June 23, 2006

Six days to go

I just came back from a three-day stay-in workshop. Every night during that workshop, we, the facilitators, stay up late working and preparing for next day’s activities.

It was on the second night when I asked my married officemate, “How many days before your wedding did you go on leave?”

Maybe just a few days, was his somewhat uncertain reply.

“Okay. I’ll be on leave starting Friday afternoon up to July 7. That’ll be about ten working days.”

Ten working days.

That’s a hell lot of days for a lean, mean NGO like the one I work with.

I know this fact when I was filing my leave application last June 19. So I backed up my application with a more detailed, more formal request…

For: The Operations Committee

This is to formally request permission to go on leave for ten and a half (10 1/2) days, starting the afternoon of June 23 up to July 7, for the following reasons:

1) I will be getting married on June 28;

2) My only sister, a nurse in Liverpool, has come home, and I will be meeting my niece for the first time;

3) This is the first time after many years that my family will be once again complete.

It's somewhat dramatic, but what the heck. ^^

June 08, 2006

The call...

Remember this?

It’s over.

My officemate for over six or seven years (darn, I can’t even remember), my housemate for over two years... a big bro, tatay, and lolo to most of his friends...

He passed away this afternoon...

I received the call in the middle of a project meeting.

It was my boss.

Normally he wouldn’t do that – to call us knowing we are in a meeting.

He asked me to pass the phone to our project director, who was speaking at that time. In a hushed voice, she told me that she has been ignoring her phone ringing repeatedly in her pocket.

But his request was firm, and I have no choice but to interrupt our director, and hand her my phone.

The gasp and panicked voice made almost everyone turn from the meeting table. Judging from her expression, whatever our boss was telling her, it was bad.

Really bad.

When she walked back to the table, she first apologized and broke the news to everyone.

Our Senior Programmer passed away.

Condolences were extended, and the meeting have to go on.

It was hard... To not to shed a tear in front of the meeting. I wanted to break something. Anything.

But I can't.

Under the table, my hand were shaking, and I cannot understand half of what was being discussed.

Darn you!

Darn you! We were playing billiards just last week, you stubborn ox, and not even our bosses could make you put down that freakin’ bottle of beer.

Damn damn damn damn!



Peace, King Tot.

Wherever you are, I’m sure you are in a better place.

I’ll dedicate my first bottle of beer to you.


And I'm not done writing about you just yet. More to follow.