Dumaguete Diaries I: Theory of Flight

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Harold’s Mansion
Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental
6:29 PM

The weather is breezy and overcast here at Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental.  Writer City becomes Lyrics Translator City for the next two weeks.  My name is Marocharim, and welcome to the Dumaguete Diaries.  Ideally, I would be here on vacation after a 20-day work stretch, but I’m here to learn how to write.  I’m a fellow for creative non-fiction at the 48th National Writers’ Workshop, to be held at Silliman University.

dsc00210My day started – where else – at the smoking area of NAIA 3.  Which was kind of the way it should start, since I’m very acrophobic.  One thing I kind of despise about airport snackage is that the iced tea that I was drinking cost me P40, and the airport didn’t even have wi-fi so that I can rant and complain my ass off.

To add to the minor annoyances I had in the airport was the reason why I’m in the smoking area anyway.  There’s grim irony in having a reason to smoke if you’re an addict, considering how airport security took a few extra lighters I had on hand.  So basically, I’m a one-lighter fellow right now.  Which is kind of shitty, considering that all smokers have to have at least two lighters with them.  It makes dukot-izing cigarettes and lighters easier and more convenient.

Airport muzak was also fantastic.  Kids outside started singing and dancing to the tune of “Single Ladies” by Beyoncé Knowles… which had me in the mood for a quick lyrics translation:

Mag-isang madrasta, mag-isang madrasta…
Kung talagang gustuhin di lagyan ng singsing
Wag kang magalit pag nakita niya siya’y kukulit
Wu-oh, oh, oh…

Well, that was bollocks.

More airport bollocks came in the way of Cebu Pacific.  Now I won’t diss the airline – hey, you get what you pay for – but I was rather dismayed at their usual route of parlor games.  It was a load of dumb shit, really, so much so that I had to go for an overpriced beer just to calm my nerves and to let go of the annoyance that the airline attendants weren’t the parade of cuteness I was expecting.

sdc10005Airplane air conditioning may suck, but there’s always that one moment where you have to appreciate the cool foggy shiznit near the overhead compartments when the cabin is being pressurized.  The flight attendant was not cute enough to pay attention to, so I focused my attention to the heavy metal fog machine taking place up above.

The woman beside me then took out a rosary and started praying for dear life as the plane was taking off.  It went something like a tongue-twister for Aba Ginoong Maria, and then she clutched my hand as the wheels met thin air.

Jesus Christ, woman! I muttered.  You’re not cute enough for my standards so let go of my hand! Yeah, I’m being my unusually cruel self again, owing that for a frail old lady, she had an iron grip on my wrecked hands.  “Anak nakalipad na ba tayo?” she asked, visibly shaken by the take-off.  “Opo ‘Nay…” I winced, and only then did she let go.  Ouch!

So the non-cute flight attendants (although that other girl had pretty hot legs) started peddling overpriced snackage around following the success of their “Bring Me” schizzle.  Rather than buy an unheard-of P50 pack of Chippy, I decided to go with a more familiar P100 can of San Miguel.  Which was much to the chagrin of Little Old Lady and Woman With a Kid on Her Lap.  I can imagine the kind of example I set to that kid who was wondering what was the urine-like substance I struggled to open.

Well figured that the cabin was pressurized, so I ended up spilling some of the stuff on my lap.  Now this is flying!

“Tissue, sir?”  It was the stewardess.  Y’know it’s kind of silly to have a woman ask that question.  If you watched “American Pie” you’ll probably understand.  The flight was starting to turn into a Freudian game of image-play and wordplay.

sdc100031I was about to take a picture of the overpriced beer when I heard a voice: “Please turn off that cellphone, Sir.”  It was the stewardess.  I was an idiot for leaving my camera inside my bag, so that’s the only picture I took of the damn flight.  Besides, the view from outside was nothing but clouds.  Big clouds, little clouds… shitty looking clouds that looked like diapers.

One advantage to being in Seat Number 7 is that I don’t have a view of the wing, but Man-Bitch behind me pulled my seat back for no apparent reason.  I was thinking I should challenge him to a fight, but the dude reminded me of Eddie Garcia.

Grabe naman Miss, I thought, pi-picture-an na sana kita pinapatay mo pa cellphone ko. “Thank you, Sir.”  Pakshet, buti di mo ko tinawag na Ma’am, the gnome in my head continued droning.

As we were making our descent, I could hear the crumpling of paper bags and the barfing at the back of the plane.  Ah, barf: the sourness of it never gets old.  Little Old Lady then gave my hand the usual death-grip that makes me wonder if I can still type, use a key, or masturbate.

Aba Ginoong Maria napupuno ka ng grasya… this was gonna be burnination.  Pain-a-nation, even; I think the Little Old Lady just gripped my hand with enough force to make me swear off masturbation completely.

After all, at the very moment that I’m writing this, a bunch of cross-dressing homosexuals just sat on the table in front of me.  Now I have nothing against gay people: it’s a learning process, and I will probably take a lifetime to get rid of every prejudice I have to become a truly open person who accepts people without prejudice or regard for their lifestyle choices, but I sure as hell won’t say I am at this point.  Hey, the worst I can do is to say “I’m all-accepting” and then end up making a few jokes at the expense of people who don’t share the same views I do.

Just in case you ask, I didn’t learn that on a plane ride.  I just learned that just now.  Must be my aching hand.

The plane landed at Dumaguete Airport at approximately… hell I don’t know I don’t wear a watch and my cellphones are still turned off, but I think I found a miracle.

sdc10012

A beerhouse with wi-fi access?  Hoo-hah!  I’m loving Dumaguete already.

Now that my pack of P12.00 Camels (I’m still having trouble looking for Astro cigarettes) is running out, I think it’s time for me to get some grub.  Unless, of course…

Mag-isang madrasta, mag-isang madrasta…
Kung talagang gustuhin di lagyan ng singsing
Wag kang magalit pag nakita niya siya’y kukulit
Wu-oh, oh, oh…

Crikes, that song’s stuck in my head.

2 comments on “Dumaguete Diaries I: Theory of Flight”

  1. Reply

    Errr… madrasta is stepmother, no?

    Good luck and have fun! 🙂

    • nikki
    • May 5, 2009
    Reply

    funny old woman! =))

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