Saturday, July 28, 2012

Goodbye Olongapo, Hello New Orleans

It's sad to say goodbye, but we have planned to move to New Orleans when the children are big enough, when they could be independent enough.  Now the right time has come, so we're moving on.  We said goodbye to friends:

                                                           Goodbye Olongapo
We said goodbye to Dolor, my first friend in Olongapo
My long-time dream of reconnecting with ADB friends happened when I came back from Saudi Arabia in 2003.  Not only that, I  made lots of friends from our exADBfriends website too.  These new friends are the people I could be friends 'only in my dreams' before.  Never did I imagine that I truly will become friends with them.    Life has lots of surprises.   Really.   Could you imagine that one of the organizers of my despedida lunch is Ms. Rosie Luistro, former executive secretary of  the President of ADB.   The awesome Ms. Ophie Sta. Ana coordinated the lunch,  and the gift -giving too.  I am such a lucky person.  Ms. Bebssey Gamboa, my ever efficient and ageless former  iron lady supervisor from IFD  also came.  The pretty and cheerful Letty Legisma and Tess Gonzales were there too.  My idols of beauty and grace came too - Lita Gamboa, Lou de Belen, Albertine Santi, Leah Gojo.  The naughty beauties joined us too - France Arceo and Baby Bolano.  The rich and the famous real estate lady, Yoly Asuncion was there.   Kate Blanco (yes from old rich Blanco clan) listened to my life story and promised to have someone assasinated.   Thank  God he was already dead.  Linda Tan, my confidante, my very disciplined  friend came too.   My pretty batchmates or 'classmates' were there too - Lulu Apagalang, Au Villamor and Marissa del Castillo.
Big Despedida lunch organized by Ms. Rosie and Ms. Ophie at ADB PDR.

Some choices of food at the ADB PDR, every one of them is yummy!

And you'd think that I'd have one despedida lunch from ADB friends and that's it. No, Virginia, I've had several. One of the biggest was organized by Carmen Dimayuga. Now, if you're from ADB, you'd surely know her. Carmen is one of the ADB ladies who is known to get her way always and forever, nobody messes with her. I am glad we're on the same side. Kidding aside, Carmen is one person who, like Ms. Rosie Luistro, has many advocacies and have several projects all happening at at the same time. I am truly lucky to be considered a friend. We had buffet lunch at Kamayan, Megamall. Now if you're a foodie like me, that's like dying and going to heaven. I super enjoyed the food and the company of bubbly and cheerful ladies - Shawn Gochangco (who later gave me a ride to my bus terminal, thanks Shawn and hubby), Leony Francisco, Edna Mae Ronas.   Thanks to all who came:  Gam de Armas who also left for the U.S. before we left; Oskee who is always funny and wacky;  Cezar Juan who is all smiles, ready to assist;  Mrs. Carlos who is enjoying her retirement to the max; Araceli Patricio, so slim and pretty; Marie Galura, always available, always friendly; Margie Flor, fellow Malambing na Ilonga, Meng Perez, my idol, poetess/writer; Tess Reyes, former co worker at Records, so sweet; Glo Ferry, gracious and charming, and beautiful Ada, so generous and thoughtful.

Grace (Neneng Dy)  Nuni and I had coffee later at The Podium

The North Group gave me a despedida lunch at Kamayan Megamall.

Thoughtful gifts from Ada.  Thank you my friend!

Beautiful pearl necklace from the North Group.  Thank you my friends.

Multicolor pin from Meng.  I always wear this, Meng :))

A gift of cash from June 19 Despedida group.  I used it for self beautification (war and serengoma removal) and the rest I gave to my friend, Maria
Rocky, Aidz and Fe treated us to lunch at 6688 Satin Tea, Malate.  We also enjoyed  their gifts of delicious Turon and beautiful necklace. Thanks Aidz, Fe and Rocky.  We enjoyed bonding with you ladies.  We had fun in Olongapo, we had fun in Malate.
Asel, my first BFF from ADB, my swim mate after we both delivered our first babies,  gave me despedida lunch too. We started on salad, remembering the days when we were both new in ADB .... until desert came - three kinds of cheesecake, whew! Nothing short of awesome lunch.
Asel, my first friend in ADB  treated me to lunch ADB EDR.

Asel and I started on Salad and Spinach soup.

Then we topped off our healthy lunch with cheesecake - three ways, hehehe
Our generous friend from the Hash, Ruel, treated us to a night of  Jazz in a popular night club in Quezon City.
Ruel treated us to a night of Jazz in Q.C.
We found time to bond before  Nory left for Hawaii and Lory for Germany.  These ladies are  my first friends at  Subic Hash Group. 

Nory is in a vacation from Hawaii, and Lory will be going to Germany soon

Maritz, Marissa, Jen and I went for a Despedida lunch at Mesa, Megamall.   Thanks for the wonderful gifts, Maritz. 
Despedida Lunch with Maritz, Marissa and Jen at Mesa, Megamall.  Thanks Maritz for the nice gifts.

At Mesa Megamall, food is delicious and so pretty-lookingl like the presentation of Tilapia fillet.  Their laing in two ways is memorable - one is cooked with coconut milk until dried and the other one moist is  with  cocunut milk sauce

                                                                Pusit in Olive Oil is Maritz's favorite

I love the Tilapia Fillet.

                                                                                       A little of everything

                                                                                         Crispy Leche flan

My childhood friend, my BFF was on vacation from Chicago and we had a reunion for our gang, the 3Gs.  It's a gang of three, 3Gs meaning Go-Getter-Gals,   dating back to our high school days. 
We bonded with Sophie (from Chicago) and her sisters (and brothers later).

We are the 3Gs (The Go-Getter Gals) back from High School days.

We also bonded with the Palomares nieces (and nephews).  As usual, if it's a Palomares clan gathering, there's food galore.

As to our family, our girls, Jen and Jaki are independent enough to let go and  test their independence wings.
We had family dinner at the Old Spaghetti House

Hello New Orleans
We stayed temporarily at Marquette International Hostel
Look at the wide street!
Lester and Family welcomed us in New Orleans and Mississippi

We enjoyed being tourists at the Tourist Information Center, St. Charles Avenue

Look Ma, a new sachel bag and white (!) rubber shoes for Dave

Internet connection at good ol' Mcdonalds while we're waiting for internet connection at home.

And we have to visit our favorite place for Jazz - the French Quarter.

The cathedral,  with fortune tellers and painters and their clientele near the entrance of the church. 

We saw all kinds of cool people.
Jazz at Frenchmen St.
A cool audience at the Preservation Hall for Jazz

Wat dat?  Hu Dat?

                              I have gotten my French Quarter beads from this balcony :))

A common sight - musicians at the French Quarter

Tours all over the place!

Peace sign from Uncle Sam's Lucky Dogs vendor.  He told me, "you have to have one, you have to  get the total experience."

Hello New Orleans, Hello U.S. of A!

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