Saturday, January 15, 2011

My highschool's 30th reunion

In 2006, my highschool had its 25th reunion party. This January 8, 2011, we had our 30th reunion party. This was for the Far Eastern University (FEU) Girls High and Boys School batch 1981, which was the last segregated (girls and boys) high school of FEU. As it was in the 2006, I was in the organizing team of this year's reunion and, as usual, it was a hard, tiring job to do.

But seeing how happy the alumni were at the reunion was worth it. I also saw some friends I haven't seen for 30 years, especially some who couldn't make it to our 25th and vowed to be present in this 30th. We held the party in a rented venue--with lots of food, games, raffles, and a live band--that lasted from 5PM to 1AM in Quezon City. It took almost a year to prepare for that. Some 150 alumni came, including many from abroad. We were joined by eight teachers. Some other teachers couldn't join because of previous commitments or, sadly, because they were sick.

The previous day to our reunion party, we held a campus tour of our school, which is located in a busy area of Manila, the Philippines's capital city. After the morning tour, we went to the Holy Mass that we sponsored at the chapel inside the campus. To me, aside from the Holy Mass, the highlight of our homecoming to our school was when one of our batchmates jammed with the FEU Bamboo Band at the start of our tour. Good thing that an angel inspired me to ask the FEU Alumni Office (and Mr. Martin Lopez of that office with whom we coordinated the tour) if it could arrange for the Band to play for us that day. Janette, my batchmate who is among those in our alumni who were former members of the Band (when we were still students), was able to play one piece of music with the Band since, luckily, the instrument that she used to handle was available that morning. Seeing Janette play with the current student-members of the FEU Bamboo Band sent chills down my spine. Mr. Victor Toledo is the original creator of the FEU Bamboo Band, but he is now retired. In fact, we invited him to be among our guest-teachers in our reunion party on January 8, but he's not in the best of health right now, according to his daughter who's also one of our batchmates. God bless him.

Anyway, below are some pictures of our tour and reunion party. I still have to get my hands on some pictures of Janette playing with the Band and the Mass. Below, I'm with my classmates (4-1 girls, of whom many were absent that night though), and a photo with the teachers who made it to our party (except that girls on the leftmost who's actually my classmate but sat along with the teachers during the photo op). The 4-1 boys joined us in the photo with the teachers.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

HAPPY NEW YEAR--this girl needs help

Girl with rare disease seeks aid

By Santiago Alcantara
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 00:01:00 01/04/2011

MANILA, Philippines—Mary Patrice Nicole Siaboc has been diagnosed to be suffering from Langerhans cell histiocytosis, a rare disease among children. Medical records show that only one in every 100,000 children is afflicted with the ailment.

The 4-year-old daughter of Liezel Siaboc of Bangkal, Makati City, is undergoing chemotherapy at Philippine General Hospital. Doctors say her treatment should last for 54 weeks.

“We don’t know where to get the PhP14,647 we need to spend per session because my husband Rogelio works as a janitor at a gasoline station in Quezon City,” Siaboc told the Philippine Daily Inquirer in Filipino.

Those who want to help the Siabocs can contact them at 0909-3923661 or deposit their donations in Rogelio Siaboc’s bank account at Allied Bank (Philippines) (account number 0316007965).