Thursday, January 03, 2008

Celebrating the New Year in Davao

I'm here in Davao City for the New Year. My uncle was very gracious to invite us to spend some quality time with the rest of the family which includes my 86 year old grandparents, 2 sets of aunts and uncles, 4 cousins, and a brand new niece. Although I visited Davao right before I moved to Malaysia, it has been years since I got to celebrate the holidays here. When I was a kid, we used to go to Davao every Christmas. And growing up was filled with fond memories of our "family reunions."

Although definitely "older," we were like our old selves still. We had the traditional dinner in the 27 year old dining table with Papa and Mama at the helm. Gone is children's table since we all fit in the big table now but all the jokes and food are the still very much the same. We went to Paradise Resort for our traditional trip to the beach and ate our ever favorite calamares (now with Beer on the side! haha). Tryke, Kaye, Ves, and I swam our hearts out in my favorite beach of all time. I discovered that I wasn't totally hopeless in swimming as I could actually float in the seawater. I made a pact with Kaye that next Christmas, I'm coming back for my diving lessons courtesy of my cousin the dive master.

New Year's eve we went to Merco to eat our favorite ice cream dessert. When we were young we used to dare each other in ordering the "choo choo train" their humongous dessert. Pippin was the one we successfully dared that time who actually vomitted after eating too much ice cream. Pippin was our baby cousin then. Now he's a college student (and now I feel old! hahaha). Ves and Mikko ordered their ever favorite chocolate parfait (our favorite) while Kaye had the banana boat (2 scoops of ice cream as compared to the three scoops that comes with the Banana split... kaya boat lang siya.). I on the other hand finally succumbed to my halohalo craving and ordered my most missed dessert. Merco was on a christmas sale and everything was either buy one take one or 50% off. So I partnered with tito mannie so that I dont have to eat two orders of halohalo (kundi goodluck my diet naman diba?).

This reunion introduced us to the newest baby of the Llaneza clan-- Kikay, Mikko's cute baby girl. I met kikay when she was just about a month old last year but now 1 year later, she's as bubbly as ever. She loves to dance and smile. She's afraid of statues and giant bears but once accustomed to them she warms up nicely. She enjoys being carried by me and we bonded over goats and our penchant for headbanging while giggling together.

Then there's Pips and Happy-- my uncle's two dogs. Pips is an overweight golden retriever whose so lazy because he's so big. Last night he was too lazy to come and greet us in the porch from his post in the garden that he would only wiggle his tail to acknowledge hearing his name when we called him. Happy on the hand is the datschund with ADHD. I think he was injected with anti depressants or uppers. He can jump all day and all night without ever tiring himself.

Tomorrow were going back to Samal.. And saturday we'll be back home...

Kamusta na kya sina olie and annie?

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