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turning points

4. i didn’t have a lighter again, it was confiscated when i boarded. i remember asking for a light at the view deck of Changi airport from a kind-looking Asian girl. that was my last cigarette, and more than 48 hours has passed since we landed in Frankfurt. i remember thinking how strange it would be to live with complete strangers for a month while making candies in gloomy Solingen. after our first day of listening to instructors while attempting to make edible sweets and drinking coffee every after 4 hours, i needed another smoke. thus, finding a lighter seemed to be the most important thing to do; which was not very easy since i was the only nicotine-dependent in the group.

few people came in late, missing the first day of class. i saw them dragging their suitcases towards the lobby. by that time, some of us who have checked-in earlier have been playing a game of “who’s who” based on the room assignments posted by the commons. i went inside my room to get my DunHills, did not really have a plan where i would get a light. when i came out, there he was, locking his door. since i have asked every single person in the group if they have a lighter, i had my script on play. “hey, oohh… HI! uhhmm, do you have a lighter?” i didn’t ask his name, didn’t ask how he was, where he was from or if he’s tired from his trip. first thing i asked was if he had a lighter. i could still remember how he looked at me, smiling. got a lighter out of his pocket, grinned and said “Yes, but you have to come over to get it”. 

 all of us have our what if’s.

5. we’ve been together for 5 years. and just like how all cliches go, i’ve never thought i would love anyone as much as i love him. but he had his dreams to fulfil, and all men will be boys until they get what they want. of course we could always settle for something else. me continuing my corporate day job that i enjoy but i don’t really adore, he working as a research scientist in the biggest semicon company in Cavite. but we both knew that wouldn’t be enough, especially for him. it has been his dream since i’ve met him to get that PhD in the US – and now the dream is about to come true. there was just one last thing that had to be done.

i actually had a choice. i could stay in Manila, continue on with my life and stretch a tested relationship to its limits. or i could leave everything behind and be with the one person i could never live without. making the decision was not really hard, the choice was pretty much obvious from where i stood. 

as my connecting flight to Nagoya rose through the mid-morning mist of Manila last June 14, i knew i have made a commitment which would not be easy to live-by. but i love this man. and there won’t be any limit as to what I can do to be by his side, always.

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