In every stage of life, man collects souls around him and places them in a special jar. He needs these souls to laugh with, to cry with, to walk along with his journey. They let him grow into a stronger and better person, each inculcating a lesson or two. These magical souls inspire him to keep on fighting and to keep on holding on for they are just beside him like a platoon of angels ready for some wings if he needed such.
I call these souls BARKADA, a tropa, an inner circle where intimate friendship, belongingness and acceptance reside.

I can’t fully remember who gave that name sa grupo namin. All i know was, eto yung pinakapopular na Freddie Aguilar song when we were in grade 6. Lupeet ng samahan namin. Buong section kaming solid. Lahat barkada. And as time passes by, walang nagbabago. We had countless reunion na. We’ve been to tagaytay, a private pool in laguna, a beach somewhere in batangas o kaya naman simpleng galaan lang sa bahay ng lahat ng kaklase. Couldnt imagine what my elementary days would be if it weren’t with these guys: beverly, janet, arnel & ariel & adrian, tommy, jardio, jerrus, dnand, zaldy, leah, ailene, carmi, gayle, welyn, eleonor, xtian, romie, vivian, annie, ape, daman, neil & cris.

Cool ang high school!!! Eto yung panahon ng experiment and firsts. Amidst assignment and hanggang leeg na projects, it was the time of unang buga ng yosi, unang lagablab ng ginebra sa lalamunan, unang pandedekwat ng mga kung anu-anong prutas sa looban, unang panonood ng sine, unang sayawan, unang relationship. Sarap kasama nila melchor, glenda, lea and annalissa. Kasama ko sila during these firsts….

I survived the accounting world because of my friends.(arcel, debbie, melanie, jovy and lauvy) They were my constant ka-kopyahan ng assignment sa acctg 1 and 2 hehehe. Though 2 sems ko lang silang nakasama, they were able to mark a very important impact in my life. I think, eto ung lowest point of my academic life and am glad they were there.

We were from different floors and buildings of pup who thought that we were on the wrong bus to our dreams. So we left our classrooms and old texbooks and embraced the school of thoughts of Freud and Adler. Soon, i was able to grasp the same air i was breathing and recollected the pieces of my wounded self. Salamat kila dennis, mhy, mark p, mark v, benzon, badet, mara, kaye, and joanne. Vivid memories were inuman kila dennis, tambay sa south wing, bday parties and outing sa laguna (thanks to biosci requirement).

Lanie, jhed, julie, marianne and i were set on our last two challenges before graduation. The main thesis and the experimental thesis. Our nights were filled with brainstorming, argumentation, encoding, nakaw-naps and drums of coffee. It was then when i realized that am a great doctor. hehehe.

Amidst the heat and beat of ISO accreditation of my former office, nabuo ang BM KADA (the pasaway counterpart of BM trada–the accreditation body). A perfect conglomeration of every department in the company. Chepai and ate dally from accounting, evelyn of admin, ricky of operations, ate pretch and jabs from billing, and ako sa hr. Ergo, medyo sinisilip kami ng management that time. Pag may pera, we had our beerstorming sa cowboygrill & baywalk. Pag mejo broke, ginpo sessions were done sa bahay nila ate dally. SOBRANG saya namin noon. A friendship circle with a spice of love, betrayal and competition.

Freshblood. Corporate jungle. Ganyan ung mundo namin nila tere, pags (beb ko), aila, noel, richard, jonie at robert (?). We felt the same angst, and pang-aalipusta (a bit of exxageration here) from almost everyone. All we had was the bonding that kept us holding on and fighting till we got our own wings of experience to soar and battle into a tougher world of so-called career path.

PINOY BIG BROTHER (season 1-home along the river)
Prior to the popularity of that reality show, that set-up was already existing sa binay street sa makati. 24 hours na kasama ko yung mga officemates ko. Tampuhan, magdamag na kwentuhan, yung task na kunin ung tv nila jonie all the way from cavite , the sariling mundo of rico, the mala-sam milby na si ryan who just stayed in the house for a month or two, love team ni jonie and ricky and the ligaya ng panginoon days with art and norie.

PINOY BIG BROTHER (season 2-the house on the other street of makati)
We left the house along the river and moved to bahay nila kuya edwin. Tatlo na lang ung kasama sa original cast. Rico resigned from acabar, jonie and ricky got married, ryan went back to cebu. So the three remaining housemates (norie, art and ako) went on to live and work with the new cast of ken, lanie, and the kapamilya members (my younger brothers- jayson and edison), ken’s cousin, norie’s ate, lanie’s younger sis plus gf ni art and gf ko.

This one is tougher than the two seasons of bahay ni kuya sa makati. 3 years na kasama ko sila robert, ronald, ariel, mike, james, sandy and richard dito sa korea. Mula paggising hangang sa pagtulog. And the best and worst of everyone and the adjusment mechanisms we have to apply so we can survive the personality differences, firm point of views and the barriers of culture and language. We love each other and we hate each other.

After three years of working in South Korea, i went back to my previous company and worked as Account Supervisor for Coca Cola. I never had difficulty coping up and hitting the demands of our clients since Nash, Angie, Rodel G, Rodel DG, Jerry, Jaymee, Janet and Jun were always there to help me. Though we didn’t have much time for gimmicks because most of them are married, Riot naman talaga pag kami ang magkakasama sa office.

Each circle of souls has distinct mark in my journey. Each tropa continues to inspire me one way or another. Each has its share of conflict and tension, tastes of happiness and loneliness. Right now, I am still collecting souls here in Qatar. I don’t have yet a circle to call my own. I am still in the process. But one thing’s sure, this would be another chapter worth-reading in my book of life.
pics from and

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