How’s life? I hope you are in good shape. Though I am a big glutton as of this moment – eating out the stress from all the shits of this life – I am still hoping that you are in a good condition: healthy, happy, and financially stable. The least thing I could imagine you right now (knock on wood) is for you to be in bed, chained with all the apparatuses this world to artificially sustain life.
I am absolutely curious of the places that you have been to. Did you make it to Batanes? How was the weather? Was it as adventurously awful and rough the way they projected it on those videos you have been repeatedly watching? Have you met Whang Od? How old was she when you met her? Let me see your wrist! I’m dying to see those imprints inked in your skin. Forever.
Did you pursue that crazy plan of tattooing the Philippine map at your back? Urrgh, I want to see it now! How about Tawi-tawi? Or was it Sulu? Probably, Basilan. To which parts of Mindanao did you set foot to? Were you able to accomplish that dream of getting inside their mosque? Were you able to converse with an imam? Come on, tell me! I’m running out of creative juices to retort my queries!
Have you gone surfing to Siargao? Dived Enchanted River? Or climbed the grandfather of all Philippine mountains? I do hope you still have the stamina and courage to do skydiving and racing. Not to mention the finances.
Are you still traveling with Badeth and Wilma? Or have you followed the steps of those solo backpackers who have perpetually changed the way you look life in contrary to how society tries to define it? Have you gone international solo backpacking? How about Japan – the land of our anime dreams, of Hiro Mashima and Masashi Kishimoto? Have you seen a real sakura tree? Oh, our animation plans? Did you pursue it? I hope so.
Did your Papa already give in and teach you how to drive a motorcycle? Or car, perhaps? Have you gone strolling and drove interstates in the land most of your countrymen dreamed about? Have you set foot in one of the world’s most diverse ecosystem? Is it still possible to visit Antarctica – given the perennial issues on climate change? What’s the condition of those polar bears, seals, and emperor penguins? Were you able to meet Doc Nelsen and Doc Ferds? I hope you did not forget John Feir – and how he made your Sunday mornings filled with travel musings.
Do you still read? Have you met Lourd de Veyra, Insoy Niñal, Paulo Coelho, Nicholas Sparks, Dan Brown, J.K. Rowling, John Green, and all the literary masters who have shaped your beliefs in life? Were you able to publish your own book? Or did you even have the will to finish those drafts only God knows how to end them?
Have you fully-documented all the sunrise and sunsets you’ve seen? How’s the blog? Did it gain more followers, or you’ve totally given up its existence? Are you still even writing? Does you current job permit you? What keeps you busy these days?
Surely, I’ve got tons of questions to ask. But more than anything else, I hope you are happy with all the decisions you’ve made. Life’s never easy; and never fair. I know troubles will always be along your way – to which, I believe, you have courageously faced head on. I hope you stood still on your beliefs and values and did not succumb to the willful demand of society.
And most importantly, I wish you are with someone who celebrates your accomplishments and stays despite your failures and imperfections. Someone who understands you mood swings and outbursts – whom you can openly debate and discuss with. I hope you were patient enough to wait. And wise enough to understand whatever the universe has planned for you.
I trust that you remain faithful to the One who made all things possible. I hope you continue to raise awareness about the environment and defending this country against foreign (and local) perpetrators.
Lastly, I am hoping that you are happy. And contented. I know it’s ridiculous to achieve everything I wanted at this age; to accomplish this so-called bucketlist. But I do pray that you are not giving up the idea of traveling the world and making a difference in the lives of the people that you have come upon with.
I look forward to meeting you. May your dreams remain bold and your courage rise to meet them.
With lots of love and adventures,
Marj (2015 version)