An Open Letter to Chichiwe: Year 2

Kære Daddy Deng,

Today”s Father’s Day here in Denmark, and in the Philippines, you’ll be celebrating it on the 3rd Sunday of June. So, I wanted to greet you a Happy, Happy Father’s Day. Hurrah! Hurrah! And a looooong… Hurraaaaah! Hihi. A lot of things happened after my last open letter to you and until this letter. Things changed, and most I believe, for the better. But, if there’s one thing that’s constant, it’s that I still think that you’re the best dad in the world. 🙂

I have a better relationship with God now… more intimate, more personal. Thank you for always reminding me to read my Bible and say my prayers. If I’m not mistaken, you’ve read the whole Bible twice. I could remember those afternoons I would see you sitting on a chair with your glasses on and reading the big Bible we have. And just saying, I am really fascinated with that Bible, with all the colorful photographs.Thank you for always reminding me to trust God in everything I do and to thank Him always. Of course you know I’m part of the worship team now at the Baptist Church. Do you remember I asked you, after reading the lifestory of St. Therese of Lisieux, what do you think about me entering the convent. You were somehow taken aback and you told me to focus on my bachelor first and we could discuss it after I graduate. Now, I have graduated and I got my degree, but I don’t think I’m going to enter a convent now and became a nun. I’ll do something else to serve God. I don’t think the convent or cloister is the place where God wants me to be. But, if you look back, a lot of people assumed that I would become a nun someday because I used to spend a lot of time in our church actively participating in almost all of the activities. Thanks for supporting me and allowing me to be an active member in our church. Do you remember there was a moment in our lives when it was just you and me who goes to church together? I guess that was the time that Mommy was still fuming mad and disappointed with me. But you, you were really just like the father of the prodigal son, you just showed me love and never said any resentful word towards me. And no, I don’t take that sad moments against mom, she has all the right to be angry and disappointed anyway. But, once again, thank you for your forgiveness. Just thinking about how things have been, I’d say, I see a trait of our Heavenly Father in you. Isn’t that wonderful? This makes me very excited to meet and greet our Heavenly Father.

I felt guilty that I am on my second open Father’s Day letter to you, but I didn’t do this with mom. But, later on I realized, it’s probably because whenever I call the two of you, it’s always mom who speaks a lot with me. I have most conversations with her. You, you would just be glad to hear my voice; ask how I’m doing; make a small talk; tell me to take care, don’t forget to go to church, and put God in everything I do; and then you’d tell me, here’s mom, she has a lot to tell you; and of course, you always say that you love me and I love you a lot, too. I think I got my listening skill from you and my talking abilities from Mommy. Hihi.

And after 48 years and a thousand moons, I fell in love again, still am. But, this time, I was able to tell you about it. Well, not all the details. But, at least, I was able to open this on my own; to tell you that I found someone. And I am very determined to let you know about it, that I finally found someone I could introduce to you and our family. I really hope that you could meet him someday.  You’ll enjoy his company. I believe that you guys would understand each other; that you could have amazing conversations together. And oh, I’m not sure if Achie Joy showed you his picture, but according to Joana, Carol and Flor, he looks a lot like you. Especially when he smiles and/or frown his forehead. Haha. Daddy Deng, you’re little girl is growing up na and turning into what I hope to be a fine lady. But, nah, I guess I’ll probably turn into a warrior princess. Hahaha! There’s so much about him that I could tell you but I’m gonna stop because there is the possibility that he would read this and keda pa grande disuyo cabeza kay all praises yo. Hehehe. Di ko naman balak na ipaalam sa kanya ano ang blog ko, gusto ko lang ipakita yung layout. Aba nung bumalik sa kinauupuan niya eh ni-scan agad-agad at keen observer nga yata talaga, nahanap niya agad yung pangalan ni Darwish at yung joke ko tungkol kay Hamed.Hoy, ikaw, pag nabasa mo ‘to, bakit yung pangalan ni Darwish di mo nakakalimutan, pero yung pangalan ng isla namin, isang century pa yata bago mo maalala? At eto pa, Deng, kinabukasan, bukas pa rin yung site ko sa computer niya. Kalurkey!!! And oh, just to make things clear Deng, he’s not my boyfriend, I just love him like he’s the one. Hihihi. Ayaw sa akin nung tao eh, anong magagawa natin diba? Di naman pwedeng pilitin diba? Sabi nga, ang hinog sa pilit, mapait. But, if you knew how things have been better and how happy I’ve been since I met him, you would be glad I did. So, fighting lang nuh maskin pa iyo lang el ta ama conele.

It’s quite sad though that I might not be able to go home for a vacation this December. Well, you know, I’m going to a Bible school and I have to pay my fees. So, the money intended for my trip, I’ll use to pay for my dues in school. But, we’ll see what God’s plan is. His plan is always better than my plan anyway. So, I’ll just trust in God’s plan and let Him lead me through it. Who knows, He just might bring you and mom here. Oh diba bongga? He’s really been doing amazing things in my life lately; making His presence felt. It’s just awesome!

So, stay safe and healthy, ne, Chichiwe… I still wanna see you and mom celebrate your golden wedding anniversary, and that would be in 3 years. When I get married, I want to celebrate my golden or diamond wedding anniversary, too. Do you know who I wanna get married to, Deng? Este kita ta habla, kailangan pa bang i-memorize yan? Sabe ya si quien Deng nuh? Hihihi. But, he always push me to some other guy, always telling me that I could fall in love another person. Pasaway! Well, okay, fine, whatever. But, yeah, if I’m gonna get married, I, in cooperation with my husband, will work out to make it lasts our lifetime and eternity. People would probably react with “Big words”. Kebz.

I miss you a lot, Deng. The last time I dreamt of you, I woke up and found myself in tears. I was crying in my dreams. I got worried but I know you’re fine. It turned out that Francoise, his goldfish, died. We really have to do Skype often. I have to talk to Achie about this. It would be nice if you could have internet connection at home, but, the way things are happening there in the isla, it’s not really worth it. So, I’ll figure this out with Achie.

There are more things I wanna tell you, but I believe it’s better if I just say it to you personally. I just wanna show the world how proud I am to be your daughter with this open letter. You are the best dad in the world and I can’t thank God enough for blessing me with your love and life. Thanks for letting this little girl become your world at some point in your life. Yo te amo mucho Daddy Deng. Besos y abrazos.

Med kærlig hilsen,
Vess 🙂

 

 

Memories of the Snow: Sne Engel, Lasse

”Do you wanna smoke?”

 Smoke? I heard him say “smoke”. I don’t smoke. Never tried and never would. Okay, never say never, but I’m not inclined into smoking. Not one bit.

 “Nej, tak”, I answered.

 “Venus, snow’s falling. There’s snow outside.” says Janika, my host mom. She was standing alongside him.

 “Oh, snow. There’s snow already?” As it dawned on me that I mistook smoke for snow, I assure you I could have brightened the whole gymnasium with my glow when I heard that snow is already falling. I’ve been looking forward to it.

 “Ja, do you wanna see snow?” He asked again.

 “Ja, of course. Snow!!!”I beamed.

 He took my arm and led me out of the gymnasium into one of the most beautiful scene I’ve ever seen…

I was having an unplanned night out with my friends who I haven’t seen for a long time, when I heard Angels by Robbie Williams again. It has been almost a year since we first and, hopefully not, last saw each other. I didn’t know the song would still affect me the way it did in those weeks after we met. Everytime I hear it, it would remind me the way he looked at me… the way he held my hand… the way he took my arms… the way he hugged me… the way he’d lift me up… the way he made me feel like I’m the most beautiful girl in the room… that there’s no other woman for him but me. *Charooot!!!* But, I guess Angels would always be his. It will always remind me of him.

After meeting him, I told myself that I’m going to immortalize it by writing it down. I started to make a draft, but I never got to finish it. I tell myself that I’m waiting for the right timing, although admittedly, I was just procrastinating. Until I saw the challenge given by the Daily Post: Weekly Writing Challenge: Moved by Music. So, I told myself, I guess it’s about time to finally release the story that has long been overdue.

So, like I was saying, I was out with friends in a bar and when the music started to play I couldn’t help but close my eyes and all the memories came rushing in…

It was a Saturday; December the 1st. It’s the start of the month that most people look forward to, including me. So, me and Ivy made plans on how to spend our Saturday; but we had to cancel. That meant I would stay home, ALONE, because the kids are out and my host parents are going to a Christmas party. Well, it wasn’t that bad. I’m used to being on my own and I think I’d love to try to be home alone here. Really not a bad idea at all. I made plans on what to do and what to eat (yep, it’s necessary to include food on the plan). However, when my host parents learned that I will stay home for the weekend, they invited me to join them. It took me like 30 minutes to decide whether I would join them or not. I mean, I already made plans on how to spend my HOME ALONE WEEKEND and I kinda like the idea of making it materialize. But, I also thought that it would also be a good idea to go out and socialize and meet new people and experience a Danish Julefrokost. Plus, it would be my first. So, I assured myself that in case I would find the event boring, I could always go home ahead of them. Afterall, we’re bringing our bikes with us and the venue isn’t far, so, I wouldn’t really be a bother to them if I decided to go home.

We were the first guests to arrive in the venue. I learned that it wasn’t just my host dad’s firm that was having their Christmas party there; there were other companies, too. After a few minutes, other guests started to arrive and of course introductions and handshakes were made and conversations started to flow among guests and I was like, “Please remind me why I am here”. But, that would just be irrational because the guests I met are really nice. I guess that was just me being preposterous because somehow, I’m not being left out. I’m just being difficult I guess. So, I told myself to behave, which I managed to do.

When were about to take our seats, I saw a guy pass by. He reminded me of Rasmus Falk, a football player with OB, the city’s football club. I acknowledged (just inside my head of course), that he’s handsome. And that was the end of it. Or so I thought. It wasn’t until dinner was through when I finally got to meet him. During dinner he was seated at the end of the table which was, well, far from where I was seated. I didn’t mind though; I was seated beside an equally handsome, young man, too. Hahaha!!!

I was secretly hoping that the one seated beside me would ask me for a dance, because we were actually moving our bodies together in tune with the song while seated. But, I think, I made a strike 2 which probably turned him off. Hahaha! I was just fortunate enough to be saved from a very uncomfortable situation when my host dad arrived to ask me for a dance, which I willingly and gladly obliged. Just an FYI, I’m not really into dancing; I’m more into singing. But, I had fun. And by the way, when dinner started, thoughts of going home ahead of them totally flew off the window because I was already having fun, and of course, I get to sit beside a handsome guy. *grins*

“Would you like to have a toast with me?” He turned to me while holding up his glass of drink.

 “S-sure.” I answered doubtfully, confused that he just suddenly turned to me and made a toast. But, I have a soda in hand, so I raised it up.

 “Skål.”

 We clink our glasses and I thought that was the end of his attention to me. Boy, I was wrong…

I went dancing with my host mom, too. And when we returned to our seats, this time, people are all over now, so seats are interchanged, he (RF’s-look-a-like) was sitting on my chair. Nothing to fuss though. The seat beside him is not taken, so I just sat down on it. He was actually busy talking to someone else and I wasn’t paying him any attention. I was just looking around, seeing what people are doing while sipping my soda when he turned to me and made a toast. I have a soda in hand, so why not, and “Skål” we go. I thought that was the end of our conversation. But, I guess he decided I’m intriguing enough to have a small talk with me. He introduced himself and asked for my name. He thought I was from Thailand. I told him I’m from the Philippines. He couldn’t believe I’m 24 (I was when we met, I turned 25 this year)… just like everybody else. I couldn’t get out from him how old he was, but after some stalking research and all that, I figured he was 20 (21 by now, I suppose). We discussed about a lot of stuff: Denmark, the Philippines, about our job, and whatnot. What I find fascinating about our conversation is that it wasn’t just superficial. He knew I was taking care of a disabled kid, so he asked me what I would do if, hypothetically, I’ll have a disabled kid of my own. My host mom was actually surprised when I told her we talked about this stuff. She was like, “You already talked about that?”

“What can you say about this?” He asked me while showing me the whole area

“It’s beautiful.” I murmured. I was so enthralled by the view. Enchanted.

“What do you wanna do? You can do whatever you want.”

“I-I don’t know.” I was still overwhelmed with my first snow scene.

“Do whatever you want. Watch.” And he proceeded in making a snowball and hitting his friend with it. And he teasingly ran behind me.
 “Just do whatever you want.”

“Okay.” I lifted my head, closed my eyes and spread my arms. Savored the feel of the falling snow as it touches my skin.

A Christmas village, nah, not really, that wasn’t what I saw. There weren’t any Christmas lights or Christmas trimmings adorning the vicinity, so I can’t really call it a Christmas village. ‘Twas a winter wonderland though. The whole expanse covered in white: snow on the trees; snow on the pavement; snow on roofs and houses; and, snow on cars. When we were on our way back inside, an old lady even told me I look beautiful with silvers on my hair; she was referring to the snow when she said silvers on my hair (I know, I asked her. Haha!)

“Come let’s dance again.” He offered me his hands.

“Sure.” I took his hands. He led me up the stage. I was hesitant going up the stage. “Are you sure we could come up here?”

“Yeah. Trust me.”

And after 5 minutes maybe, we were told to go down the stage. Haha. But, I don’t regret going on that stage with him. It was the first time I ever did that; go up the stage with a live band playing… with a guy I barely knew… and danced a slow dance. We danced to the tune of Angels. We danced to a lot of songs, but it was Angels that really got me. It was our only slow dance.

“Glædelig Jul.” He hugged me tight. Looked at me bewitchingly with his stunning blue eyes.

“I lige måde. Glædelig jul også.” I hugged him back. And we danced and hanged out together until the party was over.

My first memory of snow will always be romantic, not just special, maybe a little bittersweet, but romantic. If I spent the night over at my friend’s place, it would always be special, too. They even had wine, perfect timing to make a toast because all of us are new in Denmark. It was our first time to experience snow. But, it wouldn’t be romantic like how it happened when I spent it with him.

“Hold this.” He handed me his almost-empty glass of beer.

 “What are you gonna do?” I asked him, a little confused.

 “Just hold this and see.”

 “Okay.”

 I reached for his glass, and then he lay down on the snow and started moving his arms and legs like he was doing jumping-jack-laying-down. Then I realized he was making a snow angel and I was really touched by the gesture. After doing it, he stood up and faced me.

 “Tell me, what do you see?”

 “A snow angel.” I answered dreamily while looking at it. Then, I turned to look at him.

 He just smiled and took my arms again…

Mini Monday

Day 35

Nothing extraordinary happened today. I just made my first ever banana cake. It turned out fine. It was delicious actually. But, I know I can make a far better one next time. And maybe with nuts and raisins and chocolate chip in it, too.

Also proved to myself that some of the genre I tend to watch are just crap. Like really crap. Not worth watching. Buti pa ang anime, mas kaaya-aya pa. I learn from it. Otaku spirit, activate! That said, I’m gonna watch One Piece 618 now. Tadaa!

Triple Date

Day 32. Friday. November 1.

Stayed at home and laver hygge and watched After Earth while eating McDonald’s for dinner with my host dad and the kids. It was really a good movie. My host mom wasn’t home for it because she had an appointment. Pagkatapos nag Customer Service Representative kay Elyonna. Hahaha!!!

Day 33. Saturday. November 2.

Went to Lovsang 2013 at the Rådhus. Had a blessed time there. Then went to Tita Mina’s little pa-birthday celeb. Then went out again with Tricia. Details later. Haha. On another post.

Day 34. Sunday. November 3.

Had a wonderful morning service at church and an enlightening fellowship afterwards with my lovely ladies: Cynthia, Eva, Elyonna, Jeza, Krislee, Lotis, and Noemie. Attended the Venue with them and Gypsy, Irene, Ivy, and Janeth. Felt energized. Had a small talk and laver hygge med dem og Monika, Rebecca, and Silvia. Awesome Sunday. Got home a little wet though. Nagbike sa ulan eh.

Trick or Treat Thursday

This is what… day 31. Hahaha! The last one I posted for my supposed blog diary is day 9. I suck. Totally. Can you see my dedication? My passion? My commitment? Nada. And I won’t make any excuses for this. I can come up with a million reasons; but, I won’t go into that. I really have to practice discipline. Always. I try my best though. I still fail. But, I’m not giving up.

This is supposed to be a draft for day 10 which I entitled Thanatos Thursday (which should have been Tartarus; not Thanatos). On that Thursday I started reading the House of Hades by Rick Riordan and I watched the fourth Bleach movie: The Hell Verse, therefore the reference to Tartarus and Thanatos. So in those days that I haven’t posted here I’ve finished reading the House of Hades and two of the Mortal Instruments books: City of Bones and City of Ashes. I also started to read the third book in the series, City of Glass. But, I stopped because in the middle of my reading, I watched the movie version of City of Bones which left me utterly disappointed and refrained me from reading the rest of the book. I still have to find my mojo back in reading the Mortal Instruments. In between reading, I watched some episodes of Sword Art Online and Kore wa Zombie Desu Ka. I also watched quite a few movies: Here Comes the Boom, I am Legend (I was finally able to watch until the end), Despicable Me 2 (so wanted to watch this on the big screen, but it’s only dubbed in Dansk and I’m not really sure I could understand all of the conversation), Olympus Has Fallen, White House Down, Pacific Rim (I regret not watching this on the big screen), World War Z and The Host (second time around),

Apart from reading and writing, I also posted a lot of pictures in Instagram. Went to Tina’s birthday celebration and sang for her (with the other Marses) and hangout with Connie for the last time before she moved to Norway. I attended the Harry Potter festival; on the first day with Victor and on the second day with Elyonna. I lost my phone but found it again. Lucky me! And after 3 months, I was able to go for a night out with the girls and hangout at Color Bar. Sing like a pro and dance like nobody’s looking. Met someone. A decent guy who happened to last not only for the night. Communicated with him for 2 days. Well, it’s not that long but hey that’s a progress. The other decent guys I met only lasted for the night. Hahaha!

I guess that’s that. It doesn’t seem like a lot, eh? Well, whatever. Trick or treat! Happy Halloween! 🙂

Wednesday’s Calm, Lucky Nine

Day Nine.

I had a calm and relaxing Wednesday. After doing my responsibilities in the morning, I was able to sit down and enjoy lunch and have a little nap afterwards. I wasn’t planning to sleep, but, I was laying down while reading a pocketbook and after a while I dozed off and slumbered to Lalalandia. But, I got to finish the book, too. When I woke up, I still had time to spare before working again, so I used it to read again. It has been a year, I think, since I last read a PHR novel. Gosh, how I missed those days that I get to read more than three PHR novels in a day. So, it was really refreshing to be able to finish one today. I miss collecting pocketbooks, too. Oh well, it has to wait. I’d probably buy a lot of books when I go back to the PH. It’s cheaper there.

Then, today, I received my first eBay purchase. So, glad to finally have it. It took 18 days for it to arrive. But, that’s fine considering the distance it has to travel. So, I’m waiting for the other stuff to arrive. I have two eBay purchases. The second one actually arrived first. Geez. It sounds like I made it confusing. Hahaha. But, yeah, I am a happy girl with my happy top.

I cooked dinner, too. I made Chicken with Sweet and Sour Sauce. I really thought though that I won’t be doing any cooking this week because I’m supposed to cook Tuesday and Thursday. But, anyway, we have to do our part, our share. So, it’s cool. And thinking or reading or writing about food makes me hungry. I’m hungry. Gotta check the kitchen after writing this.

I also got a copy of House of Hades. Been waiting for this for a long time. It’s really awesome to have reliable friends.

I thought of watching the first episode of Kore wa Zombie Desu Ka. In one scene, it showed the lead character seated by the window. I remembered reading a meme, I think, about how almost always all the lead characters in a story are seated beside the window. I realized, yeah, they should be seated near the window so they can easily see if there are any commotions outside that needs their attention and see if there’s a need for them to sneak out from class. Or just be pulled out from the window. 😀

Okay, generally, I had a calm and relaxing Wednesday, but, Charlie – the dog, never fails to give me adrenaline rush and irritation at the same time. We were almost home when our neighbor brought out their dog and we had to meet them. I think Charlie and Aiko are friends, but in a doggy way, so it drives me crazy when they want to greet each other ’cause they have to lunge at each other. Pisses me off big time. Totally gets under my skin. But, then, I had to think about the rest of the day and it was fine. So, all is well.

Testy Tuesday

Day Eight.

I was still a bit anxious when I woke up. But, everything went well in the morning. But, in the afternoon, well, around 5PM maybe, things became difficult. My patience was really tested. I had to summon all the patience I can get. I’m just glad there is someone that reminds me that I can make it through. Na kaya ko ito. I’m doing my best to let my otaku spirit out. It is after all my “never give up” spirit. But, things could sometimes really get into your nerves and piss you off big time. Like today.

I had to walk the dog. I’ve been doing it since… I couldn’t even remember. Must have been a long time already. But, since the incident last September 28, I’ve been paranoid when walking the dog. So, earlier, he saw a hare. He wanted to run off after it. I really had to stand my ground, but with bended knees spread apart for better balance, to stop him from doing so. I don’t wanna hurt him. But, I really had to pull his leash so he won’t run away. It’ll be another worry for me if he runs away. Di pu-pwede ‘yon. So, I really had to shout, too, and with instinct, I had a flurry of swear words coming out from my mouth. And I’ve been trying to stop from saying bad words. But, he just brings out the worst in me. So, while fuming in anger, I thought that feeling stressed out and irritated every time I walk him will do me no good. It totally affects my health. Makes me worry about my cardiovascular system… and mental health. It’s no fun to play tug-of-war with a dog almost your size but double your strength. It just isn’t.

I thought that was the end of my lemons for today. Until, I spoke with a friend. She, too, can bring out the hideous monster in me. I had to get away to get a breath of fresh air or I’d go to sleep with a bad day. So, I stopped chatting with her and concentrated on chatting with those that actually made me feel better. Not that I don’t like talking to her. But, I just can’t handle how our conversation today is sucking the life out of me.

On a positive note, all the manga/anime that I keep myself updated were up to par. Didn’t bring me down. Inspired me. Regaled me. Entertained me. I also had, what seemed to become a weekly routine, a healthy discussion with LA about Bleach’s latest chapter. It’s really awesome when after reading or watching something you can discuss your points of view with someone who can relate to what you just have read or watched. All is well.