Friday, May 25, 2018

Reunions galore

2018 seems to be a year of reconnection for me because I continue to have so many opportunities to spend time with friends, including those who now live abroad. The last weekend was clear proof of this. It started out with lunch on Saturday. My college buddy Nemboy and his family were in Manila - I can't recall now but I believe it was because they were on vacation - and we met up with him in Elias in Bonifacio High Street. Despite the relatively short notice, a handful of us were able to join the mini-reunion. We spent a couple of hours in Elias before moving over to Single Origin next door for coffee and dessert. I would have wanted to have a waffle but I overate in Elias despite the fact that our sinigang was too salty LOL so I ended up just splitting the smaller Cappuccino Lava Cake with Letlet. But not after taking Nemboy's wife Kamela and their daughter to Piandre because their daughter needed to have a haircut. I decided to take them to Piandre since I needed to walk off a bit of what I just ate LOL.

It was late afternoon when we parted ways. I didn't go too far after that though because I had game night in the Taguig area that evening. We played several games, including a couple that I got to try for the first time. Burgle Bros. is a really cool cooperative game while Queendomino is kinda like Carcassonne in terms of how scoring works but not really in terms of game play. We very narrowly lost in Burgle Bros. but I'm happy that I won Queen Domino. We also had a belated birthday celebration for Tobie. Because he liked dark chocolate and peanut butter desserts, I decided to get a Garth Vader cake from Salt Bakery/The Noodle Bakes since that dessert is a peanut butter sponge with a cream and chocolate ganache frosting. Thankfully Tobie liked it. Game night for me ended in the wee hours of the morning and given that I was up quite early on Saturday, it meant that I had a very long but very fun and fulfilling day.

The next day, I had drinks with my English friend David. I used to see David quite a bit when he was based in Australia because he would have occasional trips to Manila but he moved to Costa Rica a few years ago. I think the last time I saw him may have been in 2014 so when he said he would be coming to Manila for a business trip, I made sure I would be able to meet him. We ended up having drinks in Samba, which is the restobar at the pool area of Shangri-La in BGC, which is where he was staying. Both of us had early days on Monday so we called it a night at around 11pm, but not after a really good discussion about our future plans, both short term and long term. I realized I actually miss having those kinds of conversations.

Thankfully, I still had some energy the next day because after work, I had to drive all the way to Tomas Morato to join my ex-colleagues from my first job for our reunion with Raych, who was visiting Manila from Australia. I'm happy that we now get to see Raych about once a year; in the past, I think we would only see her about once every 2-4 years. Bett suggested we have dinner in Fleur De Lys. I was very familiar with this place because I am a big fan of their Florentines (which I forgot to order as take home when I left, probably because I was yet again very full from our meal).

After three consecutive days of reunions and get-togethers, I had a short break before the last reunion that week, which was dinner with some of my ex-colleagues in Skinny Mike's on Thursday. When we selected the date for our reunion, Jody suggested that we just have dinner in Skinny Mike's because he had a gig there on the date that we set. Initially, it seemed like a good idea so that we would get to see Jody perform live but once the first band started playing, we immediately realized that it wasn't exactly the ideal venue to catch up because we couldn't really hear ourselves over the live music. We actually ended up like millennials since we decided to chat on messenger while the bands were playing so we could communicate without straining our voices. It was a really funny and unique experience and we were all laughing about it as we were doing it. :) Apart from getting see people I hadn't hung out with in a while, it was also the first time I went to a gig in ages. Thankfully, the bands that performed were good. My old boss was also there so I got to catch up with him too. All in all, it was a great night and a great way to end a series of pretty awesome reunions with great friends.

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