March 17th is always special for me. Not because it's St. Patrick's Day but it's my dear father's birthday. Low key and unassuming, he would probably cringe that I am blogging about his birthday. He doesn't quite get social media yet. I told him that I will explain visually what all this is about when I am back home. I've missed his last four birthdays since I moved here. We communicate almost everyday via email, text, Skype, or majicJack. Amazing how technology works, I grew up in the 3rd World with black rotary phones where I remember screaming into the phone on long distance calls and you needed an operator to put you through. I just miss him so much and wish I was in Cebu with my other US based family members who went home to celebrate. These photos were taken five years ago from his biggest birthday weekend bash in Manila (an hour flight from Cebu) which he co-celebrated with one of his best friends, Pete. His birthday is on the 18th.
Before the evening's festivities, we decided to have a quiet day and drove 70 km south of Manila and went to Antonio's Garden in Tagaytay for lunch. Much has been said about the fine French inspired Filipino restaurant by Chef Antonio Escalante tucked in lush verdant hills that we had to check it out for ourselves. It is an old home converted into a well ventilated garden restaurant. The koi pond also deserves a mention.
foyer filled with Philippine art, antiques and
with admirable bases
lovely dining vignettes were created in different areas
providing ample intimacy indoors or outdoors
everything was superb---food, service and ambience
my recent Google search also shows that
they've remained consistent.
they've remained consistent.
I am going to post the ode I wrote to my father
on Father's Day six years ago...
Thank you for letting me fly high enough
to know the ways of the world
and for clipping my wings
when it became too much for me to bear.
For the times when you drank champagne
with me to celebrate,
wine during late night talks,
sambucca to help me swallow
a few jagged pills,
when systems fail,
and for sharing a mean brownie cup ala mode
when I'm down.
For listening to my so-called
love tribulations without wincing,
and knowing when they've done
enough karmic justice to my face
(thus understanding why it validates
a big jar of La Mer charged to your card).
For loving me unconditionally
despite follies and flaws.
For simply knowing when to be a father,
friend and professional colleague.
I'm very blessed to have and share
this rare relationship with you.
I thank God for you everyday.
Happy Father's Day
---published June 2005, Gypsy Queen
Sunstar Daily Cebu, Philippines
According to my feng shui calendar, March 17th is the luckiest day of the year. I am lucky to have my father in my life. He has been incredibly supportive of my passions and continues to foster utmost influence and inspiration in everything that I do. His tenets and values guide me. I hope I'm not being obnoxious by posting our photos but I feel it is important to honor and thank our loved ones as much as we can and let them know it. This is part of my gratitude series which I decided to start after my first birthday post. I have been blessed with amazing people in my life who have supported me along the way, contributed to my growth, and kept me grounded. I want to celebrate them. I am the sum of the people who've inspired me.