“They’d spent the previous two years travelling around in a rickety van with all their worldly belongings stashed in the back. They’d crisscrossed the country, camping out under the stars sleeping, curled in the backseat, whittling away their meager savings as they made their way across every state but Hawaii and Alaska. They’d seen Mount Rushmore and Grand Teton, driven up the California Coast and gone fishing in the Florida Case. They’d been to New Orleans and Bar Harbor and Mackinac Island, Charleston and Austin and Napa, traveling until they ran out of land, and money, too.”
-The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer Smith
How’s life? I hope you are in good shape. Though I am a big glutton as of this moment – eating out the stress from all the engagements I have – I am still hoping that you are in a good condition; come to think of it, I am obsessed with all the workouts in the world, from parkour to trekking, cliffjumping and, my first love, softball. The least thing I could imagine you right now (knock on wood) is for you to be in bed, chained with all the apparatuses this world has created.
I am tremendously curious on the places that you have been to. Have you set foot on Batanes? How’s the sea? Was it truly rough like what I’ve seen on the videos I’ve downloaded all night? Have you meet Whang Od? How old is she when you met her? I want to check your wrist. I’m dying to see the baybayin written there. The one that I have spent days scrupulously sketching on my precious academic book. Did you really pursue that crazy plan of having the Philippine map at your back? Urrgh. I want to check it now! How about Tawi-tawi? Or was it Sulu? Probably, Basilan. To which part of Mindanao have you been to? Were you allowed to get inside their mosque? Were you able to interview an imam? Come on, tell me! My imagination can’t retort to my inquiries. It’s running out of juice. Have you gone surfing to Siargao already? Did the epic dive in Enchanted river? Or climb Mount Apo? I do hope you still have the stamina and optimism to try skydiving, F1 racing and do the ninja moves I have written in my bucketlist. Are you still going out with your travel buddies or you have followed the steps of Trisha and started solo backpacking already? And, hey, have you meet her in person yet? Is she still travelling or has decided to go back to Philippines and settle down? How about our Japan plans? Were you able to meet Hiro Mashima and Masashi Kishimoto already? Were you able to sleep under the sakura tree? How about your animation plans? Did you succeed? I hope so.
Do you know how to drive a motorcycle already? Or a car, perhaps? Have you gone strolling and drove interstates in the beloved and totally dreamed place of most of your countrymen, the America? Have you set foot in one of the world’s most diverse ecosystem, the South America? Did somebody bring you to Antarctica? What’s the condition of our polar bears, seals and emperor penguins? Were you with Doc Nelsen and Ferds? How astounding are they? I hope you did not forget to see John Feir, as well; he made my Sunday mornings productive.
Are you still fond of reading? Have you meet Lourd de Veyra, Insoy Ninal, Paulo Coelho, Nicholas Sparks, J.K Rowling, Dan Brown, John Green and all the other literary masters that shaped your beliefs in life. Were you able to publish your own book? Did you even finish one of those volumes, only God knows how to end them?
Have you fully documented all the sunrise and sunsets you’ve seen? How’s the blog? Did we get more followers or totally gave up and erased its existence? Are you still even writing? Does your current job permit you? Are you writing, drawing, teaching, or travelling right now? God, I have a lot to ask. But more than anything else, I hope you are happy with all the choices you have made. I know you have been all through different kinds of challenges – to which, I believe, you have courageously faced head on. I hope you stood still on your beliefs and values and did not succumb to the willful command of society; and most importantly, I wish you are in the good hands of the man, God patiently prepared for your moodswings and outburst, silly smiles and rugged looks.
I trust that you still have that rosary, only God knows where you got it and since when it has been in your wallet. I hope that you still give praise and pray to your God. I hope you are still raising awareness about caring for the environment and defending the country against all odds.
Lastly, I am hoping that you are happy. And contented. You may not be able to achieve and accomplish my bucketlist, I still do hope that you are not giving up the idea of conquering the world and making a difference in the lives of people you come upon.
I look forward to meeting you. Literally, dying to see you.
Lots of love and adventures,
Marj (2015 version)