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high school

my first time to see now and then was a consequence of an escape from a crazed school principal. it was a saturday and the anniversary of a marian event – which for my friends meant a way to officially meet up on a weekend and ask for allowance. the plan was to pretend we will attend, then find a way to break away from the group before they head for Rizal Memorial Complex at Vito Cruz, Malate. 

when the students were lining up to fill the jeeps that will take us to the place, we purposely allowed others to pass us by and use the excuse that there aren’t any room left for us so we will just go there on our own. the plan was working and we were trying to hide big smiles in our faces. it was at that point that our school principal surfaced with her bumblebee sunglasses (it wasn’t a fashion statement then). she asked one of the janitors to look for a FX to rent for the whole gang so that she could join us for the trip to Malate.

there was no choice but to board the FX and go with her, and since everything within the confines of an FX in within hearing distance, counterplans couldn’t be formulated. going to Malate was a long trip from QCSHS, it was an hour or more of pretending to be in our best behaviour which was killing all of us inside. a few minutes after boarding the FX, our principal did something we never expected. she pulled out her rosary, and led us all in prayer. in our 4 years of bullying our way around Quesci, (we buy a frosty each from our “kikil” operations every other day, got “free” pens and notebooks from the school bookstore, stroll around SM if a teacher was absent through our secret “over the bakod with a ladder” passage)we got away from all the crazy stuff we have done because: 1) we got good grades which was high enough to make parents and teachers happy but not too high to classify us as school geeks, 2) pure deception, 3) utter denial.

we were bored beyond our wits but had no choice. it was a moving vehicle. halfway through the rosary, Roy (a guy friend close to our pack) started making faces. the principal was seated in the middle portion, and we at the back were all red from suppressed chuckles. to make suppressing our laughs more difficult for us, he pulled out a paper from his binder, rolled in into a tube, and blew into it with its end near the neck of our principal. this made her shiver as an involuntary reaction. our faces were buried  in our laps by that point. he did it again and again until we begged him to stop. all these while we were reciting the rosary.

the entrance to the stadium was packed when we arrived. without talking to each other, we knew what we had to do. we allowed our principal to lead the way, together with a few loyal students by her side. after a few minutes we were suddenly “lost” in the crowd and found our way to the far side of gate. without text messaging and beepers during those younger years, mental telepathy was at its peak.

watching now and then inspired us to make a somewhat similar pact  done by the characters in the movie – to meet up and see each other (wherever we are) after 10 years. i can’t remember when we made it though, was it during the same afternoon when we were sitting by the grass near manila bay? (it hasn’t been transformed into a commercial establishment like it is now) or by the Monday after, while we were semi-listening to whoever was trying to teach us something at class … either way, the 10th year mark will end in a few weeks. but despite the fact that it would be relatively easy for me to get in touch with all of them in this day and age – i do not have the heart to do so.

maybe our friendship would have been better off it ended tragically at graduation day rather than it dying a slow, natural death as we each grew apart through the years. back in college, we ocassionally saw each other for lunch, still practiced marathon phone calls at night, spent most weekends together at malls and continued to scrutinize each other’s object of affection as an obsession. but a lot of things happened soon after, and the saddest thing about it all is that the emotional break-up could have been prevented – if only we tried to stay friends.

it’s upsetting when people grow apart. i would like to think that the act is a conscious effort – not an undertaking which one has no control over. because if that is the case, then why should i make an effort to make new friends when by the end of the day, circumstances will always arise to make me loose them?

i don’t know what’s causing my current antisocial disposition. all i know is that i miss old friends. but i miss them in a way that cannot be remedied by a simple “Hi” in YM chat, an email greeting for the holidays or a meaningless text message. i would like to be friends with all of them again, friends just like what we were when we made that pact 10 years ago. i know such a wish could never be granted. but then again, it’s christmas – the season of eternal hope.

and i, like most,  won’t mind being surprised.

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Categories: others
  1. December 15, 2006 at 5:14 pm

    nabitin ako! asan na ang karugtong pleeaaaase?? 😀

  2. December 15, 2006 at 5:24 pm

    i actually had a long long long narration of how i think all of us started to emotionally break away from each other from that day in manila bay… but decided against “publising” it … hehehe…saka na, hindi ko pa kaya eh. =p

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