the Christmas spirit of my monito or monita.

I took so much time and effort to find what my monita really wanted. It was harrowing and stressful, especially copies of the book she wanted were sold out in the midst of panic buyers. I was ready to give up and resolve to another gift until a text message came to me at the last minute, reserving the book she wanted under my name. 

Praise God for the timing. I guess this is the reason I was not buying another gift or asking an accomplice if she wanted another book of the same author. When she unwrapped the present, she was bursting with glee and she ran away with the most perfect Christmas present she had received in her life.

She was total stranger to me. But deep inside I was glad to make her happy by fulfilling her wish (but hey, I’m no genie). Somehow, that’s my mission. And I want to ensure that the receiver would not be disappointed. 

Somehow, I believe some people would give just anything because tradition obligates them to do so. But giving gifts is not an obligation. It is an act of appreciation, friendship, love, and respect. 

It’s fulfilling when the person receiving your gift smiles because all your effort and sacrifice searching for it has been paid. I would never forget when my monito, a seious guy who would occasionally give charming half smiles, brightened up when he received the pair of boxers he wanted. That smile made me forget the great embarrassment of going to the men’s section to buy a pair of boxers (where I asked my mom to accompany me on buying such a pair because I had no idea about boxers). As much as possible, I follow what’s in a person’s wish list because it’s also an act of valuing that person. In turn, receiving the gift I really wanted gives me the impression that the giver values me well. 

All my disappointment had washed away when my closest friends gave me the most wonderful gifts later that day. I saw they were all attributed to my personality and needs. By what I had received, I could see their effort and the love they had poured into their sleepless search across every mall and specialty store. It’s fun receiving them but it was even more fulfilling to know how much I am loved.

I just hope my Secret Santa next year would value me just as I value my monito or monita. And before this year ends, I’ll make a follow up on my not-so-secret Santa about the right and perfect gift I had been waiting for all my life…

Callouses On My Fingers

They are shedding once again. Gaining them was painful but they were my prized posessions. After the guitar has been returned to its owner, they were lonely, useless and dying. The callouses on my fingers are being taken off my fingertips and they can only be revived if I have my own guitar.

I am willing to endure the pain again. All for the love of music…

The Magic Of Dinner Over Movies (Tenth Bite): Relax and Take A Good Cup of Coffee at D’Cup Coffee Republic 

We all love cafés. A steaming cup of coffee is good to stir up so many memories with friends who are willing to share it with you. Many cafés are springing up in every side to cater coffee loving buddies who wanted nothing but a good cup and a place to hang out. This is one of those I have appreciated.

D’Cup Coffee Republic is a newly opened coffee house located at The Artisan Lounge inside Pioneer St. Market. It is very spacious and very simple in design. Although it still lack the usual furnishings of an artsy coffee house, their coffee is something to be anticipated.

Latte de Choc Nut

All hot coffee cost Php138 and yet every cup is worth the price because of its size and taste. One cup is really huge, enough to last for hours while my friends and I chatted much for the time we stayed.

Kaffe Hazelnut and Carrot Cake

The smell of real, fine coffee has soothed our nerves as they were infused with the sweet aroma of pandan (for the Kaffe Pandan), the sweetness of hazelnut (for the Kaffe Hazelnut), and the fine taste of choc nut (for Latte de Choc Nut). But let me advice you to mix Latte de Choc Nut well so the choc nut beneath would be mixed well with the coffee. I had my mistake by not doing so, that’s why I couldn’t find the taste of choc nut at the initial sip.

Kaffe Pandan and Oatmeat Choco-Chip Cookie

We partnered it with Carrot Cake (Php118), Ambrosia (Php88), and a gigantic Oatmeal Choco-Chip Cookie (Php78). We had a pair of Ambrosia for free since we ordered more than two cups. All pastries were fulfilling and they are all worth the price.

A pair of Ambrosia bars

I am fascinated by the words of inspiration attached to every meal. Beside every cup and pastry was a card filled with light factoids or words of encouragement. The café’s operations manager, Rezzhel Sanchez, told us they aim to give inspiration to every visitor coming through their doorstep. I appreciate the café’s crews and owners because they were very accommodating and genuinely amiable. They do not only function as a business but this café serves as a place of rest to anyone who would drop by.

Some of the books you could find at the reading lounge

A reading lounge and bookstore stands nearby. They encourage every visitor to take the time to read and check out the books on sale. Inspirational books are up for grabs on the shelves. I’d love to drop by again to check out more of their books while drinking coffee.

My friends with the cafe’s operations manager, Rezzhel Sanchez.

I’d recommend this place especially for those who are sick and tired of crowded commercial coffee houses. D’Cup Coffee Republic could be found at the 2nd floor of Pioneer St. Market, inside the HMR Parking Compound in Mandaluyong City. You can get there by taking a tricycle from Robinsons Forum if you’d be coming from MRT Boni Station. Hope you can drop by there and say hello to the friendly crew.

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