Meeting old friends

Since I arrived in Manila, I have this odd feeling that I will be meeting old friends from UP and do some cheesy stuff as reminiscing what we’ve gone through in the university and asking each other as to what happened to our other batch mates.

The Batch 2003 in the College of Arts and Sciences of UP Visayas took the toll of decreasing number of enrolees then when most students who were entering college that time opted to take nursing. The enrollment went down for almost 30 per cent. Our small number, however, proved to be advantageous because it created a strong bond among us. We may not know each other’s complete name but we know with a glance if a certain student is a member of our batch.

Two years after graduating from college, what is left are a handful of names I have occasional contacts with.

It occurred a week ago while I was waiting for the train to arrive at Ayala station when I bumped on a familiar face. It was Ferlan, a Political Science student who studied a year in Bali and speaks fluent Bahasa Indonesia. We were together in the ROTC program which I quit after a week; he continued and later became the Corps Commander of the UP Visayas ROTC. We shamelessly talked in Hiligaynon while inside the train going to Cubao. His fluency in Bahasa almost made me feel ashamed of my rudimentary Tieng Viet.

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He was on his way to meet his date, Mae, a block mate of his who also used to be my classmate in one of the general education courses. I felt I was intruding on the rare moment that they’re together, but they insisted that I go with them. While looking for a place to eat, the three of us talked about our plans for the future and the uncertainties we face daily. We complained about the myriad options before us making the act of choosing a truly difficult thing to do. We complained about our impecunious state. I didn’t dare calling it poverty because being poor is too strong a phrase to modify the current state of the three of us.

It felt good meeting Mae and Ferlan and hearing from them that they are also experiencing the same struggles I am facing this time. At least I know I am not alone and that we share the same burdens, dreams, plans, fears, and drive to transcend the limitations because of our age, lack of experience, and insufficient understanding of life itself.

Mae, Ferlan, and I are just three of the many twenty-something who continually go against the current in this time where alienation, globalization, specialization, and some other big-sounding words ending in the suffix -ion prevail. We dare to create our little marks in the vast desert of humanity for our families, our friends, our self, and our dreams.

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6 thoughts on “Meeting old friends”

  1. Hi there Leslie,

    It’s been a long time. Thanks for sharing that quote and for visiting my blog as well. All the best and see you in Iloilo.

  2. The first thing that really caught my attention was the photo…LOL probably i was just surprised to see my classmates… i suddenly miss them… thanks to you..hehe

    Anyway, i have always admired how you write Fev… and for this article, i can certainly relate. Two years ago i remembered how excited i was to get my diploma, but then again i came to realize, was going upstage to get ur diploma the most important (maybe yes and maybe no)? I am a proud Iska but really, i had this fear of “what comes after grad day?”… like a typical newly grad i had that… but as one saying goes
    “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the staircase, just take the first step.”
    We have to do what it takes to survive in the world of reality (life after school) so we have to be brave to enough to take every challenge and to appreciate what has been given and learn from it.
    As Rhonda Byrne had in her work “The Secret”, there is this law in the universe called Law of attraction and there is nothing wrong when we believe in it. Think of what you really want and you will get it in time…

  3. i like this piece, for I remember myself when I was at that age of 22, i am a draftsman for a big name-retailer designing supermarkets. i am not so proud of it then of what i have and what i have accomplished. john, don’t ever lose hope, you had many years more to build yourself. if i have stop hoping for the best, maybe i will not get any farther to reach my goals in life.

    i believe in what you can achieve and i can see that your future is brighter and a success story. just continue to be a good person and your efforts shall be rewarded in the end, you’ll see.

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