EACH time I hear Calum Scott’s popular line “If I could turn back the clock, I’ll make sure the light defeated the dark”, I could feel a string attached to my heart is being pulled. Not much of regrets but on realization. The same touch I guess to a long lost friend and a good influencer Nilo Cabatingan. After 34 long years since we left the portals of our alma mater, he bid to host for our high school batch reunion in Kidapawan City.
Social media is so kind to connect the nucleus through the efforts of our dynamic servant-leader and class valedictorian Jay Persigas-Alaan. And without much rigor, we came up in consensus with our young at heart adviser Edwin Bollecer to have the event on August 24 to 26, 2019.
Space Bar is very limited to recount how relishing was the travel of Ruth Tubera-Angelino, the darling of the class. From Surigao she fetched Jay, Sergio Vasquez the quiet resolver, the bidaman Alex Cabilao and sportsman Benjamen Ty in Butuan.
Dawn of Saturday, the clique proceeded to Trento where the devotee love team since high school Celedonio and Merlita Salvador were waiting to join. The elite gang of Caraga proceeded to Tagum and spent the Sabbath with the anticipation to hook and prey our class muse Lilibeth Catubigan-Saromines.
Just before the dusk came, social manager Reuel Sto. Niño from Malaybalay united with the wayfarers from Caraga at the residence of soccer guru Dr. Junel and his better half Saada Cabardo in Catalunan Pequiño.
No one from the gang of fifties complained exhaustion; but the masseuse device of the couple may have something to tell when it was incessantly obliged to serve until late hours. The men were so excited and restless throughout the night, while the women were trying to hold in peace until the break of dawn.
Sunday morning came, Grace Cachuela-Galzote from Gensan and I joined the group; and everyone was ready to ramble with the juicy rambutans, the orchard-fresh mangosteen, the mound of seedless lansones, and the milky meat of durians prepared by the host couple Nilo and Lee Ann.
And, hail the gang is here! The long trip from Caraga to Kidapawan was worth it and seemed shortened. Fruits-all-you-can was the paramount nutriment; grilled tuna panga and tuna ceviche were just few among the best dishes during the overnight satiety in forest breeze at Lake Agco Mountain Resort, right at the foot of Mt. Apo.
By the way, days before the happenings, few of our batch mates expressed regrets not to attend the reunion because of earlier commitments of equal importance. But their financial backing and wishes articulated how they cared us. In no particular order, we sincerely express our heartfelt gratitude to Dr. Corona Tidalgo who was earlier scheduled to fly back to Dubai; RN Nejean Daabay-Credo; Engr. Denny and Daisy Sasil who at that time were attending a business conference in Taiwan; Teresa Tan, Ruby Quimpan-Abundo , Marietta Calo-Yuson, Lilia Anacleto-Ungab, Emma Bador-Roma and Rowena Sollano-Cortez.
We missed some of our batch mates who lose contact with the group for quite a time like Ruth Cuartero, Edmer Nuer, Samuel Bulaybulay and Royna Casinillo.
We also have a beam and two rays that were fallen along the journey of challenging lives. We remember them in many gatherings. The NEMA batch 85 longs to reunite with them on that grand reunion for the faithful, which will be in heaven.