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Sunday, September 10, 2017

My 60th birthday surprise!


On September 7, 2017, I turned 60.  To most people , this is a milestone.  Well, I could not have  made such a fuzz about it but when my wife turned 60 last year, we gave her a big bash inviting all her friends, etc. AS one of the highlights that evening was a poem I made for her.. You can listen to it at this link  and/or you can read about it  here

I must admit, I was kind of expecting the same treatment from my children. Like it was a test who they loved more, me or their mom kind of thing.  I just can't help feeling jealous somehow if I had not been given a treat just like that.  I'm only human, you see.  On the eve of my birthday, I received an email from a friend in the States, Gwen Austin Turbyfield.  She said that she was surprised to receive a phone call from Nitz but she wasn't available. Since she never heard from  Nitz again, she began to get worried that something might have happened to me hence the email. I responded that I am just guessing but my family might be brewing a surprise for me as I am turning 60 the following day. 

Come the day of my birth, my wife told me that we will be having dinnere somewhere in BGC.  I  thought there could not be a birthday surprise as I know of no function place in BGC, just fancy restaurants.  So, maybe there is no surprise after all.  Besides, it was a weekday. so I went and true enough, it turned out to be just simple dinner.  I must admit, I was kind of disappointed  But I was still hanging on to my children's fairness. hahaha

Last night, they invited me again for dinner, this time together with my son's fiancée and my youngest son's girlfriend. I said to myself, "this is it!" However, I couldn't be too sure as my daugherr Kim asked permission to leave and buy something at Megamall and she was not dressed at all.  Coby took the car as he said that he had to do something very important with his girlfriend first. 

Later that night, Mickey told us to wait for their call as he was just scouting for a place, again at BGC.  Again, I thought it will just be another simple dinner.  Since Coby had the car, Nitz and I took Grab.  I pinned BGC Corporate Center since I was told we were going to BGC. While inside the car, Mickey texted that we should proceed to Shangriila Hotel! Hmmm, I think I am having a party after all.  When we arrived, we waited for Kim at the lobby! There she was,, all dressed up. That confirmed that I am having a party after all. We went to the Samba only to be led to a private room with only my family shouting surprise! and sang happy birthday!  Again, I was a bit disappointed.  We were about to place our order when a waitress approached us to say that she made a mistake and that it was not our room.  Mickey tried to show that he was angry at the mistake.  I said, "let's go, it's alright."  So, we transferred again.  Upon seeing the huge door that she opened up that seemed like a foyer to another big door, I knew it! She opened the next door and everybody was there.  The first person I noticed was my only brother holding a balloon, then my sisters and then every friend close to me. 

My children managed to contact the right people. Every friend was represented. Too bad, we cannot fit everyone in that room for I have too many friends.  Anyway, from my blogger friends, Connie Veneracion was there, for my La Salle University friends, couples Ollie and Kathy, Edgar and Vvian, Agnes and Roger and my good ol' pal, Redjie. Then for my Zobel family, there was Liesl and hubby,, Miguel and Henry.  My ninong Moie and wife Melba who led the prayer. From my artist friends, Omi and Tutit were there. To represent my in-laws, Kuya Ben and Ate Lilia. The ensuing messages from friends was all heartfelt. It was too bad that my childhood friends Cyntha and her brothers who confirmed could not make it at the final hour as they had to rush their 91 year old dad to the hospital. I pray for his early recovery.  

As usual, my guests said a few things about me after the very beautiful videos compiled by my children with Henry and Liesl collaborating as they did not know everyone, , Redjie sang a few songs. My wife requested Connie to read my poem about my mother and her alzheimer's disease entitled A Stranger in her own house which sent my son crying and Liesl reciting "Final Goodbye" a poem about my dad

The problem for the people preparing surprises like this is when this has been done already before. You have to make your target not aware of your moves. I can appreciate how my children and my wife hid everything from me.  I was not aware of the plans until the actual singing of the happy birthday.  They all pulled it through and I am so happy that they did. I am truly blessed to have my kids, my beautiful wife and wonderful friends to take time out of their busy schedules just to make me happy. and for that, I shall be forever  grateful.














Fanily Unity: Against all odds

About several months ago, my eldest sister, Linda, told me that my only brother, Renie, has not moved for almost a month.  I know this cannot be good. I told my siblings to immediately advice my brother to see a doctor.  True enough, he has been diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer and it has mestastasized from the prostate up to his lungs, bones and kidney.  Our nephew, Manny, is an oncologist and he advised to have a lot of tests done on him.  He was given medication to stop his balls from producing hormones that feed the mass in his prostate.  He had more tests done to him and all this cost money.

With my siblings all retired, the financial burden naturally rests on me.  The good thing is that we have relatives who, in one way or another, are willing to help even if we have not sought for it. Our cousin, Priscilla, has sent money twice and this somehow alleviated the expenses.  To think that we have just begun the fight against the big C!
got high.
On August 22 0rr 24, he was admitted at Rizal Medical Center due for castration to finally end the activity in his groin area.  When he was about to be operated on, his potassium was low and the doctors had to postpone the operation until they have corrected his potassium level.  A day after, he was wheeled to the operating room and was about to be sedated when his blood pressure . they tried to correct this but to no avail that they had to put him to the recovery room and thereafter wheel him back to his room.  Finallly, on the 29th,  my brother had  a successful operation and all we have to do now is wait and see what the outcome shall be.  My nephew said that should his PSA level be controlled, he wouldn't have to undergo chemotherapy anymore.  But should this happen, then the real trouble begins.  Each session should cost around Php30,000 and should his body allow it, there should be around ten sessions. 

Special thanks to our cousin, Mario, who assists my brother everywhere he went, ran errands when he was in the hospital. Also to our nephew in Canada, Pocholo who sent money, my eldest sister, Linda, who kept my brother at bay telling him what he can and cannot do. 

On Sept 3, my brother turned 76 years old and we decided to  give him a birthday party and everyone chipped in to make that day a special one.  His son Jimmy and his children sent money, too.  My children also gave his a present each and he was very happy.



About
MGA TURO NI TITO:
Twenty years of teaching must sure amount to something. A new friend in cyberspace suggested I ought to have a journal by now. I agree.


Taken by my friend Arlene Lawson in her room at Century Park Sheraton in May, 2000.
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Location: Bambang, Pasig City, Philippines

Jack of all trade, master of none. First a disclaimer. My students have discovered this blog and they might think that what I write is gospel truth. Worse is they might find an argument that they think they can use, for some reason or another, against their teachers. So, to set the record straight, it is NOT. As a matter of fact, I write and open it to feedback to get another view in the hope that somebody would tell me if I am wrong and reenforce my thinking if it is right. Not that I will accept anything thrown my way, though. Just so I can think about it some more and decide whether my original stance is right or definitely off tangent. So there. I hope that clarifies everything. Now, on to blogging.


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