Sunsets and Friendships

Sunsets come and go… But friends stay forever. 

I saw that as caption to a photo posted by a Facebook friend. It was a picture of five people in silhouette, watching a beautiful sunset by the beach. 

The picture was truly breathtaking… and the message equally inspiring.

It made me think of my high school friends and all the sunsets that we shared together — as well as all the times we waited for the sun to rise. 

If there are people who know me the most, these would be my high school friends. I can say this because we practically grew up together. And growing up together entails knowing each other’s quirks, each other’s habits and hobbies… It means meeting all your friends’ love interests, both the good and the bad ones, and they meet yours, too… Through the years, you share life’s ups and downs… You know what buttons to push to irritate or compliment the other…

It’s about knowing their life story — and accepting and loving them just the same.

My high school friends are the ones who call me Gorgeous, instead of calling me by my name.  They can also proudly and boldly call me vain and narcissistic without me being the least bit offended.

They have seen me at my best and still loved me at my worst. 

Like I said, my high school friends and I don’t just watch the sunsets… we share sunrise, too…

hs-1997

January 1, 1997

Taken almost 20 years ago, First of January, 1997. Coming from the house of another friend, we waited for the sun to rise and had this picture taken in front of St. James church in Alabang.

The night before the photo above. New Year’s Eve, 1996. 

And 20 years — and pounds — later… we still do Christmases together…

hs-2015

Christmas Get-Together 2015

hs-2016

Post-holiday 2016 Get-Together

I don’t always get to see my friends much. I know I am partly to blame because I allow the busyness of every day life to get in the way.

Yet whenever we do see each other, it’s like no time has passed. We are still the very people we once were. We just easily pick up where we left off. We update ourselves with the things we missed, we celebrate each other’s successes. 

And as we got older together — and hopefully more mature, we know that we are done with petty things. We still tease each other, yes, but we don’t bicker. We now talk about serious stuff… our families, our fears, insecurities, goals and achievements, even our mistakes. And we can still laugh at shallow, silly things (and people) — just like when we were 15. 

My friends and I are secure in the knowledge that we accept each other for who and what we are and were. Each of us with our different moods, strengths, flaws and all.

Because that’s the thing about true friendship. Neither time nor distance can change how you see the other person, nor how you feel about them.

With real friends, you can never lose the love, the respect and that feeling of being home.  

hs-2014

With three of my high school besties, Jeg, Liesl and Sandee. Homecoming 2014.

I originally captioned this, “Mean Girls,” but they objected. They said I was the only mean one. 🙂

❤ ❤ ❤

Sunsets come and go… But friends stay forever. 

*****

photos from the ’90s — which I grabbed online — i think came from our friend Joel.  All other photos are mine!!

Them. In no particular order: Jeg, Liesl, Sandee, Kokoy, Myla, Patrick, Manny and Joel

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Sky Ranch, sunset and selfie

I went to Tagaytay with family and friends over the weekend for a much, much needed vacation. Sometimes, a weekend getaway is just what one needs to recharge.

We spent Saturday afternoon at Sky Ranch, a small theme park overlooking Taal.  The main attractions were a zipline, a really big ferris wheel, a Viking ride (it’s like a boat that swings back and forth like a pendulum, going higher and higher with every swing)… there were small rides for little kids, and of course there were horses for those who wanted to go horseback riding.  But to me the best attraction of all was the breathtaking view of Taal volcano…

Take a look at this awesome sight!

This was supposed to be a selfie...

This was supposed to be a selfie…

If I am not mistaken, Taal Volcano is considered to be the smallest volcano in the world.  According to Wikipedia, Taal Volcano is a complex volcano, and is the second most active volcano in the Philippines.  Taal Volcano and Lake are located in the province of Batangas, a province south of Manila.  It is best viewed from Tagaytay ridge, and Sky Ranch provides a really nice viewing deck.

Sharing a few more photos that I took while at Sky Ranch…

I just love watching the setting of the sun.

day turning into night

day turning into night

One can’t help but marvel at the beauty of God’s creations.

The next picture, on the other hand, shows something man-made.   But it is awesome, just the same.

Sky Eye

Sky Eye

The light on this really big ferris wheel changes colors.

Now it's blue

Now it’s blue

Now it's white... i think...

Now it’s white… and blue…

I didn’t try out any of the rides — I’m not into ferris wheels much… the zipline looked quite scary (I feel too old… and yes, I’m a chicken)…   I didn’t like the Viking ride because I was afraid someone might puke while I’m up there — which will surely make me vomit, as well (unfortunately, someone does vomit at each turn).

I just strolled around, enjoyed the view,  watched the sunset, chatted with friends, took pictures, savored the cool breeze… Ah, the simple joys of life.

And of course I can’t help but take this last picture….

Selfie in the dark...

Selfie in the dark…

It was a fun Saturday afternoon spent with friends and loved ones.

Life is good.

*****

Sources:
Notes on Taal from Wikipedia
Photos from my iPhone 🙂