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25 April 2014

The Holy Week: A meaningful post-birthday celebration

It is quite often the case that my birthday falls before, during or after the Holy Week. There was one time when I turned 9 or 10 years old that we slaughtered all the chickens in the mini-farm beside the bungalow and cooked them all on my birthday party. It was a holy day but nothing could keep us from merrymaking. This year, it was a week earlier but it was only later that I had arranged a simple midafternoon meal at home with a handful of special people including my fiancé.

I was quick to shift into cooking mode when I stepped into the kitchen. It has always been Pinoy-style spaghetti with chunks of tender juicy hotdogs in my head and so it was. As usual, sister had to approve the final taste since she doesn't like a hint of sourness in the tomato-based sauce. But then we have to please others when we cook so I don't mind.

We also rolled some lumpia using my favorite personal recipe. It seems forever that I have been cooking meat rolls so I could actually close my eyes doing it. In reality, I am forced to shut the eyelids especially when the oil is too hot and splattering at me. My all-time favorite fried chicken wings was also never missed so it also got into the boiling pan.

Sister baked chocolate cake for me with chocolate frosting. The color was a bit dull so you would think it was bland but life sprung into a rainbow when I ate it. She also made maja blanca to satisfy the pudding craving.

The rest of the afternoon was a calm and feathery conversation over whisky, flavored rum and beer. And when the mood was already set, we all decided to play pool at a sports club nearby.

I played a few games with my sister and with my fiancé. It has been a while since I shot the balls at the side pockets so I preferred to just sit and watch the masters play. A comforting hug, Tiger beer, and a seemingly bottomless cup of free nuts kept me company.

The day was filled with good food, a few spirits, beer, pool balls and most importantly good company. It was one of those occasions that gives you a light feeling which stubbornly clings on even after all the happiness-inducing substances has washed off. I don't mind if the rest of my birthdays are like this.

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