“What do you have planned for today?” my sister asked the morning of January 1. I said nothing, I will just sleep, because it’s already four hours since I’ve last slept. With her husband and our mom they went to Tagaytay, which is a 20-minute drive from where we live, so after 6 hours I called them “Where the hellellell are you?”
“We’re still in Tagaytay!!!” my sister, whom we shall henceforth call Skullky, caterwauled. “It’s sooooo traffic! It’s soooo fun!!! We ate in… CHOWKING!!!”
Apparently everyone just decided to flock to Tagaytay, as all the roads, restaurants, churches, malls, crevices, and motels were packed like hovels and it took them over three hours to get there. Upon reaching back home I planned to gloat, but decided against it upon seeing genuine emotional distress.
“Ang pila sa Starbucks hanggang labas. Pang number 28 kami sa Dencio’s. At sa Chowking, walang yelo ang iced tea. At… walang tissue,” my mother declared, as she sprinkled Prozac powder on her milk.
“It was like the end of the world na,” Skullky declared, shaking, still reeling from the 7-hour ordeal, dried mascara on her cheeks.
“There, there,” I said as I patted them on the head. And in my head, “gloat, gloat”.
Because you see, we all have our different forms of hell. My own personal hell is when I get an extreme, debilitating allergic rhinitis attack that the image of smoke on TV is causing me to sneeze like crap, sneezing and tearing like hellellel that I don't care what the textbooks say I wouldn't want that ketchup bottle with sodium bicarb or salt or some douche thing near my nose, because if I could I would scrape out these turbinates, scrape them out with a razor and then bring down said razor to my neck, my neck I tells ya!!! (sorry been listening to a lot of Eminem lately) To other people it's endless queues, particularly in Starbucks. Speaking of queue, back in grade 5, when I had exactly two English words in my vocabulary, I would pronounce queue as kwe-we. There, I said it.