Home Sweet Home x 2: Concord and the Philippines

Yesterday was Yvette vs. Murphy’s Law day. What could go wrong DID go wrong. I missed my AM flt due to subway delays. I left the house at 7:15 and would’ve easily gotten to JFK by 8AM from Bed-Stuy had it not been for this stupidity. I got on the afternoon flight that was expected to arrive in Oakland at 7:30, but as soon as we boarded it started to pour and we were stuck on the tarmac for 2.5 hours until takeoff. We landed in Oakland at 9:30. Check-in for Philippine Airlines closes at 9:45. I was freaking out and fortunately my cousin Francis texted me and told me not to worry. While I was up in the air saying 1,000,000 Hail Maries for the flt to just get there safely and everything will be ok, my parents and auntie teamed up and rebooked my ticket for Wednesday. I txted my mom in the Philippines and told her I was very upset that I wasn’t on the plane for Manila already. She called and told me to chill – these things happen and I will be ok. As my 2 favorite guy cousins picked me up, my exhaustion started to set in. Oh and did I mention I lost my voice? Yes. I sound like a cracked out Joan Rivers right now. I have a little cough, but I don’t feel sick. I was tired the extra night was a must-needed diversion.

I woke up this morning and ate breakfast on my parents new veranda. It is weird to be in such a big, empty house. WAY different from my approx. 830 sq. foot apartment I share w/ Joanie. This is where I grew up – subtle changes, but all very familiar. Due to my voice, my mom did not sleep as a result of worrying. She promptly informed me about her predicament 3:30 in the morning their time. Apparently, the Philippines is being quite vigilant about swine flu and is doing random thermal scans at the airport. She asked me to call my Tita Helen (an RN) and/or talk to Francis (one of the cousins who picked me up who happens to be an RN) to get medication…if all else fails I was instructed to ask my aunties to talk to a family friend, Dr. Mendoza, to give me some antibiotic. Both Francis and Tita Helen said that I had nothing to worry about over the phone and that it will naturally run its course. My attempt to argue that I was fine was rebuked and I was instructed via email to not be stubborn because she would rather that I stay in the US than be stuck in quarantine. I heard my mother’s voice in my head as I read this email. Since I wanted to see my Tita anyway and I really didn’t want to be stuck in no damn quarantine for my vacation, I promptly drove to Richmond and picked up the meds. I also took my own temperature and it’s normal. Fortunately, she had a prescription cough med that she said will calm my cough and help my throat. I went to Apo’s house (grandma) and told to return later on in the afternoon so that I can eat there – my auntie was baking chicken. SCORE! I leave for the airport around 6:30ish tonight. I called PAL to confirm it’s been rebooked. All is fine.

I am relieved that I had this time to take it easy before boarding another plane. I am able to catch up w/ family and get some extra sleep. It has been a year since I’ve seen my Apo who is 91 – that was the biggest plus to staying an extra night. The Lord did answer my Hail Mary’s – everybody is safe and healthy. Oops I better go…my auntie just called and said the chicken is done! I can hear my Apo in the background giving her instructions to tell me to come…

There’s Only One Song I’ve Been Singing…

And I sang it w/ my brother the day before the King of Pop passed away. I just had him on my mind all weekend.

I will NEVER be able to say goodbye to the music, the icon – Michael Jackson. I hope that you are now resting peacefully up in heaven and the worries of the world have all washed away.

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A Taste of Home In Brooklyn

shoes, originally uploaded by joeytoofresh.

In an effort to forge our surrogate families here in Brooklyn, my sister and I hosted our first dinner party in Brooklyn. These pix were taken by Joey. It allowed me to debut the crock-pot and serve some kare-kare aka Filipino oxtail peanut stew. Good times, lots of laughs, and GREAT company.