Tuesday, December 28, 2010


Dear Toronto,

I did not like you at start. You seemed very foreign to me and I felt like you never wanted me to be here. You were harsh. You have exposed me to absolute realities I only heard and read about in the past. You showed me things that I ain't supposed to see. You lured me into your bait. You made me walk the streets of downtown alone in a cold winter night. You gave me the impression that you live and feed through the tears that fell from my eyes. I can hear you laugh at times when I cried myself to sleep. You screamed to my ear in a hollow voice, "Leave!" Your facade appeared so ghostly I wanted to run away from you.

Albeit, somehow, for the past five-and-a-half years that we have been chasing each other, there came a point when we finally came to terms and reached a truce. I learned to dance in your shadow without losing my own. I started to yell back at you, "Back off!" You knew so well when not to cross me. I lured you into my bait more than a couple of times. I got the maps of downtown tatooed on my head. The tears stopped from falling and you came to laugh with me. We realized that we both need each other. We found comfort in each other. You have been my home away from home.

By this time next week, I have moved already to Lebanon, Pennsylvania. It will be a new environment for me; a new place that I should be calling home for at least the next one-and-a-half years or so. I am uncertain as to how Lebanon will treat me. Will he be as fierce and tough as you? As cold as you? Will we eventually develop the kind of friendship that you and I share?

No matter what happens, you will always have a place in my heart, Toronto. I am praying that in the future, I will find my way back to you, and when that time comes, I hope you will recognize me as your long lost friend, and welcome me with open arms. Therefore, I am not bidding farewell to you but rather, au revoir, mon ami ! Promise me, you'll never let go.


~ I love you, Vince ~



Saturday, November 6, 2010


So this is my first entry as Mrs. Karen Mae Pagulong-Valencia. Yes, you heard me right :) I finally got the very much elusive ring. Shining, shimmering, splendid ring. Oh, wait, let me correct that. I should say RINGS instead. Hehe.

It went all soooo fast. First thing, Vince proposed and I was brandishing my diamond engagement ring for about a week or two, and next thing I know, I was running all over the place looking for suppliers for our wedding. Crazy beautiful. That was how it was.

The wedding was a bliss. There were dramas that surrounded it, mainly unrelated to the wedding, but thank God, the wedding day was truly lovely. I owe it all to God and of course to my very loving Metropolitan Bible Baptist Church - Toronto family who supported me all the way (despite all the dramas) and was there with me from the time the engagement was announced to the church until the memorable wedding day itself.

Every memory surrounding it is just so wonderful, I can't even begin how to put each in words to share them.


**Willowdale Presbyterian Church

If it weren't for Pastor Gamy's and Tita Sonia's ceaseless efforts, we wouldn't have found a venue for the wedding. Initially, we thought of Vaughan Baptist Church, but unfortunately, it was unavailable for our date. They checked out a couple other more Baptist churches within the area, but it was the Willowdale Presbyterian Church who accommodated us. Would you believe that it wasn't until the day before the wedding when we were finally able to secure the venue? How much more last minute can our wedding be?


**Shemela Decorators

A few days before the wedding, Vince and I drove to Ajax, Ontario to have a viewing of Serena's (Shemela Decorators) show room. We are so thankful to this very nice lady and so happy how she transformed the church and the auditorium. Every penny we paid was worth it. After the wedding, when she was packing up the stuff, she told Vince and me that for anything that was broken, we'd be responsible for it. At the time, she said that there were already two broken wine glasses, and that she would just get in touch with us after she had counted them all. To date, we haven't heard back from her. God bless her soul !


**Jennifer Newberry Photography

First time we met Jennifer Newberry was at Unionville when we had our engagement shoot. Her basic photography package costs $900 - four-hour coverage - plus a 30-minute bonus engagement shoot. I saw her ad through Facebook, and the moment she touched base with me through email, I knew I'd be comfortable with her. Vince and I looked into other photographers/videographers, and I am really glad that Vince agreed to go with Jennifer. She made the photo shoots so much fun. No awkward moment at all. We have only seen a few sample pics from the engagement shoot and the wedding day, but we can feel the positive vibe that our pics will all turn out as lovely as our wedding was.


**Brenda Cruz

I have known Bre through Xpressionlane for three or four years now, but we never actually personally met, not until a couple of weeks before the wedding for measurements. She is a very talented, beautiful, and nice lady who is as giggly as I am. Hehe ! The style of my gown was a little bit revealing - by that I mean, cleavage and everything - thanks to Bre and Neil's urging. But hey, I was able to pull it off ! I am really thankful to Bre for making me a wedding dress that is equally memorable as my short-preparation wedding.


*led by Pastor Gamy Romano

No words can express my gratitude to the love you have shown to me by being all-out supportive to my wedding. From the singers, pianist, violinist, program coordinator, emcees, cooks, servers, photographers, videographers and to every one who participated in the whole event, may God bless you more for being channels of blessing to Vince and me, and I pray that God bless us too, in that we may be able to reciprocate what you have done for us. Thank you for being my spiritual family. My wedding would not have happened without you.


**Dr. Vincent Glenn Valencia

Is there anything else can I say to the love of my life that would be of greater intensity than the vow I made in the presence of God and all those who came to witness the wedding? The actual scene of us exchanging vows will keep on playing in my mind. For a minute there you had me thinking that you wanted to run away - when you could not say your vows, and your voice cracking, but then when I realized that you were just overwhelmed with emotions, you made me feel the happiest bride on earth :) I love you very much, Vince. I would love to marry you over and over and over again.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


From this day on, I choose you, my beloved Vince, to be my husband:
To live with you and stand by your side,
To sleep in your arms and wake up with your kiss,
To laugh with you in good times and struggle with you in bad,
To bring joy to your heart and solace when you're down,
To wipe your tears with my hands and comfort you with my body,
To share with you all my riches and honors.
To love you sweetly and gladly until our lives on earth shall come to end.

On our path through life, with God by our side, may we grow in the likeness of Christ and let our home be praise to Him.

I love you, Vince, forever and for always.

*credits to the originals - edited to suit my taste

Thursday, September 9, 2010


It's Vince's birthday next month. I know it's still kinda far from now but I'm pretty much excited and looking forward to it. We had initially planned on going to Cuba for a getaway, but thanks to Canada for its very slow processing of Permanent Resident cards, my renewal wouldn't make it on time for next month. Ergo, I can't leave the country. No erase that. Actually, I can, however without a valid Permanent Resident card, I will be denied entry back to Canada. Good grief. That means, I can't even cross the border. Jeez. Having said that, Vince and I had searched high and low for good places to visit (that come with a good price) within Canada. Unfortunately, it seems like traveling locally is much way expensive than Cuba trips which usually cost around $500 (7-day all inclusive) - beat that! Plus, the season factor - with October being not so summery hot anymore and not so wintery cold yet, it's too late for camping and too early for skiing. I crossed my fingers last night and tried my luck again in hopes to find cheap vacation packages. Sad to say, I didn't find any that suit our taste (and pocket). This leaves us with our alternative plan: Toronto City Pass. For the price of about $60, we can visit Casa Loma, Ontario Science Centre, Royal Ontario Museum, CN Tower, and Toronto Zoo. Not bad, considering the fact that among those attractions, I've only been to CN Tower (courtesy of a visiting friend from the States).

But you know what I'm more excited about? *Giggles. I've planned on surprising Vince on his birthday with a romantic home made dinner ♥ I did some researching online on what's a good birthday present for a special someone, and most of the hits led me to that. I did a checklist on what a romantic home made dinner should comprise. I realized that I needed to buy "paraphernalias" for it. Okay, not that kind of paraphernalia, but I'm referring to stuff like table cloth, dishes, etc. Coincidentally, Kitchen Stuff Plus had a huge sale around the time I was conceiving this surprise on my mind, so I hurriedly dragged my BFF, Neil, to KSP, buy whatever items I need, help me carry the huge, heavy grocery bags after shopping, and walked all the way from Yonge and Eglinton to Neil's apartment, while it was raining so heavily that we got drenched so bad, all we wanted to do when we got to his place was jump straight to the pool. LOL. I was able to buy table cloth, table napkins, soup bowls, sangria pitcher and glasses, centrepiece (candle holder), scented candles, cake knife, and baking dish. I still have to buy fresh flowers (which obviously I have to get on the dinner day).

Now, comes the menu. I thought of serving a three-course meal. Vince, most of the time, would order soup whenever we dine out; so I decided that I'm going to serve mushroom soup for appetizer. For the main course, I'll serve grilled salmon dressed with sundried tomatoes and oregano (garnished with parsley) and chicken parmigiana. Drinks will be lemon iced tea (we're not fond of alcohol, but I may stock a couple of Smirnoffs in the fridge). Dessert will be cheese cake (which I will have to get at that time). Basically, I will be cooking the appetizer and main course, so help me God - whew !

Then, the birthday present. I asked Vince if he has a wishlist for his birthday and he told me he wanted a handy point and shoot camera (that will not exceed $200). We argued about the price as the camera I had my eyes on was worth more than $300. He didn't want anything fancy; just a point and shoot; I'll leave it up to you dear readers to figure out what camera I got him. Hehe! Anyway, I picked up the camera at Future Shop yesterday. I also managed to buy him a birthday card while I was out last week to get some of our pictures printed. Yes, our pictures which I will put in a puzzle-like frame. I had asked Neil to come over this weekend to help me hang these frames, which hopefully will add ambience to my plain Jane bachelor apartment.

After that, I intended to give Vince a bonus home made foot spa. Yeah, it has been one of my crazy routines recently due to the thick callouses on my feet that broke while I was with Vince in New Jersey two weeks ago. I found remedies online (where else?): Warm water soak with baking powder, feet scrub, and feet moisturizer. I have also purchased Dr. Scholl's foot products after I came back from New Jersey and I am determined to share to Vince the relaxed feeling that home made foot spa brought into my life (or at least my feet - should I say happy feet?).

There. I pretty much detailed my birthday surprise for Vince. Don't you go asking for afterparty. All I can say is that we'll have a good night rest afterwards and wake up fresh the following day, all set for the first day of our Toronto City Pass tour. *Wink

~ I love you Vince ~

Sunday, August 8, 2010


Okay, the first thought that probably entered your mind upon seeing the title of this post is the infamous Japanese horror flick that was such a big hit, Americans made a version of it. Sorry to disappoint you, guys, but this is not about it.

Facebook has been very faithful in keeping me updated not only with what's going on my friends' lives but basically with anything under the sun. While browsing Facebook as I waited for my body clock to switch into sleep mode, I stumbled upon a YouTube clip posted on one of my online friends' wall. It was the Robin Padilla - Mariel Rodriguez video wherein they discussed the issue of a supposedly sensational PhP 1.2 million diamond ring.
She was hosting a Channel 2 entertainment show and doing an interview with Robin. I only saw the latter half of a two-part clip, and from what I could get, I take that was for Mariel's birthday.

So there was Mariel looking like a lovely canary in a yellow dress, all pretty and made up, and Robin living up to his bad boy image was wearing dark torn jeans and coat on top, sitting beside each other. Mariel pulled out a tiny red (not blue) box - the caption revealed that it was a diamond ring displaying the monetary worth - and asked Robin what made him give her the ring. Robin went on to state that diamonds are forever and compared their attributes to Mariel. Robin coaxed her to wear the ring all the time, "Sana suotin mo... may pagkakataong hindi mo yan sinusuot..." Mariel retorted back, "Eh kasi hindi pa ako handang pag-usapan... Ngayon napagusapan na natin ... Suotin natin..." (OH EM GEE. I shrieked in unison to the audience's shrill. My eyes were glued to the screen as Robin put the ring into Mariel's finger ... and wow ! It really looked precious on her slim finger). That was apparently the first time that Robin gave a ring to a girl, so Mariel asked him the reason for this. Robin replied (to which I shrieked again in thrill), "Parang diamond ka sa akin... dapat ka pangalagaan... at kailanman hindi kukupas ang iyong kinang." Mariel began to get teary eyed when Robin declared his plans of "gusto kong kunin ang mga kamay mo at magpapakalayo layo na lang... sana manatili kang diamond, lagi kang matibay... ako hindi ako nagsisinungaling... totoo, sagutin mo ako [o] hindi... itago mo yang singsing, anoman mangyari... sa'yo yan... di ako nagsinungaling sa'yo Mariel, mahal kita..." Mariel's eyes widened when Robin blurted the words, "Mahal kita." Robin's last words were then drowned by the audience's cheering. (And I was like, "awwwwwwwww"). I bet you if only they weren't in front of the camera, I swear, Mariel would have jumped onto Robin's arms and a very sweet kiss would have been shared at that moment. Or maybe, at least, if I was Mariel, I would have done that. Haha ! But then, another friend of mine commented that almost every girl who saw that "eh kinilig." In all fairness to Robin, he was sharp to it, and pretty much landed on the right spot, bullseye. It wouldn't be a surprise if Mariel said "Yes" to him. Sino nga naman ba ang hindi kikiligin sa ganun? Good job, Robin. Two thumbs up ;)

I thought of closing this entry with my own personal anecdote relating to the experience Mariel had, however, THE RING remains elusive to me. I was given once a ring by an ex-boyfriend but it was nothing similar to Mariel's ring, and I'm not talking about the monetary value - that's not even the point. I appreciated the thought of the gift but the "kilig" factor was not there. My heart didn't do cartwheels. It could be because the way it was given (unpersonal as it was handed by someone else) or simply because I had already grown apart to that person at the time it was given. Pagkatapos noon nagtampo ata ang THE RING sa akin because since then hindi na sya ulit nagpakita sa akin.
I dated another guy after my first boyfriend and although we went out for quite awhile, the relationship was so far from even being called a "relationship," hence, THE RING was never contemplated. Needless to say, it failed. Subsequently, I met Vince, my beloved - the man I hope and intend to spend the rest of my life with - only, he hasn't asked for my hand yet. Having said that, I guess I will continue to sing, ♪♫ "If you liked it then you should've put a ring on it," ♪♫ until such time that the lord of THE RING finally gives in and decides to slip THE RING to my tiny finger.

♪♫ Uh, oh, oh, Uh, oh, oh, Uh, oh, oh ♪♫

Saturday, June 5, 2010


Thank you for the drum roll of cool rainy days that spring brought, but now I'm rolling the red carpet for June. The various colours and sounds that come with June open up the curtain of yet another season: Summer, my beloved of all them four. June arrives with an air of warmth and glow of tan that seem to say everything will be alright. It is the empress sun's time to shine proving its utmost strength with days longer than nights. Flowers in bloom, chirping birds, flip flops, tank tops -- these are a few of my favorite things.

Bride is one thing June is associated with. On looking up in the Internet the origin of this tradition, I found out that one probable explanation behind this is that during the old times, English commoners used to take a bath only once a year. June, being the warmest month of the year for them, was the perfect time. Since you would only bathe annually, might as well get married on the same day, right? Hence, the term June bride was conceived.

Come to think of it, I just realized now that I haven't really seen myself being a June bride. Maybe because: 1) I spent 25 years of my life in the Philippines, and it's a given fact that June, in the Philippines, not only is synonymous for the opening of school year but also typhoons. 2) I never actually thought of getting married then... not until recently.

Wouldn't it be lovely to be dressed in a summery wedding gown? March in high-heeled strappy sandals? Showered with fresh petals of scenty flowers? Wind blowing on your hair as your groom plants a kiss on your forehead, cheeks, nose and then lips? Say "I do" and exchange vows on a bright sunny day without a single cloud in the sky? ♥♥♥

Oh well ... it's free to dream. Reality always comes with a price, to make it worth living. Seems like my groom hasn't find his way to me yet, so for the time being, I'll enjoy the rest of my June dreaming about my own wedding -- one of my favorite things ;)

Sunday, May 23, 2010


May 19, 2010

My everdearest Karen,

I want to celebrate you on your birthday and all the days that follow.

I want to hold you and kiss you and whisper all the sweet and tender feelings my heart holds for you.

I want to see your smile, hear your laughter, and see happiness in your eyes.

I want you to feel loved and appreciated on your birthday and all throughout the year.

I may not be there on the day of your birthday, love, but know that I'll miss hugging you on your very special day.

Let's be together soon, mahal ko. I'm sorry for keeping you waiting for such a long time.

I want to hold you all throughout the year (and throughout our lives together).

Happy Birthday !!! I love you.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Blue and italicized texts are Vince's
Red texts are American Greetings'

♥ I love you very much, Vince


May 19, 2010 fell on a weekday; Wednesday to be exact. Unfortunately, Vince was on-call that day, so we decided to celebrate it on the weekend before the actual date. Since I would be entering the third decade of my life, plus it would be our 17th month together as a couple, and the recent promotion I got at work, we thought of doing something fancy. We decided to go fine dining and made a reservation for two at Studio Cafe - Four Seasons Hotel. I was very much excited about it. It would be our first time together to try something like this. I was totally hyped up, and so was he.

Friday night came, I was all giddy and excited. I couldn't wait to get out of work that day especially when Vince told me he would be arriving in Toronto earlier than expected. For long distance lovers, every reunion is sweet. Post 24-hour call, he drove his way up from Harrisburg to Toronto. Luckily, I was able to pull myself out of work in time to tidy my apartment and at least get a shower before he got here. I took him to dinner at Asian Legend, where the Magic Onions hang out every Friday after volleyball games. The food was as usual great, and Vince loved it :)

The next day, Saturday, Vince cooked adobo for me while I vegetated in the morning and chatted with Mcdo and Pakoykoy online. Lunch time, we headed to Scarborough to watch Iron Man 2. After the movie, we went to Wal-Mart to do some grocery shopping, but changed our mind when we saw the long cashier queues. It was already past 4pm and our reservation at Four Seasons was for 6pm. We still needed to freshen up and change, so we decided to just head home.

My original wardrobe plan consisted of black pants and blouse top, but when he told me earlier in the week what he was going to wear, I had to mentally frisk my closet for an outfit that would match his. Suddenly, I remembered this little brown dress I bought on sale at Suzy Shier, that had been sitting there for a long time now, waiting for her chance to be fashioned. Voila, the perfect time for her to shine. I put on the dress, applied make-up, and wore my pair of Aldo killer heels. Needless to say, Vince looked dashing in his dress shirt, tie and dress pants ♥

Prix fixe at the restaurant was classy. However, it was the moment of being together with my very special someone that made the dinner wonderful. We ordered two glasses of wine. He had white; I had white and red. At some point in the three-meal course before we had our desserts, he left to go to the washroom. I was kind of getting worried how he was as it took him a while to come back. I was just surprised when he kissed me on my cheek, handed me a blue-ribboned gift, and greeted me, "Happy birthday, love." I eagerly opened his present for me and was stoked to see he got me a fancy bracelet watch.

The waiter then served dessert, poured a glass of red wine, and asked if we wanted anything. My body was not reacting well with the wine. I was already palpitating and even Vince could tell that I was flushed. I asked for tea thinking that it would somehow clear my system. I mixed it with milk and sugar and had two cups of it. I could feel the wine's effect on me, yet I was holding it in my system well.

Sad to say, not for very long though. Just when Vince got the bill, my head started to pound, my heart felt like it would jump out of my chest, and I began to feel really sick. I asked Vince if he could bring me to the washroom. The waiters saw me stood up, so they came over thinking we're already leaving, and one of them even tried to put on my jacket to me. I walked briskly trying to head out; Vince was trying to explain to the waiters that we're not leaving yet, and that we're just going to the bathroom, that I was nauseated... and then the next thing I knew, I was so lightheaded, the room was spinning, it blacked out, voices going faint on the background, and then Vince had to sit me down.

The subsequent event was mortifying! I was trying to psyche myself, mind over matter, convincing myself I would not throw up, but there are times when you're body won't be defeated by your mind. The short of it, since I was very lightheaded and almost fainted, I couldn't even get up to go to the bathroom, that I threw up the three-course dinner I had right there inside the busy restaurant of a classy four-star hotel. I was the biggest mess ever. There was vomitus on my hair, on my little brown dress, on my to-die for heels, on my leather jacket, all over me. As if one humiliation was not enough, after a brief moment of peace, I erupted again and threw up the second time. What a way to punctuate the night! I heard Vince explained to the restaurant staff who had been inquiring for their records purposes, "She's my girlfriend. It's actually her birthday. I'm visiting from the States. We're celebrating... It's the wine." Please blame it on the wine.

I finally had the courage to get up and leave the place. Vince accompanied me to the bathroom so at least I can wash my hair. I stunk so sourly bad, Manang Housekeeper would not stop spraying her bottle of freshener inside the bathroom. Uggghhh !! I wish I had Harry Potter's Cloak of Invisibility during that time. I wanted to go back to my mother's womb. If only I could vanish at the snap of my fingers. Too bad, I am a muggle, so I had to walk to the parking lot with whatever dignity that is left of me, all wet and stinky, feeling cold inside and out, morbidly embarassed, and sad that I ruined our supposedly Eric-Clapton-WONDERFUL-TONIGHT-evening. Yes, that would have been the perfect music, only if I did not ruin it! Inside the car, I asked Vince to turn the heater on. He reclined my seat and wrapped his jacket around me. I was still in a daze during our ride back home.

The following day, while Vince and I were having a Sunday brunch at Cora's, I apologized once again for what happened at Studio Cafe the night before. He was totally cool with it. He told me not to worry about it anymore, as things like that really do happen. He drove me to church afterwards and then off he went to Pennsylvania.

Later that night, while having our Skype conversation, he sent me the pictures taken from his Iphone. Vince complimented how lovely our photos are. As I haven't gotten over my embarassment yet, my reply to him was, "Yes, because those pictures were taken before I turned into a disaster." And then for the nth time, he said, "Okay lang yun, love... Wag mo ng isipin yun," and then he added, "Ang naalala ko lang dyan eh yung mga ngiti mo..." His final remark made getting over it a whole lot easier for me.

I bet you already guessed what my 30th birthday resolution was. You're right, NO WINE ever for me. That is a no-brainer. If you'd ask me what my 30th birthday wish was, hmmmm... In the future, if for some reason, there comes a time or a situation in that I would not be able to hold myself well, I wish for Vince to comfort me the same way he did and hear him say to me again, "Ang naalala ko lang dyan eh yung mga ngiti mo."

I love you, Vince. I pray that we'll get sweeter and sweeter together as the days go by... and forever soon ♥

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


DELILAH: "Who is in your heart tonight?"

HIM: You.

HER: How about tomorrow?

HIM: For the rest...

HER: Of the month?

HIM: Of time.

DELILAH: "Slow down and love someone with Delilah." ♪ ♫ ♪ ♫

~ I love you Vince ~

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Dearest my sweet valentine,

February 15, 2009 was when I first got a bunch of lovely flowers from you. If there is one thing I find so sweet in you, it is your wonderful character who loves throwing surprises any chance you get. The hot chocolate and muffin breakfasts you used to leave on my desk at work with morning greetings written on post-it notes; the birthday treat for me along with unexpected presents that really touched my heart, I actually bursted in tears; your first Friday in Pennsylvania, when I did not hear from you and made me wonder where you were then, only to find you knocking at my door later in the night... Those are just a few, I could go on and list a whole lot more.

I am really glad to have met you. We got along well in an instant and have become best friends in a snap. It was my plan to keep it that way, no more no less. You took me out to lunches and dinners. You waited for me at work. You dropped me off at my place. I never intended to fall in love with you. We went out for movies. We hung out at my place. We talked on the phone at nights. I tried so hard to resolve my feelings. You gave me flowers. You bought me presents. You made me feel special. Eventually, I had to give in and admit that I love you.

When I opened my mailbox today, a mail was sitting and waiting there for me. You should have seen the smile it brought to my face. I am certain that my heart did a sommersault the moment I saw your name on it. The card said, "My sweetheart, my sunshine, my valentine," and inside it said, "I'm so lucky you're my girl!" It is a singing card and My Girl by The Temptations was playing while I was reading your message:

"My dearest K,

I'm sorry I'm missing a Valentine's that we could be together. It will not be like this for us for long mahal... I'll see you next week mahal. I love you! Happy Valentine's Day!


Thank you for being that ONE big surprise in my life. I am truly happy that we took our friendship to the next level. I find it quite tough that we are far apart right now, and I appreciate all the things you do to make it work out for us. I am very much looking forward to that day when we can be together, figuratively and literally, and when that time comes, I know you will, but I will say it anyway, please SURPRISE me, my sweet one :)

I love you Vince,

your K


My share for:

Friday, January 15, 2010


About 10 months had passed since my depressing heartbreak when I came to the point where I felt I was ready to start dating again. In an attempt to be bodacious and convince myself I really was, I somehow ended up having a bet with Vince. The dare was for me to have at least one date in a month's time. The stake? Nothing really. We figured we could always come up of something anyway when the time comes our bet ends.

So, there we were, Vince and I, exchanging our views regarding this date bet while walking our way to Eaton Centre after work one chilly December day. We got our Christmas gift cards from work, so we decided to hit the mall and see where to spend the treat. Amidst our conversation, I began to chicken out and thought aloud,
"Maybe I'm not really ready yet..."
He went on to encourage me and said it was just about the right time for me to move on and he would support me with whatever decision I make, yada yada. I cannot really remember now for sure how our what started to be a casual talk turned into some sort of a very random bluff. One thing I recall is that I brought up the fact that I am one of the boys (mostly hanging out with him and Neil ) and how this may play a role in catching the attention of a suitable species of the opposite sex. Having said that, Vince got the impression that him being close to me posed as a hindrance and that he should keep his distance from me. It never occurred to me though that he would act on it so quickly and instantly, that I was caught off-guard and unexpecting. Next thing I knew, he was saying goodbye to me just so I can be by myself right at that very moment in Eaton Centre! Bodacious as I was or at least pretending to be, I said goodbye to him as well, turned my back from him, and started heading down to the subway.

It was not a quick walk from the mall's exit to the subway's northbound platform and I did not hurry either. My mind was in a bit of a blur at that time. I took small steps in a slow pace taking my time to compose myself and contemplated on what had happened. It donned on me that Vince shooed me away from him (or was it me who shooed him away?) Regardless, I was hurt and saddened when I felt that he was very much okay with keeping his distance from me and letting go of me. I was disappointed when I felt he was willing to lose our friendship and give me away to somebody else. I was hurt but then I know I should not be because 1) We are just friends; 2) I started it all. It became apparent that I was testing waters, and despite the realization, I would not give in and admit it. The bottomline is that we are friends and that I ought to keep my contingency plans within this grounds.

I got to the subway, swiped my Metropass, and waited at the DWA (Designated Waiting Area). I thought to myself, if Vince did not really mean to let me go, he would not have allowed me to have gone that far. I would also say it was a good five minutes since the time we said goodbye in the mall till I reached the DWA. It should not have taken him that long to catch after me if he really wanted to. At that time, I started patching emotional Band-Aids to myself in consolation. I felt truly sad and hurt, and I wanted to go home and just hide in my proverbial comfort zone. I wished for the train to come as soon as possible, just so I could make myself believe that Vince did run after me but he missed me because the train arrived sooner than him. A couple of minutes more, it began to get crowded and yet not a sight or sound of a train (as well as Vince). The analogy was making me more sad with every second that I had to stand in the platform and wait there.

The wait felt like forever. Lost in thought and with eyes fixed on the floor, I was surprised to feel an arm slowly slipped into mine. I looked up and saw Vince. I asked him gently,
"Oh, bakit nandito ka?," to which he replied softly, "I'm sorry."
You probably would have guessed the next scene. The train finally arrived. It was a perfect script for a romantic movie.

We boarded the train arm to arm. Needless to say, it was an awkward moment, which again for me felt like forever. Vince requested that I get off at Davisville and go to Sunnybrook with him where he parked the van and from there he would give me a ride home. Easy as always, I agreed. That meant another awkward bus ride which I was sure would feel like forever again.

We did not leave Sunnybrook's parking lot right away. It was very cold then and we were both freezing. We made ourselves warm inside the van with the heater turned up. It was another awkward moment which felt like forever. Vince buried his face down my neck and hugged me and muttered under his breath,
"I'm sorry. I was such a jerk."
I hugged him back. It did not feel awkward for me anymore and I even wished we could stay cuddled like that forever.

When we were about to leave, Vince turned the radio on in time for the Delilah Show. It was playing a song that we both heard for the first time then:

"Every long lost dream led me to where you are,
Others who broke my heart, they were like Northern stars,
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms.
This much I know is true,
That God blessed the broken road that led me straight to you."

If you are wondering about the bet, for the record, I won it. Six days before Christmas day, I found myself a date. It may have been an unofficial date but technically it was. The rendezvous was very sweet and lovely; one that I will cherish forever. I never asked Vince for my winnings, but something tells me that I already got my prize :)

Lest I forget, I should be thankful for the train that was not there for it undoubtedly played a huge part in my love story.

I love you Vince.

Saturday, January 2, 2010



I have not been able to visit my own blog for quite awhile mainly because I did not have the luxury of time to do it. My work situation remains the same; if any, it actually has gone drastically worse with respect to workload and stress level. Every once in a while when I would get emotional outbursts that needed venting out, I would retort to
http://www.xpressionlane.com/ where my diary quietly and privately resides. Talking to Leda the other day, I was reminded of this blog. Hence, here I am, writing my thoughts away and eventually will be posting the manifestation of these collected thoughts into cyberworld, for posterity's sake.

The first thing I did when I logged in (after successfully getting the password at third try) is checked my most recent post (which is not so recent after all) dated March 2009. I browsed quickly to see what the post was about. Words of note included Pennsylvania; Fools Rush In; there are signs everywhere; and Starry Starry Night. Hmmmm...


I was in Penn last October 2009. I spent a week in Lebanon County. During the long drive from New York to Lebanon, I was savouring the overwhelming feeling that I was actually travelling and going to places I have only read about in books and seen in movies during my growing up years. Indeed, it was very memorable for me.


Some might not agree with me here but I believe that THERE ARE SIGNS EVERYWHERE. You just have to know which ones are for you. I was never a follower of horoscopes. I am not a fan of serendipity either. There are no accidents in this world. Everything happens for a purpose. Incidents occur for a reason.

A couple of years ago, I unintentionally threw away a pair of leather gloves that I really loved. I was so upset that time and tried to get comfort from someone whom I regarded as a special someone. I sent this person a text message and his reply was something to this effect: "Don't be upset now, baby. I'll get you two more gloves if you want." I smiled instantly at that time. Who would not? The mere thought was enough, especially that this person was very dear to me. As expected, this person never gave me any gloves. I could live without leather gloves. I could buy a dozen pairs of different colors if I want to. The pair of gloves was revealed as an epitomy when this person took off on me without the courtesy of even saying goodbye. He just vanished along with his lies and broken promises leaving me with a badly wounded heart.

Winter had come and gone and a new flame revived my heart. Two winters since I lost my gloves, this new flame of mine bought me a very pretty leather gloves. My heart was really soothed and touched with this act. I made a promise to him and myself that I will not lose these gloves. Guess what? Christmas Day and my fairly new pair of gloves is missing. We tried to go back to where I might have left them, searched the car, searched my place, searched my bestfriend's place where we spent the night, to no sucess. After a couple of days or so, when I told a friend I still have not found my gloves, her reply was, "Move on na. Gloves lang yun." Yes, she is right. Gloves nga lang yun but my sentimental side was telling me there was more to it than just the gloves. Another friend even joked about it being an omen to something relating it to the ex-gloves experience but I dismissed that thought right away; I would not even dare go there.

Hold on, do not react yet, because the gloves saga did not end there. A couple of days before New Year's Eve, my BFF Neil phoned me while I was at work. "Gusto mo ng good news? ... Nakita ko yung gloves mo ..."

And so my Facebook status that day said: Karen Mae Pagulong will have a sweet reunion with her leather gloves :) i'm taking this as a good sign ♥


It was during fall when we first met. You had the initial impression that I am a very quiet shy person and you wanted to tap out of me my wacky self. Yes, I was indeed very quiet during that time because I was wrapped up in my own shell hurting. It did not take that long for you to crack my shell though. Soon enough, I was smiling and laughing and being myself again. The walks that we took together on our way home, the casual late night talks, the lunches at work ... We knew right away that we clicked. Though we tried to shove it off, in our hearts, we felt there was definitely a connection. I was very happy to find a friend and I am very thankful to find love as well.

It was not an easy road for both of us. Me - jaded by my previous heartbreak. You - bound to make another decision. Somehow, we found ourselves in a situation we both had been before.

PAST - Whatever hurdles we went through, I am thankful and glad that they are behind us now. PRESENT PERFECT - We have been patiently weathering the distance. For now, we only have sketches of what lies ahead. I am constantly looking forward to taking the trip and exploring the world together with you. FUTURE PROGRESSIVE - We will be counting all the things we can accomplish together.

We have only just begun, and hopefully our journey leads to endless starry, starry nights together.

I love you Vince.


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