- Best adventure: Traveling on my own. In August, I managed to explore the easternmost part of Samar, the scenic and pristine beaches of Calicoan Island in Guian on my own! I even managed to reach the remote mystic shrine of San Antonio de Padua at the tip of the island and was able to say a prayer and light a candle there. I was stuck in the middle of a tropical storm there, but what the heck, I was able to conquer Guian! In October, I singlehandedly explored the beautiful island of Catanduanes after a 12-hour bus trip and 2-hour boat ride! It's exhilarating to look back and finally say to myself, you're a full-pledged traveler now, kid! This year I found out that traveling is addictive, necessary and, uhhmmm, orgasmic! That's it! There's no better word!
- Best experience: Hmmm, that would have to be my first intro dive in nowhere less than Apo Island in Dumaguete! Being scared of water since I was a child, it took a great deal of courage on my part to even initiate that one. I was frozen with fear but when I hit the water and saw the paradise underneath, I could already die then.
- Best meal: That would have to be the feast of galunggong and sukang pinakurat especially prepared for me by my staff the day I left the office. Sniff! Sniff! I miss them! I ate like a kargador then.
- Best destination: That's hard. There's Caramoan in Camarines Sur, White Island in Camiguin, Anawangin in Zambales. But wait, I guess it would have to be that secluded beach in Guisi, Nueva Valencia, Guimaras, a secret sanctuary of a good friend, which we shrewdly invaded. Hehehe. Talk about passive aggression.=)
- Best drinking session: That would have to be the drinking session of the 1st Five O'Clock Club assembly right at the office of the chairman of the Department of Medicine, my boss! I think it's the venue that made that session special.
- Best text message: Hmmm, difficult again. It's a toss between "I'm proud of you" or "I'm still recovering" or "That will never happen", all from the same person though.
- Best statement: Easy. That would have to be, "You will never disappoint me, Jean." But that's just the good part. The best part was paying that statement forward to someone in need of encouragement. Hmmm, I hope that best part didn't fall on deaf ears though.
- Best surprise: Meeting my old high school friends for the first time in so many years and finding out that things are still the same or even a lot better. And finding out that my good old man is still single and already farming! wink, wink. (peace bai, kidding of course)
- Best laugh: Claire's boobs pa rin yata!?=) Ahh! That game children in Dumaguete played... "Once upon a time in a Valentine, kiss muna bago ka choochoo..." and then they spread their legs farther and farther each time they chant that line. I was laughing my guts out until my insides felt like they were made of air. I don't know why, but that sounded so funny then.
- Best gift: Forgiveness. For myself, others, and the whole worle d in general.
- Best new skill learned: Patience.
- Best movie: It's either Sex and the City or Mama Mia, all watched with the Five O'Clock Club girls. It's the company that matters most, I guess.
- Best discovery: It's a toss between Jack Johnson and a cup of tea to cap the evening. It's hard to live without both these days.
- Best decision: The choice to stick around for one more year doing office work, and the decision to stick around for the next three years. No matter how ridiculous the reasons are. Hmmm, we'll see. That part is yet to unfold...
So many bests. There's also the craziest, the funniest, the most shocking, the most irrational, the most irritating, etc. The year was good. This new year will be better, I'm sure.
For starters... Batanes, here I come! Woohooo!